Appendix 1

Key Skills in Geography in Higher Education: Dissemination Strategy


This document presents the Dissemination Strategy for the Key Skills in Geography in Higher Education project. The principal aim of the project is to develop and disseminate models of good practice for the embedding of key skills in the Higher Education curriculum, with specific reference to the discipline of geography.

 

Purpose

According to the DfEE Higher Education and Employment Division (HEQE) (A Guide to Dissemination, May 1998) the main purpose of dissemination is: to ensure that relevant audiences understand what was done, and how they might use the lessons to meet their own needs. A dissemination strategy is a way of describing how this is to be achieved, and can:

 

Who are the audiences?

The principal audiences which this project is devised to benefit are:

Several other audiences should also benefit from the outcomes of the project including:

 

What do we want them to understand?

Staff in geography and related disciplines in HEIs:

Students taking geography and related disciplines in HEIs:

Professional bodies representing geographers:

Educational developers and careers officers who advise geography staff and students:

Employers of geography graduates:

DfEE HEQE and others interested in the development of key skills in HE, including those in the DfEE Key Skills Network:

 

What action might they take as a result?

Staff in geography and related disciplines in HEIs:

Students taking geography and related disciplines in HEIs:

Professional bodies representing geographers:

Educational developers and careers officers who advise geography staff and students:

Employers of geography graduates:

DfEE HEQE and others interested in the development of key skills in HE, including those in the DfEE Key Skills Network:

 

How does the project relate to their interests, circumstances and current understanding?

Staff in geography and related disciplines in HEIs:

Students taking geography and related disciplines in HEIs:

Professional bodies representing geographers:

Educational developers and careers officers who advise geography staff and students:

Employers of geography graduates:

DfEE HEQE and others interested in the development of key skills in HE, including those in the DfEE Key Skills Network:

 

What approaches to dissemination do we plan to use, how and when?

Staff in geography and related disciplines in HEIs:

Students taking geography and related disciplines in HEIs:

Professional bodies representing geographers:

Educational developers and careers officers who advise geography staff and students:

Employers of geography graduates:

DfEE HEQE and others interested in the development of key skills in HE, including those in the DfEE Key Skills Network:

 

Challenges

Given the variety of groups potentially interested in the project we shall need to tailor some of our dissemination to their needs. This may effectively be done by providing a range of Executive Summary documents aimed at different audiences.

Much of our dissemination strategy is concerned with making various groups aware of what we are doing and the guides and reports we produce. Persuading the groups to take up the ideas and implement and act upon them is much more difficult. In other words the challenge is to disseminate the change processes.

There are some things which the project can do to promote change, for example, through providing change agents in departments with the information about good practices and ways of implementing them within the geography curriculum (through the guides, national conferences and workshops); and tailoring workshops to the issues concerning key skills facing particular departments to help them implement changes within the contexts and constraints in which they operate, these in turn can provide case studies for other departments to learn from.

There are other things which groups beyond the project team are better placed to implement. For example, persuading senior management about the desirability of establishing and implementing key skills policies is better done at the level of the DfEE and professional associations representing educational developers, careers officers and employers.


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