Journal May 15th 2015

Write a brief summary of any work-related activities undertaken on 15th May 2015 and/or your nearest working day . In posting your reply, you consent to the potential use of anonymised extracts from this material in resources that may in future be published by the Association for Learning Development in Higher Education (ALDinHE), for educational and professional development purposes only.

I started my day off by marking some assessments for my module that has now finished. It is my first time marking assessments and I have found it quite challenging. Luckily we did write some clear marking criteria so I can feel confident with the marks I have given.

I was then facilitated one of our Digital Date sessions. Digital Dates is a programme of short, informal workshops for both staff and students across the University co-ordinated by SDDU and Skills@Library (my team) to help us to develop digital skills to support all aspects of our lives at the University. The sessions can be led by staff or students from across the University wand staff and students can attend any of the sessions. This months sessions was about alternate reality games in education and it was fascinating. I didn’t have any idea what alternate reality games were so it was a real eye opener. The idea of engaging students in their learning through games has huge potential although very time intensive when done well.  This is certainly an avenue I am interested in investigating further.

I then went straight to a PVAC (whom I am a Faculty contact for) Good Practice and Innovation Group meeting. This has been a fantastic way for me to get to grips with the way the Faculty works and is a great forum for sharing ideas and best practice. I think it really helps to get a consistent approach across a whole faculty and I can see a lot of potential in this group to discuss the kind of work I do and what I could offer the Faculty in the future.

Finally, I had a meeting about the development of our Final Chapter resource for final year dissertation student. We received lots of positive feedback from both staff and students but there is content that definitely needs improvement now it is a few years old and we have had time to reflect. We are focusing on improving the lit review section (to make it more relevant to all students), the critical thinking section and academic writing section. We want all students to be able to benefit from this resource whatever the subject or whatever level the student feels they are at. One of our main tasks is to include more illustrative examples.

Again a lovely, varied day!


Weds 21st May saw my colleague and I start our drive to Romania – yes – I said drive.
We thought it would be a good way to start a short placement in Romania. A SLOW approach rather than a quick and dirty in and out
We are delivering sessions in Sibiu and Buccharest on developing student-centred approaches to teaching and learning.
We have to deliver the same session six times each to different groups of University professors – about 30 expected each time.
We have designed a very interactive and quite playful day – with role play, image mediated dialogue, free writing and game design (a cross between Ed Foster’s ‘Session Maker’ and Alex Mosley and Nicola Whitty’s Game Maker) … so fingers crossed that is what they want… If not …
Anyway – hoping to tweet out with the hashtag #SGM15 – and really happy if some of you join in the conversation.
PS: currently listening to this: .

Lesley English

Hi, I’m a Learning Enhancement Adviser at the University of Cumbria. On Wednesday this week I had a fairly typical day. The morning was spent with 2nd year OT students delivering 2 one hour workshops on search skills, using new methods of teaching that I picked up from the PASS supervisor training at Manchester University last week. After lunch I met up with our graduate intern to discuss the monitoring of the University’s pre-induction module, Head Start. Following on from our meeting I had a one hour appointment with a student who is about to go through a malpractice hearing. The rest of the afternoon was spent emailing additional links to resources to the OT students I had seen earlier in the day, and creating a couple of online reading lists using the rebus:list system.

Sandie Donnelly

Morning spent with Y2 QTS Early Years students prepping for “small scale study project” for Y3; useful session with tutor outlining context initially and then working with students and colleague adviser around research, resources, journals, evaluating articles, addressing any concerns before they set off on projects etc. Spent similar morning with Y2 Occupational Therapy students yesterday. I like these “transition” sessions we do with Y1 going into Y2 and Y2 going into Y3 – feels like students really get something out of it because they have a better understanding of what they want/need and are more confident about voicing that so feels like we work with them/for them – lots of student-led work. In contrast to the front-loaded induction that goes on in September/October where feels more like we are being ticked off a tutor’s “to-do” list, rather than being embedded according to student need. Meeting with drama tutor who is about to leave after 24 years (and, coincidentally, taught me about 24 years ago on PGCE course).

Afternoon spent addressing various requests/issues via email: booking in sessions for January & March 16, catching up with team about dept liaison actions/queries from dept quality committee meetings with staff/students from different departments, arranging 1 to 1 appointments with students, following up meeting with our graduate interns about a project idea they proposed earlier this week … Lots of variety and interesting things happening.

Kim Shahabudin

I only work half a day on a Thursday, so my entire afternoon has been devoted to [1] reading and answering emails, and [2] reading the 130 pages of papers for the Faculty T & L Board I will be attending next week. (When it came to the 104-page additional report “mentioned in Point 10”, I’m afraid I bailed…)

Louise Livesey

Hi all, Busy, busy, busy which is just how I like it. Am Academic Skills Advisor for Workshops at Bradford Uni. Yesterday (20th) worked on a professional development module for one of our science courses which involves the students’ acquisition of various study skills. Had a collaborative meeting with the Subject Librarian concerned and asked for input from another member of the ‘team’ on this project and a colleague. Updated UG and PGT workshop resources (which I’ve also done today) to make sure they are ready for next academic year. Also in contact with lovely LDHEN colleagues about regional conferences – both well in the future (York and us at Bradford) and those not so far away (Cumbria). Today am on .5 CPD time so not quite so busy – sent quick query over to HEA about ‘dialogue’ route to full Fellowship status. Using .5 CPD, popped up to see supervisor about Masters Lit Review – why can I teach it and not do it?

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