Thursday, 30 March 2017

University management: Overpaid and overbearing?

According to the preliminary results of  a major survey, more than three-quarters of UK university staff are dissatisfied with the way their institution is run. An article in the THE today looks at some of the first findings from the National Senior Management Survey, which is being developed by academics at eight universities and has attracted more than 2, 200 respondents so far. Early data reveals that only 15.9 per cent of respondents agreed that they felt respected and valued by senior management, and 71.6 per cent disagreed, while three-quarters (74.1 per cent) said that their senior managers did not deserve the salaries they were paid. Read more of the significant findings by following the link below or browsing the THE e-journal from the library home page. 

men in office with feet on desk. Vintage

Overpaid and overbearing....

Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Time for research technologists?

Writing in the LSE Impact blog recently, Andy Tattersall argues that following on from the success of the learning technologist, a role that has helped drive innovation in teaching, perhaps it is time for universities to consider the idea of the research technologist. He outlines a role that embeds the research technologist within the university department where they can make recommendations on appropriate online tools, provide technical assistance and also offer guidance on accompanying issues of ethics or compliance. With this level of support Tattersall believes that academics can improve the communication, dissemination and impact of their research. Read more at the London School of Economics Impact blog by following the link below. 

The research technologist

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Fake news...old news...

The idea of "fake news" has received a lot of attention recently, and how to spot truth (as opposed to truthiness) from lies and fact from fiction has become an essential skill.  If you want to be more satisfied than satisficed when it comes to news and facts try to attend the All Aboard 2017 workshops happening across the campus beginning Monday 3rd April.

For further details please follow the link below..

Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Lectures or active learning?

A comment piece in the Times Higher Education recently argued that while research in higher education is driven by discovery, innovation and a willingness to take risks, often the same evidential rigour is not being applied to teaching. According to the author evidence is growing that the traditional lecture-based model of teaching, while still very prevalent, doesn’t work that well for students. He goes further to suggest that classroom sessions that use more active approaches, such as group discussions, in-class quizzes and clicker-questions, result in a deeper understanding of the concepts and in higher grades. Read more by following the link below to the THE website. If you have problems accessing the article you can go directly to the journal via the library e-journal portal or through the Nexis UK database. 

Lecture, boring, lecturer, students

Lectures v active learning

Irish government plan to curb essay mills

The Department of Education plans to prosecute companies known as "essay mills" that write assignments for students in exchange for money. The practice allows students to circumvent their college's plagiarism detection systems because the software used by universities only detects material copied from previously published academic texts. Minister for Education Richard Bruton has said that he plans to give powers to prosecute “essay mills”, and is considering a ban on these companies advertising their services. Read more by following the link to the Irish Times below.

 The scale of contract cheating is difficult to estimate, though there have been about 1,000 cases of students in Ireland being disciplined for plagiarism since 2010

Plan to curb essay mills

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

The myth of learning styles?

Several recent articles in the Guardian Higher Education pages have discussed the use of the learning style approach in schools especially after a recent report by eminent academics voiced concern over the popularity of the method among some teachers. According to the report, teaching children according to their individual “learning style” does not achieve better results and should be ditched by schools in favour of evidence-based practice. Others argue that while learning styles do exist they don't enhance education. Read arguments from both sides of the debate by following the links below. 

Children put their hands in the air during a lesson.

Teachers should ditch 'neuromyth' of 'learning styles

Learning styles & their place in the classroom