The extremely imminent demise of the publicly-funded body, Becta – a casualty of the coalition Government’s cuts – has prompted a number of developments in the learning technology field.
Towards Maturity has raised its profile, signing up ambassadors from the industry, to bring more organisations into its benchmarking and information gathering fold.
Learning Light, the centre of excellence which, among other things, publishes research on the UK and other European e-learning markets, is placing a wealth of Becta-owned information on its E-learning Centre website (www.e-learningcentre.co.uk) – making this site the only place where this information will now be available.
Thirdly, Wiley-Blackwell – the scientific, technical, medical and scholarly publishing business of John Wiley & Sons, Inc – is now partnering with the British Educational Research Association (BERA) to publish The British Journal of Educational Technology (BJET). Previously, Wiley-Blackwell published BJET on behalf of Becta. Welcoming this move, Tony Richardson, Becta’s Executive Director for Strategy and Communications, said: “It’s important that our charitable objects continue to be met after our closure and this includes realising benefits to the education sector from all aspects of our work.”
Comment: Becta made few friends in the learning technologies world during its lifetime – except for those organisations that it supported financially, of course. Its death will help to determine which parts of its activities will have lasting benefits to the ‘learning’ world.