Educational light and magic at UNSW

CMM has long heard less good than great things about UNSW’s digital uplift of the lecture, David Kellermann demonstrates them

The engineering academic has a reputation for lectures that empower students and he demonstrated what he does, to thousands (said to be tens of thousands) of people at a Microsoft education conference at Los Vegas yesterday

There’s a video of him talking here, where he starts by asking how do you get 500 students in a lecture theatre and live off-site to, “work together as a single team.”

And then he shows how– demonstrating that a range of products well-used can make a lecture an individual, interactive experience, for every-one attending. “The single integrated solution resulted in a 900 per cent increase in posts and engagement per student, per week,” he said.

And he talked about a question-bot – student asks questions – it goes straight to their tutor’s phone, “today, if it doesn’t work on mobile it doesn’t work”.

The bot also uses all the question to create a student generated FAQ for every study topic – and it now can answer questions itself, plus point students to on-line discussion groups where class-members were talking about the issue. “That’s reconnecting people and building learning communities.”

At which point CMM’s brain started to not compute – there was a bunch more stuff about using student questions to create a personalised learning pack for all question and for each individual student a fortnight before exams, but it was all getting too hard – watch it yourself, really, do – it’s as impressive as it is inspiring.

Yes, it was a big wrap for Microsoft products – but it was also a less high than Himalayan inspiration of how AI can humanise individual teaching.


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