Case Study – Enhanced Personal Tutoring: Embedding Academic Mentorship

A recent case study by David Kennedy about personal tutoring in the School of Medical Sciences and its impact on student satisfaction.

Dr David Kennedy of the School of Medical Education recently shared his work on personal tutoring and academic mentorship via the LTDS blog. The case study details what changes were made, and shows the massive increase in student satisfaction that resulted.

“As a School, we had a desire to improve academic and professional development, as well as pastoral support, for all of our students to enable them to achieve their true potential and support their transition to the workplace.”

David Kennedy, SME

This case study will be of interest to anyone who is interested in mentoring and pastoral support, and student experience.

Building Community

I recently spoke to Laura Leonardo about how she and her colleagues build community online. The case study is available to view on the LTDS Case Studies website.

You may find this particularly useful reading if you are working with PGR students who are off-campus or still abroad.

The versatility of quizzes

Over the past couple of months I have been talking to a lot of teaching colleagues about how they use quizzes. A quick summary of some uses for quizzes can be found below. There are two quiz tools available in Canvas (old and new quizzes), as well as a lot of web services that offer quiz functionality.

Using quizzes before synchronous seminars allows students to check their knowledge and make sure they have understood things correctly before entering into a discussion. This boosts confidence and allows them to participate more effectively in the session, knowing they have definitely grasped the concepts. This is especially useful with topics that are very abstract or contain a lot of new concepts or terminology. The case study with Rosalind Beaumont and Lydia Wysocki can be found on the LTDS case studies site.

Quizzes can also be used in the sense of providing test-enhanced learning opportunities for students. Regular short quizzes encourage students to retrieve the information they have remembered and put it into practice, boosting knowledge retention. The case study with Nick Riches can be found on the LTDS case studies site.

Another use for quizzes is to use them to replicate a workbook – something that might be used in Present in Person (PiP) teaching to guide students through a series of problems as teachers monitor the room. Here the quizzes are instructive and challenge students to find the information they need, practicing the skills they are learning. Detailed feedback and extra information allows the students to step through the processes they are learning and approximates the monitoring that may be done in the classroom by anticipating difficulties that may need clarifying. Teachers can then look at analytics or ask students to send questions to identify anything that needs further explanation. More information can be seen in the case study with the Library Liaison team.

When testing higher-order thinking skills such as evaluation, automatically-marked quizzes may not spring to mind, as evaluation is often done in prose. The case studies mentioned above include examples of higher-order thinking questions. This can be done through careful question construction with high-quality distractors, for testing, as shown here, or as a learning activity, asking students to apply skills and enter a rating at each stage as modelled by the Drop Bear activity in the Library Liaison team’s case study.

How do you use quizzes?