2022 is getting underway and we have lots of exciting plans for the year ahead. Before we get into those, let’s take the opportunity to summarise the additions and improvements made to the HOW2 app in 2021.
When the app launched we had one core collection of techniques called Teaching Strategies. Over the years we’ve added several more, covering everything from Access to HE to Using HOW2s for Online Learning. To make it easier to find the collections that are most relevant to you we’ve created a library index page which lists all of the app’s collections in one place.
Improved Notes visibility
Notes are a fantastic way to record your experiences with techniques and share your knowledge with others. Our December update improved the visibility of notes throughout the app, polished the notes UI, and added hints to help new users get the most out of the feature.
See the video below for a quick run-through.
Enhanced user uploads
In larger organisations with thousands of teaching staff, robust user management tools are a must-have. This year we’ve rewritten our user import tool from the ground-up to ensure that even the largest organisations can manage their accounts efficiently.
In addition to creating new accounts and populating profile data you can now create and assign groups as part of the import workflow. Which leads us on to…
Skills Exchange filters
The Skills Exchange is a great way for teachers to collaborate with one another and for leaders to track usage of the HOW2s. Sometimes though, you don’t just want to see use across the organisation as a whole — teachers might want to drill down to find colleagues teaching their subject and, or, using specific techniques, across campus locations.
In addition to filtering statuses by a single group or profile field it’s now possible to stack multiple filters at the same time. This is incredibly powerful and, coupled with the groups feature, enables just about any kind of filtering you can think of.
New user profiles
Our new profile pages pull together all of a user’s details and app activity in one place. This makes it much easier to get a full picture of how teachers are using the HOW2s and what their current focus is.
HOW2 techniques can be adapted for a wide range of learning environments and contexts. We now provide additional targeted tips and hints for specific contexts via the ‘In Context’ feature, which you’ll see alongside our standard summaries when you view a technique.
When you open a technique you’ll be shown the context that’s linked to the collection you were browsing, but you can view tips for other contexts by clicking the arrow buttons. We’ll be adding descriptors for more teaching contexts in the future — let us know if there are any you’d like to see.
Full screen mode
In June we added full screen mode for viewing the HOW2 graphics with no distractions. This is particularly helpful with smaller screens or when presenting HOW2s to others.
Later in the Summer, we added a notice board. This gives admins a way of communicating success stories, news updates and plans for forthcoming events to all users. The notice board frees up the nudge feature more targeted for comms to groups. For example, relating to the setup and running of professional learning activities.
That’s it for the headline changes from last year. We hope you’ve found them useful!