Course design and delivery

High tech and high touch: designing a bridging system to help students prepare for STEM studies

Submitted by miranda.prynne on Fri, 18/06/2021 - 09:00
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Article

Studying for an undergraduate degree in science and technology requires sound foundations in mathematics and physics, alongside strong learning skills.

Every year, we welcome thousands of new students from varied backgrounds with diverse academic qualifications, many of whom are returning to education after two years of national service, which is mandatory in Singapore, or after a few years in industry.

Standfirst
Karin Avnit, Victor Wang and Prasad Iyer describe how combining technology-supported learning with targetted face-to-face instruction helps ensure all students start university with the knowledge and skills they need to succeed
Teaser
Karin Avnit, Victor Wang and Prasad Iyer describe how combining technology-supported learning with targeted face-to-face instruction helps ensure all students start university with the knowledge and skills they need to succeed

Solving future problems today: Making HyFlex learning work for all

Submitted by miranda.prynne on Thu, 17/06/2021 - 09:00
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Article

To keep up with the sudden migration online, many institutions rushed to implement virtual classroom solutions as quickly – and cheaply – as possible.

However, with e-learning here to stay, the time has come to think about how to incorporate these solutions effectively into educational offerings for the long term.

At the most basic level, the technical elements that make an online classroom are:

1. Video recording

2. Audio recording

3. Screen capture

Standfirst
Trent Montgomery shares the key considerations for developing effective hybrid flexible teaching that will boost universities’ educational offering in the long term
Teaser
Trent Montgomery shares the key considerations for developing effective hybrid flexible teaching that will boost universities’ educational offering in the long term

The joy of text in a world of tech zealotry

Submitted by dene.mullen on Tue, 15/06/2021 - 00:01
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Article

My killer teaching tool isn’t video, audio or interactive graphics. It’s the plain written word, using tools created in the 1980s. They don’t look cool. They don’t use blockchains or AI. There’s no sign-in. They don’t spy on my students. They don’t require a powerful computer. Welcome to the joy of text.

Standfirst
Why do we fetishise high-tech teaching while denigrating reading as a second-rate learning style? asks Andy Farnell
Teaser
Why do we fetishise high-tech teaching while denigrating reading as a second-rate learning style? asks Andy Farnell

Designing postgraduate education as a means of sharing and developing academic and professional knowledge

Submitted by miranda.prynne on Mon, 14/06/2021 - 09:00
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Article

Postgraduate degrees are increasingly seen as a means of career advancement in the professions. A growing number of postgraduate courses are offered online, allowing individuals to access education from anywhere in the world, while remaining in employment.

Here, we share our views of what works in online postgraduate education and the potential benefits of our approach. However, there is no “one size fits all” and what we outline is not an easy undertaking, requiring effort from teachers with confidence, and academic and professional credibility.

Standfirst
Gill Aitken and Tim Fawns explain how to design online postgraduate courses that operate at the boundaries of the academic and professional worlds
Teaser
Gill Aitken and Tim Fawns explain how to design online postgraduate courses that operate at the boundaries of the academic and professional worlds

How to design unforgettable class activities that help students learn better

Submitted by miranda.prynne on Thu, 10/06/2021 - 09:00
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Article

A problematic trend I notice when conversing with students is how many of them struggle to remember what they did in modules from previous semesters.

These discussions got me thinking about how to design learning activities that are unforgettable. Albert Einstein, among other figures credited with the quote, famously said that “education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in school”. I want to ensure my students remember what they have learned from me, especially after all the hard work they put into the course.

Standfirst
Jonathan Sim shares teaching techniques designed to pique the emotions as a way to lodge key lessons more firmly in students’ memories
Teaser
Jonathan Sim shares teaching techniques designed to pique the emotions as a way to lodge key lessons more firmly in students’ memories

Let’s stop confusing what just happened with true online learning

Submitted by dene.mullen on Thu, 10/06/2021 - 00:01
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Article

To be clear, what we’ve all just been through with “online learning” is not online learning at all. It is emergency-use online learning (EUOL). We should be careful to call it what it is. Pretending that what we’ve experienced is online learning is akin to pretending the burger you just ate was filet mignon. Well, they’re both meat.

Standfirst
During the pandemic, decades of research and practice were tossed aside in a matter of days, says Ali Carr-Chellman
Teaser
During the pandemic, decades of research and practice were tossed aside in a matter of days, says Ali Carr-Chellman

How do we rescue the reputation of blended learning?

Submitted by dene.mullen on Wed, 09/06/2021 - 00:01
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Article

Let’s get the elephant in the room addressed up front: times have changed and a return to “normal” is just not on the cards, not truly.  Blended learning – to a greater or lesser extent – is here to stay. 

So, how do we rescue the reputation of blended learning, which has been battered by students’ experiences of universities’ hasty response to the pandemic and become synonymous with low-quality content?

Standfirst
To convince students and stakeholders that blended learning is worth the full tuition fee, we need to tell them exactly how it will work, says Russell Crawford
Teaser
To convince students and stakeholders that blended learning is worth the full tuition fee, we need to tell them exactly how it will work, says Russell Crawford

Making the most of online educational resources: a case study

Submitted by miranda.prynne on Tue, 08/06/2021 - 09:00
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Article

Online repositories of educational resources have been developed gradually, usually by people who are passionate about their subjects. Some of them have built vibrant, collaborative communities of users. These online libraries and the communities they gather can support active learning and help inform our assessment tasks.

How can we develop passion in our students for a discipline? How can we come up with assessment tasks that help them master new skills?

Standfirst
Pascal Grange explains how online educational resources can be used to complement teaching and enhance students’ opportunities for learning
Teaser
Pascal Grange explains how online educational resources can be used to complement teaching and enhance students’ opportunities for learning

Never forget: your course is not only yours

Submitted by dene.mullen on Tue, 08/06/2021 - 00:01
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Article

Let’s start with a question for instructional designers and faculty members: when you last designed a course, how much time did you spend thinking about the role that each element in that course plays in shaping your college or university?

Standfirst
Too much of our instructional design undershoots the potential of higher education to improve not only individual lives but also the public good, says Robin DeRosa
Teaser
Too much of our instructional design undershoots the potential of higher education to improve not only individual lives but also the public good, says Robin DeRosa

Boosting student motivation through course design

Submitted by miranda.prynne on Thu, 03/06/2021 - 09:00
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Article

Where there is a will

Motivation is crucial if students are to realise their potential and engage with the opportunities presented by higher education. It enables them to take ownership of accessing, appraising and applying new learning in enlivening and enriching their educational experience. However, motivation is not a given; for it to be fostered, real efforts must be made through the activities and relationships embedded in students’ modules.

Standfirst
Maurice Kinsella and Niamh Nestor explain how to use self-determination theory as a guide to boost student motivation through careful online course design
Teaser
Maurice Kinsella and Niamh Nestor explain how to use self-determination theory as a guide to boost student motivation through careful online course design