Learning Enhancement and Innovation Highlights of 2019
Happy New Year from everyone in the Learning Enhancement and Innovation unit! 2019 was a big year for us and we wanted to share some of our highlights and big wins for the year.
New blog & newsletter launched
2019 saw our blog renamed to ‘The Learning Cog’. This name was chosen as it encompasses who we are, what we do and where we are located.
Alongside our new blog, we launched our new monthly newsletter called The Learning Cog Bulletin. This monthly newsletter is used to keep all our subscribers up to date with the latest in learning and teaching, as well as news, events and opportunities for collaboration.
In September 2019, we launched our new online home, The Learning Enhancement and Innovation website.
See our new website here.
Online Programs launched
In October 2019, we launched the first of our online graduate programs, as part of our multi-year partnership with Pearson.
Currently we are offering:
- Graduate Certificate/Diploma in Data Science
- Graduate Diploma in Psychology
Students are able to begin these new postgrad programs at any of the six “entry points” through the year. Each course within them will be an intensive six-week course, requiring a 25-hours a week commitment, with a two-week gap before the next one starts. The courses are available on a “carousel” model, with some available more than once a year.
There will be more online postgraduate programs announced in 2020, including an online MBA.
Find out more about available online courses here.
Program Enhancement Partnership Award nomination
In October, our Program Enhancement Partnerships (PEP) initiative was reviewed by three other Australian Universities and selected as a finalist for the ‘2019 Australasian Advancing Academic Development Good Practice Awards’.
Colleen Ortega represented the LEI unit at the Advancing Academic Development event in Brisbane and delivered a presentation on the PEP initiative. While we didn’t win the major award, we were very honoured to be recognised as a finalist in this highly competitive field, along with 9 other finalists. All finalist presentations can be found here.
Program Enhancement Partnerships (PEP) are a LEI initiative aimed to support a Program-centric approach to learning design. Find out more about PEP here.
Students as Partnership (SaP) involvement throughout the year
In the Learning Enhancement and Innovation unit, we value a philosophy and practice that emphasises staff and students working together in learning and teaching. This philosophy and practice is called “Students as Partners” (SaP). We try and model authentic student partnership through co-creation and recognition of the valuable contributions that students can bring to learning and teaching activities.
We enact Students as Partners in three ways:
- Students employed as paid casual staff (Learning Enhancement Officers)
- Student volunteers (Learning Enhancement Partners)
- Wider student outreach
In 2019, we had 86 student partners engage with 176 hours of volunteer activity and 2015 hours of Learning Enhancement Officer (LEO) work to achieve some outstanding outcomes.
Find out more about Student Partnerships here.
Student Analytics Insights Page
We also developed the Student Analytics Insights page for the MyUni LMS Analytics application in order to enable students to acquire a better understanding of their progression in courses. The Student Analytics Insight page was collaboratively developed with Students as Partners, Learning Systems and Innovations and Academic Applications Development teams contributing to the design and technical development.
The solution was implemented in preparation for Semester 2, 2019. Student interactions were tracked throughout the pilot and data showed that students valued the information that the page provided and students shared that it increased their awareness and level of engagement with the course.
Further iterations of this will be delivered in Semester 1 and 2 of 2020, with a view that it will be expanded to all courses in due time. Contact the Learning Analytics team if you have any questions.
New Analytics: data-driven student feedback made easy
In late 2019, New Analytics was rolled out for all courses in MyUni, providing teaching staff with a simple and effective way to provide vital feedback to students, based on student engagement and assignment results data.
New Analytics provides data visualisations on student engagement (page views and participations) as well as student grades across the course. Teaching staff can then use these data to send communications to students based on assignment submission status, assignment grades, views and participations with specific course resources. Providing students with targeted, timely feedback during semester has been shown to increase their engagement and satisfaction within a course, leading to increased pass rates and higher SELT scores.
The LEI Wellness Group
2019 saw the introduction of the Wellness group within the Learning Enhancement and Innovation unit. The group facilitated, championed and enabled opportunities for individuals, teams and the whole of the LEI unit to engage in optional wellbeing activities.
Each month had a wellbeing theme with planned activities and initiatives to align. Some of these activities included Lego challenges, fundraisers, lunch time walks, bake offs, and stress management activities. This group will continue in 2020.
2019 LEI Grants
In 2019, LEI funded 6 grant projects for the enhancement and innovation in learning experiences, totalling $30,000. Proposed by staff and students within the bidding process, and with strong student input in the design and delivery through Students as Partners approach, these projects commenced in June 2019 and will conclude on 14th February 2020. The 2020 LEI Grants are now open for submissions.
Find out more about LEI Grants here.