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Laser Short Courses 2019 CPD short courses update

CPD Short Courses Update

Our content team continue to work closely with subject specialists to create new Laser CPD courses, and last year our courses were nominated for two awards.

Skills, knowledge, and confidence delivered online.

Laser Short Courses awards nominations
Laser Short Courses awards nominations

New courses for 2019

Developing learning resources Laser Short Courses teaching CPD course.

Developing learning resources (Teaching)

This course will help teachers and teaching assistants to create, find, and adapt learning resources for different learning styles and needs. Learn about copyright for education and sharing resources online. Explore digital technology in the classroom and creating sustainable resources. Know how to prepare for different learning needs, such as EAL and SEN.

Dyslexia Laser Short Courses teaching CPD course.

Dyslexia (Childcare and Teaching)

Dyslexia is a common learning difficulty and dyslexic learners face problems when processing words into meaningful information, but that doesn’t mean it’s a barrier to being skilled and achieving well in education. With about 10% of the UK population with some degree of dyslexia, it’s likely you will be supporting dyslexic learners. Learn how the condition affects children and young people, signs and symptoms, the importance of early identification, and teaching strategies. This course is suitable for early years practitioners and educators in primary school, secondary school, and further education.

Dyspraxia Laser Short Courses CPD course.

Dyspraxia (Childcare and Teaching)

Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD), also known as Dyspraxia, is a lifelong condition affecting movement coordinating. It’s a common motor disorder, with approx. 5% of children in the UK having some degree of dyspraxia, and it often isn’t diagnosed until adulthood. Learn about the disorder, symptoms and early identification, the assessment process, and how to support dyspraxics in a learning environment.

Invigilating tests and exams Laser Short courses CPD course.

Invigilating tests and examinations (Teaching)

The key role of an invigilator is to ensure the integrity of the examination process. Learn about the roles and responsibilities of an invigilator, the requirements of the Joint Council for Qualifications , access arrangements, and what to do if malpractice is suspected.

Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements (MAPPA) Laser Short Courses CPD course.

Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements (MAPPA) (Care)

Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements (MAPPA) is the process through which various agencies work together to protect the public by managing the risks posed by violent and sexual offenders living in the community. Working in care, you may be providing support to offenders and be included in their risk management plans. MAPPA is a part of safeguarding and this course will help you understand the process and aims, and what to do if you have concerns.

Working in partnership Laser Short Courses teaching CPD course.

Working in partnership (Teaching and Childcare)

Many people are involved in the care a child receives. Primary carers, childcare practitioners, and other professionals should be working in partnership to support a child’s learning and development. Understand the importance of partnership, barriers to effective teamwork and communication, and how to work with external agencies and professionals.

The role of the SENCo Laser Short Courses childcare CPD course.

The role of the SENCo (Childcare)

This short course is suitable for a SENCo in an early years setting, or a practitioner who is working towards the role. Learn about the role and responsibilities of the SENCo, early identification and intervention, strategies for supporting children and their families, and the guidance and legislation relevant to SEND. This course is also suitable for childminders and parents/carers who want to learn more about special education provision in England.

Laser Learning Blended Learning for Students

Consider the student: blended learning

From the keynote speech by Laser Systems Director, Vivette Eaton

Dubai, June 25th 2019

What do we mean by blended learning?

I see blended learning as a three-pronged approach.

  1. Face-to-face teaching
  2. Independent, online learning
  3. Workplace practice, shadowing, and experience

Even in 2019, we are still working with ‘traditional’ methods of teaching. In most countries, education is a set of mandatory requirements and sweeping expectations.

  • Core subjects to be taught are set by the Government
  • Hours students must be in an education establishment are set
  • The emphasis on subjects is set, for example, students will find maths prioritised over music even if this doesn’t make the most of their talents
  • How students can present evidence of learning, knowledge, skills, and achievement is set

These requirements are in place to give the impression of equality, ensuring all students are working to the same expectations.

While there may be a slight difference in teacher style, most young children are learning the same core subjects in a similar learning environment. More than anything, access to funding and resources are what will make the biggest difference to how students are taught, which can often leave some students at an advantage or disadvantage compared to those in other learning establishments.

Teaching students in the same way with the same emphasis on subjects doesn’t account for individual needs or individual taste. It’s important students are given equal access to education and can be taught the same subjects, but teaching in a classroom environment with written assignments for example, will always disadvantage those who don’t enjoy the classroom experience and struggle with written classwork.

It can also mean that students who show a passion and talent for certain aspects of learning or particular subject areas will not be given the opportunity to nurture this from a young age as the education structure favours the status quo.

How can on learning environment suit a group of 30 students?

