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‘That’s how I teach my students to communicate effectively online’

Effective communication is one of the most important ‘skills of the 21st century’. People often think that these skills can only be taught face-to-face. However, recent technological developments now make it possible to teach these skills online, for example using the DialogueTrainer tool for conversational scenarios. I’ve been involved in the development of this tool from the very beginning as part of two university-wide projects: Communicate I and II, from 2013 to 2018. I was one of the first to use the tool for teaching in a centralised and large-scale manner in the ‘Professional Conversations’ course within the Psychology study programme. In order to improve the effectiveness of the group conversation scenarios, I embedded the tool in the e-learning modules where students can learn to enhance their communications knowledge and competency by means of a diverse and coherent package of online work formats. In addition to online scenarios, the package includes knowledge clips, good and bad examples of conversations, assignments, questionnaires, quizzes, discussions, polls, assessment questions, etcetera. In so doing, they can learn how difficult communication can be, understand (mis)communication, obtain insight into their own communication habits, and become more effective in holding conversations themselves. This integrated, digital approach is a powerful tool for learning how to communicate, and reinforces the face-to-face education in communication skills. The course is structured as follows: each week, the students prepare for the lab seminar by completing the e-learning modules on topics like listening, giving feedback or collecting information. They don’t have to do the work at a fixed place or time, however; they can complete the assignments at their own pace at a convenient moment, and can do so as often as they like. Each lab seminar deals with the contents of the e-learning module. Course evaluations have shown that students prefer the e-learning modules to lectures. Seminar lecturers have also noticed the difference: students come better prepared to class, which leaves more time for practice and in-depth discussion. Finally, another benefit is that I can also easily give fellow lecturers access to my own e-learning modules. That makes it easier to collaborate, and facilitates active sharing of knowledge across study programmes, faculties, and even universities. Want to find out more? Then take a look at the showcase I’ve created for the course ‘Professional Conversations’ by registering via this link (SolisID): https://lll-platform-uu.nl/enrol/signup/?l=t9233arzGyWI. If you’re interested in what DialogueTrainer has to offer for your curriculum, then visit the Educate-it site or contact Educate-it to ask for practical or didactic support.

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Educational innovation is helping laboratory animals - Benedikte Sam

As the faculty contact for Educate-it at Veterinary Medicine, I get to work with a colleague from the Chair of Quality Promotion at my faculty to organise an Education Sandwich meeting each month. We aim to inform and inspire teachers with recent developments in the fields of education and educational science. These meetings draw a crowd. Three recently developed e-modules were presented at the most recent meeting, whose common thread was that they each contributed to a reduction in animal testing (a priority at our faculty). All three also enabled our students to prepare thoroughly for their practicals: an essential element of becoming a vet. The first module was developed by colleagues involved with the 3R-center, a group dedicated to Replacing, Reducing and Refining testing on animals. The module is available to externals as well as our own students and is directed at improving awareness and knowledge of humane termination in people who work with laboratory animals professionally. The end of this presentation transitioned smoothly into a discussion of the ‘Behaviour and Handling’ self-study module, which helps students prepare for practicals on various species of animals. Students get to see ahead of time what kinds of behaviours they should expect, what procedure they will learn and how to perform that procedure properly. This frees up time in the practical for students to actually practice. A module that ties into that nicely is ‘Clinical Diagnostics, Cat’. The behaviour of cats makes using them as (educational) laboratory animals fairly complex, not least because they are especially susceptible to stress. To allow students to still practice what they need while using as few cats as possible, three measures were implemented: Students can prepare for clinical teaching sessions involving cats at home, using the new e-learning module on clinical diagnostics. That module contains theory, practice, and many videos and exercises. During practicals, the more distressing procedures will no longer be performed on live cats, but on dummy animals (called ‘fluffy cats’), so that students can practice basic procedures under the auspices of the teacher. These fluffy cats are also used for the so-called station exams in the bachelor’s degree programme. Students can prove they possess the required skills and expertise to pass their exam using the dummy. It is inspiring to see how actively teachers are innovating their teaching. And our students share that excitement, since the modules allow them to review and practice as often as they like. I make myself useful to teachers by helping them procure funds and whatever (educational, technical or practical) support they require. I also connect teachers interested in starting similar projects. Obviously, my ‘Education Sandwich’ meetings also provide teachers a platform for sharing their educational accomplishments and developments. Future editions have already been scheduled and will address very different subjects: January 22nd: Chantal Duijn will talk about her doctoral research into EPA’s in veterinary education. February 5th: Ruurd Jorritsma will address sideways entry into the Farm Animals and Veterinary Public Health master’s degree programme. In closing, I would like to share that our students are also developing courses, such as our didactics elective. A teacher had asked them for help: How do I get students to show up for practicals properly prepared? Here’s what they came up with: https://educate-it.uu.nl/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/voorbereiding-praktica-leerlijn-DHV.mp4 Enjoy!

