DIT First Year Initiative Event - Amanda Gibney

Report
Enhancing the First Year Experience
at UCD
Dr. Amanda Gibney
DIT First Year Initiative – 10 Steps to engage your First Year Students
30th March 2010
Outline of Presentation
• Fellowship in Teaching & Academic Development
• Education Strategy Development
• Programme Planning
• Focus on First Year
• Semester 1 Engagement and Skills Development
• Summary
Fellowship in Teaching & Academic Development
• Scheme commenced 2007, 8 Fellows
• Funded by HEA Strategic Initiative Fund (SIF1&2)
• Creation of network of emerging leaders with T&L
track record
• Research key institutional education issues
Model: Group project and individual project
• Dissemination of research findings and improvement
of student experience
Fellowship in Teaching & Academic Development
Group Project: First Year Experience
Fellows Team: Niamh Moore, Sara O’Sullivan,
Feargal Murphy & Amanda Gibney
Findings
Gibney, A., Moore, N., Murphy, F. & O'Sullivan, S. (2011) 'The
First Semester of University Life; 'will I be able to manage it
at all?'. Higher Education, 62 (3):351-366, DOI
10.1007/s10734-010-9392-9
(Web link: http://hdl.handle.net/10197/2788)
Recommendations
• Initiatives to support transition
development of skills, engagement, drop-in writing centre
• Initiatives to support community building
group work, peer mentoring, social networking
Education Strategy Development
Consultation and development process 2009-2010
Development of Strategic Objectives
Development of University, College and Programme
actions
Strategy launched in April 2010 as integral part of
UCD Strategic Plan to 2014
Education Strategy Development
Strategic Objectives
• Foster early and lasting student engagement
• Grow and develop graduate education
• Strengthen and enhance academic disciplines and
programmes
• Stimulate creativity, innovation, entrepreneurship
and active citizenship
• Widen participation and support lifelong learning
• Internationalise the student experience
• Excel in teaching, learning innovation and academic
development
Programme Planning
University Level Planning (2009-2010)
(Registrar, Deputy Registrars, College Principals, VPTLs,
Programme Deans, Graduate School Directors, Marketing
and Recruitment Managers, Finance Managers)
• Clear unified presentation of programmes,
simplification of entry routes
• Identification of common themes across
programmes
• Articulation of pathways from undergraduate to
graduate programmes
Programme Planning
Programme Level Planning (2009-2010)
Oversight and Working Group
(Programme Deans, College Principals, VPTLs, Graduate
School Directors, School Heads, School Heads of T&L,
Programme Office Directors, College Finance Officers)
• Programme vision
• Programme outcomes and graduate attributes
• Programme Structure/Map
• Action plan and timelines
Focus on First Year
University Level Initiative (2010-2011)
• University and Programme Orientation
• Academic Programme Structure
• Assessment and Feedback
• Transition to Independent Study
• Engagement with UCD
Semester 1 Engagement and Skills Development
Programme Specific Modules
Business:
Effective Learning and Development
Engineering:
Creativity in Design
Computer Science:
Computer Science in Practice
Science:
Principles of Scientific Enquiry
Nursing:
Transitions: Engage to Success
Arts:
Learning for Success @ University
(Module Descriptors: http://www.ucd.ie/students/course_search.htm)
Semester 1 Engagement and Skills Development
Engineering: Creativity in Design
(coupled with Innovation Leadership)
Active-learning engineering experience through which
students develop their:
• observation skills
• problem solving skills
• lateral thinking abilities
• visual and verbal presentation skills
• information literacy skills.
Semester 1 Engagement and Skills Development
Innovation Process
Understand
Observe
Opportunity
Statement
•Data
•Issues
•Successes
•Problem Def.
Current
Situation
Ideation
Points of
Inspiration
Ideas to
Pursue
•Shadowing
•Brainstorming
•User Journey
•Lateral Thinking
•User Interviews •TRIZ
•Story Telling
User
Experience
Prototype
Idea
Generation
Refine
Possible
Solutions
•Mock-ups
•Go Fast
•No Frills
•Create Scenarios
Working
Models
Small #
Probable
Solutions
•Focus Prototypes
•Engage Clients
•Ruthless Decisions
•Focus on Outcomes
A Few
Possibilities
Implement
Innovative
Solution
•Resourcing
•Diverse Skills
•Create
•Launch
Solution
Semester 1 Engagement and Skills Development
Assessment
Group (85%)
Formative and summative assessment in-studio wks 3 to 12
5 key concepts
 Understanding (evidence-based, comprehensive)
 Observation (planning, photos, sketches)
 Idea generation (no. of ideas, good themes)
 Prototyping (planning, testing, context)
 Communication (verbal and visual)
Individual (15%) Sketchbook submission, sketch exercises
Semester 1 Engagement and Skills Development
Semester 1 Engagement and Skills Development
Semester 1 Engagement and Skills Development
Semester 1 Engagement and Skills Development
Creative Design Solutions Exhibition
Innovation Dublin 2010 & 2011
Semester 1 Engagement and Skills Development
Semester 1 Engagement and Skills Development
General Points
• Students were provided with a module handbook
• Students obtained weekly feedback (both
formative and summative)
• Students not attending studio sessions were
contacted
• Students exhibited sustained, substantial effort
across the semester
• Student’s understanding of the process and their
prototyping, communication skills and confidence
improved across the semester
Semester 1 Engagement and Skills Development
Student Feedback
• Aspects that appealed:
Teamwork, studio setting, solving real problems,
getting to know classmates, fun, active
• Aspects that helped learning:
Giving presentations, teamwork, interactive studio
• Suggest changes:
More time per project, more drawing, earlier
information literacy session, clearer project briefs,
better chosen groups
Semester 1 Engagement and Skills Development
Science: Principles of Scientific Enquiry
Aims
• Engage students with scientific literature
research
• Encourage critical and analytical thinking
• Encourage passion for discovery and with that
self-motivated learning
• Develop group work and communication skills
• Provide a personalised contact with academics
in the scientific community
• Aid transition to university
Semester 1 Engagement and Skills Development
Delivery
Lectures:
to full cohort of 400+, lecturer-led
Workshops: groups of 75, tutor led
Tutorials:
groups of 5-6, academic as facilitator
Group Work: groups of 5-6 scheduled unsupervised
time
Semester 1 Engagement and Skills Development
Assessment
Description
Individual/
Group
Submission
% of module
grade
Timing
Individual Research Paper
Summary
Individual
13
Week 4
Group Research Abstract
Group
12*
Week 6
Group Presentation
Group
15*
Week 8
Group Project Report
Group
30*
Week 11
Learning Journal
Individual
10
Throughout
semester
Engagement and
Participation
Individual
20
Throughout
semester
* Group marks weighted by peer marking and attendance and contribution mark
Semester 1 Engagement and Skills Development
Observations and Feedback
• Students engaged with scientific literature and
aware of research activities in UCD and beyond
• Students used research and critical thinking
skills developed in other modules
• Students’ communication skills improved as did
their confidence
• Students recognise longer-term benefits of skills
developed
Summary
• Co-ordinated, planned institutional activity in
T&L supported at high level can effect real
change
• Institutional Research and research-based
evidence will dispel anecdotal evidence and spur
change
• Cross-disciplinary dissemination/interaction
pitched at appropriate level promotes wider
adoption of innovative effective practices
• Effective Fellowship model has:
- engaged academics in policy making
- developed cross-disciplinary networking
- resulted in emergence of academic leaders

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