In the wake of the creation of the new 1718 module sites, we are delighted to announce the unveiling of this year’s programme sites.

Following a recommendation to encourage a more uniform use of and engagement with these sites represented in the paper to SEC in February to help foster student programme identity, a task and finish group was subsequently formed to address what was required within the template. This resulted in the production of a more user-friendly left-hand menu and an updated version of NILE minimum standards to incorporate suggested content for each section. These were finally approved at SEC in May 2017.

A part of producing the updated template was involving colleagues across student facing services: this has allowed us to incorporate some core content for your programme sites in order to enhance the quality/clarity/consistency of information across all sites in all Faculties. We now require the programme leaders and their colleagues to take ownership of these sites and following the guidance, to add programme/ subject specific content for the benefit of your students.

As always, the Learning Technologists are on hand to help you if assistance is required.

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On 18th May, 2017, Simon Sneddon was presented with the Best NILE Site Award as part of the Student Teaching and Representation (STAR) Awards evening.

Simon Sneddon collects STAR award

(left to right) Simon Sneddon collecting his award from Rob Howe (Head of Learning Technology)

 

NILE is an essential part of the student online experience. This award was to recognise staff members who have made a significant effort with their NILE site setup and use.

Students were asked to nominate against the following criteria:
•    The site design and navigation assists students to easily find the content they are looking for.
•    The content and resources on the site cover all key areas required.
•    Tools for discussion and collaboration are effectively used throughout the site.
•    Assessment and feedback is clear and well managed through the site.
•    The tutor’s Nile Site has an element of innovation which has enhanced engagement

The full list of nominees and the student comments are shown below – congratulations to all of these and to all of the staff that have worked to support them.

Alasdair Gordon-Finlayson
The way Nile is used by Alasdair has been described as “truly innovative” as it is utilising most of the available components of the site. Alasdair uploads slides with voice overs, chapters for reading and videos covering related topics onto NILE which are well appreciated by students. He includes online tests which allow students to receive immediate feedback.
Mark Johnson
Mark provides a huge amount of information onto NILE, but organises it in such a way so that it is not daunting for students. All the content and resources are always uploaded on time so they are easy to find. He talks through all the sites and shows students where to find all the information. Mark utilises message boards to communicate with students and regularly updates these with information on the subject matter and even external job opportunities. All emails are replied to efficiently with the contact information provided on NILE. All feedback and grades are nicely structured so students know where to find all of their grades.
Melanie Cole
Melanie used NILE to create an online resource to prepare students for their practical assessments. She broke each learning stage down by demonstrating it on video, with added sound and commentary. Each element of the practical was explained clearly and then students were tested on it before they moved through the online learning resource. This learning tool was engaging, interesting, clearly explained and easy to follow. Students described it as the best way of learning a complex subject.  The video, audio and online test was a fantastic way to reinforce knowledge.
Simon Sneddon
Simon has proactively designed and prepared the NILE site to be ‘Waterside Ready’, and offers a range of resources including videos, books, journals, and examples of previous assignments for guidance. He has striven to ensure that all students are aware of how to use the site by demonstrating it in sessions, and by clearly signposting each section of the modules and related tasks. On the NILE site, there is an online discussion board where students can discuss the topics and share resources covered. Simon frequently comments and posts updates encouraging students to read each other’s work and have a discussion on the issues raised.  These tools for discussion and collaboration are highly effective throughout the site, not only because it is a different way of learning, but also it helps face to face students to share, and to read the work of distance learners, bridging the gap between both student groups. All module content is available at the start of term and so students can start planning ahead. Assessments and feedback have designated folders, which provide the breakdown of all assignments in a clear and accessible format.
Toby Purser
Toby uploads links to relevant media currently in the news linking to each topic. He uses a mixture of both interactive and teacher lead learning on the website with e-activities, videos and newspaper articles on NILE building upon content discussed during teaching. Each section of the module is separated into its own folder with a relevant picture which makes information easier to find. Toby uses active discussion boards where topics are tackled prior to the session. As well as written feedback which is easy to find, Toby uploads a 3 minute video clip where he personally talks through the strengths and weaknesses of each assignment and explains how students can improve.

