11 April 2014 ............... Length about 900 words (10,000 bytes).
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Engaging large classes
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Title: Engaging large classes
Date/time: Wednesday 9 April 2014. 2-3pm
Lecture theatre A (room 407)
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We will introduce a varied selection of ways to increase student engagement on
large courses, both in and outwith lectures themselves, and demonstrate some
in a small way. This will involve a little participation during the session,
and require some advance homework (see below).
Additionally, we will comment on theories about what may underlie the successes.
The two main mechanisms discussed are a) how getting learners to generate
explanations is one of the most powerful drivers for learning (and engagement);
b) How getting students to feel that staff are paying attention to their
actions may also produce some significant effects.
Methods discussed include:
- Just In Time Teaching (JITT)
- Taking attendance at lectures
- Peer discussion
- Using "PeerWise": which requires students to author MCQs themselves.
- Experience with video-linked lectures, which some students prefer to, and
find more engaging than, the "live" lecture hall.
- Using live open-ended feedback during lectures e.g. using Twitter
- Spending time and effort on re-editing course documentation in the light
of comments from student reviewers in order to communicate to students from
the start what the grades for their work mean at university.
- BYOD: if possible, bring your own web-enabled device to the session e.g.
tablet, smartphone. The room has wifi, and you can login with your GUID.
- Read this paper in advance:
Devon,J., Paterson,J.H., Moffat,D.C. and McCrae,J. (2012)
"Evaluation of student engagement with peer feedback based on student-generated MCQs"
ITALICS vol.11 no.1 pp.27-37
The paper, about the use of PeerWise at Glasgow Caledonian, highlights some of
the external factors which may influence the success of using such an approach.
- After reading it, email a question or comment to
with "Devon paper" in the Subject line.
These alone will form the basis of the time we give it in the presentation.
(I.e. this will be a demo of just in time teaching.)
Deadline: 11am 9th April (the morning of the presentation).
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