Blended Learning Designs in STEM: Putting Learning First

Category: Customers
Tuesday 7th May 2019
by: Shane Sutherland

Foreword by Shane Sutherland, PebblePad CEO

Ever since their inception, ‘eportfolios’ seem to have been typically associated with showcasing examples of completed work, rather than for sharing and receiving feedback on work, projects and ideas in progress. And while examples of portfolio practice have often come from disciplines like nursing and teaching, we have over our years of PebblePaddling (15 and counting) heard about innovative examples of eportfolio practice in many other disciplines, but often these have been viewed as atypical. How wonderful then for personal learning advocates and the wider STEM community to have at their disposal the excellent collection of use cases brought together by the superb team in Griffith Sciences. I cannot overstate the value and usefulness of the resources in the book described below, and how proud I am to have Griffith University as a customer.

This blog post has been authored by Julie Crough, Chris Campbell and Christopher Allan from Griffith University.

Sustaining quality teaching and learning in STEM

Finding and sustaining quality learning and teaching practice in STEM can be difficult, particularly when it involves a new technology. Finding examples within STEM to support sustained growth can be almost impossible. In 2017, Griffith University implemented a university-wide adoption of PebblePad. To facilitate this implementation, Griffith Sciences instituted a blended learning fund to find and support initiatives utilising PebblePad and other technologies. The Blended Learning Designs in STEM Higher Education book provides some results of that initiative.

The book provides a professional learning framework that can be used to implement blended learning technologies such as PebblePad, in Higher Education in an authentic way. It offers a set of learning principles to inform the design of learning in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). These principles, coupled with a range of PebblePad initiatives and case studies across STEM disciplines, provide a rich suite of resources to support educators to adopt or adapt them to their own context.  We think the book is unique in that it provides a snapshot of one university (Griffith University) and one implementation of a new technology (PebblePad) within a STEM context. It documents the “grass roots” initiatives of STEM practitioners and the blended learning designs that have organically grown throughout this process.

The Blended Learning Designs in STEM Higher Education is edited by Christopher N. Allan, Dr. Chris Campbell and Julie Crough from Griffith University.

References and resources

Blended Learning Designs in STEM Higher Education: Putting Learning First

Leveraging educational technology to enhance career confidence

New flight procedures training laboratory for Griffith Aviation

Promoting active learning and equity in a HyFlex course

Using PebblePad as a design brief with a first year cohort

Using PebblePad to collect evidence of learning

Supporting science students to be problem solvers, not recipe followers –

Building urban and environmental students’ career paths

For more information on the learning and teaching process undertaken within the book, see the Griffith Sciences Blended Learning Model –

Picture of Shane Sutherland
Shane Sutherland

As the CEO and founder of PebblePad since its inception in 2004, Shane has been a driving force in the world of portfolios and personal learning. His boundless enthusiasm and towering innovation capacity continually elevate PebblePad's position in the field. Standing at 6'10", he's got a competitive advantage with a list of ideas 'as long as his arm!

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