Save the Date: Annual Learning and Teaching Conference

Save the date banner - 30.06.2021-02.07.2021

The Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit are excited to announce the date for the 9th Annual Learning and Teaching Conference. The conference will be taking place between Wednesday 30th June and Friday 2nd July 2021.

Look out for Calls for Proposals and the announcement of the conference theme later this month. As usual, we will be updating our Learning and Teaching Conference Webpages and also our blog to keep you up-to-date with how things are progressing.

External Speaker: Mini Conference: Advice for Action – Promoting Good Feedback Practice

Distance Learner BannerOn Wednesday 16th December, the Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit will host their next Mini Conference.

We are delighted to announce that Dr Naomi Winstone from University of Surrey will be giving a presentation:

From Transmission to Transformation: Maximising Student Engagement with Feedback

Even the highest-quality feedback on students’ work will not have an impact on their development unless students actively engage with and implement the advice. The literature, alongside anecdotal reports of educators, often paint a negative picture of students’ willingness to read and enact feedback. My recent programme of research has focused on students’ cognitive, motivational, and emotional landscapes and how they influence the ways in which students receive, process, and implement feedback on their work. In this talk, I will argue that maximising students’ engagement with feedback is fundamentally an issue of design, where opportunities for students to develop the skills required for effective use of feedback, and opportunities to apply feedback, can transform the role of students in assessment. In particular, I will share a toolkit of resources that we developed in partnership with students to support the development of feedback ‘recipience skills’. Through this approach, I demonstrate how the responsibility for ensuring that feedback has high impact can, and should, be shared between educators and students.

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Potential disruption to Blackboard labels and titles

You may notice some changes to Blackboard labels whilst we update our language pack tomorrow morning (Tuesday 10.11.2020).

This will affect menu items and My Modules. Blackboard functionality and access will remain during this time and you will still be able to create content, access materials, and submit assignments. This work is scheduled to take place as part of Information Services’ Tuesday morning maintenance: https://faqs.aber.ac.uk/94.

Tips for monitoring chat for online and in person sessions

Distance Learner BannerIn this blogpost, we’ll be looking at some tips for monitoring a Teams chat when you’ve also got attendees joining in person and online.

The planning of the synchronous activity and what you want your students to be able to do after they have engaged with the activity shapes the purpose of the chat. Ask yourself: what role do you want the chat to have in your teaching session?

For example, do you want the chat to be used for students joining online to communicate their ideas with you? Do you want it to be used for them to chat with each other? Do you want the chat contributions to be communicated with those joining in person?

In addition to that, you want to think about how you are asking your online students to engage in the session. Do you want them, for example, to use the raise the hand function to attract your attention? Or, do you want them to only use the chat.

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Changes to Teaching Rooms

Practice Modules

This blogpost is intended to take you through various scenarios that you may wish to use in Teaching Rooms. If you have any questions, please email is@aber.ac.uk.

The following changes have been made to teaching rooms:

  • There are now two screens in the teaching room. Screen 1 (the one with the web camera on) is the main screen. Screen 2 is directly linked to the projector. Use Screen 2 to display materials to your class and to share with participants via Teams.
  • Microsoft Teams has been installed and a shortcut is on all desktops.
  • New desktop microphones have been installed and lapel mics removed.

If you are in a teaching room and require technical assistance, pick up the phone and wait. It will automatically dial through to Technical Support.

Before the session we advise you to:

  1. Set up a Teams meeting for participants who are unable to join the session face to face (How do I do that?)
  2. Have the teaching materials easily available to you – we recommend you use OneDrive and copy your materials to the desktop before beginning the session. Avoid bringing USBs etc. into the teaching room. (How do I use OneDrive?)
  3. Communicate with any students joining via Teams how they will be participating in the session and how you will handle questions from them.

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Useful Information: Online Teaching

Distance Learner BannerSetting up sessions through MS Teams:

  • Unless otherwise agreed, Microsoft Teams should be used to run all online teaching sessions.
  • Details of online teaching sessions should be posted in Blackboard (see our FAQ how to set up a Teams meeting in Blackboard?).
  • Please note that for any sessions set up through Blackboard, students will be able to use the link to join the session 15 minutes before the chosen start time. Any time prior to this, students have the option to add the session to their Office365 calendars (see our student FAQ).

Keeping students informed:

  1. Use the announcements feature in Blackboard to communicate with your students. (See our FAQ How do I add an announcement to my Blackboard module?)
  2. Ensure that your Blackboard contacts page has your contact information and clear instructions on how and when students should contact you.

