Week 5

  1. What have you learned this week about face-to-face teaching practice in HE?

Our topic for this week was reflective teaching practice and learning conversations, in this week we learn a lot of useful things about reflective in fact effective teaching. We were not familiar with all these tools and tips before this week. In this week we learn about techniques that how a lecturer either he is an experienced lecturer or a new lecturer, he always suffers from nervousness when he is going to interact with a new class or a group of new students. In fact, every lecturer has some stage fears at the beginning. In this week we learn that which techniques can help us out to get out of this situation. We can use these things to divert the students from watching you, and help them to think about topic, these tactics includes:

  • Use of PowerPoint slides
  • Giving handouts to students
  • Giving some small tasks to do during lecture
  • Getting student to discuss an idea with neighbors for a minute or two 

All these things help you to settle and be comfortable in the class. But you have to choose these tactics very wisely. 

When you are a lecturer and you have a specific time slot to deliver your lecture, you have to plan from minutes to seconds wisely. Usually you have a time slot of 60 minutes for a lecture and before that slot your students may be engaged in some other subject of even after your class. Planning for those 60 minutes are very important. A well planned and good lecture should involve three stages:

  1. Tell them what you’re going to tell them;
  2. Tell them it;
  3. Remind them what you have told them.

At the beginning of each session a lecturer must have to tell his students the agenda of the session, like what they are going to learn and why is it important to learn. After delivering the lecture you must have to go back to agenda of intended learning outcomes, and briefly summaries how each of the topic has been addressed. Planning a 60-minute lecture was explained well and that example help us out to learn a lot about the teaching method and planning of a session. (Philip Race, 2007) 

  1. How did you learn this?

In this week topic and activities, we learn about reflective teaching practices, in this week we discuss and important aspect related to handout material. Some experts say that providing handouts to student is not a good approach but others go in favor. Distribution of handouts material was originated by studying the common things that are student do during lecture one of them was they took notes and right material on papers during lecture time. The persons who were in favor of handouts gives a logic that if we provide some material in form of handouts, students may not waste time in writing. We also learn that how we can use handouts that could be effective and balance between both the opinions. Those suggestions are as follows:

  • Make handouts look attractive
  • Use the start of a handout to remind students what its purpose are
  • Use proper headings and white spaces
  • Make handouts interactive
  • Include ‘committed space’ for students to do things in handouts
  • Use handouts to get students making notes, not just taking notes
  • Includes annotated bibliographies in handout materials

There are a lot more things which help us out to make a face to face session more interactive. (Philip Race, 2007)

  1. What supported you to do that?

For every session where it is a typical theoretical lecture or a practical session, a lecturer must have to know about his audience approach. To make a large group session with students to maximize the learning payoff they derive from them, as we studied the practical model of learning before. These practical models of learning were having five processes: wanting, needing, doing, feedback and digesting. All these process helps us to understand how a learning could become more effective in a lecture situation when there are large group of people in a classroom. (Philip Race, 2007)

  1. Wanting to learn is a situation where learning took place in a smooth way because here student is ready to listen with extra energy and devotion.
  2. Needing to learn is not a best situation but the latter is much better than nothing. 
  3. Learning by doing could be the best approach if it is used properly, this approach dose not only mean to write on paper what had been heard and learn but it must include some activities.
  4. Learning through feedback is old fashioned techniques but it is used in modern large group learning environment. In this small cluster and groups share their knowledge and help each other to solve problems and make decisions.
  5. Digesting technique means making sense of what is being learned.

  1. What have you learned this week about the practice of supporting student learning in HE?

Supporting students learning practice was highly focused in this week. In this week we learn that what type of tools and techniques help the student in their leaning process. In above paragraphs we discuss about the materials that we have to provide to our students at the beginning of the session that helps them to understand the learning agenda and have the key notes that they may need to note on papers by themselves. Use of handouts also help the student in their learning process. (Philip Race, 2007)

 There are a lot more things that can help a student in learning, when a lecturer is winding up his session he may mention at the last that if any student have any query related to today’s topic they can come along with him in their room or they may visit my office in afternoon or whenever it is easy for him. This technique builds a confidence in them and also gain a kind of respect and concern of lecturer towards his subject. (Philip Race, 2007)

  1. How has your understanding of this changed from doing this week’s topic and activities?

This week activity where helps us to understand the problems of student side, side by side it helps me as a lecturer to understand the problems we usually face. After completing this week task and activities I gain more confidence about my learning and teaching practice. How to plan a session, how to utilize the whole time, which part is more important to be focused on, what visual aids can help me to explain well, use of technologies have impact, how to utilize the time between intervals all these things helps me to understand what to do and what not to do during a session and even while interacting with my students.

  1. What has challenged you about doing this?

‘Now you see it, now it’s gone’ (Philip Race, 2007). This is a significant pedagogic issue associated with technological use during lectures. When we’re using a lot of on-screen images, student won’t be able to remember them for a long time. If we are using too much external links of webpages it will also create problem for a student because he will get different data every time. 

Another challenge every lecturer gone through his professional career are technical faults during lecture and any emergency situation when you are in theater. Solution comes along us in this week that ‘Don’t panic’ if anything unusual happens just relax and deal with student, for example if there is a power cut you can do a five minutes activity with your students. Or if anything embarrassing you just smile and let the students smile back to you. There are a lot more solution we studied this week about such type of challenges. 

  1. What has surprised you?

PowerPoint slides is a tool which we commonly used to present content to our student and make our sessions more interactive, in this week we learn some don’t about use of PPT which were really helpful for us. Those are as follows;

  • Don’t just use PowerPoint because everyone else seems to be using it.
  • Don’t just use PowerPoint because the equipment happens to be there.
  • Don’t use too much bullets and special effects.
  • Don’t forget that it’s not that bright and don’t forget to check the focus before you start.
  • Don’t put too much in one slide, choose colors wisely.
  • Don’t use same slide format for every slide.
  • Don’t use portrait layout and don’t talk to the screen.

There are a lot more don’ts that explains about the effective use to tool we are using to deliver out lectures. (Philip Race, 2007).

  1. What has this taught you about your strengths in your practice in supporting student learning?

In this week we learn a lot of things that help me to strengthen my practice about supporting student learning. Discussion with student during lecture, asking questions, putting agenda before start of lecture and revise point at the end of each session. Inviting students for discussion individually or as in form of small groups for further discussion about topic, all these things help me to strengthen my practice about student support learning.

  1. What actions can you identify from this that you could take to further develop your practice of supporting student learning in face-to-face teaching in the future?

Doing all the tasks and activities and learning about all the tools and tips that helps us to understand a good and reflective teaching practice. In this week planning for lecture and example of 60 minutes lecture was really help us to develop a good practice to support student learning in face to face teaching session. I apply this technique in my practice and am getting great feedback from my students. Challenges that I usually face due to technical fault was a dilemma for me to deal with as well as it creates a bad environment in class room most of the time but after this week I become use to and got the right tricks that are really helpful to deal with this kind of situations.