October: first half
Students are back! Everywhere!!
We look forward to working with seven new Teaching Fellows this year: Thomas, James, Alexandra, Alexander, Jack, Aurel and Gary.
We also welcome two new Graduate Business Partnership students who will be working on the Students as Change Agents project: Dale Potter and Harriet Whewell. Dale in particular will be working with the Business School, and since he graduated from there in the summer, he is already known by a number of staff and students. Liz has been involved in their induction to the projects, and to Education Enhancement and the world of HE more generally, between their being introduced to Change Agents project by Roos, spending time with the Team Development programme (observing, videoing, taking photos) and making the video required by JISC for the two-day Curriculum Design and Delivery sessions in Manchester.
Laura was pleased to be on the panel for the Business School post for the new GBP student Moodle Migration Team. The students for the team have now been selected and are based in the main library, and they have also been completing their induction process. The Moodle migration is not directly connected to the Integrate project, but will certainly have an impact on technology use in the Business School and across the whole institution. The migration is due to be completed for next academic year.
Laura and Liz (Ali has bronchitis) spent 2 days in Manchester with JISC projects – a very early start and late back the next day. Exeter created a lot of interest, both re numbers and what we’d achieved so far, and in relation to Student-led projects. Several invitations to speak elsewhere about this. Also arranged that David Nichol (national expert on assessment, see REAP project) would visit Business School in new year – seemed interested in idea of talking to a mixed group of students and staff (more to negotiate here).
The video and an A0 poster were asked for three weeks ago to provide discussion points for the meeting. This was not good timing for us, especially as we had already spent 2 days out in mid-September at Westminster Uni for a required meeting, and time is precious! Too much of Liz in video, but everyone else too busy at the beginning of term to contribute.
Team development feedback sheets collated and analysed by Liz for almost 500 students from the Business School – so as to be clear of benefits perceived by students – very positive indeed – and potential links to teaching with technology. MACE scores (Module and Programme Evaluation scores) analysed for 83 undergraduate modules for last academic year in relation to two questions on technology. Need to work out what the figures tell us about technology use/desires across different year groups. Need also to collect more comments from staff about positive benefits of team development (Aurel, Jackie, Juliette, at least). NB. Also need to make sure that photos, etc. are accessible to the Business School. Printed poster for JISC sessions looks very professional – went back to the design team three times before we were happy with it. We should print some smaller ones?
Management group meetings were held to discuss Ali’s replacement (her last work day is 25 November, before she goes to Westminster). Job description updated and agreed, and the formalities for Personnel are completed. A new member of the group is David Boughey as School Director of Education (a new post). We welcome him and look forward to his interest and support. Also met to discuss: returning to the pre-summer practice of a member of the project team spending time in the Business School; better lines of communication in general (hence more activity on this blog!); being more proactive; and being clearer between us about targets and boundaries for the second year of the project. The management group will from now on be comprised of David, Juliette, Roz, Ali or her replacement, and Liz.
Liz and Harriet met with the Guild Education Officer and Student Representation Officer re SSLCs and Academic Affairs meetings. Currently a bit vague – very few chairs of committees as yet and no meeting times decided. This is central to Student-led projects in the School, so a bit disappointing. Will arrange to meet with the Business and Economics (student) Society to ensure good links.
Liz and Dale met with Erasmus coordinator in the Business School. Dale gained useful feedback from attending the international students evening (brief questionnaire).
Laura and Ali ran introductory sessions for WebCT, Turning Point and Turnitin for the new teaching fellows as well as an introductory session about WebCT that was offered out to all Business School staff.
Ali and Laura spent the previous week working full-time on getting the new BSD1000 Business School Development module up and running – no easy task! We hit many technical and administrative challenges throughout the week but worked around them and we are generally pleased with the final outcome. BSD1000 module is being accessed by students already – signing up for online skills courses. Problem with incorrect dates in spreadsheet for BSD1000 skills module rectified. Lots more students have signed up!
Laura and Ali also had a couple of busy afternoons in the Business School helping to sell ARS handsets (clickers) to the first year students. Mix of reactions from the students – some excited about using the new technology, some wary that they are for attendance monitoring purposes, and some completely unfazed by the devices because they’ve used/seen them before (particularly the Chinese students).
Twenty-two flip cameras have been charged (half of Education Enhancement helped with this!), marked and ready for Jenny’s group. FAQs for Jonquil’s flip video group added to slightly and uploaded to WebCT – will be useful for Jenny too. ‘Hire agreement’ sheet written for students, to add to ‘instructions for use’. (These could become ‘assets’ for JISC at a later date). All such info will be put onto the project website for reference (though not sure if we can do this as we’d planned, due to the style of the new Academic Services template). Detailed arrangements have been made in order to give full responsibility to Jenny’s groups to look after flip cameras, to video their own group presentations in taught sessions, and download presentations themselves (training session, to be run by Laura, arranged for students soon). Dale and Harriet videoed one of Jenny’s introductory sessions so that any instructions can be available in future without need for repetition. Will be made into a video for our new ‘Ning’ site.
Have spent many hours trying to find expert advice on/test out where to keep student video that can be accessed by the tutor groups but is otherwise private. Ning looks to be the best space (recommended by the JISC), but needs more testing. Other major possibilities were Facebook (mixed feelings from students about ‘intruding’ on their space) or Youtube (can only have groups of up to 25 if to remain private, so this is not possible for the size of groups required).