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The First Year: engagement and empowerment 3rd European First Year Experience Conference University

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Centre for Academic Practice and Learning Enhancement, University of Strathclyde. Dr Christine Macpherson. The Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: The First Year: engagement and empowerment 3rd European First Year Experience Conference University


1
The First Year engagement and empowerment 3rd
European First Year Experience Conference Universi
ty of Wolverhampton 7-9 May 2008
2
Professor George Gordon Centre for Academic
Practice and Learning Enhancement, University of
Strathclyde Dr Christine Macpherson The Quality
Assurance Agency for Higher Education
3
Quality Enhancement Themes
  • Topics of interest to the Scottish higher
    education sector, with the aim of enhancing the
    student learning experience
  • Part of the Quality Enhancement Framework, along
    with enhancement-led institutional review (ELIR),
    student participation, institution-led subject
    review and public information

4
SHEEC
  • The Scottish Higher Education Enhancement
    Committee (SHEEC) plans and directs the work of
    the Enhancement Themes

5
Quality Enhancement Themes Completed
  • Assessment
  • Employability
  • Responding to Student Needs
  • Flexible Delivery
  • Integrative Assessment

6
Quality Enhancement Themes Current
  • The First Year
  • Research-Teaching linkages

7
Implementation
  • Scoping study
  • Steering committee including students,
    institutional contacts
  • Identify emerging good practice nationally and
    internationally
  • Programme of public and institutional events
  • Publication of outcomes of project work

8
Dissemination Supported Engagement
  • Publications sent to higher education
    institutions (HEIs) and available on enhancement
    themes website
  • Dissemination phase supported engagement with
    outcomes
  • Dissemination events
  • Enhancement themes newsletter
  • Annual conference

9
The First Year Experience student empowerment
and engagement
  • What is the nature and purpose of first year?
  • What do we want students to gain from the first
    year?
  • How can we align student and institutional
    expectations to achieve this?
  • How can we make best use of the first year to
    engage and empower learners?

10
The First Year Experience student empowerment
and engagement
  • Two broad stands of work
  • Institutional discussions
  • Projects
  • sector-wide (2)
  • practice-focused (7)

11
The First Year Experience student empowerment
and engagement
  • Sector-wide projects
  • Sector-wide discussion nature and purposes of
    the first year
  • Student expectations, experiences and reflections
    on the first year

12
The First Year Experience student empowerment
and engagement
  • Practice-focused projects
  • Curriculum design for the first year
  • Transforming assessment and feedback enhancing
    integration and empowerment in the first year
  • Peer support in the first year
  • Contd…

13
The First Year Experience student empowerment
and engagement
  • Practice-focused projects
  • Personal Development Planning (PDP) in the first
    year
  • Personalisation of the first year
  • Introducing scholarship skills academic writing
  • Transition to and during the first year

14
Sector-wide discussion nature and purposes of
the first year
  • The principal sections considered
  • the Scottish scene
  • supporting material from the HEA
  • illustrations from the English HE sector
  • developments in Hong Kong
  • Australian experiences and approaches
  • the American scene

15
Sector-wide discussion nature and purposes of
the first year
  • Key messages included indications that
  • there is considerable interest in the first year
    experience
  • the focus upon engagement and empowerment was
    distinctive and considered to be timely
  • the discussions in Scottish HEIs demonstrated
    that context is crucial
  • …

16
Sector-wide discussion nature and purposes of
the first year
  • active discussion occurred in institutions and it
    was reported that these would continue as
    strategies were formulated and implemented or
    options investigated
  • Scottish institutions viewed engagement and
    empowerment as core components of a successful
    student experience, albeit with differences in
    detailed interpretations
  • …

17
Sector-wide discussion nature and purposes of
the first year
  • the project found that the most common foci of
    interest in Scottish HEIs were induction
    orientation peer support improved monitoring of
    students and ways of enthusing them about their
    studies. Ideas were being adopted from elsewhere
    with care taken to ensure a match to local needs
    and contexts.

18
Sector-wide discussion nature and purposes of
the first year Workshop questions
  • How can opportunities for engagement and sharing
    of good practice be maximised?
  • What could be done to lubricate/assist/enable/info
    rm without being seen as an external
    imposition/burden?
  • Once the main project phase is completed, what
    should be done to facilitate/enable/encourage
    embedding?

19
Sector-wide discussion nature and purposes of
the first year Workshop questions
  • How can students be engaged to continue to
    contribute to discussions/ dialogue/
    deliberations/developments?
  • That is, to create a continuing agenda
  • Does it matter if supportive vehicles for
    students and staff within an institution are
    slightly separate from the main academic
    discipline-based structures?
  • For example, university colleges in the USA or
    Educational Development units in the UK…

20
Sector-wide discussion nature and purposes of
the first year Workshop questions
  • What are the opportunities and challenges to the
    apparent UK preferences for subject-based focus,
    with assistance from HEA subject centres?
  • How can it be integrated coherently into a
    multi-stranded strategy (institutional,
    disciplinary, sectoral)?
  • What can be done to produce high levels of
    practitioner engagement with the first year Theme
    (and indeed any enhancement initiative)?
  • How is that influenced by recognition and reward
    schemes?

21
http//www.enhancementthemes.ac.uk/
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