Franklin Consulting 

Mark van Harmelen and I recently wrote a report on "Web 2.0 for Content for
Learning and Teaching in Higher Education" which can be found at
ject_web2_and_policy.aspx (or

JISC has responded to our recommendations, and I have commented on these.
Neil Jacobs has asked me to post them here for comment.

The recommendations are in blue; JISC's response in black and italic and my
comments in red.  (Hopefully it is clear which is which if you receive this
as plain text).

Summary of JISC response to the recommendations in the 2007 report 'Web 2.0
for Content for Learning and Teaching in
Higher Education', by Tom Franklin and Mark van Harmelen
<outbind://10/#_ftn1> [1].

JISC welcomes this timely and well-researched report, which offers some
useful pointers in a rapidly emerging field.  This document outlines some
responses by JISC to the recommendations in the report, and has been written
both to let the community know what JISC is doing and planning in this area,
and to stimulate further discussion.  In each case, JISC's response (if any)
is given in italic after the appropriate recommendation.  For easy access,
recommendation numbering refers to recommendation ordering in the report.

Recommendation 1: Guidelines should not be so prescriptive as to stifle the
experimentation that is needed with Web 2.0 and learning and teaching that
is necessary to take full advantage of the possibilities offered by this new

JISC endorses this approach.




Recommendation 4: JISC should consider funding work looking at long-term
access to student created content once they have left the university with
the aim of developing good practice guides.

JISC is currently funding a survey of institutional retention policies in HE
and FE <outbind://10/#_ftn2> [2], with respect to elearning materials.  Any
further JISC work in this area would build on the report from that survey,
which is due September 2007.

Correct URL in footnote is

From the page I am not sure what this project covers, but I suspect it is
looking at learning materials provided by colleges and universities.  What
we were concerned about is the material produced by the student.  (I guess
that realistically this comes in at least three forms:

.         Content in the VLE (mostly Web 1.0 and outside our remit)

.         Content in their e-portfolio

.         Web 2.0 content such as personal blogs, wiki pages that they have
created (either as part of their study, or just for fun).


Recommendation 6: JISC should consider funding a study to look at how
repositories can be used to provide end-user (i.e. referrer) archiving
services for material that is referenced in academic published material,
including Internet journal papers. Part of this consideration should extend
to copyright issues.

This is an ambitious goal bearing in mind, for example, the technical and
legal challenges.  JISC has funded some work that may lay the foundations
for this goal, such as a project to identify the significant properties
<outbind://10/#_ftn3> [3] of elearning materials (what needs to be preserved
for them to remain useful), and has a stake in the UK Web Archiving
Consortium <outbind://10/#_ftn4> [4].  JISC Legal <outbind://10/#_ftn5> [5]
can offer advice on the copyright issues.  As the report notes, wikis offer
reasonable versioning and roll-back functionality.

The issue, as I see it - and Mark may have a different perspective, is that
users refer to artefacts on the web, but these artefacts may be changing.
How can someone know what they learner was referring to? Is it appropriate
to take a "snapshot" of the artefact as evidence of what was being referred
to? If so what are the issues - both legal and technical?


Recommendation 17: JISC should consider commissioning studies to explore i)
the accessibility issues of various commonly used Web 2.0 technologies, and
how any limits can be overcome, and ii) case studies on how Web 2.0
technologies can enhance accessibility.

JISC and TechDis <outbind://10/#_ftn6> [6] are in discussions relating to
guidance for the sector in this area.




Learning and teaching

Recommendation 2: JISC should consider funding projects investigating how
institutional repositories can be made more accessible for learning and
teaching through the use of Web 2.0 technologies, including tagging,
folksonomies and social software.

JISC endorses this ambition, has included relevant sections in recent calls
for proposals, as a result has funded projects in this area (for example,
SPIRE <outbind://10/#_ftn7> [7], Rich Tags <outbind://10/#_ftn8> [8], PROWE
<outbind://10/#_ftn9> [9]), and will continue to do so.