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Authors: Elizabeth Palmer, (University of Northampton, Learning Designer,) Sylvie Lomer, (University of Manchester, Lecturer in Education) and Ivelina Bashliyska (3rd Year Undergraduate Student and Assistant Researcher).

With thanks to Nadine Shambrooke and David Cousens for support with transcription and coding.

______________________________________________________________________

The University of Northampton has taken an institutional approach to learning and teaching through the widespread adoption of Active Blended Learning (ABL) as its new ‘normal’. To find out more please visit: https://www.northampton.ac.uk/ilt/current-projects/waterside-readiness/

However, student engagement has been highly variable, which has created a number of challenges for staff. Semi-structured qualitative focus groups have been undertaken with 201 undergraduate students across all the year groups and faculties during the academic year 16/17 based on a pilot study of 24 students in academic year 15/16. These focus groups have been looking at trying to uncover the students own perceptions and experiences of ABL in order to unpick the reasons behind varying patterns and engagements and to glean student insight into the factors that inhibit or encourage engagement with ABL.

The study has revealed a number of key factors which students identify as having significant impact on their engagement. Key success factors include effective pedagogical design, in particular establishing a clear and explicit relationship between online and face to face components of modules, and scaffolding the development of digital skills and literacies in the process of establishing online tasks. A strong relationship between staff and students is also critical, where students trust in the decisions and motivations of staff. This is signalled by following up on online tasks, providing feedback where relevant, and explicitly discussing the value of online tasks to module learning outcomes and employability skills. A key finding is that students’ conceptions of learning, teaching & knowledge impact on their engagement with ABL, and are not necessarily compatible with ABL principles. These factors are complex, interdependent and have varying loci of control. Staff can take a number of measures to increase the likelihood of student engagement, although certain factors remain ultimately within the agency of students. Understanding these issues is critical to the success of ABL.

The following artefacts provide the results of the study to date:

Read the Interim Report from the Main Study here:

Blue background with title of report and image of the new campus

Front cover of Interim Report

 

Read the Academic Poster from the University of Northampton’s Learning & Teaching Conference 2017 here:

Academic Poster on Student Engagement with ABL

Academic Poster on Student Engagement with ABL

For Ten Top Tips on how to design ABL to maximise student engagement:

1. Be confident in your approach! There is a huge evidence base supporting Active Blended Learning (ABL). Make the case for ABL with your students.  2. Build relationships with your students and encourage socialisation and collaboration both in the classroom and online.  3. Connect the face-to-face (F2F) and online components, so that F2F sessions use the   outputs of the online sessions, and vice versa.  4. Avoid repetition of content and tasks in F2F that have already appeared online, and vice versa. They should be different, but related.  5. Ensure that you are regularly visible to your students online.

ABL 10 Top Tips card

Read the Pilot Study Report here:

 

students sat in flexible learning commons space on bright furniture

Pilot Study Report

 

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Summer is fast approaching and it’s business as usual in the the LearnTech Team. As this academic year draws to a close, we are already looking ahead and preparing for next year’s teaching. With this in mind, we will be offering our weekly LearnTech lunchtime sessions and other training opportunities on a rolling basis over the summer months, maximising the opportunities for you to engage, pick up new skills and receive the support you need to create inspiring and active teaching content for the benefit of your students. One tool in particular you may wish to familiarise yourself with is Turnitin’s new interface Feedback Studio, due for release from August.

LearnTech lunchtime sessions currently introduce some of our core NILE tools and some specific SaGE elements, including their potential applications and how these technologies can enhance your teaching and learning. Sessions are being offered at Park and we will happily offer parallel sessions at Avenue Campus on a request basis; please contact Vicky Brown, Learning Technology Manager in the first instance.

You can book now and come along to receive updates, refresh your skills and find out how your peers are working using UN-supported LearnTech tools. Feel free to bring along your own lunch to the hour long sessions.

