A £1.1m funding competition, seeking ideas for new learning technologies to support teachers and learners in meeting educational outcomes has been announced by minister for Further Education, Skills and Lifelong Learning, Matthew Hancock. The funding competition, ‘Learning Technologies: Design for Impact’ is to be run by the UK’s innovation agency, the Technology Strategy Board in partnership with the Department of Business Innovation and Skills, is seeking project ideas that will enable learners and educators to contribute to the design of learning technology products and services, helping to ensure that new products meet the real-world challenges faced in learning environments.
Matthew Hancock, minister for Further Education, Skills and Lifelong Learning said:
“Technology has the power to change education and drive up standards in the same way it has changed so many other parts of our lives. We want to encourage that change for the better. This education technology design competition will give small firms with new ideas for learning technologies the chance to turn them into a reality, by developing solutions which draw upon the expertise of teachers and learners.”
The competition specifically seeks to connect a wide range of professionals, from the design, technology, content provision and academic sectors, as well as seeking input from awarding bodies and other organisations, so that the latest practical research into pedagogy, technology and design can be brought to bear, alongside the abilities of those organisations with clear routes to market.
Paul Mason, Head of Development at the Technology Strategy Board said:
“This initiative is designed to put teachers and learners at the very heart of the design process. We want to encourage educators and students, whose insight is critical to the design of learning technologies that are fit for purpose and intuitive to use, to work with commercial organisations to push the learning technologies industry forward and ultimately, raise attainment”
From the applications received, the Technology Strategy Board will fund proposals of up to £80k to last up to six months for design studies into new learning technologies.