Teaching Innovation Award Update: Evaluation of Project Outputs through Workshop

In the latest of the Teaching Innovation Award updates Dr Ella-Mae Hubbard and Professor Carys Siemieniuch reflect on how their project has flourished thanks to student engagement.

The project aimed to address the issue of a shortcoming in student project work by enabling students to engage with procedures in validation and verification through some new workshops.

The team is currently evaluating some of the outputs generated by the Teaching Innovation Award they secured.  The evaluation focuses on a specific new workshop that has been set up; they have completed a “baseline” to help them understand opinions prior to the workshop.  Students who have experienced previous versions of the module will also be consulted; questionnaires will take place following the lecture and workshop; and relevant module feedback will be reviewed.

The Teaching Innovation Award certainly mellaarked a new journey for the team; their project has actually led to the development of a whole new series of workshops.

The team used some principles of ‘lecture flipping’ to help design the workshops and found that moving beyond conventional, simple lectures can be really beneficial and worth the preparation required.

Dr Ella-Mae Hubbard said:  ‘We’ve certainly come a long way since we started, and I think it’s fair to say that our end point isn’t what we expected (and hopefully not actually the end point!). That’s one of the reasons we do these projects in the first place; if we knew the answers before we started, where would be the fun in investigation?’

The team look forward to following up more avenues identified by the project.


TurnItIn for any assignment

TurnItIn have recently announced their Grade Anything initiative, which allows the system to accept files of any type for evaluation.  Obviously the text-matching will only work with files containing text.  However the GradeMark online marking tool is now applicable for a much wider variety of student coursework, as is demonstrated on their video clips .

Don’t get too excited, though – there is no hint that the TurnItIn file size limit of 20 MBytes per file will be increased, so image portfolios or video clips are still likely to be too big to be submitted to TurnItIn.

However one workaround is the ability to use the marking and feedback tools without any submission being present, using a ‘submission template’ (i.e. a blank document).  You might use this to comment on a multimedia submission handed in by some other means, or to assess a live performance e.g. in Drama or Sports Science.

TurnItIn is shifting its emphasis from Originality Checking towards a focus on online marking and feedback provision.  The original functionality is still there and works as it always has done: the ability to handle any file type is an additional feature.

Evaluating the quality of web resources

TurnItIn have released two new tools to support the evaluation of web-based resources; a review of the sources actually used and an interactive tool for the evaluation of resources.  These should be useful as tutorial-level discussion pieces and lend some objectivity to assessing the worth of the Web.

“Open access to this new interactive rubric helps educators teach students proper research and source evaluation.

Turnitin worked with educators to develop The Source Educational Evaluation Rubric (SEER), an interactive rubric to analyze and grade the academic quality of Internet sources used by students in their writing. Instructors and students who use SEER can quickly evaluate a website and arrive at a single score based on five criteria scaled to credibility: Authority, Educational Value, Intent, Originality, and Quality.

“Recent research shows that students rely heavily on websites of questionable academic value,” said Jason Chu, senior education manager for Turnitin. “We believe that widespread usage of SEER will help educators teach students the importance of using quality resources in their research.”

This interactive rubric, when opened in Adobe Reader, allows you to adjust criteria weight and simply click to score each criterion with a rubric score and percentage automatically calculated.”

1) What’s wrong with Wikipedia?

2) The Source Educational Evaluation Rubric (SEER tool)

Student perspective on learning technologies

Lucy Hopkins ReVIEW
One of the most anticipated and best received presentations at this month’s E-learning Showcase was from Lucy Hopkins, President of the Loughborough Students Union, on student expectations and experiences of learning technologies.

Click on the screenshot to watch the ReVIEW capture of her presentation.

You might also want to refer to the NUS report, commissioned by the HEFCE Online Learning Taskforce, on Student perspectives on technology – demand, perceptions and training needs which was published in October last year.

"I wonder if you have time for a quick survey?"

Yeah, I know, not the words we like to hear when we’re in the middle of a Saturday shop.

Still, what if you find yourself needing to set up a survey as part of your own research? One option is to go online, and at Loughborough we have an account with Bristol Online Surveys (BOS) based at the University of Bristol.

Surveys have Loughborough branding, are SSL encrypted, and come with a Loughborough-looking URL (www.surveys.lboro.ac.uk/yoursurveyname).

BOS is a web-based application, there’s nothing to download to your computer, and works equally well on a Mac or PC. The online help is comprehensive and usable

There are six question types:

  1. selection lists
  2. multiple choice
  3. multiple answer
  4. single line free text
  5. multiple line free text
  6. date

and it’s possible to create Likert Scales, grids, branched questions and more, so it’s a well-specified system. There are internationalisation options, although there are limitations with non-European character sets.

Screengrab of typical BOS survey

Sections and questions in BOS surveys are colour-coded to aid visual navigation.

If you wish to set up an account, need help/advice setting up a survey or just want try the BOS demo, please contact learn@lboro.ac.uk and they’ll help you on your way.