2017 Forum Program

Educational Excellence: Transforming Futures

A short version of the Learning and Teaching Program is available for download.

The 2017 Learning and Teaching Forum Posters booklet is now available for download.

All Presenter and Poster author biographies are available here.

 

The day's presentations will consist of three concurrent streams where UNSW academics will share practices various themes related to the pillars of the Scientia Educational Experience:Inspiring Learning,Communities, and Feedback and Dialogue. The fourth pillar, Being Digital, will be explored in a day of workshops on technologies enhancing learning and teaching during the Pre-Forum Workshops, October 31. 

8.45 -9.30 Registration, Poster Gallery, and Coffee

Opportunity to view poster gallery and speak with poster presenters

9.30-10.15 Welcome and Keynote Speaker
 
  • Welcome by Professor Geoff Crisp, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Education), UNSW
  • Acknowledgement of Country by Ben Jones, Medical Student, UNSW Medicine
  • Keynote by Professor Grace Lynch, interim Associate Deputy Vice Chancellor Education, RMIT University

Analytics - What Insights are Useful for Improving Learning and Teaching?

The premise of student engagement and success is that what students do leads to better chances of academic success, retention and overall satisfaction.  We also know that what teachers do also impact student engagement and success.  This presentation will provide an overview of analytic insights that students and staff have found useful in driving improved student engagement and success.  Universities become more intentional, intelligent organisations with data, evidence and analytics playing a central role. The teacher/facilitator becomes more informed about how learners engage with each other and the course materials and should be able to take specific actions during the learning process. The student understands how he/she interacts with other students, materials and teachers/facilitators to create a more personalised and successful learning experience.

About Professor Grace Lynch

Professor Grace Lynch (BA, BEd, MEd, PhD) has over 35 years of educational management experience in Australasia, Singapore and Canada. During her career, she has gained practical academic expertise while teaching at the primary, secondary, college and university levels. Professor Lynch, an international scholar and highly regarded consultant, has chaired many management and review committees and contributed widely to advisory boards. As well, she has acquired management proficiency with a number of higher education institutions as Executive Director of central learning and teaching divisions and most recently was the interim Associate Deputy Vice Chancellor Education for RMIT University. 

Grace is also the Executive Manager of the international Society for Learning Analytics Research (SoLAR), an inaugural member of the New South Wales and Victoria/Tasmania Learning Analytics Groups and an Adjunct Professor Learning Analytics University of New England.

Her advice on educational underpinnings – the theory, rationale and analytics behind practice and planned outcomes – is crucial in the digital age where technology is both an enabler and driver of pedagogical change. Prof Lynch has been an invited speaker in Australia, Asia, Europe and North America and has published over 120 proceedings, articles, book chapters and books. She developed and managed a tutorial teaching model for fully online undergraduate courses to improve student learning outcomes, including professional development and mentoring of over 140 tutors, in 34 courses with excess of 22,000 students. She has been responsible for managing design, development and production service groups in the provision of leadership and assistance to schools, faculties and colleges in developing courses and programs for online, blended and face-to-face learning environments.  These activities assist universities in strengthening the scholarship of learning and teaching while providing public dissemination and critique of experiences around the changing nature of teaching and learning. 

 

 

About Professor Geoffrey Crisp

Professor Crisp completed his PhD in Chemistry at the Research School of Chemistry, Australian National University in 1981. After a Humboldt Fellowship at the Max Planck Institute in Mulheim an der Ruhr and postdoctoral positions at Colorado State University and the Australian National University, Professor Crisp began his academic career in the Chemistry Department at the University of Melbourne.

In 1988 he moved to the Chemistry Department at the University of Adelaide and continued discipline research and teaching until 2001. Professor Crisp developed his passion for learning and teaching as well as continuing his work in chemistry during this time, being Associate Dean for Learning and Teaching for the Faculty of Science from 1999-2001. He was actively involved in the development of online learning and was appointed the Director of the Online Learning and Teaching Unit in 2001. Professor Crisp was appointed the Director of the Centre for Learning and Professional Development at the University of Adelaide in 2002. He received the University of Adelaide’s Stephen Cole the Elder Prize (Excellence in Teaching) in 1999; the Royal Australian Chemical Institute Stranks Medal for Chemical Education in 2003 and Australian Learning and Teaching Council Fellowships in 2006 and 2009. Professor Crisp is a HERDSA Fellow and a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Professor Crisp was Dean of Learning and Teaching at RMIT University from 2011 until joining UNSW as PVC (Education) in February 2016.

10.15 - 11.10 Morning Presentations
Stream 1: Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching and Communities

Dr. Sue Morris and Associate Professor Jacquelyn Cranney, School of Psychology, Science (Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching)
PechaKucha:  Outcomes of a Psychological Science of Resilience course: Supporting students to thrive

Dr. Sue O’Neill, School of Education, Arts & Social Sciences (Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching)
Universal Design for Learning in an online course about inclusive education

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) presents educators with an effective pedagogy to reach and teach all learners. UDL is based on neuroscience research, and proposes a framework where multiple means of representation, engagement, and expression are built into the initial curriculum design. With greater numbers of students with diverse learning needs being educated at universities, educators need effective approaches that remove barriers to access and participation for their learners. UDL benefits instructional designers by providing a blueprint for design, which promotes providing students with flexible and customizable options to access curriculum, and to display their learning. 
 
UDL provides UNSW educators a viable option to meet the 2025 Learning and Teaching goal to "address the needs of students with a disability in curriculum development, design and delivery, and staff will be competent in addressing students’ needs" (FA2). In particular priority area one: "use principles of Universal Design in curriculum delivery". A UDL approach also supports the digital environment focus area to make content "accessible to people with a disability ..." (FA3).
 
This presentation is based on the recent experiences of one lecturer's foray into the world of online learning, and makes visible the double-shift required to convert a successful face-to-face, intensive postgraduate course on inclusive education to a wholly online course that exemplifies UDL principles. Some of the methods used within Moodle to achieve an accessible and flexible course are highlighted. Further, methods used to intentionally foster a community of learners in an online community are also demonstrated. The use of a Bloom's taxonomy planning matrix, best-practices in online learning, and UDL guidelines as tools to ensure maximum learner accessibility and engagement will also be discussed.
This session is useful for tertiary educators who are interested in universally designing their courses from the outset, so that learners, regardless of their language backgrounds, disabilities, or learning preferences can access the curriculum content, show what they know, and concurrently create a sense of community in an online environment.
 

Mr. Andrew Blance, Centre for Big Data Research in Health, Medicine  (Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching)
Statistical zero to hero in 150 hours?

This paper considers the motivation behind the design of Statistical Foundations for Health Data Science (HDS), and its alignment with Scientia Education Experience (SEE).  HDS often requires probabilistic concepts in obtaining actionable insights from complex and noisy health data.  Thus, this course aims to establish the foundations required to understand such phenomena, amongst a diverse student cohort.
Motivation and design
 
A key attribute of HDS is 'statistical thinking'.  Gal & Ginsburg (1994) advocate targeting an increase in such an ability, with Garfield and Ben-Zvi (2007) claiming to do so requires a change in focus for statistics instruction.  The misapprehension that statistical thinking skills develop automatously once a student had mastered the (algorithmic) procedure has compounded this issue (Snee, 1993).  It is difficult to understate the importance of assessment.  For many students, it is the assessment that drives learning (Hubbard, 1997).  From the learners' perspective, assessment not only determines 'what' but also 'how' they choose to learn (Boud, & Falchikov, 2007).  Further, Hubbard (1997) suggests that students identify keywords as triggers for a particular response.  Justifiably then, Garfield & Gal (1999) make a strong call for alternative strategies.  Moreover, one strategy to engage students in statistical thinking is to ask non-standard questions.  Hubbard (1997) suggests role reversal is an effective means of producing non-standard questions.
 
