Thursday, December 02, 2010

Ako Aotearoa Academy Symposium 2010 - day 2

Day two opened with address from Hon. Steven Joyce, Minister of Tertiary Education with an introduction provided by Academy committee president, Dr. John Hosking. The minister reiterated his support for the work of teachers. In particular for the academy to contribute to fostering networks and strategies to improve learning opportunities for students. This comes from continued interface between institutions / teachers and industry to work on cost effective good quality education. He introduced plans for next year given financial constraints, the usual focus on completions being linked to funding.

Key note for the day from Professor Marnie Hughes-Warrington on 'curriculum by design' or 'how to reduce the number of courses offered by your institution'. Presented the different ways 'curriculum' is understood by different sectors within the institution but also perceived in different ways by the students. One approach may be to use a ‘learning spaces’ platform to move curriculum re-visioning and perhaps an ‘ethnographical’ research approach to investigate curriculum design to ‘reframe curriculum’. Need to understand only the ‘formal curriculum’ but also the informal ‘co-curriculum’. So curriculum by design may be through understanding ‘flow’ (what does it feel like to move through the curriculum?); entry /exit (where do I go in, where do I go out?); formal and informal (what to ‘take on board and when do I ‘wind down’?). Strategies include course and unit reduction and/or renewal; timetabling and movement; recognition of formal and co-curriculum (the Monash Passport) and enhancing coursework approvals. Interesting concepts to take into account as CPIT moves towards ‘constructive alignment’ approach to programme design.

After morning tea, Selena Mize presented on 'not just a qualification: getting students to integrate what they learn into their lives'. Provided overview of ‘motivating students’ for a legal ethics course; using clickers; and influencing values of students. Need to ‘motivate students’ as legal ethics course was made compulsory! And change in student’s perception from ‘wanting to do it (intrinsic) to ‘having to do it’ (extrinsic motivation). Went through strategies to use to engage students in intrinsic motivation. Covered introduction to using ‘clickers’ effectively to enhance student’s intrinsic motivation including going through the various types of ‘questions’ possible and advantages/disadvantages of each type. Lastly, when through guidelines on how to ‘influence values’ and whether it is actually ethical to ‘instill’ values. In sum, to try to develop students’ self-reflection by exposing students to multiple viewpoints and difference methodologies; use examples that bring injustice and suffering from immoral behaviour into focus and include a real world focus (not just an ‘ivory tower’ perspective); make value challenges feel relevant and personal to student; encourage class participation; consider use of literature and narratives; guest speakers can also serve as role models; in some situations develop morality through doing; encourage reflection, introspection, deep thought; take a long-term perspective; be open and non-judgemental.

Lighter session introducing the new academy committee followed by a session with Professor Sally Kitt on 'quality and standards in higher education: recent Australian developments'. Presented the Australian context with parallels to NZ situation. Detailed the journey of developing the ‘threshold learning outcomes (TLOs) by using the case study of LAW as an example. Good overview of the various ‘fish hooks’ involved in trying to produce ‘generic’ learning outcomes for a range of disciplines.

After lunch three session on IT in the classroom. Beginning with my session on ' alternatives to powerpoint'. I provided 7 web 2.0 alternatives with 4 useful in f2f and 3 for online environments for everyone to play with and evaluate. Also included brief discussion on how to use powerpoint as a tool to enhance student learning.

Then 'fun with panopto - student feedback and teacher reflection' with Alison Campbell. Panopto allows lectures etc. to be recorded and then put on to a CMS to be available to students. Video of lecture, powerpoint, screen capture of board work and embedded videos etc. available. User friendly system with lecturer only having to turn things on before lecture commences and then turn off and download into repository. Especially good for improving teaching practice for reflective teachers and for identifying students who may be struggling and are uploading and watching the video.

Followed by seesion on using 'AVS video editor 4 in Teaching' with Christine Rubie-Davies. Showed process of uploading video clips from TV programme, how to select and trim the video and use these clips for learning activities.

After afternoon tea, an introduction to the new members of the academy, the 2010 winners of tertiary excellence award winners. TTE award past winners who are buddies of each of this year’s winners introduced the winner they supported and each winner provided a brief presentation and were given a copy of this year’s TTE booklet (fresh off the press).

Lisa Emerson and Ngahiwi Apanui then went through changes/revisions to the tertiary award criteria so that members may support potential applications to the award. Lisa also provided insight into the process from her perspective as being a member of the TTEA selection committee. All selectors do a quick scan of all applications and then have a telephone conference. Then committee meets to do the shortlisting by matching applications to criteria. At end of day 1, 12 shortlisted and on day 2, the list is finalised and then a ballot is done to chooses the Prime Minister’s awardee. Day after the awards, a debrief takes place.

Day ended with drinks and a convivial and entertaining symposium dinner.