Face of the year 2015 - Janne Niinivaara

I took up the position of coordinator of online teaching and communication at the Language Centre in April 2015. I am passionate about both parts of my job and have focused on these topics in my studies and career, so having the opportunity to combine them is rewarding. But I do not think we should feel compelled to draw clear boundaries. I also enjoy the many similarities between online teaching and communication.

I have often been labelled a technology enthusiast – for good reason. I tend toward “connectivism”, am usually hooked up to a digital device and see educational technology primarily in terms of the opportunities it provides. However, I am completely on the side of learning and am always more excited about education and human interaction than about the tools used. At the Language Centre, I strive to implement and develop effective communication and to support teachers extensively in their use of educational technology.

I was nominated for the title of Face of the Year for being “a high-profile developer of the Language Centre’s operations in 2015”. Our competent and inspiring staff have made this development work particularly rewarding. Even in these historically difficult times, the atmosphere and people’s attitudes at the Language Centre have been exceptionally positive, and new employees have been warmly welcomed into and introduced to the community. I am grateful to my closest colleagues in the support unit for teaching and learning (OOTU) and in administration as well as to the Language Centre’s dedicated teachers.