Murdoch U sages on virtual, interactive, stages

Students who want will still be on campus, just not for lectures

Next year Murdoch U will “continue to shift the focus to student-centred learning and assessment design, to ensure that students are engaged in high quality and authentic learning experiences,” PVC E Kylie Readman tells staff.

What that means is less lectures, at least of the people in a room, kind. “Even without the impact of COVID-19, this is a contemporary and pedagogically sound approach that increases students’ flexible access to learning and is aligned to our technology enhanced learning strategy,” she adds.

Not that there will be no students on campus. “The feedback from students has been clear – they have enjoyed having the flexibility of engaging with the subject matter at a time of their choosing and have a preference to maintain some face-to-face contact for tutorials and labs, allowing them to maintain academic and social connections.” So, pandemic permitting, “most tutorials, workshops and laboratories will continue to be held face-to-face – as will all other activities requiring a specialised location,”

But, less so lectures, even for students actually on-site. “Content previously shared in lectures can be replaced by a number of options, all of which give you and your students more time to interact, collaborate and work with the subject matter in smaller group activity modes – on-line or on campus.”

Professor Readman proposes multiple methods:

* mini-lectures, with associated online activities and interactions.
* curated content with “associated online activities and interactions”
* integrating lecture content with active-learning (without growth in overall contact time)
* and if these aren’t possible, on-line synchronous lectures which are timetabled, recorded and includes interaction with and between students “in the synchronous mode.”