Statistical computing (Harrison, 2010) is exploited as the substantive process used to drive content, producing empirical (a posteriori) evidence and visual illustrations of statistical theories.  Thus, targeting meta-cognition through evaluation of their own learning via 'gluing' (wikipedia.org/wiki/Glue_code).  Four compelling arguments support the utilisation of statistical computing.  First, it provides a tractable process for students with no statistical knowledge.  Second, the theory heavy content could otherwise prove difficult to penetrate and comprehend.  Third, it affords an applied, health situated context, combined with an active, hands-on student-centred approach to learning (O'Neill, & McMahon, 2005).  Third, it is sui generis to HDS.  Forth, it promotes development of higher order cognitive skills (Gal, & Ginsburg, 1994), providing a means by which to encourage meta-cognition.
 
The exciting pedagogies of assessment for learning (Brown, 2005) and gamification (Lee, & Hammer, 2011), form the basis of the learning design.  After completing the statistical computing element of each chapter, students devise a multiple-choice question (MCQ) involving the content of that chapter.  Accompanying the MCQ, the student produces appropriate feedback, and a justification of the motivation, including a rationale for the distractors.  Peer MCQs are subsequently collated and attempted by each student in an online quiz format.  Students will receive instantaneous feedback, before rating each MCQ on four domains.  Each student will then receive feedback on their own performance on six domains via a dashboard.  A leader board is formed from a derived credit, thus introducing an element of gamification.  A capstone 500-word reflection concludes the course.  A standards-based rubric aids self-assessment feedback, before formal submission and feedback via the same rubric.
 
SEE Alignment
  • Positive student engagement through experiential learning in a group setting, promoting self-directed learning, and gamification should help create an effective learning community.
  • Action research is integral to the course design, underlining the essential nature of feedback.  Further, rubrics are discussed with learners, articulating both what is required and the expected levels of performance.  Involving students as partners should promote quality feedback.
  • The inspired novel design should encourage each student-individual learning experience.  Thus, yielding inspired learning.
  • HDS is native to Big Data and Big Data is native to the digital world.  Thus, being digital is innate to Health Data Science.  The content, learning outcomes, learning activities, and assessments are all driven digitally.
 
Boud, D. & Falchikov, N. (Eds.). (2007). Rethinking assessment in higher education: Learning for the longer term. London: Routledge.
Brown, S. (2005). Assessment for Learning. Learning and Teaching in Higher Education, (1), 81-89.
Gal, I., & Ginsburg, L. (1994). The role of beliefs and attitudes in learning statistics: Towards an assessment framework. Journal of Statistics Education, 2(2).
Garfield, J. & Ben-Zvi, D. (2007). How students learn statistics revisited: A current review of research on teaching and learning statistics. International Statistical Review, 75(3), 372-396. doi:10.1111/j.1751-5823.2007.00029.x
Garfield, J. & Gal, I. (1999). Assessment and statistics education: Current challenges and directions. International Statistical Review, 67(1), 1-12. doi.org/10.2307/1403562
Harrison, R.L. (2010). Introduction to Monte Carlo Simulation. AIP Conference Proceedings, 1204(1), 17. doi:10.1063/1.3295638
Hubbard, R. (1997). Assessment and the process of learning statistics. Journal of Statistics Education, 5(1).
Lee, J. J., & Hammer, J. (2011). Gamification in education: What, how, why bother? Academic Exchange Quarterly, 15(2).
O'Neill, G., & McMahon, T. (2005). Student-centred learning: what does it mean for students and lecturers?  In O'Neill, G., Moore, S., & McMullin, B. (Eds.), Emerging Issues in the Practice of University Learning and Teaching. Dublin: AISHE.
Snee, R. (1993). What's missing in statistical education? The American Statistician, 47(2), 149-154.
 

 

Stream 2: Communities and Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching

Dr. Trevor Lewis  School of Medical Sciences, Medicine (Feedback and Dialogue)
PechaKucha: Feedback for Success

For feedback to be of value, it needs to be specific, timely and actionable. A collaborative project with structured feedback at three key stages sets students up for success.

Dr. Justine Rogers, Law (Communities)
Our Teaching and Learning Communities: (how) are the professions and industry a part of them?

The concept of 'communities' in the context of higher education is not simply ‘warmly persuasive’, it is centrally important. A significant body of research demonstrates the pivotal role 'community', or the social dimension of learning, plays in motivation, sustained inquiry, effective learning and wellbeing. Indeed, some argue some argue that knowledge can only ever be situated. For educators and learners, this social dimension moves beyond the classroom. The current move towards blended learning in higher education brings an added challenge of how to cultivate a learning community, or what Garrison, Anderson and Archer developed ‘a community of inquiry’, one that integrates face-to-face with online. 

 Nevertheless, there are also ‘external’ dimensions provoked by and entailed in the notion of community. The academic teaching role involves questions of the degree to which and on what basis to connect students to outside communities, particularly the professions and industry and their practices. In the context of a larger and often heated debate about the role of the university, all academic teachers grapple with these boundaries. But we teach a student body that is increasingly expecting work-integrated learning that supports their careers. The universities, meanwhile, have entered a new age of engagement or renewed engagement with the outside world, in which industry is an especially welcome member of the learning community. 

This presentation illuminates how these ‘internal’ and ‘external’ communities interact and the ways in which they can be conceived of and organised for the end goals of:

(i)            developing student capacities that are both professionally functional and transformative; and
 

(ii)            building learning partnerships with the professions that are based on mutual recognition and enterprise.

It does so by examining the specific teaching strategies and adaptations of UNSW Law’s core legal ethics course. 

 

Mr. Ananthan Ambikairajah, UNSW Alumni, Science and Education  (Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching)
Quality student relationships can predict excellence in learning and teaching

A key objective for Educational Excellence, within UNSW's 2025 strategy, is to design, develop and deliver a distinctive higher educational experience that will facilitate the transformation of UNSW students and empower them to become the best that they can be.  There are a number of ways that this objective can be met. Firstly, an educational design perspective can be taken, which involves the modification of assessment tasks, re-evaluation of student learning outcomes and a modified semester system, which can provide enriched opportunities for student learning to occur. Secondly, the development and integration of technology within the classroom through Active Learning Spaces, and online learning via Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) can provide an opportunity for collaborative student learning environments to flourish. It is important to note, however, that the design and development of a high quality educational experience is limited by the quality of its teachers. Therefore, the current presentation will primarily focus on the importance of inspired learning by inspired teaching. 
 
Interestingly, there are key strategies and techniques that can be taught to teachers to facilitate inspired learning by inspired teaching, which have been grounded within education research. These strategies have been shown to predict improved levels of student motivation, engagement and learning. Notably, the strategies are centred upon three core words. Autonomy. Competence. Relatedness. 
 
These three words are the central tenants of Self-Determination Theory (SDT), which has been the foundation of my pedagogy. Before explaining the importance of SDT within the classroom, let me give you a snapshot into my students' perspective of this teaching style. The following student comments and scores are taken from my personal MyExperience feedback from Semester 1, 2017, when I taught SCIF1121 to a cohort of 170 Advanced Science students. 
 
Self-Determination Theory (SDT)
 
SDT is a macrotheory of motivation, which provides a broad framework for understanding the relationship between student motivation and inner needs. SDT posits that the satisfaction of innate psychological needs for autonomy, competence and relatedness influence factors which relate to individual growth and development, such as intrinsic motivation, self-regulation, health and wellbeing (Ryan & Deci, 2000). Therefore, the following pedagogical strategies have been grounded within SDT, to facilitate student motivation, engagement and learning. 
 