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News

13 November 2020

Save the date: Strengthen-your-education week 1 to 5 February 2021

“It was an interesting gathering with diverse people. Good discussions. I got some new ideas.”  “Good to share topics with different faculties.”  The Strengthen-your-education-week is starting to become a well-known phenomenon. Twice a year, UU lecturers can attend all kinds of workshops and lectures during this week, aimed at strengthening their education. Teachers have experienced the past editions as inspiring. The upcoming winter edition will take place from 1 to 5 February 2021. The Strengthen-your-education-week will be online and is organised by the partners of the Centre for Academic Teaching. All teachers of Utrecht University are welcome to attend the activities. Curious about the programme? Fill in this form and we will keep you updated!

23 October 2020

Time to sign up for the open online courses (MOOCs) at Utrecht University!

Dive in the paradoxical world of the world’s food problem and the interrelated themes of food shortage and healthy choices. Or learn more about child development from an interdisciplinary approach. Sign up for the upcoming sessions of the MOOCs Unravelling solutions for Future Food problems and Understanding child development: from synapse to society at Utrecht University! The MOOCs will start on November 2th.  Sign up for free now! Next to these two MOOCs you can register for one of the five other MOOCs of Utrecht University.

23 October 2020

Webinars and Q&A's for lecturers

In the coming months, the Centre for Academic Teaching and partners will again organise several webinars and online Q&A's for lecturers. This offer is in line with the demand from lecturers. Among other things, there will be webinars on online assessment, interaction with students and the use of MS Teams. Missed a webinar/Q&A? You can check this pageto view them back. If you are unable to attend this session, we may be able to provide you with individual advice or support. Please contact Teaching Support for this. You can find all tips and sessions on remote teaching here. Information on the UU website Contact teaching support 2 november - Lunchbite: THERMOS project Datum en tijd: maandag 2 november, 12.45-13.15 uur Voertaal: NL/EN Meld je aan! Online via MS Teams This month in the lunchbite: Marieke van der Schaaf and Lars de Vreugd will present the learning analytics dashboard which they developed to help students with study behavior and study progress. In these strange times of online education it can be difficult to create a learning environment that provides students with optimum support. The THERMOS-project aims to contribute to creating such an environment, by providing students at UU with insight and actionable feedback on their study behavior and progress. Students fill out a questionnaire within a learning analytics dashboard, about motivation, engagement and groupwork skills. By providing a visual representation of their self-assessment scores, students gain insight in which aspects of study behavior are strong and which could improve. If a student wants to improve or work on an aspect, follow-up activities are provided within the dashboard to do so. This academic year a pilot will be run within several study programs (e.g. Educational sciences, Biomedical sciences and Information sciences).  Do you want to hear more about this subject or do you have ideas about the teacher role in study behavior of the students? Please join Marieke and Lars in this webinar! 3 november - Q&A MS Teams: how do you deploy MS Teams for your teaching? Date and time: Tuesday 3 november, 10.00 - 11.00 uur Working language: NL/EN Register here! Online via MS Teams Lecturers are supported with the design and implementation of online education. In this session we will answer your questions about MS Teams. Do you need practical and didactical tips regarding Teams, or are you curious about experiences of colleagues? This session takes the form of a question hour and takes place on 3 November. MS Teams expert Lana Hoekstra(Educate-it) and an educational advisor (Educational Consultancy & Professional Development) will be present to answer questions about Teams. These can be technical questions (how do I break out in break-out rooms) or more didactic questions (how do I stimulate interaction in a working group in MS Teams). 