I have put many of my teaching resources in the humbox where anyone is welcome to download and reuse them. They are primarily used as handouts in face-to-face contexts, so most would probably need adapting to turn them into materials suitable for purely online context. Most are available under creative commons licenses, but please check first.
Further resources I have produced for sharing are on other project websites such as SPEAQ (Relating to quality assurance and enhancement) and Getting the Most Out of Feedback which has resources for students and staff on feedback and student evaluation.
Now taking registrations for the annual language leaders workshop. Discount for early booking!
Impact and public benefit are key priorities for the public funding of higher education. For example, the 2014 Research Evaluation Framework (REF) requires universities to demonstrate that their research has benefits outside the university as well as within the academic community. The strategies of AHRC and ESRC emphasise the commitment to interact with public life and bring benefits to the country. The Finch report has called for all publicly funded research outputs to be open access so they can be read by anybody who wishes to read them without payment or library subscription. The Open Educational Resources (OER) movement promotes the free sharing and re-sharing of teaching resources without copyright restrictions and MOOCs (Mass Open Online Courses) attempt to reach new audiences all over the world. The public benefits universities provide to their local communities through outreach work, continuing education and public engagement is a key part of demonstrating impact outside academia. Universities also need to have access agreements in place to promote university study to groups who have traditionally found it difficult to access higher education.
Spent some time today trying to conceptualise the way potential (UK) students make decisions about where and what to study relative to the information available and advice they receive. Comments welcome. Been doing this is preparation for next week’s workshop for heads of department.
This is my first ever post which quotes from a Take That song, but for the university academic everything really is changing this year. here are a few big changes that everybody in academia needs to know about:
Big changes are happening in higher education this year and it's not just fees. Attending 'Thriving in an uncertain world' on 13 September is a must for heads of university language, linguistics and area studies departments or anyone who has any leadership role in these subjects.
The workshop will cover the following
Understanding and interpreting the National Student Survey, League Tables and Key Information Sets
Using the National Student Survey for quality enhancement
Understanding your national funding picture (different in England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales)
Understanding resource allocation in your institution
Managing the budget of your department/section budget
This paper from the most recent edition of the International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, provides a poignant illustration of the challenges faced by those promoting sustainability across their university.
Even in an institution known for its commitment to sustainability where (presumably) senior management buys into the vision, barriers remain:
Not seen as relevant to individual/ subject area
About recycling/ estates/ printing on both sides of the paper
Senior management enthusiasm/ support can be interpreted as ‘an agenda’ (‘agenda’ never seems to be viewed positively when used of senior management)
Different views about what 'sustainability'/ sustainable development means
Lack of dialogue/ too much communication is electronic
My own contribution was in the form of role-play exercise in which participants ‘played’ a Head of Languages meeting her/his Dean to discuss either a faculty reorganisation or a curriculum change programme. I enjoy role-play as a way of learning, but I realise that not everyone does. However, it seemed that most people enjoyed the exercise and benefitted putting themselves in the position of another person. Some of our HoD’s are very good actors it seems.
As the author of the role-play scenarios, it was interesting to observe the numerous directions in which a situation can play out. The briefs for each role included a section entitled ‘What is on your mind’. It was interesting to see the ways in which people used or did not use this information to their advantage (some of the items were put in as deliberate distractions, e.g. your feelings about other people). I will write more about using role-play in this context at a later date.
For me the key lesson from this event is on the importance of working relationships. In these uncertain times for higher education, how we manage our relationships is more important than ever.