Feature article

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

The digital shift will have many (positive) side-effects

Submitted by dene.mullen on Fri, 18/06/2021 - 00:01
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Article

Even the laggards in higher education have now had a crash course in delivering online education. And while Zoom classes certainly don’t qualify as cutting-edge pedagogy, it’s clear that the past 18 months have sped up the digital transformation of higher education around the world.

Standfirst
In the not-so-distant future, we’ll realise the digital transformation has changed HE for the better in ways we never expected, say Rick Shangraw and Wayne Bovier
Teaser
In the not-so-distant future, we’ll realise the digital transformation has changed HE for the better in ways we never expected, say Rick Shangraw and Wayne Bovier

Solving future problems today: Making HyFlex learning work for all

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

How leaders can seize higher ed’s ‘catalytic moment for change’

Submitted by dene.mullen on Thu, 17/06/2021 - 00:01
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Article

I recently led a research team that interviewed presidents, vice-chancellors and directors of national universities from around the world, in an attempt to enhance understanding of presidents’ roles in leading through Covid-19.

Standfirst
Those that lead by example, reward innovative faculty and increase campus-wide buy-in will determine the future of higher education, says Jon McNaughtan
Teaser
Those that lead by example, reward innovative faculty and increase campus-wide buy-in will determine the future of higher education, says Jon McNaughtan

Are online exams better for student mental health?

Submitted by dene.mullen on Wed, 16/06/2021 - 00:01
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Article

It’s no secret that student mental health is a growing concern. Covid has compounded many of the social, academic and financial inequalities and challenges to mental health across the higher education sector in the UK and beyond. The result has been more students needing mental health support than before the pandemic and compared to other demographics.

Standfirst
Traditional exams under tightly invigilated conditions are highly stressful for students, but online alternatives bring their own issues, says Michael Priestley
Teaser
Traditional exams under tightly invigilated conditions are highly stressful for students, but online alternatives bring their own issues, says Michael Priestley

Global virtual exchange: promoting international learning

Submitted by miranda.prynne on Tue, 15/06/2021 - 09:00
Article type
Article

How do you get students working with other students to develop the intercultural skills necessary for the 21st century? Global virtual exchange, although not a new idea in higher education, has fresh impetus. For anyone wanting to set up a global virtual exchange, our experience with Universidad Continental in Huancayo, Peru, offers a good example of some key things to consider.

Standfirst
Christopher Brighton presents a model of global virtual exchange that could be easily replicated at any institution to enhance its students’ intercultural knowledge and skills
Teaser
Christopher Brighton presents a model of global virtual exchange that could be easily replicated at any institution to enhance its students’ intercultural knowledge and skills

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

Socialising is hugely important, but virtual campuses help learning, too

Submitted by dene.mullen on Mon, 14/06/2021 - 00:01
Article type
Article

Say the word “university” and the image that forms in the mind is likely a physical campus. Campus is where we interact with others in both scheduled and unexpected ways that lend meaning to those interactions, and it can be difficult to approximate the same levels of immediacy and spontaneity online.

Standfirst
The social elements of university help students succeed academically, so we must start transplanting them online, says Elizabeth Lehfeldt
Teaser
The social elements of university help students succeed academically, so we must start transplanting them online, says Elizabeth Lehfeldt

It’s a game changer: using design thinking to find solutions to the Sustainable Development Goals

Submitted by miranda.prynne on Fri, 11/06/2021 - 09:00
Article type
Article

As we march closer to the 2030 target date for the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), it is becoming more urgent that we engage young minds with these global challenges and demonstrate to them how they can have a real impact.

We developed Game Changer to engage students with the SDGs through the development of “impact-driven entrepreneurship”.

Standfirst
Rachel Bickerdike explains how using design thinking to find solutions to the Sustainable Development Goals can open up a new world of social entrepreneurship for students
Teaser
Rachel Bickerdike explains how using design thinking to find solutions to the Sustainable Development Goals can open up a new world of social entrepreneurship for students