Autonomy 
 
Autonomy supportive teaching strategies include prioritising the student's perspective during learning activities, seeking students' input, providing choice, conducting formative assessments and asking reflective questions about how to make the subject matter more interesting, relevant and useful to the students (Reeve, 2012; Reeve & Halusic, 2009). 
 
Competence
 
Competence enhancing strategies, such as the use of clear rules, expectations, structure and guidelines (Niemiec & Ryan, 2009), can significantly improve student performance (Allen & Tanner, 2006), particularly in novice students (Bresciani, Zelna, & Anderson, 2004). Furthermore, personal best goals, which facilitate feelings of competence by encouraging students to aim to do as well or better than their previous best efforts, has been shown to improve students' educational aspirations, motivation and achievement (Martin & Elliot, 2016). 
 
Relatedness
 
Strategies that promote learning communities by enhancing relatedness between peers and faculty (Reeve & Halusic, 2009), can also significantly predict student efforts, motivation and academic outcomes (Beachboard, Beachboard, Li, & Adkison, 2011). 
 
Ultimately, by structuring activities through the fulfilment of innate psychological needs for autonomy, competence and relatedness, educators have the opportunity to enhance student motivation, engagement and wellbeing (Reeve, 2012; Vansteenkiste, Lens, & Deci, 2006), which is particularly relevant to educational environments that are focused on facilitating inspired learning by inspired teaching. 
 

 

Stream 3: Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching

Dr. Adrienne Torda, Prince of Wales Clinical School, Medicine  (Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching)
PechaKucha: Ethics toolbox: integrating inspiring technology into inspired teaching

Medical students embrace electronic information resources. These can be easily accessed, rapidly updated, and dispense with the need for paper textbooks. The ethics toolbox is an inspired online learning tool

Dr. Michelle Langford,  School of the Arts & Media, Arts & Social Sciences  (Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching)
Challenges and Affordances of the Online Lecture: A Report from Film Studies

This presentation will provide an account of my experience of producing online audio-visual materials in place of face-to-face lectures in a third year Film Studies course in S2 2017. In line with UNSWs digital uplift goals, I have attempted to think through how conventional face-to-face lecture material can be translated and transformed into meaningful online audio-visual content. My key question revolves around the how to best make use of the affordances of the online environment and audio-visual media in a way that reflects the course learning outcomes and the methods of my discipline. One dimension of this is to incorporate voice- and text- annotated film clips together with more creative audio-visual essays into conventional didactic lecture material. The annotated clips and audio-visual essays aim not only to illustrate key concepts, but to model engagement with methods of close filmic analysis[1]. My approach is inspired by the evolving practice and growing body of scholarly literature on the audio-visual essay, not merely as a didactic tool, but as a critical and creative mode of engaging with films. In particular, I draw on the work of Catherine Grant and Michael Witt, who have pioneered the use of the audio-visual essay as a new mode of film criticism and analysis in both teaching and research[2]. In 2014 [in]Transition: A Journal of Videographic Film and Moving Image Studies, dedicated to publishing peer reviewed videographic work was established, highlighting the growing importance and impact of this innovative mode of teaching and research within film, screen and media studies [3]. I still consider myself a novice in this area, particularly since I have only recently taught myself to do basic video editing! My longer-term goal is to develop the skills and strategies for teaching students to produce their own audio-visual essays. This presentation will provide an overview of my conceptual strategies and practical processes. I will also discuss some of the challenges faced and report on how students have engaged with these materials. I will invite a student to co-present at the session to share their experiences.
 
1. To sample my first ever attempt at this, go to: https://vimeo.com/221060517
2.  For example, Michael Witt, 'Taking Stock: Two Decades of Teaching the History, Theory, and Practice of Audiovisual Film Criticism', NECSUS: European Journal of Media Studies, Spring 2017 and Catherine Grant, 'The shudder of a cinephiliac idea? Videographic film studies practice as material thinking,' ANIKI: Portuguese Journal of the Moving Image, vol. 1 no. 1, (2014): pp. 49-62
 

Ms. Eva Chan and Ms. Lene Jensen, Careers and Employment, Student Life and Learning  (Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching)
Inspired Career Development Through Inspired Teaching: DIPP1112 Introduction to the Workplace

DIPP1112 Introduction to the Workplace is designed to develop lifelong career management skills and increase employability. In alignment with the goals and aspirations of the UNSW 2025 Strategy this course ensure that students obtain a holistic education, securing the real-world practical skills required for a rapidly evolving workplace and develop the skills needed to achieve their career aspirations and to meet the future needs of employers. 
 
DIPP1112 is facilitated through blended and active learning approaches to engage students. Students participate in online learning and two days of face to face seminars where they enhance their online learning with practical activities and individual feedback from career development specialists, utilising the flipped classroom model. 
 
Since its inception in 2012, 1492 students have completed the course, the majority from Business (30%), Arts and Social Sciences (19%) and Science (17%) and Engineering (17% ). Social Research and Policy have embedded DIPP1112 as a core course in their degree program. Enrolments have increased from 28 in S2, 2012 to 226 in S2, 2017 with the course being delivered across S1, S2 and Summer each year.
 
DIPP1112 inspires students in their career development learning through:
 
1. Collaborative Learning: The course is available for students from any faculty at any stage of their studies. Students are involved in peer-to-peer collaboration and share their experience as part of their learning. 
 
2. Integrating Technology for an Effective Flipped Classroom Experience - A variety of online learning activities has evolved over time, catering for different learning styles. Examples of activities include Captivate lessons, wikis, quizzes, forum posts, online polling, creating online profiles, and resume shortlisting activities. Students'positive feedback has supported the flipped classroom model, and face to face time is now used to provide a practical and engaging learning experience with many opportunities to receive individual feedback.
 
3. Partnering with Industry and Alumni - Employers and alumni guest speakers are invited to interact with the students, thereby enriching the students' career development knowledge and providing an opportunity to network in a professional context. The course content, delivery and assessment tasks have been informed by changes in industry and recruitment practices. 
 
4. Scaffolding the Learning by aligning Formative Assessments with the Learning Outcomes - The assessment tasks are scaffolded throughout the course. Students build on their knowledge, practise their learning and receive individual feedback prior to submitting their final major assessments. 
 
5. Extensive Evaluation of the Learning Experience and Continuous Improvement - Students have the opportunity to provide feedback on the learning and teaching both formally and informally throughout the course. Formative evaluation is incorporated into the weekly topics, online activities, individual consultation and seminar evaluation. Summative evaluation is carried out via a staff debrief each semester, the MyExperience Survey and a pre and post career readiness inventory. The course content, delivery and assessment tasks have all significantly evolved to address the feedback provided by student and teaching staff and technological advances in teaching platforms. 
 
Many students have been successful in applying their career development knowledge from the course to gain positive graduate outcomes. For example:
  • Emily Sisson, Bachelor of Medical Science, completed DIPP1112 in S2, 2014; secured an internship with the World Health Organisation in the Philippines and graduate employment at the Department of Health in Canberra through the organisation analysis and interview assignments as part of the course
  • Mohammad Sababi, Bachelor of Engineering (Chemical Engineering) - completed DIPP1112 in Summer 2015/16: secured his career goal of a position at Sydney Water and was also offered a position in Deloitte's tax service line. "Both of these things may not have been possible if I hadn't spent my summer taking the course, learning from you all."I

 

11.10-11.40 Morning tea and Poster Gallery Viewing
11.45 - 12.50: Mid-day presentations
Stream 1: Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching, Feedback and Dialogue

Dr. Kim Lapere, School of Chemistry, Science   (Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching)

Can Students Know it All? Mastery Learning to Achieve Graduate Portfolios

Traditionally, students can pass a course on the strength of excellent results in certain parts of the syllabus, despite potentially lacking a baseline knowledge in other areas. Unfortunately this traditional assessment model means students in higher years may need to be retaught material they are expected to be competent in already, thereby taking up valuable time of other students and instructors. By not communicating what learning outcomes students are accomplished in it is therefore difficult for them, instructors of later courses or future employers to identify competency in specific areas.
 
