News

2 June 2016

New workshops and online modules to enhance your teaching

Do you want to enhance your teaching and introduce Blended Learning? Educate-it offers practical and didactic support in the form of teaching tools, online modules, workshops and individual coaching. Educate-it is organising a number of accessible workshops in June on the teaching tools TrainTool, Xerte and Scalable Learning. You will discover the many features of each tool and how to make the most of those features in your teaching. There are also a number of online training courses you can take at a time and place of your choosing, such as the course on (digital) assessment that went live recently.   Online training on assessment: always available online “What form of assessment best matches my teaching style?” “What if nobody scored above 70 on my exam?” “What are my options for (digital) assessment?” Would you like answers to practical questions like these? Then the online module on assessment developed by Educate-it with O&T is right for you! You will learn how to design, construct and present a good assessment (question). How to score and evaluate your assessments will also be covered. The module has been developed in such a way that you can get started on your own materials immediately. You can optimise existing assessments or develop brand new ones. If you’re only interested in a specific element of the assessment cycle, you can limit your studies to that part of the module. You set your own learning path. This accessible module is available to UU employees free of charge. Click “Online module on assessment” on the Educate-it page, log in with your SolisID and get started right away!    Flipping the Classroom with Scalable Learning: 20 June Flipping the classroom is an educational concept in which the knowledge transfer happens at home, using such tools as knowledge clips. Better use is made of the time spent with the teacher by employing more active teaching formats in the classroom. Scalable Learning is a platform designed specifically for this form of teaching. It makes the knowledge transfer through self-study more interactive, provides teachers with clear insight into any comprehension problems and reveals those problems at a keystroke in the classroom. You will leave this workshop knowing what it means to flip the classroom, with many tips and tricks for redesigning (parts of) your teaching according to the flipped model, and comfortably familiar with Scalable Learning. For more information and to register for the workshop Scalable learning.   Exercise your students’ soft skills with TrainTool: 22 June TrainTool is an app that lets students practice their communication skills (interview, presentation, social, transmission and language) online. In a short video, the app presents a scenario and invites the student to respond. The student records his or her response on a webcam, tablet or mobile phone. They can practice as many times as they like. Then, they submit their favourite recording to their teacher or fellow students, who will provide feedback. TrainTool also allows for the assessment of communication skills. Over the course of the workshop, you will learn how to use TrainTool in your own course, explore what features TrainTool has to offer, and get started on developing your own TrainTool training. For more information and to register for the workshop TrainTool.   Developing your own modules with Xerte Online Toolkits: 23 June Xerte Online Toolkits (XOT) is an online tool for developing your own interactive learning materials (or e-modules). You compose these e-modules by filling out forms in the online development environment. This requires no programming skills. This workshop will teach you what Xerte is, how to use it and how it can enhance your teaching. The workshop provides a brief introduction, teaching you all you need to know to start developing on your own. For more information and to register for the workshop Xerte.   If you have questions about Educate-it or any of the teaching tools, please contact Educate-it.

30 May 2016

Supporting educational innovations from the Educate-it desk

How do you make your classes more interactive? How do you make use of video in your courses? How do you perform digital assessments? The Educate-it educational innovation programme facilitates teachers as they enhance their teaching with these and other improvements. Under the heading teaching tools & training, the Educate-it website lists the tools available to help you enhance your teaching practice, including information about how each tool enhances education, other teachers’ experiences with the tools and an FAQ. If you would like to know more about the didactic applications of these IT tools or have any technical or practical questions, contact support by clicking the ‘I have a question’ button. Someone will get in touch with you that same day. Getting in touch with Educate-it You can also visit the Educate-it support desk in the University Library at the Uithof, a place for teachers and students to go for answers about blended learning, online tools and anything else involving Educate-it. This desk is manned on weekdays from 8.30 until 17.30 by Educate-it students who can help teachers with practical questions right then and there or put them in touch with Educate-it project coordinators to address didactic questions. You’ll find the Educate-it desk next to the elevators on the third floor of the University Library in the Uithof, Heidelberglaan 3. The Educate-it student can also come to your workspace for support if you need it. The desk can also be reached by phone at 030-253 2197. Or you could submit your question through the contact form on the Educate-it site.

