Blog Archives


Here my colleague Anne Quinney reflects on the recent webinar we ran…

During the Covid-19 pandemic many of you will have experienced academic conferences being cancelled, postponed or hosted on-line.

Prof Debbie Holley and I (Anne Quinney) were scheduled to present at the Association of Learning Developers in Higher Education conference (ALDinHE) to be held at Northampton University but found ourselves presenting remotely last week.

The conference had moved online, using Google Hangouts. We had to change the focus of the paper for the online environment as the workshop format would not be possible. Our online conference presentation proved very memorable – in unexpected ways.  Our first challenge was the unfamiliarity of the format. We participated in some other sessions to get a sense of what it might look and feel like, updated our material and worked out how we would approach this new experience.  We uploaded the slides to slideshare, so we could share more widely with the audience, and shared them with session Chair –  a good idea as unexpected technology glitches happen to all of us working online and this created another layer of ‘back-up’.

Assessment and Feedback is our favourite topic! We talked about the principles of assessment underpinning the revision of the Bournemouth University Assessment Design strategy and policy, drawing on the work of Professors Dai Hounsell (ongoing) and Kay Sambell (2011) for enhancing assessment and feedback practices. We used slides interwoven with questions to encourage participant chat. We shared the BU Assessment and Feedback Toolkit; talked about the options for moving assessments online with a specific focus on examinations. We discussed the student perspective, and the opportunities and challenges online assessment can raise.

The chat questions came thick and fast, and the Chair was really helpful in summarising.

We did have some technology glitches;  at the start my camera switched off and I couldn’t configure the screen to see both the slides and my co-presenter. I quickly turned the computer off and started again….still only the slides in view but the camera light was back on!  Quickly improvising we decided that as Debbie’s screen was working as expected we would manage with whatever screen view we each had! We carried on, with self-deprecating humour, commenting that this was a real-life, live and improvised experience of the unfamiliar challenges that so many of us, staff and students, are dealing with. 

It felt strange not to talk with participants informally afterwards, not to  be able to ‘read’ the audience from their body language and facial expressions. Questions and responses came in very fast in the chat box and it was not possible to give time to them all.  At the end of the screen time, it was helpful to facetime each other to reflect on the experience, as we would have done if we were physically at the conference.

Whilst we didn’t have to travel upcountry to Northampton, sleep in an unfamiliar bed and eat communal meals at pre-set times, we missed the camaraderie of informally meeting with other delegates, the stimulation of two days focussing only on the conference themes and the opportunity to visit another university. The learning with and from one another that comes from the shared experience of co-presenting was still possible, and we certainly learnt more about improvising with the technology and equipment, about adjusting to a live but distant audience, and to ‘keep going and keep smiling’.

Quinney A and Holley D. 2020. Moving assessment online; resources to support staff in an unexpected distance learning scenario. May 6th. ALDinHE.

Links to our session:

Slides are here:

Video is here:

http://aldinhe.ac.uk/aldinhe-events-resources/

Resources:

Sally Brown’s blog (UK). See the piece by Sally Brown and Kay Sambell as a response to Covid-19.

https://sally-brown.net

BU Technology Enhanced Learning Toolkit

https://www.cemp.ac.uk/projects/AFT/index.php

Transforming Assessment (Australia)

https://transformingassessment.com

Assessment Design Decisions (Australia)

www.assessmentdecisions.org


Colleagues,

Led by Dr Geli Roushan, Dr Elvira Bolat and I contributed to creating this Epigeum online course – with the covid-19 situation, Epigeum are offering it open access.

https://www.epigeum.com/courses/teaching/blended-learning/

About Blended Learning 

Bridging the gap between strategy and delivery, this practical programme presents best practice in blended learning – building the skills that enable the successful integration of face-to-face and online teaching. The programme aims to empower lecturers to translate principles and aims into effective teaching and learning practices, which, in turn, will lead to corresponding improvements in student performance, engagement, satisfaction, and retention. The programme explores all aspects of the blended learning approach, from teaching strategies and course design to assessment and evaluation – clarifying the opportunities available, whilst also analysing the benefits and challenges of this format, and how to build a culture that sustains and embeds blended learning throughout an institution.

This programme is for:

Lecturers and faculty considering a blended learning approach in their teaching and those looking to improve their skills and understanding of combining face-to-face with online teaching and assessment.


LD@3 will be back on Monday!  Please join us for five fantastic sessions:  

Monday, 20 April 3-4pm (BST)Hossam Kassem and Geraldine HuzarSupporting Open University students in prisonhttps://meet.google.com/dir-ktzi-tkq?hs=122

Tuesday, 21 April3-4pm (BST)Sonja RewhornThe need to read: a mismatch of expectationshttps://meet.google.com/fzo-yfrw-vsr?hs=122

Wednesday, 22 April 3-4pm (BST)Ian JohnsonMeetup for PGRs doing research into Learning Developmentmeet.google.com/hni-bucj-xrp

Thursday, 23 April 3-4pm (BST)Helena Beeson and Richard BylesCreative solutions to common group work problemsmeet.google.com/zkk-bmah-xiq 

Friday, 24 April 3-4pm (BST)Katherine Koulle and Qian ZhangSpecial Collection Artefacts in Learning Developmenthttps://meet.google.com/juv-bjaj-fpz?hs=122


LD@3 is open to anyone who is interested in attending, so please feel free to pass this along to anyone who may be interested!


The team at the University of Hull are firm supporters of the Association of Learning Developers (ALDinHE) and as a Steering Group Member it is great to give a shout out for their new work…

The Skills Team at the University of Hull has produced a new guide on ‘remote learning’. The Remote learning SkillsGuide is designed to help support students adapting to the new reality of studying wherever they maybe because of the global pandemic.

As this guide has been contextualised to Hull and our available technology, we have licenced this specific SkillsGuide with the CC-BY-NC-SA licence to allow other institutions to take what we have developed and adapt it to their context. The terms of the licence can be found here on the Creative Commons website. We hope this helps.

We struggled with the name for this guide but resisted reference to learning at home, off-campus or learning online. As many students are geographically ‘stuck’, we did not want a reference to ‘home’, especially as we are supporting students who are still on-campus. While the primary way we are communicating is online, we also did not want to suggest the whole paradigm of learning has shifted online also. Old techniques work fine for study too.

The guide can be accessed here: https://libguides.hull.ac.uk/remote


Good morning,
Please join us today from 3-4pm BST for today’s LD@3 session with Mark Dawson from the University of Cambridge for his session ‘nevermind the ‘buzz’ quiz’.
The link to the session is: https://meet.google.com/xfz-nxqo-rww?hs=122.  The chair will be in the meet approximately 10 minutes before the session begins to admit external participants, which will give you the chance to test your audio and video.
Today’s session will be the last one before the Easter break, so do join us for one last hurrah before a (hopefully sunny) bank holiday weekend!  LD@3 will also not be running next week, but will resume on Monday, 20 April.  The full programme, as well as slides from past presentations can be accessed on the ALDinHE events page.

Thank you,

Melanie