Module 5 Assignment Proposal Debs Initial Thoughts …

Ok, I have been coming up with lots of random seeds of ideas for the assignment, a lot of these have centred around conducting interviews but I  am really busy at work at the moment and am concerned about the timescale with interviewing, transcription etc and therefore I have a feeling that they are all far too involved to get done in the timeframe.

So in an ideal world, I would like to be able to draw on data that is already ‘ out there ‘ so to speak? I haven’t done anything like that so I think that would also be useful. So with all of this in mind, I think what I would like to do is to   “analyse how online spaces are shaped by culture” (borrowing this sentence verbatim from our tutor Murat 🙂 )

So narrowing down my random thoughts,  leaves me with the following options …

  1. How are are the SALT online spaces shaped by culture ? Should I look at just our main generic online space …. Ie the SALT web pages  or something specific like our conference website and look at how that is shaped by culture – would I need to also include our social media accounts ( but that might be too much)
  2. How can blogging and / or  open practice facilitate professional development and does this develop intercultural understanding and necessary skills ? (thanks to maria for that suggestion ! ) How do I select the blogs ?  To keep it small enough perhaps I should I look at those that have interacted with our SALT departmental blog ? Slight reseverations about this is that I dont really think we have a well developed blogging culture at Swansea so I may not get enough data ?
  3. How can intercultural understanding and skills be developed through technology-enhanced learning ? I was thinking of analysing how we address interculturality in our professional development programme at SALT ?  We have for example a module on Inclusive Practices so I could analyse that ?

One of the immediate things that springs to mind for our departmental online spaces is the bilingual element and the requirement to translate certain parts of the website into Welsh ( although acknowledging, of course, that language is just a part of culture etc ) so that clearly shapes some ( but not all)  of the content.

I think what I am really looking at whichever one I do is probably some sort of content analysis ( which I havent done before so all tips gratefully received !) but I would need to use one of the frameworks that we have come across in the course as a basis for the analysis? Does that sound approporiate ?

I did find some stuff on Blog Analysis here

I have also come across suggestions for evaluating websites from a multicultural perspective from Paul Gorski

Well, that’s the state of my brain at the moment … it may all change …



Module 5 Final Project Ideas

Guidance from Tutor

.. I would like to see you use the theories and concepts introduced in this module for analyzing particular situations in which you work our study. Overall, what is requested in the final paper is to analyze a situation or a phenomenon in relation to globalism or multiculturalism. And because the module is in the TEL program, technology should be part of the final paper. An example could be to look at the impact of technology and analyze whether it perpetuates certain cultural inequalities, or whether it helps with providing some remedy to the current problems we have. Or another example could be to analyze how online/distance spaces teaching/ learning practices are shaped by culture.

I have had lots of random thoughts about this next assignment but am still behind in my reading so I’m starting to panic a bit about time ..

Here are my random thoughts …

  1. Can blogging facilitate continuing professional development and develop intercultural understanding and skills ? I could perhaps use our departmental SALT Community Blog  Can I do a content analysis for this ( what framework to use for this ? ) Action Research ?  Or – analysing the blog posts ( anonomised ) to ascertain levels of intercultural competence ?
  2. How is the SALT ( our department)  online space shaped by culture?  or 
  3. How is the SALT Conference Online space shaped by culture ?
  4. Analyse perceptions / awareness of the various multicultural frameworks ? ( see study by Potts)
  5. What are learning technologists perspectives on interculturality within SALT ?
  6. How can we improve the knowledge and awareness of multiculturalism and interculturality within SALT ? ( See Murray)
  7. Cultural Competency ? or should that be Intercultural Competency and Professional Staff Development ? How can intercultural competency improve cross faculty communication ?
  8. Inclusivity CPD Module How is multiculturalism understood on the inclusivity module and what impact does studying have on academic understanding of interculturalism?
  9.  Investigate implementation of Open Digital Badges for the Inclusivity Patch and whether or not culture shapes their adoption ?
  10. How is open practice shaped by culture ?
  11. How is blogging shaped by culture ?
  12. How can intercultural skills and understanding be developed through technology enhanced learning ? 
  13. I was thinking that I could even perhaps look specifically at initiatives like virtually connecting ? Actually I quite like the idea of looking at virtually connecting in the context of conferencing etc but not sure if I could do this for this assignment ? Needs more thinking about …

I seem to have lots of ideas but the problem is most of these seemto be quite involved and possibly will have too many ethics hurdles to leap, plus the fact that I just don’t think I will have enough time to get through most of them given that the first draft is due in on the 27 November.

Module 5 Schedule

Activity / Assignment Date
Discussion October 2 – October 29
Ethics October 30
Optional Early Draft October 30
Research & Write Up October 30 – November 26
Optional Discussion October 30 – November 26
Draft Submission November 27
Peer & Tutor Feedback December 11
Revisions & Final Paper Submission December 19
Module Evaluation December 18

Soo, I think what I need to do is take this sentence from my tutor which is to ” analyse how online spaces are shaped by culture“. In which case I have three choices a) to take blogging as my focus ( a gem of an idea suggested to me by my lovely peer Maria ) and b) to take our SALT Departmental Space as a focus … so I think this narrows my choices down to …

  1. How can blogging and / or  open practice facilitate professional development and does this develop intercultural understanding and necessary skills ? Which Blogs should I look at ? We have a departmental blog within our website that might be applicable
  2. How are ( is)  the SALT online spaces (space) shaped by culture ? Should I look at just our generic online space …. Ie the SALT web pages  and / or something specific  like our conference website and look at how that is shaped by culture
  3. How can intercultural understanding and skills be developed through technology-enhanced learning ?


Whichever way I go I then I still need a framework and process within which to conduct the analysis and identify which parts to concentrate on as it will be too big to consider all of the online spaces ?.

Methodology ? Discourse Analysis ? Content Analysis ? What else could I use ?

Desk Based Study ? or  would I need to /  could ask for volunteers from my network to see if I could analyse their blogs ? Ideally I would like to interview but I really don’t think I will have time for that … I could ask them to point me to any relevant blog posts that might be good to analyse ?

Think I am in need to a gin and some chocolate ….

Articles on Blog Analysis

Paul Gorski’s work seems very relevant

Search Criteria

qualitative content analysis AND online AND Multiculturalism AND Staff Development AND Higher Education

Articles 2015-2017 Article