Change. A short word which has big implications. Change is something indispensable in all areas, especially in the field of education. change.jpgWhile it is a need to embark in change for the better of all, it is still a difficult process which one has to be prepared for. Unfortunately there have already been cases where due to mismanagement sometimes the process of change leads to detriment rather than to success in education. A change management plan needs to be developed to ease the process of change and make it more effective. If we take a look at the process of introducing interactive whiteboards in our classrooms, one cannot say it was a success since some of the teachers till don't make use of interactive whiteboards for several reasons. These being, there are unable to use them, they are afraid to use them or they use them as projectors.

Before deciding that change is needed, one has to ask 3 questions. Why is the change needed, what shall be needed and how will the change happen? The 4 major pillars of change include:

  • Analysis
  • Planning
  • Implementation
  • Review

Resistance will also be present throughout the steps. As human beings it comes natural to resist change and instead playing it safe by following what we already know. The unknown holds mysteries which human beings hesitate to face.

According to NHS Managing the human dimensions of change (2005), several guiding principles need to be followed to cater for change. These include:

  1. Planning for project implementation.
  2. Acquiring senior support.
  3. Setting objectives and congratulating the team whenever an objective is reached.
  4. Always remember improvement is an ongoing process.
  5. Recognise that a plan needs to be followed for introducing change and monitoring the effects of change.
  6. Gaining commitment of all the staff involved in the process is vital.

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Change involves 3 different aspects. These are the people, the process and the culture (Change Management InfoKit).

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Probably, "one of the most unpredictable variables" (Prosci, 2014) is people. Change management is not simply a recipe of steps which can be leant by heart and followed unconsciously when needed. Instead every time change needs to be brought about, a specific change management plan needs to be crafted according to your specific needs. The most important thing when it comes to change management is that the people involved understand the why rather than simply the how. Knowing why certain steps are chosen instead of others makes you more flexible towards choosing the most effective method. Prosci states that "a methodology based on proven methods combined with understanding the 'why' is the most powerful combination". Customization of the most appropriate steps, needs to start by means of some guiding principles that can be adapted to suit one's specific needs.

Prosci's Seven Change Management Principles


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How should an e-learning platform be introduced?

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References

Change Management InfoKit. Retrieved on 31st January 2014, from https://www.um.edu.mt/vle/1314/pluginfile.php/23841/mod_resource/content/1/Literature/change_management_JISC.pdf