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Teaching and assessing large groups

April 25 @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

This online workshop will showcase examples of successful teaching and assessing of large groups and will include contributions from a range of staff at the University. Contributors include:

Dr Joel Ross (Mechanical Engineering) – Large group teaching: Tools of the trade?

In this show and tell Joel will be presenting some of the strategies that have been implemented in their team taught engineering lab unit with over 600 students.

The implementation of home laboratory kits, formative peer assessment and audience participation have been key to the delivery of unit with a focus on what students are doing in the synchronous sessions.

Joel will discuss how these tools have helped enable a meaningful learning experience on this team taught unit.

Professor Alan Champneys (Engineering Mathematics)

Engineering Maths 1 is the service course currently taught to almost 900 1st year engineering students. To engineers, maths is marmite; some see it is the fundamental building block of engineering science, others as a necessary evil, a rite of passage that must be overcome before they can do the ‘real’ creative stuff. There are also mixed backgrounds from BTECs to double A* in maths/further maths.

Yet over the years, through genuine team teaching and acting on feedback, the unit has proved one of the most popular in the Engineering Faculty. As with all teaching, the pandemic has provided fresh challenges, but has also brought fresh opportunities, particularly in the use of digital technology for both instant polling and automatically marked formative assessments through which we can constantly ‘take the temperature’ of how the material is being assimilated.

Dr Annika Johnson (Economics)

When a cohort doubles in size, simply doubling the planned teaching delivery is rarely possible and it is often undesirable.

To maintain both the quality of the students’ experience and educational outcomes, the organisation outside the classroom is every bit as important as the delivery of teaching within. Co-lecturing, live Q&As and polling are exciting during the live session, but equally important are developing cohort identity, consistency of student experience and quality of feedback offered by the inevitably large teaching team.

Reflecting on optimal unit design across a range of unit sizes from 200 to 600 students, Annika considers the key threshold numbers which necessitate redesign. She recommends some practical templates for implementing units on different scales, while making the most of the university’s existing physical and digital resources.

Joining instructions will be sent out via email ahead of the event.

*registration closes at 11am, 30th March