5 november - Webinar: Giving feedback to students and organising peer feedback Date and time: Thursday 5 november, 10.00 - 11.30 uur Working language: NL/EN Register here! Online via MS Teams  Lecturers can get support with designing and implementing online education. This session will focus on giving your students feedback and organising student peer  feedback. What are ways to do this online or in a hybrid education situation? In this webinar, you will design a (peer) feedback process that fits your own educational situation. You will learn how to apply (digital) feedback effectively and how to use it to optimise the learning process of students. In other words, it is all about using (peer) feedback to achieve your own educational goals. In addition, attention is paid to the practical and technical side and digital (peer) feedback tools supported by Educate-it are explained. This webinar is provided by educational advisors Nanette Verhulsand Annet van der Riet. 10 november - Webinar: Remote testing Date and time: Tuesday 10 November, 13.30 - 14.00 uur Working language: NL/EN Register here!  Online via MS Teams  Remote testing: how do you do it? What possibilities are there? Educational advisors and experts from Educational Consultancy & Professional Development (O&T) and Educate-it are ready to provide you with didactic and practical information and answer your questions. Any questions that cannot be answered directly, we will take them with us and sort them out for you. 12 november - How do you provide an efficient online seminar? Date and time: Thursday 12 November, 11.00 - 12.30 uur Working language: NL/EN Register here!  Online via MS Teams  During this webinar we will discuss various elements with which you can make an online seminar run smoothly. How do you organise a good introduction, how do you stimulate interaction with your students and what kind of working methods are suitable for an online session? In this webinar you will work with interactive assignments and you will be given the tools to create an efficient online seminar. 12 november - Webinar: Letting students create knowledge clips as a test Date and time: Thursday 12 November, 15.30 - 17.00 uur Working language: NL/EN Register here! Online via MS Teams Lecturers are supported with the design and implementation of online education. This session focuses on one way to increase the interaction with and involvement of students, namely  student generated knowledge clips. In this webinar two courses are highlighted in which the written test has been replaced by knowledge clips. In addition, do's and don'ts are discussed and attention is paid to the assessment of these knowledge clips. This webinar is provided by educational advisor Elma Zijderveld. 19 november - Workshop Effective digital testing Date and time: Thursday 19 November, 11.00 - 12.45 uur Working language: NL/EN Register here! Registration is possible until the Monday prior to the workshop. In this workshop you will be given a number of rules of thumb that a good MC test and open-ended test must meet. In an exercise we will look critically at the quality of your own test questions, so that you can improve them and develop good questions. In addition, you will learn how to put your own test questions in Remindo and how to build up a test. We will also show you how you can reuse questions in other tests. In this way you can build up an itembank from which you can benefit for years to come. In the workshop you will work with your own questions. Bring your own test (or test to practice) to the workshop!  3 december - Workshop: Test analysis in Remindo Date and time: Thursday 3 December, 11.00 - 12.45 uur Working language: NL/EN Register here!  Do you want to know how to analyse a test in Remindo? What should you do if your test has been made badly, or if many students have made a question right or wrong? Does the test differentiate between good and less good students? How do you interpret the psychometric values (P, Cronbachs Alfa, Rit, Rir, Rat, Rar)? In this workshop we will deal with these questions. Afterwards you can: Interpret a test analysis in Remindo Identify any problems with the test on the basis of the analysis Recognize and improve bad questions for next time Identify the pros and cons of: Deleting questions afterwards Adjusting the answer key adjusting the caesura This workshop will be given by Mirne Cammen, Matthias van Veen and Ruben van Riel. 10 december - Get more out of digital testing: multimedia and other question types Date and time: Thursday 3 December, 11.00 - 12.45 uur Working language: NL/EN Register here! In this workshop you will become acquainted with the possibilities that Remindo offers to test with innovative question forms and multimedia. On the basis of examples, we will discuss the ins and outs of the different types of questions that Remindo offers. Afterwards, you will be able to make a well-considered choice for multimedia and innovative question types in Remindo. Registration is possible until the Monday prior to the workshop.

