Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Health Promotion Steps to a Mobile Learning Project

As regular readers of this blog will know, I doing presently a mobile learning course MobiMOOC.

As part of this we are to think of a mobile learning project and the course facilitators have provided us with a template to fill out and a few focus questions.
1. What do you really want to do with mobile learning?
2. What should every good plan contain?
3. What are the needs/opportunities in this area?

This blog post was based on a Mindmap I made using the Spicynodes tool last week. It covers mainly question 2 -What should every good plan contain?

I think there needs to tentative and reiterative series of tasks beginning with community engagement and strategy invention, moving through implementation and ending with a range of evaluation/reflection tasks that then inform future planning. 

You can view and move through the Mindmap by clicking on the direction arrows.

To me the pre-occupations of health promotion are manifest in the steps outlined in the Mindmap by :
  • A focus on capacity building rather than health education about health or illness topics.
  • An extensive engagement and co-invention with people who are members of the intended  'target group'. 
  • An assumption that it all might be a dumb idea unless proven otherwise. This  sceptical outlook comes with my commitment to evidence based practice. Mobile Learning or Mobile Health is too new to be a proven Health Promotion approaches.
  • There is a good deal of focus on marketing. In health promotion, we work with people out in the world and just letting them now about a opportunity can be a major task. 
  • A sense that we are making choices that are based on consultation, data and best practice principles as well on consideration of technology issues.
  • A suspicion that IT can be risky and that these risks needs to be actively managed.
  • Planning and preparation but a willingness to be adaptable to learned needs.
I have not put in the usual health promotion obsessions of formulating SMART Objectives, Key Performance Indicators (KPI) a detailed budget and specific timelines. I have done this because I think starting and sustaining an electronic community of practice  does not meet the criteria of  defined project with definite set of tasks. It is an emergent undertaking that needs to be allowed to take it own form rather than be guided by the pre-ordained strategies of the project manager.

I plan to use low cost no cost tools. Thus the main budget component is staff time and that will unfold as the community of practice emerges.

This project sees the network of people in the education/health/human services as a complex adaptive systems and the problem of improving social and emotional wellbeing and resilience as wicked problems. The tools and methods proposed fit this mental model.

I have been infleunced in my thinking by the following publications on wicked problems:

Wicked Problems, Knowledge Challenges, and Collaborative Capacity Builders in Network Settings
Tackling Wicked Problems A Public Policy Perspective

    1 comment:

    1. By chance the authorative Institute of Public Administration Australia (IPAA)today released an impressive policy paper with same conclusion as mine. Social ane Media are a good fit. Ahead of the pack for half a day.

      Link text