We look forward to welcoming you over the coming weeks. Details, dates and booking links follow:

Kaltura/ MediaSpace (video)

As the University has now moved to a single video solution in Kaltura (MediaSpace), this is a chance for those who have already started to engage with this tool and those as yet to experience it. The following areas may cover an introduction to MediaSpace; video capture using CaptureSpace; uploading video to MediaSpace; embedding video content in NILE; using quizzes in Kaltura.

Monday 5 June – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus,  Library, Tpod

Tuesday 4 July – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus,  Library, Tpod

Tuesday 1 August – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Friday 1 September – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 26 September – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 24 October – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 21 November – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2fWkTbG

 

Collaborate (Virtual Classroom)

This session will introduce those new to using online virtual classrooms (Northampton is licensed for Collaborate: Ultra Experience until 2020) as well as for those who are curious to learn about new functionalities now available in the tool. Topics may cover some of the following: setting up the tool in your NILE sites; inviting attendees; sharing files/ applications/ the virtual whiteboard; running a virtual classroom session; moderating sessions; recording sessions; break-out rooms.

Monday 22 May – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, IT Training Room

Monday 19 June – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 18 July – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 14 August – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 11 September – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 9 October – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 6 November – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 4 December – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2eG7mZR

 

MyPad / Edublogs (blogging tool)

MyPad (Edublogs) is the University’s personal and academic (WordPress) blogging tool and can be used in a number of ways to communicate and share learning resources. Topics covered may include: creation of individual / class student blogs; use of menus/ media; blog administration within modules; creation of class websites.

Friday 30 May – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 26 June – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, IT Training Room

Monday 24 July – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 22 August – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 18 September – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 16 October – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 14 November – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 12 December – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2f4BEUM

 

Assessments (Rubrics)

Have you heard about the use of rubrics in NILE and wondering what all the fuss is about? Want to find out how to grade your assessments electronically using rubrics? Curious to know how you can streamline your marking by using quantitative and/ or qualitative rubrics?

Come along to this LT lunchtime session to find out more about how to enhance and enrich feedback for your students using these tools in NILE.

Tuesday 13 June – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 5 September – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 27 November – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2pNL0H8

 

Assessments (Groups)

Groups are a powerful tool in NILE that can be used to facilitate and manage group assignments, and enable communication and collaboration for students.

If you are interested in seeing how to easily create groups, set an assignment (e.g. Group Presentation or online Debate), AND potentially reduce administration and marking time, whilst still maintaining quality of feedback, then please sign up ….

Wednesday 12 July – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 3 October – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2pNRmXb

 

Assessments (Turnitin Feedback Studio)

Turnitin has a new interface that will be adopted institution wide later on this year – Feedback Studio. Would you like to get ahead of the crowd and get a sneak preview of the new look and feel; to see the features offered by the new interface; see a demo and find out where to seek help and further support?

Sign up to this new LT lunchtime session to find out more.

Monday 7 August – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 31 October – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2qnc3dB

 

In addition the following training sessions are currently scheduled for Xerte – N.B. these are 2.5 hours in duration:

Xerte (online content creation tools)

Xerte is a University supported tool used to create interactive e-learning and online content.

In this training session you will be introduced to the software templates, page types, features and tools available to enable you to produce an interactive e-learning session or online content provision.

You will also learn about the importance of instructional design for your e-learning and online content projects, and benefit from some useful hints and tips, technical advice and items relevant to developing e-content generally.

Park Campus, Library, LLS IT Training Room or Tpod

14 June 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (IT Training Room)

29 June2017 – 13:30-16:00 (Tpod)

13 July 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (Tpod)

15 August 2017 – 14:00-16:30 (Tpod)

6 September 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (IT Training Room)

27 September 2017 – 13:30-16:00 (Tpod)

12 October 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (Tpod)

1 November 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (Tpod)

28 November 2017 – 13:30-16:00 (Tpod)

21 December 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (Tpod)

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2fYwKpY

 

Spaces are limited, so do not delay, book today! Unable to attend on these dates? More will be offered on a rolling basis so watch this space. In the meantime, please visit our NILE Guides and FAQs.