A true reflection of a student having sufficient knowledge to pass a course can be demonstrated by achieving microcredentials in major syllabus topics. We have developed a new assessment structure where learning outcomes were separated into either "basic" or "expert" concepts:
 
- Basic: essential for passing the course and all must be completed to receive the pass mark. Chosen based on difficulty and how fundamental they are for later courses. 
- Expert: makes up the other half of what students are taught in the course and provides merit grades. 
 
"Basic" concepts were taught in a blended, flipped classroom format in the pilot study in the new 2017 courses CHEM1811 and CHEM1821 Chemistry for Engineers A & B. The "basic" concepts were continuously assessed through a series of weekly online quizzes, backed up by face-to-face tests designed specifically for the mastery learning project. The "expert" topics are taught in a traditional lecture format and were assessed in the end-of-semester exam. 
 
We can now guarantee that each student who passes the course possesses a minimum level of knowledge and we can reduce the expectation of re-teaching "basic" concepts in higher years. Students receive more feedback on their progress using this approach as they see their individual portfolio of knowledge progressively updating throughout the semester. By scaling this up to other first year chemistry courses and higher undergraduate years our aim is for students to graduate with a portfolio accurately reflecting their personal attributes. Preliminary results are promising, with initial reflections and analysis to be discussed in the talk.
 

Ms. Veronica Ho, PhD Student, Medicine  (Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching)
UNSW Knowledge Maps: An online mapping tool with automated feedback

Concept and knowledge maps have been used to promote meaningful learning, critical thinking and problem-solving skills. These maps were traditionally constructed with pen and paper. Accordingly, such maps must be manually graded, adding to the heavy workload of time-poor educators. Additionally, existing computer-based software for concept and knowledge mapping cannot provide reliable feedback in a user-friendly environment.

We have developed UNSW Knowledge Maps, an online cloud-based interactive knowledge mapping system that can be used to create, edit and share maps, as well as automate graphical feedback for students in real-time. The system can be accessed without the installation of third party applications or plugins, increasing usability. The native web-based interface of the tool enhances usability by lowering the barriers for uptake. Already compatible with UNSW's LDAP service, this software is currently being integrated with Moodle.

UNSW Knowledge Maps has two options for educators' activity mode and assessment mode. Activity mode allows for more freedom in the design of the task given e.g. varying levels of scaffolding, lists of prewritten phrases to choose from or open response. Assessment mode is used to compare students' submissions to a teacher's "expert map"  and is able to provide individualised feedback based on each student' submission. 

Pilot studies of the educational impact of this tool have been performed with students enrolled in the Medicine and Medical Science programs. For junior medical students, our data demonstrates a significantly improved perception of understanding after using the maps. A group of students in a Medical Science course demonstrated significantly improved learning outcomes in a pre-test post-test study. We continually gather feedback from students via online questionnaires regarding their perceptions of this learning tool and how it might be improved. That feedback indicates that UNSW Knowledge Maps is a readily accepted tool for concept and knowledge mapping by students

Our data suggests that UNSW Knowledge Maps is a readily accepted and useful educational tool that provides benefits for learning by students. This tool could be potentially applied to many disciplines for the purposes of both formative and summative assessment.

UNSW Knowledge Maps is an online knowledge mapping system that can be used to create, edit and share maps, as well as automate feedback for students in real-time. Our data has shown that UNSW Knowledge Maps is readily accepted tool that is beneficial for learning by students. This tool could prove useful in many disciplines for both learning activities and assessments

Ms. Heather Weltman, PhD Student, and Dr. Nadine Marcus, School of Computer Science and Engineering, Engineering (Feedback and Dialogue)
The Role of Feedback in Adaptive Tutorials

In our constantly 'switched on' society, learning is no longer relegated to the classroom. Classes are larger and more diverse, with learners expecting flexibility and support, despite the distance. Adaptive tutorials that include feedback can provide students with flexibility, support and guidance.

Background:

The strength of adaptive tutorials lies in the ability to create instant, adaptive feedback, particularly when students are experiencing misconceptions. Feedback is vital to learning (Hattie, 2009; Shute, 2008) and can take the form of elaboration or verification (Kulhavy & Stock, 1989). There are many different feedback types with the most basic being 'knowledge of response' (KR) where students are made aware of whether their answer is correct, or incorrect, to feedback that includes 'knowledge of response' with further explanation (Mason & Bruning, 2001; Narciss, 2013). 

Method:

We created four adaptive tutorials; in Chemistry, Mathematics, Pathology and Petroleum Engineering, utilised in four different pedagogical scenarios. Different feedback types were used in each course:

Course 1:  KR + 'answer-until-correct' 

Course 2:  KR + 'multiple-try' with automatic continuation after three attempts

Course 3:  KR + 'multiple-try' with the correct answer provided on the third attempt 

Course 4:  KR + 'multiple-try' with the correct answer provided including an explanation on the third attempt.

Results:

What was common to all courses was students' appreciation of receiving feedback. However, on analyses, Course 1 had a low completion rate, which may have been due to student's frustration at having to provide a correct answer before they could continue. Students also identified frustration at having to source a correct answer after three attempts in Course 2. Course 4 had a high completion rate with positive comments made regarding the value of in-depth explanations. The lecturer reported students having greater depth in knowledge.

Conclusion:

Teaching and learning is complex, as is the use of feedback, particularly online. The literature identifies these difficulties, which is affected by what is being taught and the type of students involved (Mason & Bruning, 2001). The inclusion of KR with elaboration serves as a worked out problem solution, supporting demonstrated learning benefits relating to the worked example effect (Sweller, Ayres, & Kalyuga, 2011). From our research, it would seem for novice learners, who utilise adaptive tutorials to reinforce their learning, the inclusion of KR with elaborated feedback, provides students with an increased level of confidence, guidance and support with their learning.

Dr. Dominic Fitzsimmons, Law (Feedback and Dialogue)
Legal writing and learning through dialogue

In recent years globalisation has meant that many more students from non Anglo legal systems have studied in Australia. Law degrees have shifted from being very parochial or place-based to embracing a more diverse and outward approach. The paper discusses how feedback has been as a type of learning through dialogue in one course for new JD international students. The 'Legal Writing in Context' course is available in the first semester and includes short but regular assignments which enable students to get timely feedback on their writing and analytical skills. By the end of the course the feedback becomes accumulative, and the assignments take on the appearance of an ongoing dialogue in which both teacher and student are leaning.

 

Stream 2: Communities, Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching, Feedback and Dialogue

 

Dr. Marina Nehme, Law (Communities)
Building a Community of Inquiry: The Why and the How

In its 2025 strategy, the University of New South Wales Sydney (UNSW) aims to blend the highest quality face-to-face teaching with digital education to inspire curiosity and innovation across a collegiate learning community of peers, academics, employers and alumni.  However, the challenge this strategy may face relates to fact that technology can create disengaged and unmotivated learners. This would especially be problematic in law, a discipline that thrive on discussion and debate of key legal concepts and issues. 
 
Consequently, the adoption of blended learning should embed online learning with face to face classes. The greatest pitfall would be to view the online environment as just an add on or an extra. Ideally, blended learning should lead to the establishment of a community of inquiry which is designed to support the learner. The promotion of such a community may also result in a greater motivation and engagement of students with class activities. It may further enhance their critical legal thinking.
 
