We use cookies to improve your experience on this website. Read More Allow Cookies
+

Tús maith, leath na hoibre

(A good start is half the work)

Tús Maith is a series of seminars/workshops/information sessions that we run at the start of each academic year that should be of interest to staff, both new and more experienced, to help get the current academic year off to a good start.

 

Schedule for 2020/21

Due to COVID-19, all seminars/workshops took place on-line, the following was the schedule of workshops for the 2020/21 academic year with links to recordings and resources:

 

Date

Time

Description

Friday,

11th September 2020

10:00-11:30

Welcome Address & Launch of Tús Maith 2020/21

Presented By:

  • Dr Áine Ní Shé, Registrar & Vice President Academic Affairs, MTU
  • Marese Bermingham, Head, AnSEO – The Student Engagement Office | Head, Teaching and Learning Unit, MTU

View Recording

Increasing Interaction to Enhance Student Learning

 

Facilitated By:

  • Dr Tom O’Mahony, Electrical & Electronic Engineering & TLU, MTU
  • Prof Jim O’Mahony, Biological Sciences & TLU, MTU
  • Sinéad Huskisson, Management & Enterprise & TLU, MTU

Seminar Description:

Student engagement is a central concept in the literature on teaching and learning in higher education. Research has shown that students’ active engagement in their learning is central to their academic success and that students who engage deeply with learning are better equipped for life-long learning. However, encouraging student engagement can be challenging. So, what can be done - how can we encourage students to engage in their learning in what, for many of us, are quite challenging times?

 

One way of achieving this is through assessment. Assessment is probably the most important thing we can do to engage students in their learning. Traditionally, assessment practices have tended to focus on progression and completion rather than focus on enhancing student learning. If we wish to use assessment as a tool to enhance student learning the provision of feedback is crucial. We need to help students understand not only where they have gone wrong, but also what they need to do to improve and when they have done well, we need to help them understand what is good about their work and how they can build on it and develop further.

 

This seminar outlined how staff from different discipline areas have developed their assessment practices to integrate feedback as a central component of their practice. Three different case-studies were presented and discussed with the intention of providing participants with a range of practical options that they might choose from and integrate into their own practice.

The seminar was aimed at all academic staff, whether new to the whole notion of assessment and feedback, or those who wanted to improve their feedback practice with students, or those looking for ideas on how to enhance their current practice.

 

View Recording

Monday,

14th September 2020

10:00-11:00

Providing Formative Assessment Opportunities in Numerate Disciplines

 

Facilitated By:

  • Dr Julie Crowley, Mathematics, MTU
  • Deirdre Casey, Academic Learning Centre, MTU

Seminar Description:

While we as educators might hate to admit it, assessment does drive student learning and is probably the one most important thing we can do to help our students learn.

 

Formative assessment can help us as educators identify concepts that students are struggling to understand, skills they are having difficulty acquiring, or learning standards they have not yet achieved so that we can make adjustments to lessons, instructional techniques, and academic support. If we wish to use assessment as a tool to enhance student learning the provision of formative feedback is crucial. We need to help students understand not only where they have gone wrong, but also what they need to do to improve and when they have done well, we need to help them understand what is good about their work and how they can build on it and develop further.

 

This seminar focussed on how the Department of Mathematics and the Academic Learning Centre use Numbas, a free online platform aimed at numerate disciplines, to provide students with the opportunity to practice particular types of mathematical problems, receive instant feedback and advice on where they may have gone wrong, and to attempt other similar auto-generated questions.

This seminar was aimed at academic staff who teach in a numerate discipline who would like to explore how they too can provide formative assessment opportunities to their students in an efficient and effective manner.

 

Those who attended this session:

  • Got an overview of some of the capabilities of Numbas
  • Learned how Numbas can be used to enhance student learning
  • Learned how a Numbas learning resource can be uploaded to Canvas.

View Resources

View Recording

Tuesday,

15th September 2020

11:00-11:30

Master of Arts (MA) in Teaching & Learning in Higher Education Information Session

 

Facilitated By:

  • Dr Tom O’Mahony, Electrical & Electronic Engineering & TLU, MTU

Description:

 

Do you wonder if there are better ways of going about your teaching and/or assessment practices?

Perhaps you would like to learn more about current thinking and best practice in teaching, learning, technology and assessment in higher education?

Maybe you are interested in gaining a Level 9 qualification in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education?

 

If so, the TLU offers the MA in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education. Currently, approximately 60 colleagues from across the institute are enrolled on this programme.

 

In Semester 1 2020/21, the TLU are offering the following three modules which may be of interest to you:

  • EDUC9043: Teaching and Learning in Higher Education , scheduled from 13:00 - 15:00 on Tuesdays.
  • EDUC9046: Curriculum Design & Evaluation scheduled from 13:00 - 14:00 on Wednesdays.
  • EDUC9041: RPL: Policy, Practice & Pedagogy which will be delivered as an on-line module.

This information session provided an overview and introduction to the programme, more detailed information about the programme itself including options to step off with a Level 9 Certificate or Level 9 Postgraduate Diploma and explains how to apply.

 

View Recording

11:30-12:00

Enabling Academic Transitions through Professional Development Information Session

 

Facilitated By:

  • Dr Tom O’Mahony, Electrical & Electronic Engineering & TLU, MTU

Description:

 

Are you an early career academic, i.e. have you been teaching full-time for three years or less (or some equivalent)?