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As we fly through this year’s exam period and summer approaches, the LearnTech team has been looking ahead to the next academic year and preparing the 2017-18 NILE templates.

This year we have chosen to differentiate between courses taught at the University and those delivered by our academic partners, to reflect the different needs of all concerned. This has led to the creation of separate templates, making for a more tailored student (and staff) experience.

On the back of this, we are pleased to announce that your 1718 module sites have been created and are now ready to receive your content, so you can self-enrol now.

The template and NILE Standards have been updated for 2017-18 following recommendations approved at the University’s Student Experience Committee and Faculty SECs.

You will note that your module sites’ guidance has been streamlined to allow for any necessary dynamic updates throughout the academic year, incorporating links to existing support, thus avoiding duplication and avoiding potentially conflicting advice.

The template is designed to build on last year’s declutter/ updating of content: you should therefore all find yourselves standing in good stead for this year’s plan to copy over only what is required for the coming years teaching. For those of you unfamiliar with the process there is guidance on hand to assist you with this process as well as Learning Technology team members on standby should you require extra support and assistance. Please email LearnTech Support in the first instance or contact your designated LearnTech.

It’s never too early to start, so why not begin now? Consider getting head of the game; enjoy the summer break safe in the knowledge that some of your preparation for the coming academic year is already completed.

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NILE is integrated into the learning and teaching process at The University of Northampton and we need to ensure that it is being used effectively by staff in order to provide a quality student experience.

Building on the guidance which was initially produced in January 2012, the  framework has now been updated to cover the minimum standards which are expected on a NILE site. This was approved at University SEC on 10th May, 2017 and subsequently used as the basis for the new NILE templates which have been developed for the 2017/18 academic year.

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Melanie Cole achieves tremendous praise from her students who undertook their study using the Xerte e-learning package.

Melanie Cole

Melanie Cole-learning package.

Newborn airway skills teaching and learning
Second year student midwives are required to demonstrate knowledge and manual dexterity skills in key elements of newborn resuscitation while undertaking the undergraduate module ‘The Compromised Newborn’.  All those responsible for the care of the newborn infant should be able to provide basic assistance including essential airway management to a baby that does not make a normal transition to extra- uterine life.

The ‘4 stage approach’ is a recognised tool to facilitate acquisition of skills in resuscitation of the newborn infant and is advocated by the UK Resuscitation Council (2015).

Stage 1 – a silent demonstration of the skill by the tutor, allows the learner to observe the skill to real time.

Stage 2 – a demonstration with the addition of tutor dialogue, allows deconstruction of the skill and provides rationale for techniques and the structured approach.

Stage 3 – another tutor led demonstration which encourages the learner to verbally predict the next step and provide commentary for the tutor.

Stage 4 allows the learner to perform the skill independently with tutor and peer support.

Planning an online teaching and learning package
With our future learning environment at Waterside and a shift towards blended learning in mind, I explored the prospect of combining video assisted technology with face to face teaching and learning. My aim was to provide Stage 1, 2 and 3 online and bring the students to the university to consolidate learning and practice new skills during scheduled tutor facilitated contact sessions in small groups. While Kaltura enables the students to engage with stages 1 and 2 in viewing pre-recorded demonstrations of the skill, the challenge was related to Stage 3 and in providing an opportunity for students to be able to engage and contribute online. I contacted Anne Misselbrook from the Learning Technology Team and during a meeting we discussed my requirements and vision for the online resource. Anne quickly identified the Xerte learning package as an e-learning tool that would support my needs and enable Stage 1, 2 and 3 to be delivered online.

Selecting the correct mask

Selecting the correct mask

Creating an online package

Andy Stenhouse helped me to create the video of the skill being performed in real time (Stage 1) and the video of the skill being performed with tutor dialogue (Stage 2). The video of the skill in real time was then spilt into 10 smaller clips to enable Stage 3 to be created. The students would then be able to view a small clip and choose an answer from a multiple choice question to predict what should happen next.   A correct answer takes the student to the next clip while an incorrect answer takes them back to the beginning of Stage 3. The student has to answer each question correctly to get to the end of the sequence and they can have as many attempts as they wish, accommodating individual needs and learning styles.