This paper considers the literature regarding blended learning to discuss the strategies that may be used to build a community of inquiry. It further considers the challenges and benefits that may be accompanied with the promotion of such a community. In doing so, the paper focuses on one law course, responses to corporate wrongdoing, to highlight how the pedagogical framework adopted in the course has resulted in the establishment of a community of inquiry and has led to a more constructive and critical engagement of students with their peers.
 

Dr. May Lim, School of Chemical Engineering, Engineering (Communities)
Partnerships with Engineering Student Societies to Improve Industrial Training Experience and Career Development

All UNSW engineering students must complete a minimum of 60 days of Industrial Training (IT) before they can graduate from their degree program. IT is a valuable experience for the student as it provides them with first-hand experience working as an engineering professional, and employer often assess students for future employment during their IT placement.  Nonetheless, IT is also a daunting experience for many students due to their own inexperience and current state of the job market. We also have issues on the institution side re compliancy with the Engineers Australia accreditation requirements, workplace regulation, insurance, and engagement with industry.  In this talk, I will explain what drove me to partner with student societies, my Faculty and UNSW Careers and Employment to improve the IT experience and career opportunities of Chemical Engineering students, and share some tools and tips on working closely with student, e.g. Why engage with student via Facebook Messenger?

Dr. Anne-Marie Singh, Student Life and Learning, Student Services  (Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching)
Engaging students in online environments: Guidelines to manage cognitive load

Human cognitive architecture is a collective term used to explain the way the way humans decode, comprehend and undertake tasks (Sweller, Ayres, & Kalyuga, 2011). Fundamental to the human cognitive architecture are three memory structures: sensory memory, working memory, and long-term memory. Working memory has two significant limitations: a) limited capacity (Miller, 1956), and b) limited duration (Peterson & Peterson, 1959). The human cognitive architecture emphasises the importance of encoding information into long-term memory due to it being unlimited in capacity. Since the human cognitive architecture underpins all learning, effective instructional designs need to consider the main concepts and properties of human cognition (Sweller et al., 2011).
 
The major premise of cognitive load theory (Sweller, Kalyuga & Ayres 2011) is that effective instructional design should consider the processing limitations of working memory load (Miller, 1956). Cognitive load theory has identified a category of cognitive load (extraneous) that impacts negatively on person. In other words, expending working memory resources on unnecessary processing inhibits the level of engagement. Extraneous cognitive load is generated when working memory resources are consumed by hard-to-understand or poorly designed instructions. 
Research inspired by cognitive load theory has shown online learning environments can be cognitively demanding if designed inappropriately (Kalyuga, 2015). The aim of the presentation is to describe the major theoretical underpinnings of the human cognitive architecture, followed by implications for instructional design using multimedia. Specifically, this presentation will discuss cognitively optimal presentation formats for managing cognitive load with reference to educational implications within the student service sector. In line with the 2025 strategy, the educational implications adopted from cognitive load theory would help improve the educational quality and the study experience at UNSW.
 
 

Dr. Jose Bilbao, School of Photovoltaic and Renewable Energy, Engineering (Feedback and Dialogue)
Digital exams in renewable energy engineering, lessons learned

In this presentation I will share my experience using digital assessment on three different courses in engieering during the last year. I choose to use a digital format for the mid-session exam of two courses during session 2 in 2016, and for the final exam of a course in session 1 2017. For most part the results show that it is possible to use a digital exams within an engineering context, when care is taken to develope the questions. The digital format brings several benefits including automatic marking and quick feedback, increase in transparency and fairness, and analytics. The student feedback was mostly supportive but some strong points were raised. Moreover, a couple of technical challenges remain, mainly on the issues of 'error carried forward' on questions with multiple sections and on the 'lack of marks' given for students workings. The lessons learned also point out to untapped opportunities of the digital format, like including universal design principles (e.g. allow for text translation to different languages) and the use of common engineering tools during the exam that would allow students to solve more complex and realistic problems (e.g. Excel).

 

Stream 3: Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching, Communities

Associate Professor Sarah O'Shea, Chair, Wollongong Academy of Tertiary Teaching and Learning Excellent (WATTLE), University of Wollongong (Communities)
Exploring 'Students as Partners' in the context of student support, transition and engagement

Drawing upon a ‘students as partners’ approach, this presentation will highlight two different, but complementary, collaborations between students and staff designed to engage with students from diverse backgrounds. Both projects have recently been undertaken at University of Wollongong and have adopted an exploratory approach to students as partners seeking to develop a ‘best fit’ approach to these partnerships.

 The SaPiM (Students as Partners in Mentoring) project has developed a peer-mentoring program, designed and developed by staff and students within the School of Education. University peer mentoring programs are largely designed by staff, who not only recruit and train student mentors but also generally select frequency and type of involvement for all parties. This SaPiM pilot project proposed a different approach to this by collaborating with students in the design, development and enactment of a peer-mentoring program. The second project emerged from research conducted with students who are the first in their families to come to university. The First in Family project collaborated with students to develop student initiatives and programs from the ‘ground up’, these activities include audio-visual materials designed to unpack the university environment for this first in family cohort.

The presentation will focus on how both these students as partners’ projects were enacted and discuss ways that this approach could inform other programs, particularly within the student support, engagement or transition fields. Drawing upon feedback from students and staff, the presentation will also include an overview of the potential hurdles or issues that may exist institutionally around implementing this approach. These considerations will include those identified by key stakeholders when partnerships are developed that span schools or discipline areas. Finally, resources that have been developed in conjunction with these projects, including a student-staff partnership agreement, will be shared with attendees.

Dr. Adrienne Torda, Prince of Wales Clinical School, Medicine   (Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching)
SLLIM (Student led learning in medicine) pickings - an inspired backflip

Listening to podcasts gives us so much flexibility and choice. The broadcaster can reach an unlimited audience and the listener can find information on a huge variety of topics, anywhere and anytime. The utility of podcasts is increasing globally and 'millennials' are the highest consumers. So, in academia should we be using this format more? Well, if you're looking to engage a young, global audience in a blended and technology-enhanced learning form that is appealing, podcasts are worth exploring. Earlier this year, I launched the podcast series SLLIM pickings. Medical students were invited to suggest topics and participate in the podcast discussion. Students suggested a multitude of topics ranging from euthanasia, the 'Charlie Gard' case, designer babies to student mental health, indigenous and gender equity issues. Students, were keen, engaged, did pre-reading, listened to each other and reflected on their learning. Just about everything we aim for in teaching. 
When asked about the experience of participating, all students reported it being a positive experience. They reported that they were engaged, stimulated to actively research topics and think about them in depth. They all felt that it was a valuable learning tool.  Some students found it challenging, but also remarked that it is an easy way to learn about particular topics.
Podcasts have other benefits over some of the traditional approaches to teaching, allowing:
  • Conversation: students to explore their views and those of others,
  • Invited experts: allowing students direct student interaction with an expert,
  • Timeliness: discussion as topics unfold contemporaneously,
  • Student centred learning: allowing students to expand and explore an area of particular interest,
  • Unlimited dissemination of content: nationally and internationally.
Unfortunately  research  linking  podcasts  to  learning  outcomes  is  still  scarce.  A  recent  review
1.  found  that  although  there  are  many  examples  of  podcast's  use  in  universities and schools, research is often via students' reports using questionnaires and interviews, rather than rigorous study. But the theoretical basis for the utility of podcasts is strong, particularly if we examine them using a "conversational framework" of learning
2. In this framework, we make academic learning possible, by examining the specifics of our learners, involving them in meaning-generating activities, and undertaking an iterative negotiation of meaning and knowledge
3. Involving students in determining the content of podcasts, as well as giving students feedback on their activities, are key factors for successful learning using this medium that also allows us to deliver a distinctive higher educational experience.
 