Recommendation 10: JISC should consider funding experiments with new forms
of teaching that utilise Web 2.0 systems, and should consider funding the
development of new Web 2.0 tools specifically for the educational domain,
including those that allow pedagogic experimentation.

JISC endorses this approach, and will hope to take forward work in this area
within the 'e-learning' <outbind://10/#_ftn10> [10] and 'Users and
Innovation' <outbind://10/#_ftn11> [11] programmes.



Recommendation 11: JISC should consider funding research, and build up a
bank of case studies, on how Web 2.0 impacts pedagogy.  This should include
the impact of implementing these technologies on institutions, teaching
staff, support staff and students.

Relevant work has already been undertaken (for example, in the Digital
Libraries in the Classroom programme <outbind://10/#_ftn12> [12] and in the
Learner Experiences studies <outbind://10/#_ftn13> [13]).  However, there
might also be value in assessing how case studies are effectively used to
inform and promote change in institutions.  Furthermore, any case studies
involving Web2.0 technologies should be commissioned and treated in the same
way as other case studies, focusing on the pedagogic practice rather than
the technology.

I agree that the focus needs to be on the pedagogic practices.  However, it
is important to note the widespread belief that Web 2.0 technologies are
likely to have a marked impact on pedagogic practice and that it is
therefore worth considering how they will create new types of practice.  It
may therefore not be possible to tackle this from the direction of practice
(it barely exists yet), and may be appropriate to explore the potential
forms of practice that are being opened up, that build on the theories of
eg. Vygotsky.


Recommendation 12: JISC should urgently consider funding work that looks in
detail at problems in the assessment of group work that uses Web 2.0 tools.

Relevant work may be in scope under future calls for proposals in the
e-learning programme, but may need to recognise that the focus would be on
established questions and practices relating to pedagogy and assessment,
rather than specifically on Web2.0 technologies.

We believe that there are issues that specifically pertain to Web 2.0 that
institutions need to engage with as a matter of urgency if they are not
either going to block Web 2.0 as being too problematic for assessment or be
overwhelmed.  These include:

.         Attribution of effort in a Web 2.0 projects.  For instance, while
it may - in theory - be deducible by tracing through all the changes in a
wiki that would be extraordinarily time consuming for the marker.

.         Making it coherent.  The work might be in a number of different
technologies and places (blogs, wikis, facebook, youtube etc. etc. what are
appropriate ways of bringing this together that support the learning of the
student, and the work of an assessor?

.         Contribution to others work.  Students can contribute (and
potentially be assessed for) their contributions on other people's wikis,
blogs, flikr images, facebook etc. etc.  Bringing all this together would be
impossible for the assessor and very time consuming for the student.  It
might also mean reading / looking at / watching / listening to vast swathes
of "stuff" in order to understand the (value of the) contributions.

We think that these, and similar issues, need to be investigated and widely
discussed as a matter of urgency.  There is a danger of Web 2.0 being banned
as too problematic or of putting great strain on assessors who want to
support their students and have to put too much effort in.

We believe that a small amount of effort by JISC now could have enormous
return on investment in terms of saved time within institutions. 


Recommendation 14: JISC should consider funding projects to develop a range
of assessment methods suitable for application in the context of developing
Web 2.0 pedagogies. This might be in the context of a larger programme
encompassing pedagogies, assessment methods and Web 2.0 tools for learning,
teaching and assessment.

See (12), above.


Recommendation 18: JISC, possibly in conjunction with the Higher Education
Academy and QAA, should produce briefings and advice for validating bodies
on the implications of Web 2.0 for learning, teaching and especially for
assessment that can inform their work.  This advice would have to be kept up
to date.

JISC will consider this further, although the principles of good practice
are the same regardless of technology.

At some levels the principles, of course, remain the same.  However as
suggested in the report, and previous comments here, there are differences
that Web 2.0 will foster particularly relating to the distributed nature of
students' contributions and the way in which work can be built up
simultaneously collaboratively and independently.  Advice, and practice,
needs to reflect  the changed environment.