Stage 1 Video

Stage 1 Video

Six months after I contacted the learntech team the final xerte was embedded into NILE within a series of timetabled learning units and was accessed by the pre-registration midwifery students in October 2016.

AirwayManagementTheory

Stage 2

These are some quotes from the students who engaged in an online survey following uptake of the xerte learning tool:

Positive Comments

“I found this learning tool extremely helpful and it had the perfect mix of written information and pictures/videos. I feel this will really help me in my practical assessment, if you got a question wrong you had to go back to the beginning which I thought was a really good idea as it enabled you to revisit information that you may not have completely took in and allowed you to keep going over it until this information has stuck”.

“I think the xerte learning tool is of great benefit as it enabled me to go through the learning stages at my own pace and I am able to revisit the information as often as I want in preparation for my assessment.  I especially found the videos useful and with these found the content easier to understand”.

“I thought it was extremely useful. The videos were excellent. A good variety of media used too which encouraged learning. I found it very helpful”.

“Overall this tool was brilliant to aid our learning and being able to go back to the videos and quizzes will be very helpful before the assessment”.

“I thought the learning tool was excellent and a great help to my understanding of the topic.  So much better than reading a book about it”.

“I believe this to be an excellent method of learning, as you can view the correct way to manage the airway and view it as many times as you wish”.

“A really good learning tool. Easy to follow and in order, making it easy to revise and understand”.

“The videos were really good, easy to understand and clear”.

“I felt the videos very useful especially as I believe I am a visual learner”.

Stage 3

Stage 3

Suggestions for modification

“Instead of going back to the beginning when getting an answer wrong, perhaps just show it is the wrong answer and give another opportunity to select correct answer”.

“Having to go right back to the beginning if you had got a question wrong was slightly frustrating although it did make me remember information so there were definite pros and cons to that process”.

Concluding reflection

Anne provided customised training and valuable support throughout the design and implementation phases. Time for early engagement and collaboration between myself and the Learning Technology Team proved to be vital in the planning, configuring and embedding of Xerte into the module. Inputting theory (text and images) is relatively straightforward on Xerte, creating the activity in Stage 3 and embedding the videos was more complex.

I imagine this approach might be suitable for other practical skills based teaching and learning within the university and I would encourage academic colleagues to give it a try with the support of the Learning Technology Team.

 

The LearnTech Team is pleased to bring you the next three months programme of LearnTech lunchtimes, following on from the success of our inaugural offerings.Thanks to those of you who have already attended: we hope that you have managed to apply & implement some of what you have learnt for the benefit of your students. For those of you as yet unfamiliar with the concept, read on….

We will once again be introducing you to the various NILE tools, their potential applications and how these technologies can enhance your teaching and learning. Sessions are being offered at both Park and Avenue Campuses and we have a few new additions to whet your appetite, so book now and come along to receive updates, refresh your skills and find out how your peers are working using UN-supported LearnTech tools. Feel free to bring along your own lunch – tea and coffee will be provided.

We look forward to welcoming you over the coming weeks. Details, dates and booking links follow:

 

Kaltura/ MediaSpace (video)

As the University has now moved to a single video solution in Kaltura (MediaSpace), this is a chance for those who have already started to engage with this tool and those as yet to experience it. The session covers an introduction to MediaSpace; video capture using CaptureSpace; uploading video to MediaSpace; embedding video content in NILE; using quizzes in Kaltura.

Friday 17 March – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus,  Library, IT Training Room

Friday 30 March – 12:30-13:30 – Avenue Campus, Library, CTC

Tuesday 11 April – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 8 May – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here:

(Park Campus): http://bit.ly/2fWkTbG

(Avenue Campus): http://bit.ly/2gAKcQx

Collaborate (Virtual Classroom)

This session will introduce those new to using online virtual classrooms (Northampton is licensed for Collaborate: Ultra Experience) as well as for those who are curious to learn about new functionalities now available in the tool. Topics covered include: setting up the tool in your NILE sites; inviting attendees; sharing files/ applications/ the virtual whiteboard; running a virtual classroom session; moderating sessions; recording sessions; break-out rooms.

