#ocTEL week 1 – My Practice

I’ve been considering my approach to teaching using this matrix.  I vary my approach depending on the cohort, subject and context.  For example, in accounting, there is some emphasis on technical proficiency, which can prompt ‘individual, autonomous’ self-testing and drilling approaches.  However, I am currently teaching a current issues module to final year undergraduates, and am placing more of an emphasis on discursive skills, hence group discussion activities and open questions.  

I came into HE from a professional training background, so I do tend toward traditional approaches, albeit facilitated with technology.  I can’t decide if institutional constraints and student resistance/unfamiliarity with new ways of doing things are really stopping me from using more innovative approaches, or whether I am just making excuses!  

Next year, we’re going to run a new module using a business game, in which the students will have some direction but also some autonomy in running a business within the game, in groups of 4.  So, there are dual skills and content learning outcomes.  It will be a new experience for me as well as the students!  

Considering my current course further, it’s a blended learning approach.  I have sought student feedback formally halfway through teaching and again at the end of the course, and informally when students come and see me for appointments.  There is a significant element of information absorption, so I use a traditional lecture format for this, plus a range of supplementary resources including screencasts, weblinks, ebooks, journal articles and tweeted links via the VLE.  Application of the knowledge is important, however, and this guides my approach to the workshops which accompany every week’s lecture.  I have structured this with some preparation work, which is then built on and extended in class.  There have been informal opportunities for students to work in pairs and ‘buzz groups’ within the class.  However, there is individually assessed coursework and a summative exam.  

For me, as long as there is balance in the approaches across a programme of study, then you don’t necessarily need to have a balance within each module/course.  


2 thoughts on “#ocTEL week 1 – My Practice

  1. I agree that as long as there is a balance across a programme of study then the balance within each module is not so necessary. Perhaps, ensuring a balance across each individual module is more manageable or easier to control. You have employed a good range of formats in your current course and say that you gathered student feedback at various points. Have you been able to form any conclusions from the students responses to the different formats? If so is there a consensus or are the views very mixed?

  2. Hi Sue

    Hope you enjoyed the webinar earlier – there was a lot going on, wasn’t there? The feedback has been positive at the midpoint, collecting the end of module feedback this week! I don’t think the engagement with the range of resources has been as good/deep as I hoped yet, but I shall have to gauge that during the upcoming revision period.

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