News and Updates

New coffee courses coming in 2017!

Happy New Year to all our subscribers, readers, and commenters!

Fireworks over Parliament House, Canberra. Photo by Bunyahem.

We hope you have all had a relaxing holiday. Our team was very gratified with the response from participants over the courses we ran in 2016. With just two coffee courses and one espresso course, we’ve garnered 80+ subscribers from ANU and other universities in the ACT and across Australia, and had more than 175 comments in total. The surprise winner for most hits on a page was Academic Integrity and Turnitin Day 1 with 312!

Our team has been busily planning our coffee courses for 2017, and it’s shaping up to be an exciting time for this blog. There are a lot of courses planned for this year, with some fantastic guest contributors from universities around Australia joining us.

2017 Courses

The dates are still being arranged, but here’s a sneak peek at some of the courses coming up over the next few months:

Design Series

We’re looking forward to offering 2 courses which will discuss designing teaching & learning sites. The focus for the first course will be on developing clear, easily navigable, and student-centred sites in your LMS (Wattle, in the case of ANU). The second will be about the principles of universal design and accessibility, and how to design online sites and resources that are inclusive for all students.

Openness and Open Educational Resources

Our first guest contributors for 2017 will be Adrian Stagg (Manager, Open Educational Practice) and Emma Power (Research Assistant, Open Educational Practise Grants) from the University of Southern Queensland. It will discuss the concepts of Open Educational Resources (OERs), how to develop teaching & learning resources as OERs, and discuss some of the implications of openness and OERs in Australia and globally.


To coincide with the launch of Mahara at ANU, we’ll be taking a look at ePortfolios and their role in universities. ePortfolios can provide students with a platform to collect and curate evidence of their work and achievements as part of an individual unit of study, a full degree program, or co-curricular engagement with the university and community. This course will investigate how ePortfolios can be used in teaching and learning practice, and share some case studies on how and why it can be used to showcase student learning.

Engagement Series

You may be putting material online, but are the students using it? How can you tell? The Engagement series of courses will look at the vital role of engaging students in online activities and communities for more effective learning with technology. It will include how to build relationships and social presence online, fostering engagement with students using digital tools, and developing communities in your courses to support better outcomes for your courses.

Social Media in Teaching and Learning

Our next guest contributors for 2017 are Rebecca Goodway (eLearning Advisor) and Meg Appleby (Educational Designer) from the Australian Catholic University. Chances are you are already familiar with Facebook or tuned into Twitter. What you may not have considered is that social media can be utilised as a powerful tool for learning and teaching. Social media can increase student engagement and the feeling of ‘presence’ in your units, support learning outcomes, and can encourage your students to engage in lifelong learning through the development of Personal Learning Networks. This short course will investigate the opportunities and challenges which can arise when you integrate social media platforms into your teaching practices.

Designing Effective Quizzes

Quizzes are commonplace in online learning as a quick way to check student understanding. This course will look at some ways to take quizzes to the next level, so they can be of maximum benefit to students and teachers. It will look at how to structure quizzes, strategies for providing formative and summative feeback to students, and some of the things that quiz grades can tell you about how your students are going.

Active Learning in Lectures

This course will expand of some of the ideas discussed in the Flipped Classroom course to look at how technology can support engaged and active learning in large classes, particularly in lectures. It will explore concepts of active learning, and apply them in practical ways to the lecture format to get students more involved in their learning.

Let us know what you think

There will be even more courses than those listed above – we’re just getting started! Let us know which of the topics appeal to you the most (or least). We’re also looking for contributors to offer more courses in the future, so if you have an idea please contact us or discuss it with us in the comments.

We look forward to learning with you in 2017!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *