Weekly Resource Roundup – 1/10/2021

As leader of our PGCTHE programme, I keep an eye out for resources to help staff teach effectively. These include webinars, podcasts, online toolkits, publications and more. Topics include active learning, online/blended teaching, accessibility/inclusion, and effective learning design based on cognitive science. Below I’ve listed items that came to my attention in the past week. In the interest of clarity, our policy is to show the titles and descriptions in the language of delivery.   

Online events and webinars

Resources and publications

Please see the Staff Training booking page for training offered by the LTEU and other Aberystwyth University staff. I hope you find this weekly resource roundup useful. If you have questions or suggestions, please contact our team at lteu@aber.ac.uk. You may also wish to follow my Twitter feed, Mary Jacob L&T.  

Weekly Resource Roundup – 16/9/2021

As leader of our PGCTHE programme, I keep an eye out for resources to help staff teach effectively. These include webinars, podcasts, online toolkits, publications and more. Topics include active learning, online/blended teaching, accessibility/inclusion, and effective learning design based on cognitive science. Below I’ve listed items that came to my attention in the past week. In the interest of clarity, our policy is to show the titles and descriptions in the language of delivery.   

Online events and webinars

Resources and publications

Please see the Staff Training booking page for training offered by the LTEU and other Aberystwyth University staff. I hope you find this weekly resource roundup useful. If you have questions or suggestions, please contact our team at lteu@aber.ac.uk. You may also wish to follow my Twitter feed, Mary Jacob L&T.  

Weekly Resource Roundup – 8/9/2021

As leader of our PGCTHE programme, I keep an eye out for resources to help staff teach effectively. These include webinars, podcasts, online toolkits, publications and more. Topics include active learning, online/blended teaching, accessibility/inclusion, and effective learning design based on cognitive science. Below I’ve listed items that came to my attention in the past week. In the interest of clarity, our policy is to show the titles and descriptions in the language of delivery.   

Online events and webinars

Resources and publications

Please see the Staff Training booking page for training offered by the LTEU and other Aberystwyth University staff. I hope you find this weekly resource roundup useful. If you have questions or suggestions, please contact our team at lteu@aber.ac.uk. You may also wish to follow my Twitter feed, Mary Jacob L&T.  

Resources from the Annual Learning and Teaching Conference

Hector, our AberForward who has been working with us to support the Annual Learning and Teaching Conference, has pulled together a list of resources inspired by the talks at the conference. If you want to watch any of the sessions again, then you can do so on our webpages.

Conference Keynote: Dr Chrissi Nerantzi

Our conference keynote was definitely a highlight. Chrissi asked conference attendees the following questions. Below are the results from our conference delegates:

Mentimeter poll result outlining how much colleagues agree with the following statements:

I am feeling more creative since the pandemic broke out (3.8)

My students react more positively to create tasks since the pandemic broke out (3.2)

I find it easier to be creative in my teaching practice during the pandemic (3.3)

Being creative means risk lowering my evaluation scores linked to my teaching (3)
Mentimeter word cloud results answering the following question: What is your main driver to innovate in your practice?

Most common answers:

Engagement
Student engagmeent
Fun
Curiosity
Inclusivity
Learning

If you’re interested in reading more about Chrissi’s work, then take a look at the following webpages:

Read More

Weekly Resource Roundup – 11/8/2021

As leader of our PGCTHE programme, I keep an eye out for resources to help staff teach effectively. These include webinars, podcasts, online toolkits, publications and more. Topics include active learning, online/blended teaching, accessibility/inclusion, and effective learning design based on cognitive science. Below I’ve listed items that came to my attention in the past week. In the interest of clarity, our policy is to show the titles and descriptions in the language of delivery.   

Online events and webinars

Resources and publications

Other

Please see the Staff Training booking page for training offered by the LTEU and other Aberystwyth University staff. I hope you find this weekly resource roundup useful. If you have questions or suggestions, please contact our team at lteu@aber.ac.uk. You may also wish to follow my Twitter feed, Mary Jacob L&T.  

2021-2022 Modules now available to Staff

Modules for the academic year 2021/2022 are now available for staff teaching on modules. This is in order to assist staff in preparing for the new academic year. You may have noticed that a new tab has appeared on the top menu of your Blackboard screen: 

If you’re enrolled as a staff member on the module in Astra then you should be able to view your modules for next academic year. If you’re not able to see a module that you are enrolled on then contact your Departmental Administrator. Students won’t be enrolled on the module until registration is complete.  

You’ll notice that the codes for modules have changed slightly owing to the new MAF form. AB1 denotes modules running in semester 1, AB2 denotes modules running in semester 2, and AB3 denotes modules running in Semester 3 and Semester S.

We’ve got the following support available to help with Course Copy: 

Read our FAQ

If you have any queries regarding Course Copy, or need further assistance, please email elearning@aber.ac.uk

Interactive Blackboard Tools Case Studies – Wikis

Distance Learner Banner

This case study is based on and includes extracts from the Student-led Planning of Tourism and Hospitality Education: The Use of Wikis to Enhance Student Learning book chapter written by Dr Mandy Talbot (Aberystwyth Business School) and published in the Routledge Handbook of Tourism and Hospitality Education.

What tool do you use and how? 

Dr Mandy Talbot used Blackboard wikis to facilitate a student led, collaborative learning project (…) on the second year, bachelor degree module: international tourism development. (…) The module course work required students to work in small groups to identify and evaluate the tourism development strategies that were being followed in given tourist destinations and to compare these with approaches being taken elsewhere. Due to the collaborative and interactive nature of the assignment the most suitable web tool was the wiki.’

Why did you choose this tool? 