11 May 2016

Train je Collega-week: workshop Zelf e-modules maken met Xerte Online Toolkits

Ook dit jaar gaan we op een laagdrempelige manier onze kennis binnen de UU delen gedurende de ‘Train Je Collega-week’ 23 t/m 27 mei; de week waarin je onder werktijd gratis mini-workshops kunt volgen, voor en door collega's. Trainer: Geertje Agricola Locatie: Uithof Xerte Online Toolkits (XOT) is een online tool waarmee je zelf interactieve leermaterialen (of e-modules) kunt ontwikkelen. In de online ontwikkelomgeving kan je, met behulp van diverse invulformulieren, zelfstandig deze e-modules samenstellen. Hiervoor is geen programmeerkennis vereist. In deze workshop kom je meer te weten over wat Xerte is, hoe je het kunt inzetten in je onderwijs en hoe je deze tool kan gebruiken. De workshop biedt een eerste kennismaking waarna je als docent er zelf mee aan de slag kan. Xerte wordt aangeboden via het universiteitsbrede programma Educate-it. Docenten kunnen inloggen in Xerte met hun solis-id via xerte.uu.nl. Niveau Basis. Wat moet je meenemen? Niets. Klik hier voor meer informatie en aanmelden NB: Gezien het grote aantal trainingen, duurt het even voordat het aanmeldformulier geladen is.

11 May 2016

Students come up with study stress and course review apps

EduChallenge winners Team Bij de Hand One app to track stress-related complaints in students and another to review courses. These were just two of the innovative educational initiatives students entered into EduChallenge 2016.   Joining forces Educhallenge is three-day competition in which students from all over the Netherlands think about and work on educational innovation. The competition’s second edition took place in the Science Park from 20 through 22 April. Its organisers were the Educate-it programme at Utrecht University, the Boundless learning programme at UMC Utrecht and Ricoh. Their efforts were supported by knowledge and expertise supplied by UU’s IT Services department, the Freudenthal Institute and the University Library. External organisations SURFnet, Campusparty and UtrechtInc also contributed. Exchange This year, 43 students in 9 teams took part. They worked on technological concepts with the potential to improve education. They were supported in their process with inspiration sessions and intensive coaching by academic and business experts. “The event’s strength is in creating a vibrant exchange between student, academia and businesses.” So says Educhallenge project leader Michèle Gerbrands. “The students know what’s needed and try to find innovative ways to meet those needs. Our experts coach the teams and together they take their ideas to the next level.” Study stress app Student participant Aiden Buis also believes in this extraordinary cooperation. Aiden is part of the Nomi+ team, which took home the professional jury’s prize as well as the audience prize. Nomi+ is an app that addresses the growing numbers of students dealing with psychological problems. The app creates insight into stress-related complaints by providing information. It also monitors overall health and informs users about where to find help. Juror and Faculty of Medicine assessor Lisa Adriaansen believes Nomi+ could resolve an urgent problem. “And it’s a viable concept.” More participation Lisa was also very pleased with the efforts of the other teams. She shares what the concepts of all the teams have shown her. “We’ve seen that students want more of a voice in the processes at their schools and that there is a need for organisation and clarification of the vast amounts of information (about programmes, courses and internships).” Additional information Source: Dub (read the entire article here) To see pictures of the event, visit Instagram. The winning team created a video report.

