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The following are details of the sessions held together with links, where possible, to the relevant resources and recordings:


Title & Descriptor


10th January 2017

Rethinking Final Year Projects and Dissertations


Presenter: Professor Mick Healey (HE Consultant and Researcher) Emeritus Professor at the University of Gloucestershire, UK


“For the students who are the professionals of the future, developing the ability to investigate problems, make judgments on the basis of sound evidence, take decisions on a rational basis, and understand what they are doing and why is vital. Research and inquiry is not just for those who choose to pursue an academic career. It is central to professional life in the twenty-first century”

(Brew, 2007)

Final year projects and dissertations (FYPD) are a topic of interest in many countries. They provide an excellent training ground for students who wish to continue research at Masters and Doctoral levels, as well as showing evidence of the all-important independence and critical thinking skills emphasised as graduate attributes. Effectively implemented, the outcome from undergraduate dissertations can be highly motivated students effectively empowered as independent self-learners.


For many students FYPD provide a transformative experience, yet for others the experience is less inspiring and sometimes quite negative. The traditional dissertation has come under pressure for reform as student participation in higher education has increased, there has been a growth in professional disciplines, and staff-student ratios have deteriorated. Some departments have dropped the dissertation altogether or made it optional, but this could be seen as ‘throwing the baby out with the bathwater’.


This interactive presentation explored ways in which we can rethink the dissertation, while at the same time retaining a significant element of research and inquiry and deliver key graduate attributes. Our argument is that a more flexible approach is needed in the form, function and assessment of final year projects and dissertations to meet the needs of all students. These may include group, work-oriented and community-based projects. There can also be novel ways of disseminating the findings – via exhibitions, undergraduate research conferences and other forms of public engagement. Preparation for the dissertation needs to begin from the day students enter the higher education institution.


10th January 2017

Writing for Publication


Presenter: Professor Mick Healey (HE Consultant and Researcher) Emeritus Professor at the University of Gloucestershire, UK.


This interactive workshop focused on writing for publication in refereed journals. Specific examples focused on writing about research into teaching and learning in Higher Education in addition to writing up discipline-based research.


The workshop gave participants the opportunity to:

  • Reflect on their reasons for wanting to publish
  • Choose a suitable journal
  • Plan and structure their paper
  • Draft the title and abstract
  • Explore some of the characteristics of successful writing for publication
  • Examine research evidence on what journal editors are looking for

The workshop was highly participative, focusing on making participants more confident and productive in their writing. It was particularly appropriate for staff in academic and support positions and PhD students who have relatively little experience of writing for publication.


11th January 2017

Introduction to Web For Faculty (WFF)


Presenter: Dr. Stephen Cassidy, Dean of Academic Quality Enhancement and Acting Dean of Graduate Studies


Web for Faculty (referred to as Banner) is a CIT student information database used to grade and access student information. It provides academic staff with secure access on campus or at home to the information needed to manage the modules they teach.


Some of the features include the ability to:

  • Display a class list for modules that have been assigned to staff for teaching and download to Excel
  • Display student details such as address, phone number, e-mail
  • E-Mail a student or all students on a class list
  • Display the component breakdown of your module, showing types of continuous assessment, final exam and the percentage of marks associated with these.
  • Enter Continuous Assessment Marks
  • Enter Final Exam Marks
  • Change Marks After Original Entry


11th January 2017

Staff Induction: Teaching Tools; Classroom Assessment Techniques to Assess Learning And Engage Students


Presenter: Dr Siobhán O’ Sullivan (Teaching and Learning Unit)


Classroom Assessment Techniques (CATs) are simple, non-graded, anonymous, in-class activities designed to give you and your students useful feedback on the teaching-learning process as it is happening.


CATs can be used to improve the teaching and learning that occurs in a class.


More frequent use of CATs can:

  • Provide just-in-time feedback about the teaching-learning process
  • Provide information about student learning with less work than traditional assignments (tests, papers, etc.)
  • Encourage the view that teaching is an ongoing process of inquiry, experimentation, and reflection
  • Help students become better monitors of their own learning
  • Help students feel less anonymous, even in large courses
  • Provide concrete evidence that the instructor cares about learning

This session examined a number of tried and tested classroom assessment techniques that can be used in the classroom to assess learning.


12th January 2017

Sharpening the Saw; Refreshing and Refocusing Ourselves


Presenter: Ruairí Ó Céilleachair


“If I had six hours to chop down a tree I’d spend the first four hours sharpening the axe”

Abraham Lincoln



Our greatest resource is ourselves and learning more about how we can nurture and develop ourselves while guarding against burnout and overwork is an essential part of our professional development.


This workshop explored Stephen Covey’s 7th principle as it applies to our work as educators. Participants looked at ways to reduce the stress of lecturing and examine ways to make teaching more enjoyable for both the lecturer and the students. This involved identifying the major issues which raise tensions and cause stress in the classroom, focusing on techniques and strategies which promote a positive atmosphere in learning situations and how these strategies and techniques can be adapted to the needs of lecturers in CIT.


12th January 2017

Briefing on Staff Mentoring & Mentor Programme Lunch


Everyone who took part in the pilot Staff Induction Mentoring Programme was invited to a lunchtime get-together to share experiences and meet other participants. There was an informal awards ceremony and photographs.


Any staff interested in becoming a mentor or who wished to be mentored were invited to attend.

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