|English: Steph's Rol Model (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
A range of strategies were trialled around offering the students support in an effort to support students and help with retention and success.
Reflective practice was an issue, so to help students get started a video was put together, along with, for example, detailed hings and open ended sentences. This provided an opportunity for early formative feedback. Students struggled with the progressive nature of the course too. The discussion forums were quite successful with a high contribution rate. To support the early stages of teamwork there was an introductory forum for students to respond to, as well as the use of an ice breaker wiki, virtual helpdesk sessions, and a Belbin inventory. Out of 6 groups, only 1 group completed the assessment successfully. The successful group made regular use of the collaborative tools, the online forums, and had an obvious leader who was motivated.
To improve the course there are plans to reduce the scope of the group project, and students will be able to submit work progressively. Tutor training in providing efficient and effective feedback is important, and the re-structuring of the course so that support resources are obvious.
This was a refreshingly honest overview of something that didn't work, and where the presenters are going to use their findings to address the issues.