Welcome to SCoPE Next Steps

Welcome to SCoPE Next Steps

by Sylvia Currie -
Number of replies: 8

A rather loose tradition here at SCoPE is to schedule a "reflections and next steps" discussion at the beginning of the academic year. We miss some years, and this year we're getting a late, but hopefully productive, start! 

First, a bit of a snapshot of what's happened since we launched 7 years ago. We have:

  • Approximately 4,000 member accounts from 156 countries
  • Organized 75 scheduled, facilitated, asynchronous seminar discussions, and about 120 synchronous sessions
  • Hosted 1 entirely online conference, provided facilitation and administration for 2 others, and supported online presence for f2f conferences
  • Held 4 Online Community Enthusiasts events in Vancouver
  • Collaborated to offer 2 MOOCs
  • Provided space and support to 50 online special interest/project groups

All of this has been possible thanks to well over 200 volunteer facilitators. Some volunteers have facilitated several events!

And thanks to full support from BCcampus, and prior to that Simon Fraser University, all of these activities have been free. It's fantastic that this international professional learning community continues to be valued!

The 3 questions we always kick off with are:

  • What have you liked about SCoPE? 
  • What would you change? 
  • What are your ideas for future activities?

During a recent conversation with SCoPE members and Community of Practice leaders, we thought that asking the questions this way might help to focus the conversation more on value to YOU and your workplace.

  • How has SCoPE helped you?
  • How do you think SCoPE can be improved to have more impact?
  • Where do you see the community going in the next few years?

However you choose to jump in, even if it's just to wave and say hello, your contribution is much appreciated! 

In reply to Sylvia Currie

Re: Welcome to SCoPE Next Steps

by Anil Prasad P -

Dear friends,

I was away from SCoPE activities for a while. The present discussion helped me for a return. Thank you! ... and eagerly waiting to read interesting reflections of the community on the future planning.

Warm regards



In reply to Sylvia Currie

Re: Welcome to SCoPE Next Steps

by Juanita Foster-Jones -

I am an avid lurker in the SCOPE communities. I have the forum messages come straight to my email where I dip in to the topics that interest me as and when I have time.

I like the fact I can dip in, that some sessions are now provided as live/recordings, and that resources are compiled into wikis. The different perspectives of peers from across the globe, from multiple disciplines is great.

It's helped me by providing to links to resources I would perhaps miss, sparking ideas for my teaching practice, helping with my CPD. The recent session on "revisiting community inquiry framework" was of particular interest as links with ideas I'm having for my own PhD.

To have more impact - perhaps wider dissemination of events - not sure if there are hashtags assigned to discussions so that they can be continued in multiple channels. I've suggested to one of the PhD students in our department they should contact scope about running a session based on their research. Perhaps a regular PhD slot might help other practitioners.

I hope the community continues to grow and evolve. The fact that I can dip in and lurk, yet feel the welcoming atmosphere means I'm not deterred from contributing is great.

Looking forward to more learning via lurking

Juanita Foster-Jones

In reply to Sylvia Currie

Re: Welcome to SCoPE Next Steps

by Nicholas Bowskill -

Hi Sylvia,

I absolutely love SCOPE. Its one of those places where I feel some substantive issues are discussed from a critical perspective. On top of that we are all offered access to perspectives from around the world.


I used to be a member of TappedIn which I also valued but a bit like Second Life etc I find there's a lot more 'noise' in such environments that is interesting but can be a barrier to meaningful dialogue.


I also love the way it drops into my inbox despite me often forgetting to subscribe to some of them. This means that I can follow the conversation without the need to log in to a web site. I can also reply if and when I have something to say. I have enjoyed several topics without having contributed to them (although I recognise the issues raised in being an audience rather than a participant).


It's an effort to think of ways it might be improved because it is so good. I like the openness of the space and the way that its not an assessed form of professional development.

Perhaps if there was a newsletter or digest or a report on each topic afterwards that could be helpful. Such a report might marry themes from the literature with the conversations that came out of the topic.

Or even just to have a report on the conversation once it was over. That would be a potentially interesting resource. For that particular purpose one of the hosts might act as a news reporter summarising what went on and the issues raised etc.

It would even be possible to invite participants from the community to write a short report from their perspective on the topic. That would be a kind of inside view akin to a post-match report created by one of the learners/participants/players.

