Publication Details

This conference paper was originally published as Wills, S & Bowles, K, Keynote address, eLi First International Conference of e-Learning and Distance Learning, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, March 2009. Original conference information available here


Although all Australian universities have University-level strategic plans as well as Learning and Teaching plans plus underpinning Information Technology plans, it is estimated that only 11% of universities have a separate plan for eLearning. Instead eLearning is often integrated into either an Information Technology Plan or a Learning and Teaching Plan. As a result, the specific needs of eLearning can be overlooked, underestimated or tokenized.

The University of Wollongong has undertaken a process of interviews and consultation with committees, deans, managers, academics, students and support staff to develop a coherent strategic and educational vision for the use of eLearning, that is framed by a commitment to teaching in a blended learning environment, rather than in a wholly online or distance mode. After four years, and many draft versions, this process has resulted in a Strategic Plan for eLearning and eTeaching 2008-2010. The key to the final structure of this plan is its total alignment with the university’s Learning and Teaching Plan, released as part of the suite of Strategic Plans which will guide the University of Wollongong through 2008-2010. In this paper, we describe the processes involved in developing the plan, and share the simple lessons we have learned that may be relevant to other universities, including issues raised by the implementation of the plan.


130103 Higher Education, 150307 Innovation and Technology Management, 150312 Organisational Planning and Management