I-coaches at Noorderpoort

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Noorderpoort, Netherlands


Digital Learning

Noorderpoort was one of the first schools of Vocational Education that started with a pilot of I- coaches back in 2009. An I-coach has multiple roles within Vocational Education, and focuses on the digital literacy of educators and teachers.
At the moment the I-coaches have a network in the Netherlands where ‘kennisnet’ is the umbrella organisation.
First the I-coaches were explaining the tools teachers could use (for example the tools in the learning programme ‘Media Rich Content’). Later on, their expertise elaborated on the learning processes of students and educators, as well as the theory behind blended learning.

The goal of the I-coaches is to improve the digital literacy of educators by distributing information and knowledge (gathered through a nation-wide network) within the organisation. They form a network within the organisation to provide knowledge, expertise or support to teachers, in order to improve their virtual literacy skills.

Different roles
An i-coach has a multifaceted task and needs different talents and broad knowledge to do so. From a survey among participants of the program ‘Building Bridges’, 6 crucial roles of the i-coach emerged. These roles clearly highlight the added value of the i-coach:
– the trainer who delivers effective workshops and trainings with a specific goal and lasting effects.
– the coach who stimulates and enthuses colleagues individually in the right way and who is accessible and approachable as part of the team.
– the advisor who knows him- or herself, the organization and the client well enough to give appropriate advice. The consultant knows what is going on, what questions there are and how to respond to them.
– the educationalist who keeps an eye on the didactic value of ICT and is a serious discussion partner for the instructor.
– the change expert who can supervise a change process effectively and act as a link between education and management.
– the technovator who knows the potential of new technology for the educational context and can communicate this enthusiastically and with inspiration.

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