Feedback cycles are useful concepts in biological systems, our everyday lives, and education. However, Higher Education is finding itself in something of a feedback crisis, with low student satisfaction despite high academic workload in this area. Here we explore how changing our conceptions of feedback in Higher Education could address this, and look at some positive cases of innovative feedback practice within bioscience disciplines.
This is the abstract of my article in the June 2018 edition of The Biochemist magazine from the Biochemical Society about Feedback: Completing the Cycle. Click through to access the whole article.
Here at Learning Science we’ve been innovating for over ten years, and we’re not planning on stopping now. There are some very exciting developments underway at LearnSciHQ, and we’d like to share a few with you here: a growing bioscience library, Smart Worksheets now enriched with interactive graphs, plus the first steps of a new chemistry series.
Learning Science are pleased to announce four new light microscopy interactive resources as expansions to the bioscience pre-lab library. Taken together, they offer students a comprehensive introduction to functional use of a compound light microscope. Used individually, each one functions as a stand-alone resource which targets specific skills. Find out here what your students can achieve with each one.
If you work with learning technology, what’s important to you - now and in the future?
For the past four years, ALT (Association for Learning Technology) has put out a survey designed to track current and future trends in learning technology, and how it’s used across sectors. Here we discuss some key findings of ALT's Annual Survey 2017, published 1st March 2018.
Learning Science have partnered with Coventry University to bring enhanced pre lab and post lab solutions to their bioscience students.
Find out about how they customised our Learning Science Labs: Bioscience pre-lab package to suit their lab requirements, and worked with us to develop bespoke Smart Worksheets and other auto-graded post-lab assignments to support their students engagement and understanding of practicals with detailed, timely and consistent feedback.
We’re going to be attending the HEA STEM conference in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, on Weds 31st January and Thurs 1st February 2018. The focus this year is Creativity in Teaching, Learning and Student Engagement.
We’ve got a stand and will be running an interactive workshop session on the Thursday afternoon, where we look forward to learning from and sharing ideas with you.
It's called: "Creative techniques to support your laboratory practicals: student engagement via interactive simulations, smart worksheets & more."
Teaching labs across the country are going through a time of transition, including the introduction of learning technology. In recent years we have seen the development and potential of virtual labs which could be used to replace teaching labs.
However, real university teaching labs are invaluable; irreplaceable, even. Here are our top four reasons why.
This semester, the University of Glasgow’s School of Chemistry have transformed two teaching lab units with learning technology.
In doing so, they have enhanced student confidence in the lab, made more efficient use of lab time and improved the quality, consistency and timeliness of feedback whilst reducing the staff marking burden.
How much do you and your students get out of your Virtual Learning Environment (VLE)?
Imagine your VLE with the added opportunity to provide real-time feedback to individualised student assessments, test your students on their ability to draw chemical structures, add in complex mathematical notation or introduce engaging and interactive resources to spice up your own content.
With these added functionalities, the opportunities for student engagement and active learning are abundant.
Online assessments are an increasingly integral part of UK higher education. The potential is huge, and the possibilities growing. But digital infrastructure alone is not sufficient for effective online assessment. A foundation of solid pedagogical underpinnings is needed.
Here are five tips to enhance the effectiveness of your online assessment practices.
First year teaching labs have variable digital learning provisions among UK universities, according to a Learning Science survey of delegates at ViCE-PHEC 2017 in York, a leading conference in chemistry and physics higher education teaching.
Welcome to Learning Science’s News Digest for July 2017.
This month we learned about potential new changes to TEF and the pay-packets of vice-chancellors, and the finalists of the Global Higher Education Excellence Awards.
We cover a study on the thinking processes of chemistry students, and a report on how students feel before uni vs during or after. There is news, although it’s not entirely new, that the proportion first-class degrees is greatly increasing at some institutions.
In science, it appears that frogs benefited greatly from the event that killed off the non-avian dinosaurs, and we discover a “charming” new particle.
Learning Science Ltd are delighted to be the main sponsor of this year's Variety in Chemistry Education and Physics Higher Education Conference (ViCE-PHEC) at the University of York from the 23rd to 25th August 2017.
Welcome to Learning Science’s News Digest for June 2017.