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Events

3 December 2020

Workshops Analysing a Remindo assessment

This workshop is postponed due to the corona limitations. You will be contacted when a new date has been set. Have you performed digital assessments with Remindo before? Would you like to analyse how that went? Then this is the workshop for you. We will answer the following questions: What does analysis in Remindo look like? How do you interpret what it tells you (P, Rir, Rit, Cronbach’s alpha)? What do you do when your students perform very poorly on the assessment? How do you handle questions that either everyone gets or everyone misses? Can you remove questions? Accept ‘wrong’ multiple- choice answers? How do you evaluate the quality of your questions? The deadline for signing up is the monday before the workshop (This workshop is given in Dutch by default, if you want a workshop in English please say so in the registration form)

10 December 2020

Webinars and Q&A's for lecturers

In the coming months, the Centre for Academic Teaching and partners will again organise several webinars and online Q&A’s for lecturers. This offer is in line with the demand from lecturers. Among other things, there will be webinars on online assessment, interaction with students and the use of MS Teams. Missed a webinar/Q&A? You can check this pageto view them back. If you are unable to attend this session, we may be able to provide you with individual advice or support. Please contact Teaching Support for this. You can find all tips and sessions on remote teaching here. Information on the UU website Contact teaching support 2 november - Lunchbite: THERMOS project Datum en tijd: maandag 2 november, 12.45-13.15 uur Voertaal: NL/EN Meld je aan! Online via MS Teams This month in the lunchbite: Marieke van der Schaaf and Lars de Vreugd will present the learning analytics dashboard which they developed to help students with study behavior and study progress. In these strange times of online education it can be difficult to create a learning environment that provides students with optimum support. The THERMOS-project aims to contribute to creating such an environment, by providing students at UU with insight and actionable feedback on their study behavior and progress. Students fill out a questionnaire within a learning analytics dashboard, about motivation, engagement and groupwork skills. By providing a visual representation of their self-assessment scores, students gain insight in which aspects of study behavior are strong and which could improve. If a student wants to improve or work on an aspect, follow-up activities are provided within the dashboard to do so. This academic year a pilot will be run within several study programs (e.g. Educational sciences, Biomedical sciences and Information sciences).  Do you want to hear more about this subject or do you have ideas about the teacher role in study behavior of the students? Please join Marieke and Lars in this webinar! 3 november - Q&A MS Teams: how do you deploy MS Teams for your teaching? Date and time: Tuesday 3 november, 10.00 – 11.00 uur Working language: NL/EN Register here! Online via MS Teams Lecturers are supported with the design and implementation of online education. In this session we will answer your questions about MS Teams. Do you need practical and didactical tips regarding Teams, or are you curious about experiences of colleagues? This session takes the form of a question hour and takes place on 3 November. MS Teams expert Lana Hoekstra(Educate-it) and an educational advisor (Educational Consultancy & Professional Development) will be present to answer questions about Teams. These can be technical questions (how do I break out in break-out rooms) or more didactic questions (how do I stimulate interaction in a working group in MS Teams). 5 november - Webinar: Giving feedback to students and organising peer feedback Date and time: Thursday 5 november, 10.00 – 11.30 uur Working language: NL/EN Register here! Online via MS Teams  Lecturers can get support with designing and implementing online education. This session will focus on giving your students feedback and organising student peer  feedback. What are ways to do this online or in a hybrid education situation? In this webinar, you will design a (peer) feedback process that fits your own educational situation. You will learn how to apply (digital) feedback effectively and how to use it to optimise the learning process of students. In other words, it is all about using (peer) feedback to achieve your own educational goals. In addition, attention is paid to the practical and technical side and digital (peer) feedback tools supported by Educate-it are explained. This webinar is provided by educational advisors Nanette Verhulsand Annet van der Riet. 10 november - Webinar: Remote testing Date and time: Tuesday 10 November, 13.30 – 14.00 uur Working language: NL/EN Register here!  