I have engaged in the use of video to capture the skill set that can support feedback in post-lesson conversations. We have made some recordings and are using these as part of the School of Education’s work with cooperating teachers in schools and those pursuing mentoring and coaching modules at postgraduate level.
I wanted to see how we might capture the nuances of effective feedback with particular attention to a post-teaching conversation. Increasingly this element of teacher education is gaining traction in our system, yet few are addressing the skill set and the choices associated with effective feedback. I drew upon Prof Barrie Bennett’s conferencing or feedback methods which sought to advance the learning for the observed by being very careful in the questions we ask as observers and our responses to such questions. Not as much has been done as I hoped but it is envisaged that the video clips and scripts will be shared and explained so as to support a range of scenarios where one teacher observes another teaching and the conversations that follow.
In this project, I am investigating how technology can be used to assist ‘flipped’ classroom teaching, specifically in the area of spectroscopic analysis of organic molecules. A flipped classroom is one where the typical lecture and homework elements of a course are reversed. Lectures notes or videos are viewed by students beforehand, while class time is devoted to exercises and problem solving. One of the potential pitfalls with the flipped classroom is where some students may not have engaged with the video material beforehand and are, therefore, unable to properly participate in the problem-solving sessions during class.
I hoped to use the Articulate Storyline to create interactive online video packages which mix short video lectures with quizzes. Articulate Storyline is able to export context in SCORM format, which is compatible with various Learning Management Systems (LMS) e.g. Blackboard, Moodle.
Following initial discussions and follow-up training sessions with Patrick Kiely and Claire Fennell of the UCC Instructional Design Team, I have set about creating interactive video lectures using Storyline. The Panopto video was first split into short clips, embedded into Storyline and then interspersed with quizzes. Each quiz relates to the preceding video, and the student must correctly answer the question in order to proceed to the next video clip. This is not only a more stimulating learning exercise for the student, but also ensures that the student engages with the video material, rather than it simply playing away in the background. I have been experimenting with a range of question types (e.g. mix and match, drag and drop). However, in the context of infrared spectra, hotspot questions are particularly effective (see below).
Importantly, once the student successfully completes the module, the SCORM package reports this information back to the LMS grade centre. This feedback loop is important for the tutor, as it makes it immediately apparent which students have not viewed their pre-classroom material. So far, I have found Storyline to be quite flexible as a package, with a significant amount of community resources online. I hope to present a more comprehensive report during the June 7th Showcase.
“GetAutismActive” my mobile digital technology program is growing wings!
To date, the digital champion journey has been one of interesting content refinement and establishing meaningful contacts in other Departments. Claire (Fennell) and I explored what needed to be done from my perspective and we set up an agenda and timeline to consider deliverables.
“GetAutismActive” is my baby in earnest. I have been working my way through the content of the mobile digital technology program. This has involved running a full day workshop with teachers and parents to get them actively engaged in using the program. This proved particularly useful. We were able to follow the video footage, use each of the pointers for skill development and finally look at the opportunities for incidental teaching and learning that occurs within each session. Further, participants were able to use the aspects of skill breakdown as a type of checklist which we will now include in the program. We have also been collating feedback from teachers, parents and individuals with autism on their experiences of using the program. So far the feedback has been very positive, with all enthusing about the variety of teaching and learning modalities and the accessibility of the program from a digital perspective.
Claire and I went on a further technical journey and set about framing a basic application for the program. This was very informative as we were able to use the components of each skill presented and set them up as a check list like a pre-test. We also did three short introductory videos with Michael in audio-visual to set the scene about autism, fundamental movement skills and “the where and why of “GetAutismActive”.
The next leg of our journey was collaborating with our colleagues in Computer Science
where we recruited Sabin and Sarah to take on the actual app design from their perspective. We plan to have a version of the app ready for display on our Digital Champions presentation day. So all in all the process is going very well with good people on board.
Dr Roy Sleator investigated the pedagogical benefit of GoSoapBox in the lecture theatre via realtime assessment. GoSoapBox is a solid web-based clicker tool which gives instant feedback from the class allowing formative assessment Social Q&A, Polling, and the Confusion Barometer to understand what students are thinking and keep them engaged during class.
To do so, Dr Sleator undertook a mixed-methods approach centered on the triangulation design, in which both quantitative and qualitative data were collected simultaneously. In particular, Dr Sleator investigated the use Confusion Barometer – a form of realtime minute paper/ muddiest point tool, which allows students, with the click of a button, to indicate when they’ve become confused, or need the lecturer to change tack.