Would you like to develop your teaching practice?

Would you like to learn about proven teaching strategies that you can deploy in your classroom?

 

EAT-PD: Enabling Academic Transitions through Professional Development programme offered by the Teaching and Learning Unit is funded by the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education under their Strategic Alignment of Teaching and Learning Enhancement Funding in Higher Education 2019.

 

In Semester 2 2019/20, we recruited over 20 early career academic staff, from across a variety of disciplines in both faculties, and successfully delivered the first iteration of this pilot programme. So far, feedback has been extremely positive, despite the disruption caused by COVID-19, and indeed a number of participants have commented that the programme really benefitted them in the current crisis as it enabled them to utilise some of the strategies learned and observed to enhance their remote teaching.

 

This information session provided an overview and introduction to the programme and explained how to apply.

 

View Recording

14:00-16:30

Universal Design for Learning: Accessibility & Inclusive Assessment and Feedback:

A Seminar Funded by the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education

 

Facilitated By:

  • Dr Lisa Padden, Project Lead - University for All, UCD
  • Trevor Boland, Digital Media and eLearning Officer, AHEAD (Ireland)
  • Lorraine Gallagher, Information & Training Officer, AHEAD (Ireland)

 

Seminar Description:

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) aims to eliminate barriers in the design of the learning environment to make the curriculum accessible for all. COVID-19 has, if anything, highlighted the need for higher and further education providers to fully embrace UDL principles and practice so as to ensure high-quality education for all students and allow for full active participation by all learners.

 

This session outlined the principles of UDL, examined what these principles look like in action and provided advice on how these principles can be applied, even when at distance or online. In addition, it demonstrated how, with the correct mindset at the creation stage, we can ensure resources created for students are accessible and how students can be offered flexibility through engagement, representation, action and expression. To conclude, the core tenets of inclusive assessment and feedback practice were outlined, and how this practice can be developed at programme and individual level was demonstrated. Drawing on research from the National Forum, UDL and practical case studies as examples, specific assessment methodologies were examined and consideration was given as to how these might be transformed, through the lens of universal design, to ensure inclusion of the full student population.

 

Participants in this session learned about:

  • Accessible resource creation, be it in hard copy or electronic format.
  • How to redesign their own assessment strategies, either through simple tweaks or fundamental changes to ensure all students have the opportunity to demonstrate their learning.

View Recording

Resources

  1. Lorraine Gallagher - Introduction to UDL & Assessment
  2. Trevor Boland -  UDL Accessible Resources
  3. Dr Lisa Padden - UDL Inclusive Assessment & Feedback
  4. Linda O'Sullivan - UDL Closing Comments & Call to Action

Wednesday,

16th September 2020

11:00-12:00

The Science of Learning – what research tells us about the act of learning

 

Facilitated By:

  • Prof Jim O’Mahony, Biological Sciences & TLU, MTU

Seminar Description:

The science of learning, also known as learning sciences, is an interdisciplinary field of study that examines how people learn. An understanding of this field can help to improve our teaching practice so that we can have a greater impact on students’ learning.

In this seminar, existing research related to how students learn was presented and the practical implications for teaching and learning were discussed.

 

It provided participants with:

  • A summary of existing research from cognitive science relating to how students learn.
  • A variety of effective easily applicable teaching strategies that have evolved from this research.
  • An insight into how to match the study method to specific learning outcomes

View Recording

View Slide Deck

Thursday,

17th September 2020

11:00-12:00

 

Engaging Students in Deep Learning by Crowdsourcing Quality MCQ Questions

 

Facilitated By:

  • Dr Anna Dynan, Accounting & Information Systems, MTU

 

Seminar Description:

Deep Learning refers to the cognitive skills and academic knowledge that students need to succeed in the 21st century. These skills include critical thinking, problem solving, communication, collaboration and learning to learn. The mastery of these skills will enable students to think flexibly and creatively, transferring and applying their learning from one context to new situations.

 

This seminar will look at how one academic in MTU, Dr Anna Dynan, Accounting & Information Systems has used PeerWise, a free online platform, to provide a space where her students can collaboratively create, answer, discuss, and evaluate practice questions with peers and has thereby helped her students engage with unit concepts more deeply and critically.

 

In this seminar, participants will gain an understanding of:

  • How PeerWise can be used to engage students and enhance their learning outcomes.
  • The impact this approach can have on student engagement and learning
  • The student view on this collaborative approach to learning
  • Advice/best practice/tip & tricks when using PeerWise in your module.

View Recording

View Resources - a wealth of resources to guide you through the process

Friday,

18th September 2020

10:00-11:30

 

Placement in the New Normal

 

Facilitated By:

  • Catherine Murphy, Accounting & Information Systems & TLU, MTU
  • Dr Trevor Hogan, Media Communications, MTU

Seminar Description:

This was the first kick off session of MTU’s new Work Placement Learning Community, established in June 2020. The session provided an opportunity to hear about the new online offerings from the Careers Service on LinkedIn and Interviewing for placement students. This was followed by 8 five-minute presentations on work placement from various departments across MTU- an opportunity to hear what colleagues from other programmes are doing about work placement and discuss what is different for the next semester.

 

Those attending this seminar:

  • Leartn about new supports for available for students.
  • Gained some insight the changes other programmes are making for next semester.
  • Picked up some ideas and names for follow-up coffees.

View Recording

Let's get social