Quick Talks: Meeting students face-to-face – a reflection on introducing IOAs in Information Studies

Presenter: Louise Curham

Co-presenter(s): none

Faculty / Division: Faculty of Arts and Education

School / Unit: SICS

Session Type: Quick Talk

Session Number: 5

When: Wednesday 16th November at 11:15 am

Zoom link: https://charlessturt.zoom.us/j/63274731255?pwd=RUlvOWZud0tFRmUrc3ZpYURnem41QT09 Passcode: 311847

Abstract: Consulting resources about IOAs and their usual position in the learning process, they are often scheduled as a final assessment. At CSU many examples I learnt about were in third year subjects in undergraduate courses.

With support from more experienced colleagues, I took the leap, replacing a first assessment in a postgraduate course. There have been challenges but also unexpected benefits.

THE BENEFITS The benefits include that as a teacher, there is nowhere to hide, you must know the nuance of your content deeply. Co-marking has allowed me to deepen my own technical knowledge, providing me with a professional development opportunity. It has also allowed me to see how another professional in my field views these learning outcomes and the knowledge needed to meet them.

A benefit from schedule them early is that I have now spent 15 minutes in undivided conversation with each student, a rare privilege in the wholly online model of teaching in our area of our School. This has taught me about the students as learners, as people and as emerging or practising professionals. I have learnt first hand how to communicate effectively with them, build rapport with them and examine what they know. I can already see ways I will be improving my teaching as a result. I have also had the chance to better understand the challenges students on Study Access Plans face.

Another benefit from scheduling them early is that I know what the students know. I know which key concepts have yet to truly land for them and which they have grabbed hold of. This will help me refine my teaching content as I see what has been effective both in the subject content and my delivery and what has had insufficient emphasis.

SO WHAT ARE THE DOWNSIDES? They include that we faced unexpected tech challenges with Zoom. Secondly, practicing the scenario was useful, yet it didn’t deliver the nuance to really understand how to support each student reveal and share their knowledge. That feels like a skill the marker and I are developing as we go.

The IO assessment is about to wrap up. This talk will share these and other insights, drawn together from this implementation experience.