There’s been some moving and shaking since our last News Digest. There’s a new parliament, after a bit of a delay and much ongoing debate. The TEF Year 2 results have also been announced, also after a bit of a delay and much ongoing debate!
Jisc reports findings of a 22,000-strong survey of students and their use of digital learning at their institutions.
We also look at the connection between birds’ egg and wing shape, and how drones could be replanting a forest in the next few years.
We know that you have a lot of pressure and demands on your time. If you spend too much time on repetitive marking why not use Smart Worksheets to help?
Smart Worksheets from Learning Science are designed to improve the student experience whilst making your life easier. Students benefit from live support as they work through their assessment and the system handles the repetitive and time-consuming marking for you. The cost of implementation can usually be offset against your marking budget and can actually save you money over time.
2007 was a big year for Learning Science - it was the year we came into existence! It’s now been a full 10 years of science, technology and education here at LearnSciHQ, the perfect opportunity to both celebrate and reflect.
We’ve planned a series of articles for the coming weeks and months on the past, present and future of our favourite topics: science, technology and education. For example - how has e-learning changed in the last ten years? What myths have been debunked? And what could be the future of Higher Education?
But for now, here’s 10 of our favourite science & tech news stories from 2007: the year of our founding.
Welcome to Learning Science’s News Digest for April 2017.
There’s more change on the horizon in British politics as April saw Theresa May call a snap election for June. This could have implications for the Higher Education Bill – forcing it through or killing it off completely.
We consider how bots, drones and trackers could become an integral part of campus life, and how laptops in lectures, especially of the 9 am variety, could be hindering student learning.
New research announced this month include studying the smartness of squid, how viruses could purify water, and destroying the new polymer £5 note - in the name of science!
We have been talking to universities across the country and this one question seems to be at the forefront of everybody's thoughts. Whilst there are a multitude of ways to address this, we believe that integrating technology into your course is a great way forward.
Welcome to Learning Science’s News Digest for March 2017.
Among many other things, March has brought the UK Spring budget (the last one - although they’ve said that before!), International Women’s Day, arguments about TEF and “learning styles”, and research about dinosaurs and how one mistake can quickly lead to another.
On Monday 20th March 2017, the Biochemical Society hosted an e-learning training event at Charles Darwin House in London.
During the morning talks, afternoon workshops and our discussions with delegates at our demo stand, it was great to see so much interest and passion for innovative teaching with technology. We were proud to sponsor and attend the event.
We all really enjoyed the morning talks, each of which offered thought-provoking ideas to take away. Here’s our summary:
Welcome to Learning Science’s News Digest for February 2017.
In case you missed the inaugural edition, each month we feature news stories, articles and blogs from across the Internet on topics including Higher Education Policy, education and tech innovations and other aspects of modern student life.
Here at Learning Science we are approaching our 10-year anniversary, an opportunity to reflect on the past and look forward to the future. So we were particularly interested in the new NMC Horizons report on upcoming education technology. See the Guest Topic section below for more details, and stay tuned for our anniversary articles and lists later this year.
We are proud to announce our sponsorship of an e-learning training event hosted by The Biochemical Society in London on Monday 20th March 2017. The theme of this one-day workshop for HE educators is “Using e-learning to improve student engagement in the biosciences”. It will introduce and explore e-learning methods and technologies available to improve student engagement within physical and virtual classrooms.
Each month we’ll feature a selection of news pieces, articles and blogs from across the Internet. We’ll be focussing on three hot topics: News from the Education (particularly Higher Education) sphere, education and tech innovations or studies that caught our eye, and other aspects of student life today.
Our guest topic this month is New Year, New Education? What is predicted to change in 2017... and what should change (in the opinion of one academic)?
Bristol ChemLabS, a Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning at the University of Bristol’s School of Chemistry, had the vision to bring innovation to their undergraduate laboratory courses.
Learning Science helped the ChemLabS team to explore available technologies and establish the scope of what could be achieved. We worked closely with Bristol to create a cutting edge online tool; transforming teaching and learning across the entire undergraduate syllabus.
It’s that time of year again: the students are back and embarking on the next stage of their academic programme and it’s all too easy for both staff and students to feel somewhat jaded after the Christmas and New Year break. But for me, this is a time to reflect and to gear up for the year ahead. So, I’ve been thinking lately about the challenges we face in university assessment and ways we might overcome them for everyone’s benefit.