Recommendation 3: JISC should consider funding work looking at the legal
aspects of ownership and IPR, including responsibility for infringements in
terms of IPR, with the aim of developing good practice guides to support
open creation and re-use of material.

There is a good basis already built for this work, such as proposed, current
and recent projects undertaken by JISC Legal and the JISC IPR Consultancy
<outbind://10/#_ftn14> [14], for example focusing on student-created
content.  Further work has now been commissioned looking specifically at IPR
and copyright issues.



Recommendation 5: JISC should consider organising a workshop to look at
forms of moderation (including peer moderation) and control of Web 2.0
content, with the aim of providing institutions with practical advice and
examples of good practice.

There is good advice on this topic already (for example, see Gilly Salmon's
book 'E-moderating: The key to teaching and learning online').  Further work
will certainly review and update this in the light of developments.

Gilly Salmon's book has been important, and is well known to us.  However,
it was developed in a Web 1.0 world, and we believe that many of the issues
that it discusses need revisiting to take account of the changing
technological environment.  One approach could be to ask her to revise the
book, and produce a new edition for the Web 2.0 world (or to ask LETTOL to
revise their work).


Recommendation 7: JISC should consider funding work to look at how
widespread the use of "googling" candidates as part of selection procedures
is, and consider producing advice and guidance to institutions and staff and
students on the potentially permanent nature of postings.

Some survey work has already been done, for example by Poolia
<outbind://10/#_ftn15> [15].  Further work in the education sector may well
be justified.

No comment to add


Recommendation 8: JISC should consider funding studies looking at the risks
to the institution associated with internally and externally hosted Web 2.0
services, and ways in which the risks can be controlled and mitigated.  This
could be done within the wider context of examining risks associated with
Web 2.0, web services and Service Oriented Architectures.

The report itself has begun this work, which will be continued within
various JISC programmes including the e-learning programme (Technology
Enhanced Learning Environments), work within the organisational support
area, the e-Framework for education and research <outbind://10/#_ftn16> [16]
and elsewhere.  However, it is worth noting that the UK Web Focus initiative
run by Brian Kelly at UKOLN has already addressed this area
<outbind://10/#_ftn17> [17].

I would suggest that our report took this further than Brian's brief report.
However it is an important issues, and one that is likely to be of great
interest to, for instance, UCISA.  Institutions are having to make decisions
on what Web 2.0 services to use, and how to implement them.  A framework
that they could use to support that decision making could save considerable
effort for institutions by saving them from having to develop it themselves.


Recommendation 15: JISC should ask the JISC Plagiarism Advisory Service to
produce guidance on Web 2.0 and its implications for plagiarism that
supports the use of Web 2.0 in learning, teaching and assessment.

The issues with respect to plagiarism are likely to be independent of the
technologies, and so the advice currently offered by the JISC Plagiarism
Advisory Service <outbind://10/#_ftn18> [18] is probably sufficient.

I suspect (but don't know) that there are some new issues that may arise
from Web 2.0 that need to be understood.  As an example, suppose a student
writes part of a wiki entry and then cites that as their work.  How should
they do that to avoid being accused of plagiarism? How much of the work
should be theirs? What happens if they claim it and subsequently others
change it?  

I think that it would be worthwhile to ask JPAS to look at these issues and
produce some advice and guidance for the community.


Recommendation 16:  Universities should actively monitor practice and law
over control of content in a Web 2.0 environment, and update their policies

Universities will be doing this as a part of their routine scanning and
policy development activities, and - for example - will be reviewing the
terms and conditions of use of popular Web2.0 services to ensure that they
do not pose a risk to either the institution or its members.  Advice from
JISC Legal will help in this area.



Recommendation 19: JISC should consider organising workshops on the
implications for personal security of the use of Web 2.0 technologies for
learning and teaching, with the aim of producing guidance to the community.