Before implementation of wikis ‘students undertook the exercise by creating and delivering a group PowerPoint presentation of 15 minutes to the class, with a further 10 minutes for questions.’ Dr Mandy Talbot changed the format of this assessment in order to:

  1. ‘Improve the cohesiveness of student group work: The wiki format provides a collaborative work space for students to develop their work’
  • ‘Provide students with more opportunity to interact with the work of other groups: The wiki format enables students to visit each other’s’ presentations over an extended time period. Wiki pages also have comment boxes which enable students to pose questions and engage in discussion on the other sites.’
  • ‘Develop student IT skills: Students will learn how to create and structure web pages’.

Read More

So Long, and Thanks for All the…

…challenges, suggestions, and insights into many different departments at the university! The last 11 months have been an absolute blast working with the Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit as an Online Learning Specialist.

Having started with the 2020 Annual Learning and Teaching Conference, it was wonderful to be able to be a part of the 2021 instance of the same event towards the end of my time in this job. This time round, I even presented (albeit in my role as Lecturer in Theatre and Scenography with TFTS) – you can find the recording of that paper here. Those two events bracket an intense time of learning and teaching for me: alongside my lovely colleagues, I designed, developed, and delivered training sessions on everything from Blackboard to Vevox. I supported staff from all kinds of departments in the switch from in-person to blended learning, to online-only, and back. It is no exaggeration to say I am in awe of the dedication, determination, and ingenuity displayed by colleagues all over the university. I am sure that the resources produced by the Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit will continue to support staff as we head towards another academic year potentially full of necessary adaptations. Keep an eye on the Staff Training pages – I for one will be sure to make use of them.

As my Online Learning Specialist colleagues and I move on to other challenges, I wanted to take this opportunity to thank all Information Services colleagues, and especially the Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit, for being so welcoming and allowing me to gain a much deeper understanding of and appreciation for the many-facetted work of that department. Diolch o galon i gyd!

2020/21 External Speakers and Resources

As part of this year’s CPD programme, we hosted a number of external speakers who provided us with new perspectives and unique expertise in various aspects of learning and teaching. In preparation for the upcoming year, we would like to briefly remind you of some of the topics discussed and the resources available to you. We hope that by building on these and other sessions the Unit organised this year you will feel fully prepared to adapt and innovate your teaching in the upcoming year.

Professor Ale Armellini: The Journey towards Active Blended Learning

Last summer’s conference keynote speaker, Professor Ale Armellini, shared his insights and advice on learning innovation and online pedagogy.

Recording


Dr Naomi Winston: From Transmission to Transformation: Maximising Student Engagement with Feedback

In the first mini-conference of the year, we had an opportunity to listen to Dr Naomi Winstor who argued 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.

Recording


Frederika Roberts: Flourishing at Aberystwyth – Putting Positive Education into Practice

In this mini-conference keynote speech attendees learnt about key elements of positive psychology in the context of higher education and practical strategies for enhancing their own wellbeing.

Recording


Kate Lister: Online Communities and Student Well-being

Kate Lister from Advance HE explored how to create effective digital communities that can support students’ sense of belonging and purpose, facilitate meaningful connections, and provide support without relying on a campus environment.

Recording


Dr Kate Exley: Taking your (PowerPoint) Lectures Online

Dr Kate Exley was invited to deliver a workshop on moving our lectures, previously delivered in large lecture theatres and classrooms, to online platforms.

Summary


Dr Sally Brown & Dr Kay Sambell – Improving assessment and feedback processes post-pandemic: authentic approaches to improve student learning and engagement.

During our Mini-Fest on assessment, Dr Sally Brown and Dr Kay Sambell led a workshop designed to build on lessons learned during the complex transitions academics made last year and explore the concept of authentic approaches to assessments.

Link to recordings & resources


Professor Mick Healey & Dr Ruth Healey: Engaging students through student-staff partnership

We invited Professor Mick Healey and Dr Ruth Healey to deliver a workshop on student-staff partnerships and consult them on engaging students in projects and provisions we currently deliver.

Recording

Dr Dyddgu Hywel: Blaenoriaethu Iechyd a Lles Staff

The first external speaker of this year’s Learning and Teaching Conference talked about prioritizing the health and well-being of staff.

Recording


Andy McGregor: What will assessment look like in five years?

We also had an opportunity to listen to Andy McGregor from JISC on the future of assessment. A talk based on JISC’s paper: The future of assessment: five principles, five targets for 2025, which ‘sets five targets for the next five years to progress assessment towards being more authentic, accessible, appropriately automated and secure’.

Recording


Dr Chrissi Nerantzi: Breaking Free

Lastly, our keynote speech for this year’s conference was delivered by Dr Chrissi Neratzi who talked about open and flexible pedagogies.


Joe Probert & Izzy Whitley: Using Vevox to engage learners.

Joe Probert and Izzy Whitley from Vevox, our university polling software, delivered a session on how to make effective use of polling to engage learners.  

Recording

Course Copy 2021-2022

Every year, the E-learning Group create new modules in Blackboard ready for next year’s teaching. For the academic year 2021/22 departments decided internally  whether modules would be blank or have content copied over. Modules for 2021-2022 will be available from the beginning of August. 

Staff in Geography and Earth Sciences and IBERS will have modules created blank. We have prepared these FAQs with detailed guidance on copying different elements from one module to another in Blackboard.

All other departments will have their modules copied. As part of the course copy process, the following tools and content are not copied:

  • Turnitin submissions  
  • Blackboard Assignments  
  • Announcements
  • Blogs
  • Journals  
  • Wikis
  • Panopto recordings and links
  • Teams meetings. 

We would like to assist staff with preparing their modules as much as we can. We are happy to arrange a consultation over Teams. To do so, send an email to elearning@aber.ac.uk