“I think this app has huge potential in a lecture environment.
Firstly, it was very user friendly with a simple interface. Roy mentioned that there other features to which we were not exposed and they all sound like they would make the experience extremely beneficial.
We could easily express our confusion at any time during the lecture. While we are a small group who know each other well I think that I would be very grateful for this app in a larger and unfamiliar group. In my opinion, in such a situation, the opportunity to express confusion in real time without having to raise a hand and speak cannot be underestimated. I believe that all too often a student will remain quiet rather than draw attention to themselves which could be detrimental to their learning experience. This app can overcome such difficulties in a discreet manner.
While the app, for me, is only a positive thing there were some technical issues which effected its use. The wifi signal was neither strong nor consistent. This meant that, at times, we could not register confusion and this negated the entire purpose of the app. I believe that with proper wifi support it would be a far more worthwhile exercise. “
“I felt that the Go Soapbox app was good for those who aren’t that outspoken in the class. Maybe better in a larger group setting as our class is quite small. This year we have 20-30 people in PB4 so raising a hand in class isn’t so daunting for us now, especially as we have grown up together as a class over the last 4 years. The benefit of the GoSoapBox app would be more so for us as CIT students over the years in terms of the lectures carried out in the IT rooms. Some years we sat in lectures on Quality and Bio-statistics that had over 100 students. This tool would have given the lecturer confirmation we all understood the lecture material, and prevent the panic in the lead up to exams.
GSB is an excellent innovative tool. It allows the lecturer to engage indirectly with the students and go back over certain topics which were deemed difficult among the class. Spending time on harder information and skipping ahead with the more basic would be of more value to our 4th year Bio-Pharma class- and no one would be so daring as to raise a hand to tell Roy or any other lecturer that the lecture material is too easy!
Some complaints of the GSB app would be if your battery was low/dead or the WiFi connection in a room was poor. Hopefully some upgrading of the infrastructure around CIT will see better internet connectivity in certain rooms in the near future. I never had any trouble with these issues and I pressed the “confused” button to get better clarification from Roy in class. He did so immediately, explaining the material in a more broken down, slower pace which benefited me enormously.”
“Overall my feelings were very positive about the app. It worked smooth, hasn’t crashed at all. The only problem I experienced was the internet connection. The wifi connection struggles and in the room where we had lectures with Roy the signal is very bad (E icon only). It took a lot of time to open the page. What I thought would be a good solution (not sure if this can be done), is to write an application downloadable from app store/google play store and make some sort of LAN connection. Place a server on which all different users can join. Other than that, GoSoapBox works great!
I have a Sony Xperia Z2, phone based on android version 5.1.1. I used google chrome as the browser.”
As a lecturer in CITs Department of Arts, Health and Community Practice, specialising in art therapy, Louise has many students who travel from all over Ireland to attend her courses on a part time basis. To facilitate collaboration between her students, Louise will encourage her students’ use of tablets for collaborative learning and documenting their reflective work. Watch Louise’s interview to learn more.
A lecturer at the Department of Physical Sciences CIT, Anthony’s project involves using screen casting as a method of recording software demonstrations that can be re-played throughout the class which enables individual students to revisit the steps as required, and also to view these screen casts at home for revision purposes. To learn more about the project watch Anthony’s interview.
Donal O’Donovan is a mobile robotics lecturer in CIT with particular interest in artificial intelligence. As Digital Champion, Donal will investigate the use of a real-life programmable wheeled robot, to teach his students different concepts in developing autonomous cars. To hear more, watch Donal’s interview.
I am preparing information on the rainbow trout, as a species, for inclusion in my dissection video. This information will appear on a panel to the right of the video, and will change as the film moves forward. I have ordered a drawing tablet and will create simple drawings of the rainbow fish organs, which will be highlighted throughout the dissection video. With only a month until the final presentation, Patrick and I will be very busy with editing and preparation of the video in the next few weeks. For updates keep an eye out for more blogs which I will post in the champions blog section of the website.
As a lecturer in Applied Physics and Instrumentation, Eamonn will develop an online assessment tool for his students. This will enable his students to be examined on their analysis of sophisticated online datasets, and access technical documents, which they would be unable to do in a paper-based assessment. To learn more about this project watch Eamonn’s interview.
As Digital Champion, Eleanor, a lecturer in the Department of Physical Sciences CIT, will investigate using an online tutorial system for her students to use at home. This system will give the students access to subject material, exam-style questions and also module assessment, while providing instant feedback to the student. To hear more about her project, watch Eleanor’s interview.