The JISC is considering this.


Recommendation 20: JISC, together with other interested groups such as
Becta, the NHS and TTA, should develop model policies on personal security
that universities can adapt to meet their own needs.

The JISC is considering this.


Recommendation 21: JISC should consider funding a workshop to consider
current practice and determine how best to balance the issues of openness of
safety, with the aim of producing guidance to the community.

The JISC is considering this.




Recommendation 9: JISC should consider funding projects or case studies that
look at different methods for integrating Web 2.0 into the overall
university information and information technology environment while
retaining flexibility of use across teaching, learning, administration and
other areas of university activity.

This area of work is already in scope for JISC development programmes in the
e-learning, information environment and users and innovation areas.  The
challenges are considerable, and cross organisational, cultural, legal and
technological boundaries.

Excellent.  I will be very interested in the outcomes.


Recommendation 13: JISC should consider funding projects to develop
web-based tools to assist in ongoing monitoring of group process and in the
assessment of group work, taking into account individual effort within the

The underlying issue of group work and assessment is technology-neutral.
Where group assessment is prevalent - where group-based or problem-based
learning is widespread - then appropriate tools will be in scope for work
within some areas of the e-learning programme.  However, online summative
assessment should not include more monitoring of group processes than
conventional summative assessment.

There are a number of assumptions in here which need exploring.  You state:
"summative assessment should not include more monitoring of group processes
than conventional summative assessment" This assumes that the monitoring of
group processes in "conventional" assessment is in some sense ideal.
However, it may simply be that it is what feasible that more (or less or
different) monitoring may be what is appropriate.  We don't simply want to
replicate what has been being done in the new medium.  I know that there is
a strong argument that new technologies first replicate the old practices,
then enhance them and only later transform them.  I think that people are at
different stages along the continuum and we need to support all three

One area that may become possible through Web 2.0 tools is the ability to
assess processes instead of just artefacts.  To make the evaluation of how
it was done important instead of simply what is achieved (as is already
widely done in the art and design community).  With Web 2.0 one can extend
this to group work as well.

These issues need exploring and the results feeding into the general wider
discussions on why we are assessing, what we are assessing, how those
assessments should be undertaken, and how that fits in with the move towards
realistic assessment.

Tom Franklin

August 2007


 <outbind://10/#_ftnref1> [1] Web 2.0 for Content for Learning and Teaching
in Higher Education':

 <outbind://10/#_ftnref2> [2] Retention of learning materials: a survey of
institutional policies and practice:

 <outbind://10/#_ftnref3> [3] See the INSPECT project:

 <outbind://10/#_ftnref4> [4] UK Web Archiving Consortium:

 <outbind://10/#_ftnref5> [5] JISC Legal:  <> 

 <outbind://10/#_ftnref6> [6] TechDis:  <> 

 <outbind://10/#_ftnref7> [7] SPIRE project:

 <outbind://10/#_ftnref8> [8] Rich Tags project:

 <outbind://10/#_ftnref9> [9] PROWE project:

 <outbind://10/#_ftnref10> [10] JISC e-learning strategic theme:

 <outbind://10/#_ftnref11> [11] Users & innovation programme: personalising

 <outbind://10/#_ftnref12> [12] Digital Libraries in the Classroom
programme:  <> 

 <outbind://10/#_ftnref13> [13] JISC Learner Experience studies:

 <outbind://10/#_ftnref14> [14] JISC Development IPR Consultancy:

 <outbind://10/#_ftnref15> [15] Poolia: 'Employers make the most of Internet
networking sites to find out more about their prospective employees':

 <outbind://10/#_ftnref16> [16] e-Framework for education and research:

 <outbind://10/#_ftnref17> [17] UK Web Focus: Risk Assessment For Use Of
Third Party Web 2.0 Services:

 <outbind://10/#_ftnref18> [18] JISC Plagiarism Advisory Service:



Tom Franklin 
Franklin Consulting 
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