References:
1. Hew K.F., (2009) Use of audio podcast in K-12 and higher education:a review of research topics and methodologies, Education Tech Research Dev,  p. 333-357.
2. Laurillard,  D.  (2002).  Rethinking  university  teaching:  A  framework  for  the  effective  use  of  learning  technologies  (2nd  ed.).  Oxon: Routledge Falmer.  
3. Popova A, Edirisingha P. How can podcasts support engaging students in learning activities? Procedia Social and Behavioral Sciences 2 (2010) 5034-5038. 
 

Dr. Orin Chisholm, School of Medical Sciences, Medicine (Communities)
Communities of Practice in Pharmaceutical Medicine

As a distance-based, fully online program, Pharmaceutical Medicine relies heavily on the formation of Communities of Practice between its students and staff. These communities form by embedding collaborative online learning activities within the program as well as linking students together with their tutors in the wider pharmaceutical industry community. 
 
It is essential for a community of practice to develop in order to foster collaborative online learning which then facilitates the development of skills requiring collaboration. Even in the past few years there has been a significant shift in the way employees use digital technology to integrate their work, study and personal lives and the familiarity of students with these systems can be harnessed to build connections. 
 
Belonging and feeling part of a community lowers the barriers to participation and stimulates sharing of thoughts, ideas and concepts that are all required for effective collaborative online learning. A more active, collaborative, constructivist approach to learning pedagogies is needed in the online learning environment in order to create a sense of place that can then contribute to the development of a community of practice.
 
Yuan and Kim (2014) reviewed factors affecting the development of a learning community and developed a set of guidelines to facilitate the development of online learning communities: building communities from the start of the first course; involving students and staff in shared community-building; use of synchronous and non-synchronous technologies to create a shared space for community-building; encouraging task-oriented discussions and activities and assigning students collaborative tasks to perform.
 
In implementing these guidelines, the teacher becomes not merely a facilitator of the group discourse but acts as a mediator between the students and the larger knowledge community they increasingly feel connected to as they progress through the program.
 
A number of tools are used to foster collaborative online learning environment in the Pharmaceutical  Medicine program: group-based wikis, asynchronous discussion forums, synchronous webinars and student presentations, peer review of collaborative activities, pair-share-discussion forums, ice-breaker forums, Linkedin and other social media platforms, and face-to-face meet and greet activities at communal functions such as industry-based conferences.  These will be discussed as examples that could be applied to other programs wishing to facilitate the development of communities of practice among their students and staff.
 
Reference
Yuan J and Kim C. (2014). Guidelines for facilitating the development of learning communities in online courses. J Comp Assisted Learning 30(3): 220-232.
 

Dr. Ang Liu and Ainsley Sydun, School of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering, Engineering (Communities)
A UNSW-ASU International Joint Course on Grand Challenges for Engineering

This paper presents an international joint course on the subject of National Academy of Engineering (NAE) Grand Challenges for Engineering (GCE), which is collaboratively developed by Arizona State University in the USA and University of New South Wales in Australia. In the fall semester of 2016, a total of 28 undergraduate engineering freshmen (15 ASU and 13 UNSW students) were selected to participate in this joint course. Videoconferencing technology was employed to support the synchronized lectures on a weekly basis, and a variety of information and communication technologies were utilized to support team collaborations. The main course components included: weekly lectures, team project, individual research paper, and cross-cultural exercise. More specifically, a total of 20 lectures were offered on a biweekly basis (twice a week), which included 5 special guest lectures delivered by experts who specialize on different GCE topics (i.e., cyber security, sustainable manufacturing, personalized learning, bioenergy, etc.). The class was divided into 6 globally distributed project teams to identify a GCE, analyse relevant needs, and propose a future solution. Students from the same university were tasked to work together to produce a mini-movie to present their observations of the culture of their home campus. Students also utilized digital portfolios in the course to complete reflections on class content related to each Grand Challenge theme area.  It should be noted that, ASU operates a well-established NAE Grand Challenge Scholars Program that enrols more than 100 students every year. Through the knowledge transfer initialized by the joint course, UNSW aims to gradually launch its own Grand Challenges for Engineering program locally in Australia.  To date, the course has been offered three times in 2017 S1, S2, and 2016 S2. 
 
This work provides information about the course and describes the outcomes of the course as related to the students' experience, instructor's experience, and comparison to other courses.  Formal assessment of course effectiveness was not completed in this pilot effort. To solicit feedback from participating students about their experience in the course, a focus group was conducted at UNSW and written feedback from small groups of students was obtained at ASU. Last but not least, some lessons learnt will be reflected by the course instructors with respect to, for example, how to design the course schedule constrained by the time and calendar difference, how to divide responsibilities between the collaborating instructors, and how to grade assignments in consideration of different grading policies. 
 

 

12.50-1.45 Lunch and Poster Gallery Viewing
1.45 - 2.40 Afternoon Presentations
Stream 1: Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching

Dr. Paul Evans, School of Education, Arts & Social Sciences  (Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching)
PechaKucha: What science has to say about inspiring teaching

Educational psychologists have long studied inspiring and effective learning and teaching. This presentation reviews strategies that maximise learning and enjoyment  - see what the evidence has to say about inspiring teaching.

Dr. Cristan Herbert, School of Medical Sciences, Medicine  (Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching)
Online resources to enhance the learning experience of students in an introductory Pathology course

Introductory Pathology courses for Medical Science and Exercise Physiology students (PATH2201/2202) currently utilise a blended learning approach with incorporation of interactive online activities to enhance the learning experience. In 2016, this included online modules which incorporated interactive questions with feedback, online tutorial quizzes and practical classes supported by digital images hosted on the BEST network. The course also included large-group sessions with in-class questions to which students could respond using mobile devices via the UNSW Lecture Recordings+ service.
 
As part of the UNSW Inspired Learning Initiative, a series of additional enhancements were introduced in 2017. The Moodle page was redesigned and a topic-based approach was introduced, in which activities are presented in a chronological order. Navigation was enhanced, including by the introduction of an interactive timetable. New adaptive eLearning activities based on the Smart Sparrow platform to support the existing practical classes were designed with input from students who had previously completed the course. In all, over 20 new eLearning activities were created with more than 150 individual questions and tailored feedback. Feedback was obtained via online surveys linked to each new activity, and also from meetings with student representatives throughout the semester.
 
The revised course was delivered to 280 students in Semester 2, 2017. Based on feedback to date, most students agreed that the new online activities "enhanced their motivation to learn", and "provided feedback that enhanced their learning". While several students found it difficult to adapt to the new Moodle layout, most appreciated the improvements.
 

Associate Professor Nalini Pather, School of Medical Sciences, Medicine  (Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching)
Immersive Virtual Reality: Exploring its usefulness for learning anatomy

Anatomy is complex yet fundamental discipline for medicine and related professionals.  It requires an appreciation of the 3-dimensional (3D) relations of complex body regions and organs that are not always easy to visualise as they may be partly or wholly obscured from the exterior, or deeply located in fossae and spaces.  A virtual reality immersive learning experience (VRILE) was designed and created for skull anatomy as a 'test case' to explore the usefulness of VR for learning anatomy. Anatomy of the skull is conceptually difficult and is regarded as a "threshold concept' (Meyer and Land, 2003). An understanding of skull anatomy is vital to several medical disciplines including neurosurgery and ear, nose and throat specialities. This VRILE simulated a 3D exploration of the skull, integrating soft-tissue features and clinical imaging, was developed to enable greater understanding of the skull through interactivity that enables accessing and exploring the 'hidden' spaces and fossae. The VRILE supported an embodied learning experience where students could interact with and receive immediate feedback. 
 