31 March 2016

First MOOC UU live

March 24 2016- The first MOOC of Utrecht University will go live on the platform Coursera at April 4th. The registration has recently started. This MOOC with the subject Clinical Epidemiology is the first of four MOOCs the UU will be developing in 2016, each linked to one of the university's four strategic themes. The university wants to use these MOOCs to introduce students to the relevant fields. That will allow students to make a more informed selection from among the accredited Small Private Online Courses (SPOCs) and campus courses. An MOOC – a Massive Open Online Course – is a free online course that has been designed for mass participation and for which the course materials are distributed on the web, meaning that participants are not bound to any one location. Courses usually last from 3 to 6 weeks and feature lots of interaction between students, who can take part wherever and whenever they like. MOOCs make heavy use of video, quizzes, texts and homework as well as a final exam. The course is not accredited. Goals UU wants to use MOOCs to gain experience with new forms of teaching and new ways to make education available to wide audiences. That's why the MOOCs are coordinated by Educate-it. Other goals UU hopes to achieve with these MOOCs are: Increasing Utrecht University's renown Contributing to the university's (international) reputation Using the four themes to demonstrate what areas UU excels in. Marketing the university's (post-graduate) online educational programmes and investigating whether MOOCs increase participation in UU educational programmes, especially its (online) Master's degree programmes. Facilitating scientific research by generating data.  UU and online education Utrecht University already has a great deal of experience with online education. The MOOCs will serve as an introduction to the SPOCs and campus education. Utrecht University has been developing SPOCs – Small Private Online Courses – since 2012. It was one of the first institutions to offer SPOCs and a complete online Master's degree programme. Right now, the university already offers over 70 fully accredited courses on the Elevate health platform, which UU co-founded with UMCU. That platform offers small-scale education with intense coaching and lots of interaction, both among students and between students and teachers. This makes it a good fit for the Utrecht model of education, with its emphasis on small-scale, personal and engaging education. The advantage of SPOCs is that students from all over the world can participate in the course from a distance, without having to physically come to Utrecht. We will also be using these courses to help students make up any academic deficits before they start a Master's degree programme. Concurrently with the Elevate initiative, top-tier institutions like Stanford, MIT and Harvard started the first MOOCs. MOOC platforms offer free, online, open courses that can and do accommodate large numbers of participants. The MOOCs have put online education back on the international and administrative agenda. They have vastly increased the popularity of online education. Since the fall of 2013, some of the top-tier institutions and MOOC platforms have been shifting their focus: alongside their MOOCs, they have started offering SPOCs. This latter form of teaching has a more sustainable business model and a much higher graduation rate. It seems likely that these two forms of teaching will continue to exist side by side for a few more years at least, but only time will tell. The UU MOOCs Now that MOOC platforms are graduating from their initial years of experimentation and development, the time has come to investigate how Utrecht University can benefit from MOOCs. The university has no intention to offer the entirety of its on-campus education online, but it does believe, as stated in the Strategic Plan, that it is important from the perspective of internationalisation and valorisation to develop off-campus education that parallels on-campus teaching. In time, it may well become feasible for students at our campus to take part in courses or academic programmes with students elsewhere in the world. Educate-it will coordinate the development of four MOOCs in 2016, as well as their publication on Coursera. Each course will address one of Utrecht University's four research themes: Sustainability, Life Sciences, Institutions and Dynamics of Youth. You can find more information about the MOOCs on offer from UU on the UU corporate site. More information about Utrecht University's SPOCs is available from the Elevate site.

15 March 2016

Facility for digital assessment on location

March 15, 2016 - Because of the growth in the use of the facility for digital assessments and the increasing need of teachers to digital assessments, the facility for large-scale digital assessment in the Educatorium will be further expanded in the near future from 480 to 650 students at a time. In addition the current facilities for digital assessment will be transferred to the organisation in place in a few months. That means it will be a structural feature within the UU. At the request of faculties small-scale digital assessment at location can also be created. This can be used for small-scale digital assessments, inspection of assessments, retakes and students with disabilities. By expanding the number of students who can take digital assessments at a time in the Educatorium and facilities for digital assessments at location Educate-it can continue to meet the needs of teachers. At the beginning of April a small-scale facility for digital assessment on location at REBO (USBO) will open for 40 students at a time.  The faculty of Veterinary Medicine has a digital assessment on location in use for several months. Some other faculties are also planning to have a small-scale digital assessment on location.