Best Practices in using Technological Infrastructures

Howson, Oliver; Adeliyi, Adeola; Willis, Alistair; Hirst, Tony; Charlton, Patricia; Gooch, Daniel; Rosewell, Jonathan; Richards, Mike; Wermelinger, Michel; Piwek, Paul; Savage, Simon; Lowndes, Charly; Thomas, Elaine and Smith, Andrew (2020). Best Practices in using Technological Infrastructures. The Institute of Coding.


This report follows on from the D1.2.5 report on the IoC Common Curricula and aims to provide an overview of how an agreed Institute of Code infrastructure has been, or is being, deployed for student benefit to enhance their industrial readiness.

The report consists of a number of case studies of investigations and activities which have been carried out or are underway within the Open University, primarily within the school of Computing and Communications. As such the focus is within the Higher Education sector, with a number of the case studies hinging upon the Jupyter infrastructure covered in the preceding report.

Due to the continually changing nature of the infrastructures available, and the developing nature of the work underway, this document is a snapshot at time of writing and it is expected that the document will need to be updated over time to maintain relevance.

In the D1.2.5 report we described the gap in digital skills. The Institute of Coding was set up by the UK government, through the office for students, to tackle this gap. Part of this challenge is in increasing the digital capabilities of learners by developing hardware infrastructure, software infrastructure, and pedagogical infrastructure, which will prepare them for industry and support other work streams within the IoC such as the accreditation of competency in recognising this readiness.

The D1.2.5 report was primarily an investigation into the affordances offered by a Jupyter ecosystem centric infrastructure and the hardware infrastructure needed to support that. Many of these lessons are being applied to the work done in TM351 (case study 2.2). However, many other projects within the Open University have also, often with IoC support, been investigating opportunities to develop or stretch physical, software or pedagogical infrastructure to promote the efficacy of learning, the diversity of audience and to increase the industry- readiness of the learner. Some of these projects are detailed in the following cases studies.

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