Teach Online is a new CPD programme developed by both of the Faculty Learning Technologists’ in MDH and in FSS. The course has been developed in response to a growing interest amongst academic colleagues who are involved in developing blended and distance learning courses. The course aim to discover how distance and blended learning teaching can be supported by technology to engage students online and has been designed to cover a mixture of both e-pedagogy, technology and discussion.
This was a great opportunity to gain some insights into potential learning technologies and to share ideas and resources. It also provided a forum for discussing the challenges of implementing online learning and related curriculum re-design.
The course ran for the first time over 4 weeks in June and utilised a mixture of delivery methods including face-to-face and online teaching. During the course 31 participants’ from both faculties undertook online activities, webinars, face-to-face sessions and discussion with colleagues using a supportive online Google community. Each week focussed on a different aspect of online teaching, this included topics such as facilitating and engaging online students, creating media, online collaboration and social media.
Before coming on the course I was extremely concerned that I was expected to run two new DL modules without any proper training. I had very little idea of what the courses should ‘look like’, or how I would adapt my face-to-face teaching for a new purpose. After just 3 weeks, I’m in a much better position, and can actually see how I’m going to develop the modules, what tools I’ll use, what I will and won’t mirror from my face to face teaching. I feel more confident now that I understand what I need to do to communicate with the students, and to give them a good learning experience. If only I’d been able to go on the course earlier, it would have saved me a huge amount of worry over the past year!
Participants found the course useful on many different levels in relation to planning online learning, learning new methods to teach online and the experience of being a distance-learning student.
It was a great opportunity to take time out from teaching to think about the theory of on line learning and to actively participate in a course. I found working with colleagues from other disciplines very useful, stimulating and supportive. I loved the course and would value any further training in this area.
The course was successful in its aims and will be running again later on in the year. For more information in this area please contact Nav Hundal, MDH Faculty Learning Technologist.