We know it isn’t possible.

Students, particularly in schools, are grouped according to location and age over everything else. There is no consideration as to whether, as a group, the learning environment will meet their needs.

Even the school day is designed like a work day. This prepares students for a life of work but doesn’t consider how they might learn best. If a student struggles in the morning but learns better after lunch, is consideration given to how their learning is delivered to address this?

How can we ensure we give students the best possible learning experience, giving them the skills, knowledge, and confidence to excel in later life?

We need to meet their individual needs, but not simply the superficial needs. Every student should be given the same opportunities to reach their full potential.

For example, we know from research that teenagers need more sleep than any other age group. Research published in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience in December 2017, found that student absence due to illnesses dropped by over 50 percent with a 10am school start for children between the ages of 13 and 16. This is a significant change at 50 percent and a permanent change to school start times for teenagers could see a huge improvement in attendance as well as overall achievement.

As educators, we must facilitate our students to achieve their goals. This means:

  • Meeting someone where they are
  • Choosing methods of learning that suit their personality and needs
  • Being flexible and adaptable
  • Giving a range of varied resources to learn and practice
  • Valuing initial assessments while also understanding that needs change

We should priorities the things young people need:

  • Independence
  • Respect
  • Options
  • Confidence
  • Positive, trustworthy relationships
  • To look forward to their future

We can become facilitators of this by allowing students to take responsibility for themselves and their learning while giving them the support and guidance they need. Let them tell us what they need and how they learn best. We need to listen and adapt, but as educators we firstly need the funding, time, and resources to do this.

However, we don’t need resources to listen or to flip the classroom and use this format for sharing, understanding, and clarifying. We can encourage learning outside the classroom and gain experience from real life involvement.

Let the classroom be the place students ask questions because they have read things, been told things, discovered things, but haven’t yet seen these things in action.

Similarly, it is important that the time students do spend in face-to-face teaching is:

  • Informative
  • Collaborative
  • Organic
  • Engaging for all students by incorporating a range of teaching styles

In an article published in EduTopia in 2015, they stated:

“According to findings culled from five meta-analyses, blending technology with face-to-face teacher time generally produces better outcomes than face-to-face or online learning alone. An analysis of effective technology use for at-risk students found that simply replacing teachers with computer-based instruction typically yields no learning benefits. Rather, blending technology with teachers to support interactive learning, exploration, and creation leads to higher engagement and learning gains.”

Blended learning allows greater equality, diversity, and representation:

  • Consider the student who lives with a carer rather than a parent
  • Consider the student who is learning in a second language
  • Consider the student who is from a minority background
  • Consider the student who is from a disadvantaged background
  • Consider the student with a physical disability
  • Consider the student with a learning difficulty
  • Consider the student who is unwell

Whether it’s needing extra time, needing access to learning in a specific format, allowing for a wider variety of inclusive examples, or giving students the option to return to sections of learning at any time, blended learning including online learning makes all this possible.

The results reported in the 2018 Educational Technology Journal research article, ‘Blended learning: the new normal and emerging technologies’, found that blending maintains or increases access for most students and produces improved success rates for minority and non-minority students alike. In addition, students expressed they believed the most effective learning environment was a blended learning environment.

Giving students a truly flexible, blended learning approach to learning would include:

  • Face-to-face teaching
  • Peer group collaboration
  • Online learning resources accessed in and out of the classroom
  • Flexible approaches to teaching – not expecting a one-size fits all attitude to give the best possible experience to al learners
  • Regular feedback from students about their own experience and adapting learning where possible
  • Workplace experience or hands-on experience to put learning into context and further develop life skills

The 2018 ‘Teaching with Technology Survey’ which questioned 161 faculty members in the US about their experiences using technology in the classroom found 73% said technology made their job easier or much easier, and 87% said technology has positively affected their ability to teach.

Online learning was initially widely frowned upon, despite offering important opportunities and support to students who were previously struggling to learn. It’s vital we continue to be open to what might be possible tomorrow and not just what we can accept today.

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Laser Learning Next Generation Laser Launch Event

A Successful Launch Event: London, Leeds, and Dubai

Laser Learning have been helping education and training providers to deliver apprenticeships, workplace learning, and qualifications using the signature Laser e-portfolio and digital learning resources since 2008. We have seen a multitude of changes in this time, everything from a fear of online evidence capture, increased funding, and decreased funding, to the world transitioning from paper, pens, textbooks into hand-held, mobile learning on a digital device.

Since 2008, we have been working to create the best possible learning experiences for our learners as well as an intuitive and friendly user experience for every Laser user.