Several lessons were learnt in developing the pilot VRILE. Creating 3D models needs to retain the visual complexity within a minimum number of vertices. The storyboard for the VRILE required several iterations and discussion with the programmers to understand the possibilities within the engine, and the detail of information required for programming. A pilot version was user-tested to understand the learning impact of the interactivity for users, and then refined for deployment in courses. The VRILE was tested by two user groups: an experienced group of tutors, and a cohort of undergraduate students studying anatomy. The VRILE was found to be useful for learning especially as it allowed viewing on a magnified-scale and conceptualising features that are not easily visible even on cadaveric specimens. Some users reported motion-sickness when the VRILE was deployed in the immersive learning space, and getting easily 'lost'. To overcome this, the next iteration of the VRILE will include the ability to reset the exploration to a reference view. Users also provided important feedback on the interactivity, placement of the textboxes, the use of colour, and the time taken to complete the VRILE.  A useful suggestion was to provide different levels for different user expertise (e.g. shortcuts in the guided tour). Several users also suggested that the VRILE could be easily modified into an assessment activity.
 
This feedback is useful in informing the further development of VRILEs for immersive learning.
 

Professor Gary Velan, School of Medical Sciences, Medicine  (Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching)
Humour in education? You've got to be joking!

The positive impact of humour on learning in general, and in higher education in particular, is often under-appreciated. There is evidence for the benefits of appropriate humour in higher education, including: enhancing learning; engaging students; reducing anxiety; enhancing rapport and social  cohesion; as well as improving students' ratings of teachers. The theoretical underpinnings of the role of humour in improving learning include the Elaboration Likelihood Model of persuasion and the Instructional Humour Processing Theory, which attempt to explain the effect of humour on cognitive processes. It is also important to distinguish between the effects of appropriate (affiliative) and inappropriate (socially isolating) humour, which can have opposing effects on learning. Evidence will be presented that humour is also beneficial for health and wellbeing, which might provide a broader motivation for its use by both educators and students.

 

Stream 2: Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching, Communities

Mr. Andrew Chambers, UNSW Business School  (Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching)
PechaKucha: The Learner Centric Design Model

Teachers need guidance, inspiration, and support, to design courses that effectively develop student learning. The LCD Model develops teachers design capabilities and enables effective collaborative partnerships within course design teams.

Dr. Simon McIntyre, Art and Design (Communities)
Learning Hubs - A strategy for synthesising curriculum, peer learning communities, and data analytics

As students progress through their coursework program in art or design disciplines, they start to develop and apply knowledge and skills in ways suited to their own unique creative practice. Standard curriculum design – that does not allow students to assess their capabilities and adjust their learning pathways in support of their individual learning needs – can potentially limit a student's potential. This presentation outlines a SEIF funded concept designed to address these issues currently under development at the faculty of Art & Design called Learning Hubs.
 
This idea is currently being developed for piloting in S1 2018. It underpins and supports key aspects of the student learning experience by creating centralised, active learning communities to facilitate greater creative skills development, personalised learning and peer to peer support across the entire Art & Design curriculum. Learning Hubs will provide three interconnected elements of learning support: 
 
1. Intensive skills development masterclasses. Curriculum integrated, intensive sessions in core creative skills to prepare all students for undertaking related elective, stream, and studio courses. Masterclasses can also run on demand to extend and consolidate students' skills development in specific areas.
 
2. On-demand online resource packages for 24/7 self-help. Flexible, personalised 24/7 online learning support for a range of digital and analogue skills development  across creative disciplines. These include inductions and proficiencies and are related to masterclasses, but are always open to any student.
 
3. Drop-in learning communities. Physical spaces on campus where knowledgeable staff are always present. Students from any year, discipline or course may come together to work on assessments, drop in to get expert help at any time, and continue to develop advanced skills from the support and cross-pollination of ideas of peers and hub staff. 
 
The Learning Hubs concept deals with the question of how all students' individual learning needs can be supported across a program or faculty so that they can receive meaningful, personalised guidance and feedback about their learning. The main foundational learning concepts supporting this idea are differentiation and personalisation. The Learning Hubs idea synthesises formalised curriculum, data analytics, and personal community based learning approaches. This enables students to vary their focus based upon their own needs between structured classes, private 24/7 online tutoring, and large mixed cohort communities working informally in dedicated spaces on campus. 
 
This short presentation outlines how this idea is being developed with the collaboration of academics, professional staff, educational developers and students. It also explains how the concept will be synthesised into the curriculum, and iteratively evaluated over the duration of the pilot project. 
 

Mr. Martin Healy, Educational Support Service, Student Services (Communities)
Engaging, supporting and retaining academically at-risk students: A pilot with one UNSW faculty

The Educational Support Service, in Semester 2 2017, embarked on a pilot project involving proactive personal contact with students designated at risk of academic failure to provide them with an action plan of personal, social and academic processes and resources designed to promote their engagement with their studies. Proactive advising programs represent the perfect conduit to relationship building, an essential element that helps students reconnect with their studies and go on to academic success (Barnes, Macalpine, & Munro. 2015). Torres, Reiser, LePeau, Davis, & Ruder, (2006) emphasized the importance of relationship building achieved through gaining students' trust. 
 
The focus of the current project is to create bridges for students between their classroom experiences, the discipline and specialist support services available to assist them with their learning and/or management of issues that may be interfering with their ability to focus on their learning and engagement. This is achieved by proactive and timely personal contact with those students who are classified as "at academic risk" based on available indicators (Nelson, Karen, Duncan, Margot, & Clarke, 2009), (Pearson & Naug, 2013). 
 
The project is a proactive and preventative rather than a reactive approach, in line with examples of best practice (Nelson 2013). It identifies students at risk of academic failure early and links them to available resources, personal support and academic assistance through individualised, appropriate and timely interventions. This presentation will discuss the design and implementation of the project, preliminary results and the potential for broader implementation across faculties. 
 

Dr. Jasper Hsieh, Educational Design Services, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Education) Portfolio  (Communities)
The roles of interculturality in Chinese-speaking international students’ identity transformations. An auto/ethnographic inquiry.

Asia's booming economy provides Chinese-speaking international students (CHIS) a context where they can efficiently transform their internal "desires" into external "identities" within a short period of time. These desires tend to relate to becoming 'international and multi-cultural'  linguistically, professionally and personally. Drawing on the political sense of interculturality (Lavanchy, Gajardo & Dervin, 2011), this study discusses the complexity of CHIS's identity transformations through Australian higher education. Scholarly attention has been concentrated on two research directions in terms of CHIS's identity transformations in western higher education. One is to orient CHIS's academic and social challenges in an English-speaking context. The other is to document how homecoming students use their acquired interculturality in their home context. While the complexity of identity development has been emphasised in both research directions, a linear and causal pattern between the completion of western higher education and the acquisition of interculturality is perceived. This auto/ethnographic study followed three Taiwanese international students' lives for over 12 months and documented their identity transformations throughout their postgraduate education in Australia. Working with a rearticulated, post-structuralist Bourdieuian notion of habitus, the stories happened to them, to me, and between us were compared, categorised and reflected on as the empirical evidence to elucidate the complexity of identity transformation. The findings suggest a variety of identity transformations resulting from the participants' evaluation of their past, present and future situations. Their post-Australia transformations were not only shaped by individual Australian experiences, but also by both personal choices and home context's influences. While the implications for the divide between homecoming students and locally-educated students were suggested, this study wishes to do in this forum is to bring in provocative questions for UNSW staff and educators: What does it mean to be "intercultural" in the Australian setting? As the professional/academic members of UNSW, how should we draw the line between being multicultural and intercultural? And how can technology facilitate students' and our sense-making work for what it means to be intercultural?  