Online via MS Teams  Remote testing: how do you do it? What possibilities are there? Educational advisors and experts from Educational Consultancy & Professional Development (O&T) and Educate-it are ready to provide you with didactic and practical information and answer your questions. Any questions that cannot be answered directly, we will take them with us and sort them out for you. 12 november - How do you provide an efficient online seminar? Date and time: Thursday 12 November, 11.00 – 12.30 uur Working language: NL/EN Register here!  Online via MS Teams  During this webinar we will discuss various elements with which you can make an online seminar run smoothly. How do you organise a good introduction, how do you stimulate interaction with your students and what kind of working methods are suitable for an online session? In this webinar you will work with interactive assignments and you will be given the tools to create an efficient online seminar. 12 november - Webinar: Letting students create knowledge clips as a test Date and time: Thursday 12 November, 15.30 – 17.00 uur Working language: NL/EN Register here! Online via MS Teams Lecturers are supported with the design and implementation of online education. This session focuses on one way to increase the interaction with and involvement of students, namely  student generated knowledge clips. In this webinar two courses are highlighted in which the written test has been replaced by knowledge clips. In addition, do’s and don’ts are discussed and attention is paid to the assessment of these knowledge clips. This webinar is provided by educational advisor Elma Zijderveld. 19 november - Workshop Effective digital testing Date and time: Thursday 19 November, 11.00 – 12.45 uur Working language: NL/EN Register here! Registration is possible until the Monday prior to the workshop. In this workshop you will be given a number of rules of thumb that a good MC test and open-ended test must meet. In an exercise we will look critically at the quality of your own test questions, so that you can improve them and develop good questions. In addition, you will learn how to put your own test questions in Remindo and how to build up a test. We will also show you how you can reuse questions in other tests. In this way you can build up an itembank from which you can benefit for years to come. In the workshop you will work with your own questions. Bring your own test (or test to practice) to the workshop!  3 december - Workshop: Test analysis in Remindo Date and time: Thursday 3 December, 11.00 – 12.45 uur Working language: NL/EN Register here!  Do you want to know how to analyse a test in Remindo? What should you do if your test has been made badly, or if many students have made a question right or wrong? Does the test differentiate between good and less good students? How do you interpret the psychometric values (P, Cronbachs Alfa, Rit, Rir, Rat, Rar)? In this workshop we will deal with these questions. Afterwards you can: Interpret a test analysis in Remindo Identify any problems with the test on the basis of the analysis Recognize and improve bad questions for next time Identify the pros and cons of: Deleting questions afterwards Adjusting the answer key adjusting the caesura This workshop will be given by Mirne Cammen, Matthias van Veen and Ruben van Riel. 10 december - Get more out of digital testing: multimedia and other question types Date and time: Thursday 3 December, 11.00 – 12.45 uur Working language: NL/EN Register here! In this workshop you will become acquainted with the possibilities that Remindo offers to test with innovative question forms and multimedia. On the basis of examples, we will discuss the ins and outs of the different types of questions that Remindo offers. Afterwards, you will be able to make a well-considered choice for multimedia and innovative question types in Remindo. Registration is possible until the Monday prior to the workshop.

1 February 2021

Save the date: Strengthen-your-education week 1 to 5 February 2021

“It was an interesting gathering with diverse people. Good discussions. I got some new ideas.”  “Good to share topics with different faculties.”  The Strengthen-your-education-week is starting to become a well-known phenomenon. Twice a year, UU lecturers can attend all kinds of workshops and lectures during this week, aimed at strengthening their education. Teachers have experienced the past editions as inspiring. The upcoming winter edition will take place from 1 to 5 February 2021. The Strengthen-your-education-week will be online and is organised by the partners of the Centre for Academic Teaching. All teachers of Utrecht University are welcome to attend the activities. Curious about the programme? Fill in this form and we will keep you updated!

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