openEQUELLA Use Case - TAFE Queensland

TAFE Queensland (TQ) is a vocational education and training provider with over 120,000 learners enrolled in approximately 650 qualifications, courses and micro-credentials offered across 60 locations in the State and internationally. As a single entity operating across such a wide spectrum of geographic locations, reducing duplication by having a central repository of reusable teaching and learning resources was not a ‘nice-to-have’ - it was an imperative. Adopting openEQUELLA in 2007 and subsequently implementing an internal content management and quality control team has resulted in TQ being able to offer a high-quality, consistent student experience. For teachers, creating new courses and enhancing course content as new resources and assessments are developed has been significantly more efficient. 

openEQUELLA Use Case - TAFE Queensland

Key benefits

  • Quality control - Given the size of the organisation and the breadth of delivery, openEQUELLA gives TQ the ability to know that teachers across the state are using high-quality learning resources and compliant assessment. Students studying a qualification have a consistent student experience regardless of where they are located
  • Save time and duplicated effort - Rather than having to create from scratch every time, teachers can search for and access all course resources on openEQUELLA, even prior to their units being created in the LMS. This means they can spend more time preparing for classes rather than recreating materials that already exist
  • Content discoverability - The granular metadata profile of content makes finding exactly what teachers are looking for easy - especially as content is tagged to align to vocational codes. This is an important feature in an organisation with multiple contributing departments and collections containing content up in the tens of thousands

In their own words

Lee Webster, TAFE-Queensland

“openEquella has enabled TAFE Queensland to manage its vast catalogue of learning and assessment resources, aiding continuous improvement and ensuring that our teachers have ready access to high quality and compliant learning and assessment resources. As continuing changes in the workplace, adoption of new occupational technologies and the COVID-19 global pandemic have driven the need for learners to retrain or build new skills in emerging areas, openEQUELLA has been able to seamlessly support peer and industry collaborations that will see TQ remain a leader in the sector well into the future.”

- Lee Webster, Director Learning Technology Innovation and Services at TAFE Queensland

openEQUELLA stats

Year of Adoption 2007  
Used For Learning Resources and Assessments Copyright Management
  Product Licensing (External)  
Key Collections Immersive Technologies  
Other Integrations openEQUELLA Collections LMS Import/Export Tool

 

Origin story

Lee Webster, Director Learning Technology Innovation and Services at TAFE Queensland , was there from the start: “We were relatively early adopters of EQUELLA (as it was known then) as part of a combined effort to implement a learning management system (LMS) and learning content management system across 12 out of the 13 state-based TAFE institutions. “openEQUELLA forced us to stop and really think through how we wanted to set things up that would make sense with where the organisation was heading,” Webster continued.

Along with harvesting materials from multiple institutions into a central repository, the initial implementation included setting up a licenses collection so that they could more easily manage copyright compliance.

The jouney so far

Between 2013 and 2017, Queensland’s TAFE institutes were organised into six regions, and TQ was officially established as its own entity and consolidated their six regional registered training organisations (RTO) into a single RTO. “Pretty quickly, we realised that we needed to sort through some organisational challenges if we were going to make the most of what openEQUELLA offered,” said Lee Webster “We just hadn’t needed to consider up to that point how we were going to manage this increasing volume of digital content in a way that would align with the One TAFE Queensland approach,” she went on to say.

“openEQUELLA was instrumental in collecting and collating disaggregated content from several different LMSes and importing them into the new LMS. Content was siloed into the different systems and tied to regional courses. openEQUELLA enabled us to create a collection that contained quality assured content and assessment for use TQ-wide, including the packaged LMS course,” Webster elaborated.

Developing and agreeing on a set of e-Standards was central to the quality control strategy for Webster’s team. They started by setting up master product collections and a dedicated product development unit. “This immediately increased content sharing and reduced duplicated effort,” she explained. “More than that, with openEQUELLA, anyone accessing the content has a full picture of its lifecycle, including any licensing relating to the course, and assessment quality and compliance information. And as an administrator, we have visibility of review dates, requests and version information. We can run validation reports to check that the content meets our internal guidelines. At a glance, you’re ticking off regulation, quality and compliance issues,” she commented.

openEQUELLA’s workflow management capabilities also means that master products have a continuous feedback loop. “If something needs to be updated, it goes through a professional learning community of teachers to assess what needs to be changed, then the updated learning resources and assessments are contributed back into Resourcebank (the name given to openEQUELLA at TQ). This keeps TQ’s resources up-to-date and in line with industry expectations which just couldn’t happen without a central repository like openEQUELLA,” Webster said.

With TQ identifying the need for the development of a managed approach to the use of AR and VR in educational delivery across the organisation - openEQUELLA’s collaborative interoperability has become a central hub to their future strategies. Webster elaborates: “We’ve partnered with Aviation Australia to build and continue to develop a comprehensive MR collection. Aviation Australia have their own openEQUELLA and we’re able to bi-directionally harvest assets and share license information."

openEQUELLA’s role in TQ’s sharing economy doesn’t stop with Aviation Australia. According to Webster: “We’ve established a commercial collection that we share with other education institutions and industry partners.” She continues, “openEQUELLA enables us granular control of who and what other institutions can access, sharing key content information such as licensing and use.”

Next Steps

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