Finding out about Learning Analytics

I’m attending the JISC Learning Analytics network meeting (information), which is giving a good overview on the emerging development of learning analytics, and its integration into higher education. Learning analytics aims to harness data about students interactions and engagement with a course, whatever can be measured, and use that in an intelligent way to inform and empower students about their own academic journey. Of course, one of the major questions being discussed here is what data is relevant? This was something I explored when looking at developing a model to help tutors predict student performance and identify at-risk students (see CERP:…

What are your thoughts on lecture flipping?

I am giving a keynote at the AHEAD conference in March, and the lecture itself will be a flipped lecture on lecture flipping. The audience will be a mixture of academics and support staff from all over Europe and beyond, and the idea is that they will watch the presentation in advance (hmmmm) and we will then use the time during the actual conference presentation to discuss emerging themes. I will be highly caffeinated. In order to address some of the issues around lecture flipping that face most educators, I would be interested to hear thoughts from lecturers and support…

A future direction for clickers?

Clickers are routinely used to survey class on their understanding of topics or test their knowledge with quizzes, and as technology has developed, there have been clever ways of doing this (See: The Rise and Rise…). One issue that arises is that as lecturers, we don’t have a convenient way to know what individual students think, or what their answer is. Enter this recent paper from BJET, An Augmented Lecture Feedback System to support Learner and Teacher Communication. This paper describes a clicker-based system, but instead of (or as well as) a lecturer viewing a chart of responses, the lecturer sees the…

Showing hints in Blackboard Quizzes

A previous post showed how to include hints and worked examples in quiz questions in the now old Blackboard, BB 8. With the new Blackboard 9, is this still possible? It seems the hint option (i.e. an alert box) still works. Including the code shown below using the HTML editor option,  a button is included in the question text: <form name=”myform”> <p>(This is the Question text)What is the answer to 1 + 23</p> <p><input type=”button” value=”Hint” onclick=”alert(‘This is a hint’)” /></p> </form> Note that the question text can be subsequently edited. The hint text “This is a hint” in the above…

Designing e-resources – the transient information effect

One thing I have often wondered about when considering videos/animations/audio files is that unlike something written on a piece of paper, the information in multimedia presentation moves on quite quickly. With paper, one can get a sense of the whole, see the sequence, refer back quickly to what went before. With audio or video, information, and often quite complex information, is presented at the pace of the speaker, and it takes a bit of effort to go back and review a segment (i.e. not a glance of an eye). Therefore, for technical topics like chemistry, is there an issue with…

Lunchtime T&L Session: Video to Support Teaching

The College of Sciences and Health is hosting a series of lunchtime sessions to disseminate examples of learning, teaching and assessment methods being employed on programmes across the College. These events are designed to provide colleagues with an opportunity to learn from each-other, and to provide an opportunity to share examples of practice collected through the annual monitoring process. On Wednesday, 11th December 2013, 1:15pm to 2:45pm: 1:15 – 1:45 – Steve Meaney, School of Biological Sciences, Broadcast Video 1:45 – 2:15 – Bryan Duggan, School of Computing, Free tools for recording video 2:15 – 2:45 – Michael Seery, School of…

Flipping Lectures and the Blackboard Retention Centre

I attended a useful workshop today on the Blackboard Retention Centre, which I was aware of before, but never really looked at. However, it looks like it could be quite useful. Perhaps the reason it doesn’t look immediately useful is that the initial options set up automatically by the retention centre are too broad. When I first noticed the alerts, I had about 750. If I have two groups of students doing labs at different times, but was too lazy to set up groups, then half the class flag an alert. Therefore first task will be to turn off all alerts…

Flipped Classroom Debate

Educational innovations are a bit like political parties; people tend to advocate them passionately or dismiss them disparagingly, with both groups relying on legacy rather than evidence for their views. This week, the flipped classroom hit the headlines, with a USA Today article that presented a study of flipping the “STEM classroom”. The preliminary results found that flipping the classroom had no difference in problem solving, attitude to learning, and exam performance. It was remiss of the journalist of this article not to pick up what others later did; that the staff-student ratio at the institution in question was 1:9…

Teaching Fellowship 2013

My work on enabling students to prepare for lectures has gathered some momentum again this year with the awarding of a Teaching Fellowship for a project involving second year students. Most work to date has involved Year 1 students, focussing on introducing core concepts in advance of a lecture. These pre-lecture activities are probably best described in an Education in Chemistry article previously published. This new project extends the concept to second years, and expands on the amount of information presented in advance of the lecture. The idea is that by providing much of the “content delivery” of lecture in…

Using WordPress for E-Portfolios

Overview
The Resource Pack aims to show how WordPress web publishing platform (WordPress.org) can be a useful tool in creating and presenting e-portfolios. It aims to show what can be done technically to integrate various elements of an e-portfolio: the documentation of learning, conversation with peers and tutors, and presentation of the ‘product’ for assessment and/or feedback.[Jan 2012]