30 November 2010

Inquiry Based Learning at Sheffield University

Inquiry Based Learning at Sheffield University

"We aim to provide our students with a learning experience that is shaped by strong linkages between teaching and research. This experience includes:


  • being taught by inspirational teachers who are leading researchers in the subject;
  • studying a curriculum that is informed by current research topics
  • having opportunities to gain and practice research skills; and
  • learning by carrying out inquiry and research, and by participating in knowledge-building in their academic and professional areas.

"Vygotsky was the Mozart of psychology"

Student Assignment: Vygotsky is referred to as the Mozart of Psychology. Use his concepts regarding the psychology of play, mediated artifacts and social interaction to make a music video showing how "make believe" can create a zone of proximal development (ZPD).

JISC: Effective Assessment in a Digital Age

Effective Assessment in a Digital Age is aimed at those in higher and further education who design assessment and feedback for their learners. The guide draws on recent JISC reports and case studies from different contexts and modes of learning to explore the relationship between technology-enhanced assessment and feedback practices and meaningful, well-supported learning experiences.



Useful and informative guides plus case studies of some of these approaches in use.

David Jones's Ps framework

David Jones's Ps framework is a work in progress. In his PhD research David is moving towards using the Framework as a tool in a sensemaking process in the pre-decision stage of an educational technology project. The Ps Framework is based on a number of assumptions:

  • People will always make decisions based on what is familiar with them.
  • The implementation of e-learning within a university is an example of a wicked design problem.
  • Some of the characteristics of a wicked design problem include:
  • There is no definitive formulation of a wicked problem.
  • Stakeholders have radically different world views and different frames for understanding the problem.
  • There is no unique “correct” view of the problem.

Learning Literacies for the Digital Age

LLiDA stands for Learning Literacies for the Digital Age, a JISC funded study which amongst other things generated a useful Best Practice page. Many of the Best Practice examples include some useful student materials for developing learning literacies. Topics include:
  • Policy or strategy for Learning Literacies
  • Central services provision e.g. library, learning development, e-learning, ICT
  • Provision in the curriculum: separate skills/literacies module
  • Provision in the curriculum: skills/literacies addressed in topic module
  • Learner led provision
  • Literacy and competence testing

Russell Stannard's teacher training videos

Russell Stannard's teacher training videos are intended for teaching ESL but are actually useful in many classroom situations. Russell Stannard is a principal teaching fellow at Warwick University. He teaches in the Applied Linguistics department where he teaches on the MA in TESOL with specialisation in Multimedia and ICT. He has won several national awards and he is well known for his work on using screen capture for providing feedback to students.