Week 8

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

In this week we conducted a micro teach session and on our sessions our peers give their valuable feedback that really help us out to explore more things and more ways to improve our strategy in a face to face session. Many of our peers use different type of strategies some were really amazing that I never tried before in my own sessions and some were more relevant to my own strategy. Some of the common strategies to gain the learner attention and to make a session successful in a friendly environment that me and my peers use are as follows;

  • Instruct students to do a specific task
  • Use of hand outs
  • Board activities (involve different students)
  • Asking question during a discussion
  • 5 minutes activity to think and write something on the paper
  • Peer to peer communication and discussion about topic
  • Hands on practice during session

Every person who conducted the session, tries to keep a balance between student centric and teacher centric approach (Marchioro, Ryan, & Perkins, 2014). I use the board activity in my session and a peer discussion that is a type of formative assessment, through which I try to understand whether learning is happening or not (Fry, Ketteridge, & Marsgall, 2007). Further I try to ask my students after every point that whether is that clear to them or not. 

  1. Learning from the session:

Where I was having some good points related to my strategy side by side I lacking in some aspects and my peers also help me out to focus on them in a future session. I also went through my session and critically observe and evaluate my teaching session and try to learn from that practice. The content was too much that I tried to cover in a short time which was not a good approach and it may cause a surface learning approach (Fry et al., 2007). Another thing that I learned from the session is that peer activities must be conducted in a friendly environment. 

  1. How did you learn this?

Reflecting back to my teaching strategy and my peer feedback helped me to take out many points that was very necessary for a face to face session. This week micro teach session help me out to implement the strategies that we learned in week five of this course module. In that we learned about the planning of lecture, in which we learn which content to choose and how to manage time so you can successfully achieve the learning outcomes of the session.

Discussion of agenda at the beginning of the session in which we tell our students what we are going to learn today and why it is important to know about it. At beginning of the session, we provide handouts to the students and during the session we conduct hands on or board activities so student centric approach could be obtained. (Philip Race, 2007)  

Reflective teaching practice helps me out to look back to the session and learn from that session, side by side we can’t deny the importance of feedback. Feedback from students and feedback about tutor both are very important as well as feedback from peers helps us to achieve the goals. So, importance of feedback could not deny in a learning process (York, 2003).

  1. What supported you to do that?

Use of handouts during a session is a powerful strategy that we adopt in out micro teach session. As in my session I was very aware from my student background and was aware from their learning approaches so it was easy for me to carry with them. I use board activities and hand on activity, we learn about the assessment process in previous weeks. Assessment process help us to set and achieve the learning outcomes, I use the formative assessment approach to assess whether learning is happening or not (Black and Wiliams 1998a; Gibbs and Simpson 2004-5).

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

Supporting student learning is always a major concern of a lecturer. In this course we learned a lot of strategies to support student learning. In micro teach session I use to assess whether my students are understanding what am saying or not by asking them ‘Is that clear’. I use this statement again and again, I also provided them handouts so they don’t need to write down each and everything as well as they will able to get the lecture slides from their student portal right after the session. I offer my students if they have question about anything, they can meet me after the class. As all these strategies helps us to achieve student learning support. (Philip Race, 2007)

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

After doing this week activities and tasks I learned the difference between the five overlapping processes which underpin successful learning. All these processes help us to improve our teaching method and help us to provide better support to our students. After doing this week activity and getting peer feedback on that I realize that giving explanation on a certain topic in your own word is better than just read out the lines form the slides. This will increase the student level of understand, according to SOLO taxonomy (Biggs & Collis, 1982).

  1. What has challenged you about doing this?

The major challenge I faced during the session is that, peers were not communicating well with each other. The reason behind is that all of my students are mature enough and they all are professionals doing their jobs and doing different practices at their jobs. They all are not from the same educational background so it become difficult for them to be on same page. Being teacher, it is my responsibility to take care of their mutual understanding on a given topic or assignment. Also, I use to access their learning approach so I can change my teaching strategy according to them, learning approach must be deep rather than surface approach (surface Vs. deep learning; Fry et al., 2007).

  1. What has surprised you?

Importance of feedback in assessment and learning process could not be denied. Assessment during learning process is very important, I was not much aware from the importance of assessment but after reading and practicing I realized that formative assessment is very important and every practitioner have to adopt some good ways according to their student’s learning method. As it is responsibility of the institute also to handle the summative assessment at their own level (Taras 2006). Importance of both formative and summative assessment was surprising for me.

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

This micro teach session helps me to identify my weak points in my teaching practice. Written feedback from my peer also help me in this regard. Feedback in written format instead of oral is always helpful whether it is a feedback from tutor to student or from student to student (Lilli’s). In written feedback from my peers was helpful for me and they help me identify my weak points that they observe from my micro teach session.

  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?

In supporting student learning hands on practice and class room activities are very important. They will “learn by doing” group activities must be there rather then they only listen to me they will be facilitated experiential learning (Saddington, 1992). Getting feedback from the students during session help us to indemnify whether learning is happening or not. I will continue to ask question whether they are getting my point or not. Formative assessment will be the strategy I will continue to use and assess my students so they get ready for their summative assessment side by side.

  1. How well do you think you have achieved the stated learning outcomes for this week? Is there anything else you could do to achieve these?

This week we learn by doing and experiential learning happens, we conduct micro teach session and learn from our experience and did practice by our own (Saddington, 1992). We learn how to manage a small or large group of students and adopt the assessment and feedback strategy according to them.