 

Stream 3: Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching, Feedback and Dialogue, Communities

Dr. Bryoni Trezise and Dr. Jonathan Bollen, School of Arts & Media,  Arts & Social Sciences  (Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching)
Pitch Perfect: Integrating physical learning and digital platforms in teaching presentation skills
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Pitching a concept, telling a story and leading with ideas: HUMS1006 integrates physical learning and digital platforms to empower UNSW students with effective presentation skills for real-world communication.

Dr. Kim Snepvangers, Art & Design (Feedback and Dialogue)
Digital Transformation: Developing innovative technologies to support personalised feedback within large scale creative professional practice cohorts

PEP is a core course across fourth year Honours UG degree programs in Fine Arts, Design and Media Arts. A Design PEP has been in existence for the last 25 years, with a focus on experimental design, products and entrepreneurship.  New in 2016, Fine Arts and Media Arts students are actively part of a real world industry focused core course, which requires new understandings of mentorship, partnerships and ecologies of creative practice. An experimental challenge was to address digital transformation and knowledge exchange in traditionally focused fine arts fields of practice and the more software/technically focused understandings required in Media Arts. This presentation will show how PEP is designed to generate self-managing and personalised digital pathways in creative fields of practice as well as generating new mentor ecologies. This multi-level exchange has been developed as a new learning technology, the "PEP Tool" with students, staff and industry entry points through the Art & Design website. The significance of the development of new digital technologies is the management of large cohorts of final year students using personalised learning formats. Providing a counterpoint to established understandings of traditional "internships" the structure of PEP engages 21st century learning outcomes, evidenced in the Scientia educational experience. The focus is on learner transformation across digital platforms and flexible timeframes to negotiate new learning scenarios and feedback loops.  Transferability of professional skills across new conceptions of fine arts, design and media ecologies is the focus to professionally communicate with university staff, hosts and industry. 
 
This presentation will focus on the innovative development of technologies that support digital transformation in creative fields of practice including brokering innovative creative partnerships at scale across sole trader, artisanal ecologies and medium to large scale business. Challenges in developing internal/external facing digital technology became evident during the design phases of PEP and a visual analysis of the strategic digital system will be presented. In addition to system modifications in the digital space, transformation has been accompanied by changes in human experience through provision of quality self-reflective dialogue. A key outcome of the project is how the public online presence of learners has been initially devised then re-envisioned using quality learning outcomes and innovative technologies that support personalisation of feedback at scale.
 

Ms. Amy Teale, Art & Design  (Inspired Learning through Inspiring Teaching)
Reflections on a Faculty wide project to improve assessment practice

At Art & Design the release of the new UNSW Assessment Policy and Procedures was used as a driver to improve assessment practice across the faculty and consequently to increase teaching staff engagement and capability in curriculum design. This presentation will outline the process undertaken to achieve 100% compliance of semester 2 2017 course outlines with the Policy and Procedures, whilst also engendering a positive culture shift amongst staff, discussing the lessons learned along the way. 

Review of the Policy and Procedures highlighted inconsistencies in assessment design and implementation practice across the university, and a number of implications and opportunities for Art & Design. A random sample of Art & Design courses were examined to establish the scale of non-compliance. The most common issues identified were; unclear assessment information, vague (or subjective) standards and criteria, over-assessment and group assessment marks contributing to more than 30% of the overall grade.
 
A process of consultation meetings, professional development workshops, development of support resources and Educational Developers working in partnership with academics was implemented from March to June 2017, to ensure that the 130 courses running in Semester 2 would have compliant and fit for purpose assessment plans. Focus groups were also held with students to inform the project development and implementation.
 
Difficulties encountered included availability of academic staff to work with Educational Developers on their assessment plans, some resistance to articulating standards and criteria around creativity and implementation of assessment prior to census date in a course. It was also identified that a number of courses had unclear course learning outcomes and incomplete assessment mapping, which led to redevelopment of course learning outcomes for those courses.
 
The main outcome of the project was revised course outlines for all semester 2 courses, including updated assessment plans and assessment rubrics. Secondary outcomes were increased knowledge of assessment design principles and awareness of the Assessment Policy and Procedure amongst course convenors. Further, the process resulted in increased collaboration between academics and between academics and Educational Developers on course and assessment design and improved the clarity and consistency of course information provided to students. Positive feedback was received from many course convenors on the support that they received during the process and satisfaction with the revised assessment plans that were developed. Future plans include evaluation of the impact of the project and revised implementation of the process for summer and semester 1 2018 courses.
 

Associate Professor David Blaazer and Ms. Fiona Honeyman, Arts & Social Sciences, UNSW Canberra (Communities)

Building a community of history learners through construction of a web-based timeline

When designing assessment for an upper-level history course on the United Kingdom since 1945, David Blaazer sought to introduce an ongoing web-based, whole-class, group project aimed at increasing ongoing student engagement and interaction by developing an online learning community. In the discipline of history, construction of a 'thick' timeline, including analysis of events and episodes, suggested itself as an appropriate project. He therefore asked Fiona Honeyman, of UNSW Canberra Technology Enabled Learning Support (TELS), to evaluate available web-based tools to enable the project.
 
Fiona reviewed and road-tested a range of different timeline tools and found that all came with pros and cons. Ultimately TikiToki was selected as the only tool that enabled both group collaboration and the incorporation of multimedia. Its cons included some clunky administrational features and no facility for comments/discussion. Following the initial evaluation, the authors collaborated to maximise the pedagogical benefits of the project in line with TikiToki's scope and limitations. They refined and developed the aims of the assessment as follows:
  • Development of a community of learners through shared engagement in a common task
  • Fostering a sense of responsibility for individual and collective learning 
  • Production of an attractive, accessible and useful learning resource for use by all students
  • Development of students' digital literacy, particularly their capacity to produce multimodal academic communication
  • Development of students' research skills, including web-based research
  • Opportunities for students to explore topics led by their own curiosity 
  • Increased week-to-week engagement with course subject matter
  • Development of students' understanding of themes and periods across the full range of the course subject-matter 
Given that this form of assessment was new to both staff and students, it was essential to develop clear rules and protocols that not only ensured that the aims would be met, but were also consistent with the structure and presentation of the course. A key requirement was that entries were written to take full advantage of web-based publication, by containing embedded videos or photos, and hyperlinks to relevant scholarly articles and primary source documents. It was equally important to give students intellectual freedom in order to foster a sense of ownership and responsibility for learning; students were therefore allowed to write on any historical event or episode relevant to the UK since 1945, regardless of whether they had been or would be discussed in lectures and tutorials.
 
Student participated in the project enthusiastically, generating many attractive and interesting entries - often on unexpected topics. The finished timeline provided the rich learning resource envisaged at the design stage. 
 
Prior to completing the myExperience survey, students were requested to reflect on the timeline assessment task, and to offer any comments, criticisms or suggestions for improvement they might have. A relatively high proportion of students took the opportunity to do so. Overwhelmingly, responses were positive, with many students offering constructive and well-considered suggestions for improvement and refinement. On the other hand, despite a 'light-touch' approach to assessment, the task proved more demanding on staff time than anticipated, largely as a result of limitations in the capacity of the TikiToki tool.
 

 

2.40 -3.30 Bringing it together

Bob Fox: Scientia Education Experience

Richard Buckland: The First Year Experience,  Wrap up of the Forum,  Q and A

Simon McIntyre: The Education Focused Role at UNSW

Geoffrey Crisp: Award presentation of the newly appointed 2018 Scientia Education Academy Fellows  

3:30 - 4pm Networking Drinks