Q: What is the typical project timeline?
A: The total length of a Digital Uplift (DU) project varies. A typical project tends to be 15 weeks long from start to end. The first 4 weeks are dedicated to review the course and identify the resources that need to be developed. This is followed by 10-12 weeks of development and 1 week dedicated to handover and closure.
Q: Are DU projects funded?
A: Yes, the school and convenor receive $10,000 split into two payments coinciding with the beginning and end of the project. This fund can be used by the convenor for teaching and marking relief. There is an additional $20,000 dedicated to the project which the Office of the Pro Vice-Chancellor (Education) (PVC(E)) team use to develop resources for your course.
Q: What is the expected time commitment from the academic team?
A: The time commitment tends to be 7 hours a week. The academic team usually devote a little more time in the early stages as the statement of work is being developed. Once this plan has been developed, convenors are encouraged to identify content specialists, such as teaching assistants, who could be employed to help with content development and the review process.
Q: How can this additional DU workload be reduced?
A: Convenors are encouraged to identify and delegate the content development and the review process to teaching assistants. This can reduce the weekly commitment to 2 hours. In addition, they can save time by ensuring they come into the project with a plan, concept or a pedagogical problem that they would like to work on.
Q: What if the academic is taking annual leave or going to a conference in the middle of the DU project?
A: The PVC(E) team will tailor the project schedule based on the convenor’s availability.
Q: What type of digital resources can be created?
A: This will be determined in the early stage of the project by the course convenor and the PVC(E) team. This is a collaborative and iterative process where the convenor and PVC(E) reflect of teaching experience, student feedback and pain points to identify the required resources. Some examples of resources are concept videos, guest interviews and lectures, quizzes, H5P lessons and many more.
Q: Does the DU initiative remove face to face contact hours from a course?
A: The aim of the digital assets is to ensure face to face time with students is maximised. (e.g. with the flipped classroom model).The answer is yes ONLY if the course is designed to be fully online, but in most cases the answer is no.
Q: Do the academics have to develop all the digital assets themselves?
A: No, the PVC(E) team will take care of all the development once the convenor provides the content. The PVC(E) can engage students and freelancers to develop the resources in a timely fashion. We ensure that academics are given the chance to review and give feedback at multiple points throughout the development.
Q: Who is responsible for managing the project and developing the assets based on the academics’ content?
A: PVC(E)’s team of educational developer will take care of all the development. The team will also be happy to train the convenor and teaching assistant if required.
Q: How do I nominate my course?
Nominations for Digital Uplift usually come to the PVC(E) from the executive of each School or Faculty. Often, the executive will have a development plan which targets large gateway courses to obtain the maximum reach, or it may be that they are interested to hear from staff who think that their course would be a good fit for the Digital Uplift program. If you think that your course would benefit from Digital Uplift, you can approach your respective Head of School.
Q: How does this benefit my future career in education?
Digital Uplift is a chance to work with a team of experienced educational developers to build a course that suits your needs and the needs of your students. Participating in the Digital Uplift program will streamline your teaching, increase your knowledge of educational theory and develop your technical skills, which will benefit your career in education.
Q: Can I get my tutors involved in the process of Digital Uplift?
Yes, the Digital Uplift program is designed to develop the digital literacies of a community: lecturers, tutors, and students. The program has funds to employ casual staff as content specialists which can help the tutor to gain a greater knowledge of online learning platforms and greatly reduce the workload of the lecturer. Examples where they could help: include drafting lesson content, testing or obtaining their input based on their face-to-face with student/tutoring experience for the course.