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Strategic planning for online learning
Strategic planning for online learning

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4.3 SWOT analysis

SWOT analyses (SWOT, 2020), can be applied to an organization, or individual projects within a single department of that organisation. They are normally used to determine strengths; weaknesses; opportunities and threats, in relation to the organisational or departmental mission or purpose. They are useful in relation to strategy in order to evaluate how your strategy is faring in relation to the external and internal environment or to initial projections.

SWOT is often presented as a grid-like matrix with four distinct quadrants – one representing each individual element (see figure 6)

An image of SWOT analysis.
Figure 10: SWOT analysis

Examples of the SWOT applied to a school strategy might look like this:

Strengths: Governors keen to allocate budget to digital resources; staff in 4 departments are supportive of adoption of digital methods; some parents keen to help pupils at home.

Weaknesses: Government funding for schools being cut; digital poverty problematic in 30% of pupil homes; staff in music and language departments need development in delivering digitally.

Opportunities: new funding for digital teaching due to be announced later this year; interschool collaboration is improving and supportive; new funding could be used to develop staff, and or invest in hardware and connectivity.

Threats: external economic climate very poor with inflation rising and energy bills putting many families on the bread line and increasing digital and actual poverty; families may be evited leading to homelessness, hunger and lack of space for educational work , due to being housed in temporary accommodation.

Think about Kotter’s 8 step model of change, within your own school and evaluate where you are on the continuum. Make a note of the areas that you feel are weak or still need attention. This will form part of your SWOT analysis . (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats), as you begin to write your strategy.