Thinking about the student experience
How do we ensure a positive student experience in a multi-mode teaching and learning environment where groups of students must study off-campus?
Here is a summary of strategies found in educational research to enhance the student experience and outcomes in higher education courses. Some related resources are linked here, and also see reference list below.
- Teacher presence
- A feeling of belonging or community
- Easy access to information about assessment requirements and deadlines
- A course environment that is clear, uncluttered and easy to navigate
- Regular meetings in real time with peers and teachers
- Flexible access to learning materials and activities in the form of recordings and asynchronous discussions
- Ability to practice for assessments and obtain feedback
- Engaging course materials and activities
- Opportunities to learn directly from experts in the field
- Giving students a choice about how they learn
What students are saying
The above strategies reflect what students told us in recent surveys of their experience at ANU during the hastily arranged remote learning courses set up for the pandemic, so it is certainly worth exploring some of them over the next two days. The responses included positive as well as negative student experiences.
Take a few minutes to look at this cartoon depicting how students responded to their experience at ANU (expand to full screen to read text more easily):
From these student responses, what do you think are some ideas you can take away of what to avoid and what strategies might work for your students, in a multi-mode teaching environment? What other thoughts do you have about this range of student feedback from students surveyed on their experiences during the COVID19 lockdown at ANU? Jump into the Comments and share your thoughts.
Other References and Resources
ANU Coffee Course Blog: Bringing Discussions Online
ANU Coffee Course Blog: Issues with engagement and participation
UNSW site Learning to Teach Online
deNoyelles, A., Mannheimer Zydney, J., & Chen, B. (2014) ‘Strategies for creating a community of inquiry through online asynchronous discussions.’ Journal of Online Learning and Teaching. 10(1):153-165. Available: http://jolt.merlot.org/vol10no1/denoyelles_0314.pdf.