Renewed curriculum Open-ICT Highschool Utrecht: In conversation with Gert van Hardeveld

Published Categorised as News, regular-education

How nice that you wanted to make time to talk to us about what teaching looks like at the Open-ICT program, how it has changed, and how Scorion has helped with this. Could you perhaps introduce yourself and indicate what exactly you do in education?

My name is Gert van Hardeveld, started in education in 2007, worked in Technical Business Administration and then switched to ICT, where I have been working for about nine years now. Since working in education, I have struggled tremendously with the issue that not all my students were hanging on my every word during my lectures. I thought, how can I teach them something if they don’t get into a kind of active mode to participate so they absorb the material much better. So it didn’t feel very good what I was doing. So from the beginning I started experimenting with all kinds of teaching methods just to get the students involved.

I really tried everything to get the students to participate more actively but nothing really worked. Until I started turning the process around and asking the students what they actually want to learn and what they need to learn and if I started facilitating that then they got going. And that actually worked. Especially in project-driven teaching, this worked very well. So well that I figured out to just stop courses and exams and go full on the projects. All the material can be found on the Internet anyway so the role as an “expert” has been played out by now.

In year three with the Open Innovation specialization, we started trying this out. And I was amazed by the results, they worked harder, the enthusiasm was many times higher, the results I was amazed by. So I wanted to start doing this from year one. It seems we have really found the Holy Grail of education. If someone wants to learn something they have to be 100% motivated and want to learn something that you are passionate about, fits your background, your talents etc.

That sounds very good how work is now done within the ICT program. But how did you come to Scorion, why did you need this system?

Early last year, I had a conversation with a colleague about replacing the systems we were using. In fact, we were using four different systems to gain insight into student development. We were running into the limits of what these systems could do, and we were missing overviews across all of them. I also didn’t have the right information to be able to guarantee it to the Examination Board and make this insightful to them so that what the students were doing was actually enough to make them pass the course.

I was then shown Scorion and this was exactly what we need. After all, Scorion is a “black box. A system that we can set up ourselves. Namely, we need certain overviews in dashboards, such as the content competence development and development over skills. Then we could calculate this back to the beginning, how do we get that data? Data collection in a form, which gets validated along the way, which then gets validated in the dashboard. Scorion is the perfect “low-code solution.

Can you give some examples of what the Scorion implementation for HBO-ICT looks like?

I can tell that but of course I can also just show it!

What is the main result you achieved with Scorion?

Rest, especially rest I have now. We really got our ‘act together’ here at Open-ICT. For the exam board, for students, for teachers.

Scorion is exactly what we were looking for, we are missing almost nothing at this point. We still do make changes, we are still learning every day how it all works. We have rewritten the code quite a lot to make it more manageable. But we don’t mind that, of course we are a training with techies and they just like to make everything as efficient as possible. With this we now have a very fine setup that we can use for years to come.

The students are also happy with Scorion?

The students tell me that they are so happy with Scorion because they can see for themselves whether they are delivering enough data points. So they can monitor their own trajectory, whether they are on track and whether the data points are of sufficient level. So the students are much more able to take the lead in this. In addition, it is much easier to work in one system than in the four systems we worked in before. After all, programmers only want to program, so reducing the amount of administration is something they really like.

And all the parts of the artifacts you saw in the demo are standard parts of the Scrum process. Also in Scrum practice, at the end of two weeks you have to have your code reviewed by a peer before you can merge it into the branch. At the end, you also always do a retro in which you look back. With Scrum you also do a daily; we just added a check-in to this to capture it. The tasks we ask for are almost all tasks that students will encounter later in practice.

Lastly, the final assessment has now become much more efficient. During an educational period, students have already submitted all the necessary evidence and had it validated by all kinds of stakeholders. This makes it clear per skill how the student has done and can interpret his level and in the assessment conversation we can quickly go through this and have the real conversation. Like what is the student proud of, what would they do differently next time and what would they want to learn in the next period.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *