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Enhancing Curriculum Delivery for Postgraduate Distance Learning through New Technologies

0190 ALTC 2009

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The Cloudworks Team
26 August 2009

ALT-C 2009 Session: This Cloud has been set up to aggregate live blogs, comments, discussion and links for this session.

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  •  Ming Niew and Alejandro Armellini
  • Beyond Distance Research Alliance, University of Leicester
  • The DUCKLING project - Delivering University Curricula: Knowledge, learning and innovation games
  •  Started Jan 2009, 2 years jisc funding
  • 2 DL programmes - Masters in linguistics and psychology
  • Common challenges in delivery - feel distant and isolated despite forums, want better feedback, don’t have much time, materials text-based ‘too dry’, also about relevance of materials to work context
  • Three technologies use: podcasting, e-book readers and second life
  • Research methods: Action research, collected from 3 stakeholder groups (students, course teams and employers). Data collection: documentations, surveys, interviews, blackboard discussion board, informal discussion with staff
  • Podcasting, started April 2009, both psychology and education produced lots of podcasts. Also individual assignment feedback. Podcasts short e.g. 1-4 minutes with key message and purpose. 
  • Initial findings from psychology podcasts - building student-tutor relationship (resembling direct communication, personalised and live, less distant, but closer and more connected), providing clearer and more detailed information (mainly about assignments, so don’t need to ask so many questions on the forums), repeating and reassuring, thinking and planning ahead, increasing flexibility and mobility (e.g. Put on mp3 player, use when travelling)
  • Second Life, just starting to use now. Psychology: Simulation of evacuation from an oil rig, have to devise evacuation procedure, comparative study between people using second life and people learning through paper-based method Education: Visit LanguageLab and observe classes 
  • E-book readers Starting September 2009 - 15 psychology and 8 education students. Using Sony PRS-505 - probably cheapest device on the market. Pre-load e-book reader with course materials and podcasts. Students will keep the device in perpetuity - have generated a number of problems with copyright. E.g. If students load materials themselves through library different legally from pre-loading the materials Going to get more podcasts produced, student-generated podcasts in education (discourse analysis). Downloading materials from blackboard to e-book readers
  •  Part of JISC Curriculum Delivery programme. Significant design changes not just delivery changes.


Juliette Culver
09:56 on 9 September 2009

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