Indigenous learners in the digital age: recognizing skills and knowledge

Indigenous learners in the digital age: recognizing skills and knowledge Conference Paper

Emerging Futures - Recent, Responsive & Relevant Research,

  • Author(s): Eagles, D, Pope, M, Woodward, P
  • Published: 2005

Abstract: This paper presents findings from an action research project conducted by the University of Ballarat, funded through the Australian Flexible Learning Framework, New Practices initiatives. The project was designed to help remove barriers to Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) through the development of a streamlined and culturally appropriate model for assessing the knowledge and skills of Indigenous workers intending to gain vocational qualifications. The project investigated and trialled the use of web-based voice applications for recording and transmitting oral evidence. The paper highlights challenges in traditional RPL assessment processes described as time-consuming and cumbersome by Kemmis (2004) and Bowman et al (2003). These challenges were encountered by experienced Indigenous workers who possessed a wealth of knowledge and experience in relation to their work, but had not, necessarily, collected the documents (certificates, logbooks, diaries) to demonstrate competence. These workers preferred to demonstrate their knowledge orally, through discussion, conversation and/or narrative. They were geographically isolated, which meant that face to face interview methods proved a costly option. Initial trials suggested that online voice technology might provide an alternative method for the confidential and secure capture and transmission of evidence of competence.

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Eagles, D, Pope, M, Woodward, P, 2005, Indigenous learners in the digital age: recognizing skills and knowledge, Conference Paper, viewed 03 December 2023,

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