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Flexible learning and teaching through technology at USQ Birgit Loch Department of Mathematics and Computing University of Southern Queensland

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Presentation on theme: "Flexible learning and teaching through technology at USQ Birgit Loch Department of Mathematics and Computing University of Southern Queensland"— Presentation transcript:

1 Flexible learning and teaching through technology at USQ Birgit Loch Department of Mathematics and Computing University of Southern Queensland Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009

2 Overview USQ Context Fleximode at USQ Examples of technology use The Tablet PC project

3 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 University of Southern Queensland - Location

4 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Toowoomba 100,000 people Regional centre Education largest employer Carnival of Flowers

5 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 USQ Context USQ - regional, multi-campus, 26,000 students Large distance student population - 75% of students studying off campus in over 70 countries (WEB, EXT, ONC) Large percentage of students mature age, work full-time, study part-time, live remotely, low socio-economic background. Incarcerated student. “Open” university. *** USQ Vision – to provide flexible and inclusive learning experiences. “Fleximode”.

6 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 How do we differ from the OU (maths/computing perspective)? Both ONC and EXT teaching Students in very remote areas all over the world Aboriginal students No F2F tutorials offered to external students Lecturers expected to do … lecturing, tutoring, marking, course material writing Plus research, service Tutor private details not revealed to students Assignments received in central location, then sorted and distributed

7 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 What is similar to the OU? Still mainly snail mail assignment transport Course material and specifications to be prepared well in advance Need to explore technologies

8 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Fleximode? Every course to have an online presence on StudyDesk Lecturers/tutors to participate in online discussion groups Electronic assignment submission encouraged Electronic marking encouraged Course material available in Integrated Content Environment (ICE) for web, CD, print delivery Equity? Closing the gap between distance and on campus learning?

9 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Fleximode in Maths&Computing teaching? Electronic writing in lectures Screen and audio capture of lectures Electronic communication with students Online tutorials Electronic assignment submission Electronic assignment marking

10 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Fleximode in Maths&Computing teaching? Electronic writing in lectures Screen and audio capture of lectures Electronic communication with students Online tutorials Electronic assignment submission Electronic assignment marking Trial or mainstream? Tablet PCs!

11 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 a squared minus 1 divided by a plus 1 Why are tablets so useful for e-learning in maths?

12 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 a squared minus 1 divided by a plus 1 Why are tablets so useful for e-learning in maths?

13 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 a squared minus 1 divided by a plus 1 Why are tablets so useful for e-learning in maths?

14 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 a squared minus 1 divided by a plus 1 Why are tablets so useful for e-learning in maths?

15 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Keep record of writing in class. Can produce screencast of the whole lecture. –Students can revise. External students can see handwritten development of solution. Students see how a problem is saved using hand writing Electronic communication of mathematical content with distance students Electronic marking of assignments At USQ, 12/16 lecturers teaching into maths/stats/OR courses use a Tablet PC/graphics tablet. Only 2 computing lecturers. Tablet PCs for e-learning in maths/stats/computing

16 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Examples of Tablet use at USQ Mathematics and Statistics MSN Messenger (with Christine McDonald; others joined later) –Discrete Mathematics and Data Analysis –Foundation Mathematics Web conferencing –Linear Algebra and Calculus –Foundation Computing

17 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 More examples Writing electronically in lectures –1 st year Calculus –1 st year Operations Research Recording of writing in lectures, assignment marking, student support, iPod/iPhone video files –Operations Research

18 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 More examples Recording after lectures and statistical software walk-throughs –Data analysis (Christine McDonald) Recording of assignment feedback (Linda Galligan) Multimodal course material (ICE) –Operations Research

19 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Other technology-related projects Ebook readers (Business) Pen-enabled screens Staff mentoring

20 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Tablet PC Project Staff component: existing tablet PCs 25+ new tablet PCs, 10 new graphics tablets 50+ new tablet users Student component: Digital note pens 20+ mini tablet PCs

21 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Examples from other disciplines Biology, Chemistry, Engineering Lecture writing and screen movement recording German language teaching Lecture writing and assignment marking Hier klicken

22 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Student digital pen trial

23 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Student Tablet PC trial

24 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Some student comments… Live lecture screen casts: –makes me feel more like I’m 'at' uni as an external student [EXT] –I wasn’t able to attend all of the lectures so this allowed me to go at my own pace. [ONC] –To be honest, without these online screencasts, I would not have understood concepts or passed this course. [EXT] –I watched the first screencast, but I don’t really find this artificial environment useful to my learning. I require a more personal one on one exchange when learning allowing for feedback and gestures to assist in the message. [ONC] –A short recording would be better as it could be of a focused topic or problem only [EXT]

25 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 More student comments… Student support screen casts –The screencasts I accessed in response to my questions were very helpful as I could see at what point I had begun to get off track. Web conferencing –I have really enjoyed my experience with the Elluminate tutorials and highly recommend it. Writing in lectures –Perfect lecture setup, perfect course for that matter. I’ve really enjoyed this subject, each maths subject should have this setup. General –I am very impressed with the external learning facilities at USQ so far.

26 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Lecturer comments 2007/2008: It saved precious time in class It is cumbersome to switch between the whiteboard and the data projector. Using the Tablet PC I didn’t need to use the whiteboard at all Students themselves were able to suggest corrections on their texts as an added and very useful learning/teaching experience

27 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Initial results from Tablet PC project Legibility of handwriting an issue Reliability of tablet PCs Students are asking for more library classes Engages students more (Finance) Those disciplines with equations and diagrams will benefit most Far superior to using screenshots with typed texts which are pre- prepared (library)

28 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Issues encountered at USQ Lecturers not confident and not using stylus Readiness for change? Convincing management that tablets are worthwhile Funding to purchase ICT support for tablet PCs – inclusion in SOE Audio input for lecture recording

29 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Unresolved issues Server storage space RSS feeds and outside access Student download quota Backup of recordings

30 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Lessons learnt It is incredibly difficult to change the way things work at a university. But not impossible. Persistence pays! One step at a time. Pressure through numbers. Work with ICT! And get them excited too. Mentor new users! Show what is possible, relate to their context. Have backup, and don’t get upset when something doesn't work. Pedagogy needs to drive technology not the other way around. I would like to thank Christine McDonald, Linda Galligan, Bernadette McCabe and Gabriela Pohl for providing examples shown in this presentation

31 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 PowerPoint Linear Algebra and Calculus B.Loch

32 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Windows Journal Operations Research B.Loch Back

33 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Electronic marking with hand written annotations Word DOC files PPT files XLS files PDF files Operations Research B.Loch

34 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Electronic marking with hand written annotations Word DOC files PPT files XLS files PDF files Operations Research B.Loch Master thesis edits B.Loch

35 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Electronic marking with hand written annotations Word DOC files PPT files XLS files PDF files Gazette editing B.Loch Back

36 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Student support Back Operations Research I B.Loch

37 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Web conferencing

38 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Web conferencing Linear Algebra and Calculus. 2006/7. B.Loch

39 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Example: Algebra and Calculus

40 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Example: Algebra and Calculus

41 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Example: Algebra and Calculus

42 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Example: Foundation Computing

43 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Example: Foundation Computing

44 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Example: Foundation Computing Back

45 From a Data Analysis recording Back Data Analysis C.McDonald

46 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Recording of assignment feedback Back The Learning Centre L.Galligan

47 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Operations Research I B.Loch Back Screencast embedded in course material

48 Open University, Milton Keynes, 9 September 2009 Language teaching zurück German language course G.Pohl

49 Chemistry lecture Chemistry course B.McCabe Back


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