Delivering online sessions from the University:

  • If required, you may come into the University to deliver your online session from the teaching rooms in the allotted timetabled slots. Please ensure you are using the correct room and time allocated to your activity. 

CPD sessions:

  • The Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit will be running a number of CPD sessions for staff members over the coming weeks, focusing specifically on online learning and teaching and associated E-learning tools.

For any technical assistance with using MS Teams or any of the E-learning tools, please email elearning@aber.ac.uk. If you wish to discuss any aspect of learning and teaching, please email lteu@aber.ac.uk.

 

Learning and Teaching Updates – September 2020

Distance Learner Banner

We would like to provide you with an overview of recent developments and support materials that we have worked on for the past few months.

This information is also available at:  https://www.aber.ac.uk/en/is/it-services/elearning/continuity/

Scheduling MS Teams meeting from Blackboard

All teaching sessions held in MS Teams should be scheduled in Blackboard. This includes timetabled online activities.

Setting up a meeting: https://faqs.aber.ac.uk/3067

Information for students: https://faqs.aber.ac.uk/3061

Recording seminars and Teams activities

There are privacy concerns which need to be considered when recording a meeting in MS Teams.

Further information: Guidance on recording seminars and Teams activities

Using teaching rooms

Information about using teaching rooms this academic year, including how to use MS Teams in an in-person teaching session is available at Teaching Room Guide 2020-21

Support materials for students

Supporting your Learning resources for students are now available at https://www.aber.ac.uk/en/important-info/living-and-learning-in-aberystwyth-2020-21/students/supporting-your-learning/. We will add to this page during the semester as things change or we approach key points for students.

Invitation: Aberystwyth University’s Learning and Teaching Conference 2020

We’re looking forward to this year’s Learning and Teaching Conference which is just under a month away, 7-9th September 2020.

As you may have read, this year’s Conference will be taking place online via Teams so you can join us for as much or as little of the conference as you wish.

You can download the full programme and book your place online.

We’re grateful to have a number of external speakers this year. Our keynote, Professor Ale Armellini, will be talking about embedding active blended learning into all courses at the University of Northampton. You can read more about this project on the University of Northampton’s webpage

In addition to Professor Armellini, we also have Dr Kate Lister from the Open University who will be talking about embedding wellbeing into the curriculum. In addition to her presentation, Kate will also be offering a drop-in session where colleagues can ask specific questions about the wellbeing strategy.

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Conference Registration

Registration for the eighth annual Learning and Teaching conference is open. This year’s Learning and Teaching conference has the theme Enhancing the Curriculum: Inspire Learning and Invigorate Teaching! and will be taking place online between Monday 7th and Wednesday 9th September 2020.

You can register for the conference by filling in this online form.

This year, we’ve got an exciting and varied programme with activities, workshops and presentations demonstrating the innovative teaching practices that are taking place across the University. A draft copy of the programme is available on our webpages.

If you have any queries, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Learning and Teaching Conference 2020 Logo

Changes to the Blackboard Required Minimum Presence (RMP)

Distance Learner BannerWe have updated the RMP to respond to the Covid-19 situation. The new RMP contains items that will help support students with their online learning. It has been developed by the Learning and Teaching Enhancement Group (LTEU) with significant input from sub-groups of the Learning and Teaching Scenario Planning Group (LTSPG).

What’s New?

All new or altered items are highlighted in bold in the new RMP. They represent some good practice currently in place around AU as well as responding to some of the queries received by the LTEU from staff and students during the Covid-19 crisis. Some highlights include:

  • A Panopto recording of a module tour to help students to familiarise themselves with how the module will run
  • Induction activities – see below
  • Providing clear information to students on what they need to do online, how they should do it, and what to do if they have problems
  • Recommendations on providing lecture materials via short Panopto recordings.

Induction materials

The IBERS Distance Learning modules make use of an induction folder (known as Unit 0). This introduces all students to a range of activities which must be completed to ensure that students are able to successfully study online. We recommend this approach for modules in the coming year. The types of activities you may want to include will vary between modules and will depend on what tools and approaches you are using in the module. Some examples may be:

  • A practice Turnitin or Blackboard Assignment submission to check submission and that students can view their feedback
  • Viewing a Panopto recording and completing a quiz
  • Posting an introductory message to a discussion forum
  • Completing a formative Blackboard test
  • Locating library materials through the Aspire Reading List

If you need any help or support with the new RMP, please email elearning@aber.ac.uk