Over the past year our development team have been working on the Next Generation Laser, a new and improved Laser e-portfolio and virtual learning environment (VLE) which continues to provide audit compliant, flexible, engaging learning while improving on usability and adding new features to further improve the experience for all Laser users.

It was a pleasure to launch the Next Generation Laser on 25th June 2019 with a preview of the new system for our clients.

Our launch was three separate events held simultaneously in London, Leeds, and Dubai. We were very lucky to be joined by three keynote speakers, one in each location, who were linked to the other venues via live link to give their speech.

  • Sir Christopher Ball – The Pillars of Good Education
  • Julie Hyde (Director, CACHE) – The Qualification Pathway
  • Sarah Rogers (CEO, EYES) – Considering the Effects of Globalization on Teacher Training

On top of this, we invited BBC’s Kevin Duala to compere for the event. It was wonderful to hear his take on the education landscape and how digital learning would have made such a difference to his school experience.

The Next Generation Laser will launch properly in September 2019 but we are already booking demonstrations of the system and are more than happy to discuss what the system has to offer. Please get in touch to speak to one of our team or to book a demonstration.

Additionally, we will be running information days about the Next Generation Laser and our digital learning resources for qualifications from September. If you would like to register your interest for one of these information days please also send us an email using the contact form on the website.

It gives me great pride to have been at the heart of Laser Systems for over a decade, and I am delighted to share with you The Next Generation Laser: an e-portfolio and virtual learning environment for life-long, digital learning.”

Matt Eaton, Lead Programmer

The Next Generation Laser Launch

London   Leeds   Dubai

Join us at simultaneous events in London, Leeds, and Dubai on Tuesday 25 June 2019 for the launch of the Next Generation Laser e-portfolio and virtual learning environment.

We will be live at venues in London, Leeds, and Dubai with three keynote speakers to discuss the evolution of digital learning in the further education sector, and how those working to develop life-long learning and skills are making a crucial difference across the globe.

The event will be hosted by The One Show’s Kevin Duala who has been bringing our digital learning resources to life for the past five years.

Author of the 1994 Royal Society of Arts commissioned report, ‘Start Right: The Importance of Early Learning’, Sir Christopher has been crucial to the development of the Laser since it’s conception back in 2008.

Sir Christopher was a guide to Laser Learning Directors when they began with just a vision of flexible and accessible online learning for early years staff, and has been a constant supporter of our work ever since.

Currently, Sir Christopher is promoting his book Early Childhood Education Redefined, which evaluates the impact of the Start Right: The Importance of Early Learning (RSA, 1994) report with research from a collaboration of early years specialists and academics, including Professor Pat Preedy.

CACHE Director, Julie Hyde

Julie has over 10 years’ experience of management in the childcare and education sector. Julie spent 12 years prior to this gaining commercial sales and training experience working in industry as a Regional then National Account Manager.

Julie joined CACHE in 2010 as Northern Regional Manager and in 2011 was appointed Senior National Development Manager. In 2013 she was promoted to Director of Business Development where she directed the development of high quality vocational qualifications in care, health and education for learners and employers; improving the skills level and professional standards of the childcare, adult care, education and health care workforce. Julie is now the Director of CACHE.

In Julie’s role as Director of CACHE, she led on the recent Save Our Early Years campaign which resulted in the government reinstating Functional Skills as an alternative qualification for Level 3 Early Years Educators. 

Sarah is the CEO and founder of EYES and Quest. With over 25 years experience of working within the education sector at senior level in the UK and overseas, Sarah set up EYES and later Quest in order to support and promote the quality of education in both the early years and primary sectors.

As well as carrying out the important day to day tasks of running a company, Sarah is very much a hands-on, proactive CEO. She regularly guest speaks at important educational events and conferences around the region, she also delivers a number of CPD courses.

London   Leeds   Dubai

Laser Learning Learners are at the Heart of what we do

Putting Learners at the Heart of what we do

It was a pleasure to be guests at the e-Assessment Awards dinner on Wednesday in London. We were delighted to find out Laser Learning had been selected as a finalist in the Export to Excellence category last month and now had the chance to celebrate the best of innovation in the sector with other e-assessment champions.

Laser Learning e-Assessment Awards 2019 Finalists

Chairman, Matt Wingfield commented that this year had seen a much stronger focus on the needs of the learner alongside using e-assessment to improve outcomes for learners. This has been at the heart of what we do since the very beginning, and it was an honour to be one of the businesses included in this statement.

In 2019 we have further developments to share, all of which we have created to fully support learners and staff using the Laser, but also to ensure the best possible learning journey for each individual learner.

If you would like to know more about our Laser e-portfolio and virtual learning environment, as well as our range of digital learning resources please don’t hesitate to get in touch.