Friday, July 23, 2010

Development Ideas

Keeping up good communication with staff and students

Face to Face

In order to start on a good collaborative playing field the introductory lecture has been face to face. The students have been given a hard copy of the assessment, the aims/outcomes of the paper and the assessment policy. Also a timetable was used to let students see how the placement fits in the middle of this placement.

I have also had a face to face meeting with Wintec staff in Hamilton before the paper started to discuss the nature and content of this paper. This is the first time I have co-ordinated accross two campuses for the one paper. I have organised a weekly telephone conversation to the lecturer up in Hamilton to keep communication up and going. The resources needed for this paper have been discussed. These are the tangible craft art requirements for the students to have access to when they develop their poster frameworks. The resources for online media may be compromised as not all students have broadband and there has been issues with moodle getting "stuck" which inhibits a smooth flow of learning.

An issue I have noticed is that the Wintec staff have not had enough time to get their head around this paper. They have been caught up with marking until just before this paper starts. Due to my marking I have not had the opportunity to fully prepare the lecturer up in Hamilton. I can only compensate by having regular telephone calls and emails as the paper progresses to keep things on track.

Moodle is the main online venue for students to be updated on Lecture content and tutorial content. This is made available a week before the class/tutorial begins. I have set up a news forum for students to get an email to update any information as it comes to hand.

Existing learning Activities reviewed.

I have changed the first presentation questions again after the first tutorial. I was persuaded by observing last years students to omit one question however the nature of the students are different this year and I believe the question should remain. The problem I had was that Hamilton had already done the tutorials with the question omitted. I sent a news forum announcement stating that on Moodle there is an updated version of the questions and it is optional if they choose to do question 5. It was not ideal and next year I will have it more organised from the outset I am realising that ability to be flexible is severly compromised by having the same paper running over two campuses on different time frames.

Proposed learning media.

I have thought through with the Flexible learning course how to utilise discussion boards or forums to get students to "touch base" with their own individualised learning. Due to time constraints this year for the students I am delaying this until next year. This is because the timetable for their placement changes next year and will affect this paper.

I am however utilising U-tube and other online media embedded on Moodle for the students to access to back up their learning. My concerns however is that the students do not appear so far to do what is required unless their is a reward at the end or a need (as in Marks allocated). An example is that I emailed by news forum a week ago for students to read a lengthy chapter for this paper. One tutorial group of 15 people had not done the reading. This is a concern as am I wasting my time putting resources online if the students do not access these. To comensate for this in future there may be a need to allocate marks for this.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Constructing Courses for Enhanced Learning

Practicalities of Proposed Design

Main issues that have come up with the design of this paper is creating a balance of content and time. This is a five point paper and the required time that students need to dedicate to this paper with facilitation including lectures and tutorials is 50 hours. To maintain a balance of content and self directed learning is important.

One other major issue which interrupts the flow of this paper is how it is timetabled. In the middle of the course the students go away on a fieldwork placement and with holidays mean they are away for seven weeks.

From my experience, the affect this has is that students lose the thread of what the learning outcomes and assessment focus is for this paper. Some students have the opportunity to progress with their own learning activity on placement. Others do not have the opportunity and there is no requirement for students to be involved in other study on their placement.

This may change next year as the fieldwork team are changing how the placement works.

Design factors for these issues:

* How to utilise blended delivery, and or content changes to enable students to not lose focus of learning outcomes and thread of paper
* Utilise either blended delivery and or change course content to constructively enhance how learning outcomes are achieved.