As many of you know, the University will be moving to Canvas on the 1 August 2020 and all use of Blackboard will end on the 31st July.
We know colleagues across the University are working incredibly hard at the moment to implement the remote delivery and assessment of the University’s programmes. We have therefore postponed the start of the workshops for colleagues in academic units from this week, until after the Easter break.
The way we are delivering this support is also changing. The face-to-face workshops we had intended to deliver will not now take place. These will be replaced by a programme of shorter webinars, supported by a range of online resources. We have arranged these webinars so that in total, there will be the same number of spaces available on webinars as we had planned to deliver in face-to-face workshops. As with the face-to-face workshops, there is no requirement to attend these webinars if your preference is to get familiar with Canvas via the other online resources we are providing.
We know that the demands on colleagues means that many will not be able to engage with the training opportunities at this time. We will be offering a comprehensive programme of webinars throughout the summer, so that if you wish to participate in a webinar you will be able to do so at a time that fits with all your other commitments.
If you are unable to attend a webinar, you also have access to the Canvas Online Orientation Course available on the dashboard when you log in to Canvas. This has been designed by University colleagues to support you in using the key features and tools in Canvas and there are a number of self-check quizzes for you to check your understanding as you work through each section.
If you have any queries please contact the Canvas implementation team.
Many staff often request for modules to be joined together on the Virtual Learning Environment where the content delivered on those modules is the same. When this happens, we create what is called a parent-child module. The existing modules become child modules of a newly created parent module. Combining the modules in this way means that the content only has to be added to the parent, but students continue to see the content via the child module they are enrolled in.
For example, a lecturer requests modules K1920-ABC2000 Introduction to Newcastle and K1920-ABC2004 Introduction to Newcastle (Erasmus Study Abroad) to be combined as all Continue reading “Parent-Child Modules”
Do you want to help inform the University’s decision on the future VLE?
The University is well underway with the review of its Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) and following the in-depth consultation that has taken place with staff and students over the past 18 months, the project team have worked hard to ensure the University’s requirements have been captured in the official tender which will be published later in February.
Once we receive suppliers’ responses to our tender, members of the project team will analyse these and will initially determine which suppliers meet our mandatory (pass/fail) requirements. The project team will then score suppliers based on their responses to our highly desirable/desirable requirements.
We need your input….
The quality of the user experience is a very important element to our tender and will have significant weighting in our scoring process. We would really like both staff and students to get involved with this. During April to June, we will have access to test accounts for the systems that have met our mandatory requirements and volunteers will be asked to undertake a series of tasks, assessing each for ease of use, anticipated support required and system confidence.
It is essential that colleagues involved in this process review all systems that meet our mandatory requirements but it is not anticipated that this will take more than half a day. You will have the option of an organised workshop or completing the tasks in your own time and further details will be provided in the coming weeks.
We need representation from both academic and professional service staff with varying degrees of VLE experience from absolute beginners to expert users.
If you are interested in being involved, please complete this expression of interest form.
On behalf of the project team, I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your engagement throughout the consultation period which has been crucial in getting us to the point of publishing our tender documentation. I look forward to working with you during the next exciting phase.
In 2015-16 the following awards were made:
- 8 Responsive Projects, each for up to £2,500
- 1 Strategic Project, for up to £10,000
Details of all the projects can be found in the 2015/16 list of funded projects.
LTDS are running an ULTSEC Innovation Fund workshop on December 12th 2-3pm in KGVI 1.36C. You will be given an overview of the fund as well as guidance from the Careers Service about how to employ students for your project. There will also be presentations from successful project teams from previous years who will share details of their project and the application process.
To sign up to this workshop please do so via the following link: http://www.ncl.ac.uk/ltds/about/training/ultsecinnovation/workshops/. We would love to see you there.
Further information including key dates and application forms and guidance can be found on the Innovation Fund section of the LTDS website: http://www.ncl.ac.uk/ltds/funding/teaching/
In April, the Learning and Teaching Development Service and the Student Union ran some pop up feedback sessions in the Business School, the Robinson Library, the Student Union and the Medical School asking students one question, ‘What one thing would improve your experience of Blackboard or the LSE?’ The same question was also added to the Blackboard My Institution page to which students could give an online response.
In total, 434 students gave feedback, 402 about Blackboard and 32 about the LSE. The student responses were collated and categorised into main themes. Some students covered more than one theme in their answer.
Few students had issues with the functionality of Blackboard and 20.65% of comments were very positive where they felt staff engaged with it. From the small sample of students who commented about the LSE, 43.75% of comments were positive and found it very clear and easy to use.
The main Blackboard issue students raised was regarding organisation and consistency of module content with 22.64% of the students who responded recognising this as a problem. In answer to the question, student comments included, ‘All lecturers using the same way of organising. Everything in the same place!’ and ‘Same layout for every module. It would make it so much easier if all modules had the same layout.’
Other key themes included the mobile application, Blackboard Learn and the availability of lecture materials and ReCap recordings.
This feedback gave us a very useful snapshot of student opinion on the VLE. You can read the full report that was shared at the HaSS and SAgE FLTSEC meetings this month and view the student comments by Faculty, School and Stage.
If you would like any tailored Blackboard training or would like us to work with you to reorganise your modules or come along to your school meeting to discuss creating a school, or discipline, specific template , please contact LTDS.
You may have noticed some new Blackboard pages that have been added to the LTDS website recently. These provide you with information about Blackboard at Newcastle University, the VLE Threshold Standard and the Module Overview Page on your Blackboard sites. You will also find links to the Case Studies database highlighting innovative use of Blackboard and details of any workshops delivered by LTDS.
Please note this information replaces the pages that were originally found at teaching.ncl.ac.uk/blackboard. The new pages are also linked to directly on the Overview Page of your module sites.
If you have any Blackboard queries or would like to arrange a training session, please contact LTDS.