Tuesday 21 March – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Thursday 23 March – 12:30-13:30 – Avenue Campus, Library, CTC

Friday 21 April – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 22 May – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, IT Training Room

Please sign up here:

(Park Campus): http://bit.ly/2eG7mZR

(Avenue Campus): http://bit.ly/2hwElOv

MyPad / Edublogs (blogging tool)

MyPad (Edublogs) is the University’s personal and academic (WordPress) blogging tool and can be used in a number of ways to communicate and share learning resources. Topics covered include: creation of individual / class student blogs; use of menus/ media; blog administration within modules; creation of class websites.

Tuesday 4 April – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Friday 28 April – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Friday 30 May – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2f4BEUM

Assessments (Rubrics)

Have you heard about the use of rubrics in NILE and wondering what all the fuss is about? Want to find out how to grade your assessments electronically using rubrics? Curious to know how you can streamline your marking by using quantitative and/ or qualitative rubrics?

Come along to this LT lunchtime session to find out more about how to enhance and enrich feedback for your students using these tools in NILE.

Tuesday 28 March – 12:30-13:30 - Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2n1m8xu

Assessments (Groups)

Groups are a powerful tool in NILE that can be used to facilitate and manage group assignments, and enable communication and collaboration for students.

If you are interested in seeing how to easily create groups, set an assignment (e.g. Group Presentation or online Debate), AND potentially reduce administration and marking time, whilst still maintaining quality of feedback, then please sign up ….

Thursday 4 May – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2n1sRI1

Assessments (Turnitin Feedback Studio)

Turnitin has a new interface that will be adopted institution wide later on this year – Feedback Studio. Would you like to get ahead of the crowd and get a sneak preview of the new look and feel; to see the features offered by the new interface; see a demo and find out where to seek help and further support?

Sign up to this new LT lunchtime session to find out more.

Monday 15 May – 12:30-13:30 - Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2mjnTml

Spaces are limited, so do not delay, book today!

 

In addition the following training sessions are currently scheduled for Xerte – N.B. these are 2.5 hours in duration:

Xerte (online content creation tools)

Xerte is a University supported tool used to create interactive e-learning and online content.

In this training session you will be introduced to the software templates, page types, features and tools available to enable you to produce an interactive e-learning session or online content provision.

You will also learn about the importance of instructional design for your e-learning and online content projects, and benefit from some useful hints and tips, technical advice and items relevant to developing e-content generally.

Places are limited to six per session.  Contact: anne.misselbrook@northampton.ac.uk for more details.

Park Campus, Library, LLS IT Training Room or Tpod

29 March 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (IT Training Room)

13 April 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (Tpod)

5 May 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (Tpod)

23 May 2017 – 14:00-16:30 (Tpod)

14 June 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (IT Training Room)

29 June 2017 – 13:30-16:00 (Tpod)

13 July 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (Tpod)

15 August 2017 – 14:00-16:30 (Tpod)

6 September 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (IT Training Room)

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2fYwKpY

 

Avenue Campus, Library, CTC

Wednesday 3 May – 14:00-16:30

Wednesday 24 May – 14:00-16:30

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2ng6wqq

Unable to attend on these dates? More will be offered on a rolling basis so watch this space. In the meantime, please visit our NILE Guides and FAQs. Still need help? Please contact your assigned LT direct.

