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The ‘Ideal Module’ and ‘Bite-sized’ Learning Dr Anita Walsh, Birkbeck, University of London SEEC Seminar 11 November, 2008.

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Presentation on theme: "The ‘Ideal Module’ and ‘Bite-sized’ Learning Dr Anita Walsh, Birkbeck, University of London SEEC Seminar 11 November, 2008."— Presentation transcript:

1 The ‘Ideal Module’ and ‘Bite-sized’ Learning Dr Anita Walsh, Birkbeck, University of London SEEC Seminar 11 November, 2008

2 The ‘Ideal Module’ and ‘Bite-sized’ Learning Definition of module: A self-contained, formally structured learning experience with a coherent and explicit set of learning outcomes and assessment criteria (Credit bodies, 2001)

3 The ‘Ideal Module’ and ‘Bite-sized’ Learning In a credit framework each module has a credit value (which represents notional time) and credit level BUT there is no formal recommendation for a standard module value/size – why?

4 The ‘Ideal Module’ and ‘Bite-sized’ learning Institutional autonomy – in % of institutions had a standard module size BUT values reported: 10, 12, 15, 20, 30 and frequently double, triple and half modules allowed In addition, on occasion, reference to 4 or 5 credit modules

5 The ‘Ideal Module’ and ‘Bite-sized’ Learning Are some of these values ‘wrong’? Credit provides evaluation of learning experience but doesn’t structure it What are the considerations relating to module size?

6 The ‘Ideal Module’ and ‘Bite-sized’ Learning A standard module size offers flexibility in terms of programme design Arguably the smaller the module size the greater the flexibility BUT also increases assessment burden (e.g. 1 x l,500 words on different topics c.f. 3,000 words on one)

7 The ‘Ideal Module’ and ‘Bite-sized’ Learning What is the intention of the learning experience? ‘Taster’ module – 5 credits Dissertation – 60 credits How does level affect the size of a valid learning experience?

8 The ‘Ideal Module’ and ‘Bite-sized’ Learning There has been a shift away from small modules in the first year – perhaps also difficult at postgraduate level? How does standard module size relate to ‘bite-sized’ learning outside the university?

9 The ‘Ideal Module’ and ‘Bite-sized’ Learning Difference between work-based delivery (= different context) and work- based learning (= different content) Aim is to achieve equivalence between learning inside and outside the institution

10 The ‘Ideal Module’ and ‘Bite-sized’ Learning If part of a small, tailored award does the ‘bite-sized’ learning need to conform to standard module? Why? Does precise measurement of time matter? Volume of assessment as a proxy Academic judgement of level fundamental


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