I'm not sure where it would be going in the next few years. One way it could go is to develop a wider picture of practice from specific countries or continents. That might be a focus on Africa for example. Or a view from China etc. Each quarter or even for one quarter SCOPE could host an intercultural focus not just by having intercultural input but by having that interculturality instantiated by a travelling focus on difference and different specific cultures.


There's a lot could be done but you've also done a lot too. I'd like to say well done! Lots to celebrate there.




In reply to Sylvia Currie

Re: Welcome to SCoPE Next Steps

by Don Beadle -

Hello all, great to "see" folks gathering.

I have dusted off the user id and password, and am looking fwd to engaing conversations

In reply to Don Beadle

Re: Welcome to SCoPE Next Steps

by E.A. Draffan -

Me too and thankfully Chrome remembered it all!! Also looking forward to future discussions although I know I tend to lurk with so much on.  However, I do try to pick up whenI can so many thanks for keeping it all going. 

In reply to Sylvia Currie

Re: Welcome to SCoPE Next Steps

by Christine Horgan -


I'm more of a professional lurker than an active SCoPE participant, but I do learn a lot from people's postings:

  • What have you liked about SCoPE? Knowledge and experience of participants.
  • What would you change? nothing
  • What are your ideas for future activities? I'd like to know a whole lot more about using Wikis, coaching instructors through their use, using free Wiki sites, and whatever else pops up in conversations.
  • How has SCoPE helped you? Provided me with ideas and suggestions I might not normally come across.
  • How do you think SCoPE can be improved to have more impact? Regular summaries of the conversations -- especially for those folks who need to breeze in and out of the seminars.
  • Where do you see the community going in the next few years?

Cheers, Christine (Chris) Horgan, SAIT Polytechnic, Calgary, Alberta.

In reply to Sylvia Currie

Re: Welcome to SCoPE Next Steps

by Jenny Mackness -

I am not sufficiently active in SCoPE to answer all your questions Sylvia, but I can  answer three of them

What have you liked about SCoPE? SCoPE is a very friendly and open community and does not discrimate against lurkers such as me :-)

How has SCoPE helped you? Sylvia was enormously helpful in a MOOC (FSLT12) that I recently worked on to design and run with Oxford Brookes University, UK. She not only offered us the use of the SCoPE Blackboard Collaborate site for our synchronous sessions, but also supported us in the use of this site and provided very valuable advice. We possibly could have run the MOOC without synchronous sessions, but it would not have been anywhere near as successful. What was particularly impressive was that we did not seek this help. Sylvia offered it to us and gave of her time freely.

What are your ideas for future activities?

  • Continue cross boundary work which exemplifies best open practice - which is what the Oxford Brookes team were fortunate to experience
  • Perhaps ask for feedback into the SCoPE community of this cross-boundary work.

Thank you Sylvia and the SCoPE community

Jenny (on behalf of myself and the Oxford Brookes team)

In reply to Sylvia Currie

Re: Welcome to SCoPE Next Steps

by Janet Salmons -

Hello Sylvia and everyone,

Sorry for my late response!

You asked:

  • What have you liked about SCoPE? 
    I like the sense of community, and the diversity of the community. While social media is fun, this format, to me, allows for deeper exchange and continuity.

I like the seminars-- giving and either participating or reading. The forum to email features of this platform allow for both in-depth posting and casual reading.

  • What would you change? 
    Not much!
  • What are your ideas for future activities?
    I would like to see more seminars on research-oriented topics as well as the instructional approaches typically covered. I would like to see more focus on graduate-level teaching and learning.

    I would like to see some more in-depth classes, perhaps longer than the 2-3 week seminars. 
  • How has SCoPE helped you?
    I feel connected with others of like mind.
  • How do you think SCoPE can be improved to have more impact?
    I am not sure how to create the opportunity for more in-depth, engaged seminars with consistent participation. On one hand, making seminars free means they are open, on the other hand perhaps a small fee (and honorarium for facilitator) might encourage those who sign up to make an effort to consistently participate. 

    It would be interesting to create some tie-ins with writing and publishing. Might SCoPE be a place where one could find research and writing partners, contributors, etc.? Perhaps developing relationships with relevant journals and/or publishers? Or even e-book distributors for self-publishing? 
  • Where do you see the community going in the next few years?
    I  hope the community will grow and that it can foster improved teaching, learning and research!
Warm regards,