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We’ve written a few posts about learning styles in the past, and an important letter in yesterday’s Guardian added yet more support to the anti-learning styles side of the argument. Thirty academics signed a letter to the Guardian calling for teachers to end the use of learning styles and to make more use of evidence-based practices instead. Regarding the use of learning styles, the letter said that they were “ineffective, a waste of resources and potentially even damaging as … [they] can lead to a fixed approach that could impair pupils’ potential to apply or adapt themselves to different ways of learning.”1

You can read the entire letter here: https://www.theguardian.com/education/2017/mar/13/teachers-neuromyth-learning-styles-scientists-neuroscience-education

References

1. Sally Weale (2017) Teachers must ditch ‘neuromyth’ of learning styles, say scientists

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Dr Paul Beeson BSc, MSc, PhD, CSci, FCPM, FFPM RCPS(Glasg), FHEA, a Senior Lecturer in the Faculty of Health and Society attended two Xerte training sessions with Anne Misselbrook the Content Developer on 19 April 2016 and again on 11 August 2016.

After attending the August session, Paul started to build his Xerte e-learning packages.  Paul took a sensible approach to the Xerte development and contacted Anne for support and they met on 16 August to discuss the plan for Xerte.  Paul acknowledges the importance of storyboarding with instructional design.  Paul was able to put the content in order in a plan before using Xerte software.  Anne helped Paul with designing the structure of the Xerte package with instructional design, provide recommendations about page types to use, and show Paul how he could ‘duplicate’ his Xerte for re-use with different content, thus saving time.

Metatarsalgia due to nerve entrapment

Anne emphasised that the Xertes need to be interactive and future proof.

Andy Stenhouse and Rob Farmer from the Learning Technology team got involved with supporting Paul with video clip recordings.

Video clip describing cheilectomy surgery

Video clip describing cheilectomy surgery

Paul needed video clips to complement his content and has since embedded quizzes to some of these using Kaltura CaptureSpace.

Paul has developed an impressive 21 Xerte e-learning packages (11 Xerte packages for the 2nd years and 10 Xerte packages for the third years).

At the end of September Paul added the survey questionnaire to his NILE sites.

Sample questions asked include:

  • Overall do you think that the Xerte’s are of benefit to learning and why?
  • What are your feelings to this approach to teaching?

 

Paul made the survey a mandatory part of the course and got the 2nd and 3rd year students to complete the survey at the end of term once they had used the different topic Xertes.

Anonymous feedback comments referring to the first question above include:

“Yes, the visual learning of video clips is especially beneficial”.

“I really enjoy the pre learning xerte, it sets me up with some base knowledge and understanding – giving me the foundations to build on within the lecture but also allowing me to bring something to the lecture”.

“It has been very helpful with pre-lecture learning”.

Anonymous feedback comments referring to the second question above include:

“I found it very useful”.

“It’s really good! It has everything we need to know about the topic”.

“Very satisfied, uses a different approach”.

However there does seem to be a misunderstanding about the delivery of teaching.  See the feedback comments below:

“It is a good extra to the lecture but nothing can be better than good time spent with the lecturer.  The face to face style is needed for this course”.

“I enjoy this style of learning when used in conjunction with the lecture”.

“Teaching is favoured fills the gaps of the Xerte’s”. 

The Flipped Classroom is the teaching style being promoted and this is a mix of online and face to face learning.  Some students are indicating that they think online is replacing face to face, but this is not the case.

Neurological Causes of Forefoot Pain

Neurological Causes of Forefoot Pain

Paul states:

“Lessons learnt include making sure the e-learning package is varied and not too long.  Also, the importance of making a plan prior to construction of the Xerte.  This can’t be emphasised enough”.

What Paul liked:

It was useful to have the opportunity to attend a Xerte training session more than once as this helps reinforce learning.

Paul liked the direct phone support provided by Anne Misselbrook and the opportunity of being able to share his Xerte examples with Anne for her feedback.

In addition, Paul looked at websites to find examples of good practice.

Conclusion

Students need to have a shift of attitude from the thought that “they (Lecturers) are making us do this” to accepting the message (from Lecturers) “we’ve done this for you and we are helping you by giving a structure and a piece of work useful for your learning and for revision” says Paul.

Paul states that we are giving the e-learning to students to enable their learning and to help facilitate learning in a different way.

Paul feels that using Xerte e-learning packages makes his course cutting edge and interesting for students.  E-learning gives another option for how students learn.