DL Forum Newsletter: August 2011
- News/Updates from CDDU
- Assessment & Feedback
- A Personal Voice and AUDIBLE
- Online assessment and feedback
- New online discussions course
- VLE Policy/Guidance
- Updates from other departments
News/Updates from CDDU
For those who missed the very interesting discussion around this area at the April DL Forum, you might be interested in reading the extensive summary Cliff produced from the day:
http://bit.ly/pNKNg9 (log in with your CFS username/password)
Around this area, there are a few developments which will be of direct interest to the DL community, and which will both feature in future DL Forums as opportunities arise.
Two interlinked projects funded within the University through TEP (http://bit.ly/pmy5ti), are looking at the use of audio feedback from a variety of perspectives – and in particular, aim to produce useful models/templates for any department to use within their course. At present, the projects are determining appropriate departments for pilot studies: if you are currently re-assessing your feedback methods or are interested in using audio feedback in your course in 2011/12, please contact Alex Moseley (email@example.com) for details.
This is an area which some departments are already working in; which many are using for some elements of assessment (eg. Turnitin submission) but not all; and in which the University as a whole has a heightened interest (as evidenced by our DL Forum discussion, above). Through the Assessment and Feedback Working Party, a University-wide symposium is being planned which will allow anyone interested in this area to see current practice and future options, and to arrive at a model, or set of models, for our institution to adopt with appropriate support. A bid for external funding to help in this area was recently made, results of which will be known later this week.
CDDU in conjunction with IT Services are creating a new online course which focuses on the technical and pedagogical aspects of creating, facilitating, and assessing domain-focused online discussions. This course will be available to departments at the end of September, and will be offered periodically in conjunction with Staff Development.
This document, which was presented at an earlier DL Forum and has been around the College Academic Committees and other groups for comment, is now entering the second phase, where relevant groups will write the policy/guidance for each area. DL departments will be well represented in these groups – if you haven’t already expressed an interest and want to be involved, please email Alex (firstname.lastname@example.org). Much of this work will go alongside, and inform, Blackboard projects currently underway in IT Services (details of which will be provided at a future DL Forum).
The new Library Website has been launched. As well as a new design and structure, the Website offers some new ways of searching Library resources.
- The All Search: a combined search of books and journal articles
- The Articles Search: search for journal articles only
- There is also a Books Search (using the Catalogue), Journals A-Z (to find a journal by its title) and a Databases A-Z.
- The My Subject section replaces Subject Rooms. It guides students to the most relevant information resources available in different subject areas.
To see an example, visit the Management page:
There continues to be an information area specifically for distance learners. Visit:
There will be redirects in place from the most important pages on the old Website to their equivalents on the new Website. Please update your links when updating resources.
We are also implementing a new look Leicester eLink system for accessing eJournals. Although it has a new ‘look and feel’, the new system does the same thing as the old i.e. links you to the electronic journals the University has access to. Support for the old system is being withdrawn by the supplier this summer.
You can access the new look Leicester eLink from the Journals A-Z on the new Library homepage.
We are continuing to increase the number of eBooks available. This summer we are buying a number of eBook collections from Springer (Computer Science, Social Science, Humanities, Life Sciences), Oxford University Press (History, Psychology, Business), Palgrave (Social Sciences), Wiley Blackwell (Medicine) and IEEE (Engineering).
The new eBooks will be added to the Catalogue as they become available.
Ben Wynne email@example.com
The new Careers Service website has been launched, and aims to provide students, staff and external visitors such as employers, with a more comprehensive and easy to navigate guide to the range of information, services and resources available to enable students to succeed in their studies, gain experience and develop their careers. In the coming weeks, we'll be asking students to use the site and give us feedback about its design, layout and usability. We are also keen to hear from colleagues what they think about the new site and redesigned pages.
Steve Rooney firstname.lastname@example.org
Zara Hooley from the The Leicester Award team is pleased to announce that they are now taking expressions of interest from students who wish to pursue the distance learning Leicester Award programme FLEX in Oct 2011.
The Leicester Award Flexible programme is an online self reflection and personal development experience. It is delivered through web based interactive workshops which can be accessed at the learner’s own pace. Students participant in social media based forums to discuss key points from each module.
• Networking, teamwork and decision making
• Developing a strong online personal brand
• Application and interview skills.
Students take part in three online workshops, participate in discussion forums and submit three assignments.
• Employability core skills reflective statement
• Personal branding online presentation
• Career research interview and planning assignment.
“The FLEX award allows distance learners, and campus based students who have a very full timetable, to access a Leicester Award experience. Workshops can be accessed online at the learners own pace. Social media based discussion spaces allow students to meet other likeminded people and share thoughts and ideas.”
Zara Hooley, Leicester Award Coordinator email@example.com