In order to curb the spreading of Coronavirus pandemic, on 16 March 2020, the Finnish government decided to put the Emergency Powers Act into force. People are recommended to work from home if possible. All universities and schools (excluding the kindergartens and 1 – 3 grades of primary schools) across the country are closed till further notice. Starting from 18 March 2020, many universities and schools move to online teaching. The communication and collaboration among teachers regarding curriculum design, planning and arrangements are done online too. Thanks to the comprehensive infrastructure including internet, and the popularity of digital pedagogies and digital campuses, in my opinion, these changes have been tackled relatively smoothly .
Working from home, online teaching, and distance learning are quite common in my university – Häme University of Applied Sciences (HAMK), especially in the department where I work – Global Education. My department is responsible for providing research-based initial and continuous professional teacher education in higher education, vocational education and early childhood education across the globe and helping different countries implement digital strategies. As our clients are from various countries all over the world, our delivery modes of continuous teacher training are very flexible. In addition to the traditional face-to-face training conducted in Finland or in the client’s country, according to the actual needs of our clients, the delivery modes include online programme and blended programme, i.e., face-to-face classes plus online lessons. For different modes of delivery, please visit: https://www.hamk.fi/global-education/?lang=en#online-program
As the new competence required in the 21st century, digital capability, particularly digital pedagogies, has become even more prominent during this unprecedented Coronavirus pandemic. How to apply the innovative digital pedagogies? How to effectively motivate the online students to study proactively? How to use various digital pedagogical tools to ensure teaching quality, efficiency and fun? How to collaborate online with colleagues in curriculum design, planning, evaluation? How to manage the online education according to the standards? All these are the actual problems encountered by many schools and teachers while teaching online.
As the pioneer in online pedagogies, our university’s Global Education and HAMK Edu Research Center, which focuses on learning solutions and digital capabilities, would like to share with universities and schools all over the world including China our suggestions and experience accumulated for years in digital pedagogies.