Students with Disabilities Have Long Sought Online Learning. It Must Continue and Improve

Posted in Governance and administration, Teaching on June 5th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“Over the past few weeks, the Disability Service has been conducting surveys and collecting information about the student experience with online learning. In a recent survey amongst 90 students with different disabilities, it was reported that 49.5% indicated that their experience of online learning was positive, 29% said it was negative, 18% had a mixed experience …” (more)

[Niamh Ní Hoireabhaird, University Times, 4 June]

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Coronavirus: Queen’s expects to open for some teaching in September

Posted in Teaching on June 4th, 2020 by steve

“Queen’s University (QUB) expects to open all of its campus for teaching and other activities in September. However, lectures will continue to be provided online and facemasks will be provided for staff and students …” (more)

[Robbie Meredith, BBC News, 4 June]

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Students and lecturers: Share your views on remote learning

Posted in Teaching on June 4th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“Online lectures are set to continue for students at colleges and universities in September, combined with some face-to-face seminars in some institutions. The Irish Times would like to hear from students and lecturers …” (more)

[Irish Times, 3 June]

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What We Know About Trinity’s Plans for a New Normal on Campus

Posted in Life, Teaching on May 29th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“This week, The University Times has published a slew of details about the various plans Trinity is pondering as it seeks to get back to teaching in the next academic year. For weeks now, we’ve known that students’ return to College – most likely on September 28th – will be only partial, but until this week we didn’t have much in the way of details about the specifics of what this return will look like …” (more)

[Emer Moreau and Donal MacNamee, University Times, 29 May]

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Testing the equivalence of online and on campus learning

Posted in Teaching on May 28th, 2020 by steve

“Our thousand-year-old model of higher education has been strongly culturally transmitted. It is based on creating environments and facilities that ensure efficiency and effectiveness for university teaching and a ‘place to be’ for the students, in social and academic communities …” (more)

[Gilly Salmon, Wonkhe, 27 May]

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Universities are pressing the self-destruct button

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Teaching on May 25th, 2020 by steve

“Online lectures and virtual years abroad will only make prospective students wonder why they should attend at all …” (more)

[Joanna Williams, spiked, 25 May]

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Higher Education requires ‘Tier One’ category for resources and engagement

Posted in Governance and administration, Research, Teaching on May 22nd, 2020 by steve

Ireland“Earlier this week Cambridge University in the UK announced that all its courses will be delivered online for the next academic year. The decision followed immediately on a warning from England’s university regulator, the Office of Students, on the need for ‘absolute clarity’ for students making academic plans …” (more)

[Joan Donegan, IFUT, 21 May]

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Remote learning will be deployed at IT Sligo next year

Posted in Teaching on May 22nd, 2020 by steve

Ireland“The president of IT Sligo, Brendan McCormack has warned of a changed landscape and novel challenges for third level student in the new academic year. Fears had been expressed this week that many students will find it difficult to return to third level education due to the financial consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic …” (more)

[Ocean FM, 21 May]

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No more face-to-face lectures at Cambridge University until summer of 2021

Posted in Governance and administration on May 20th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“News today that Cambridge University, and all its Colleges, are moving all lectures on-line for the 2020/2021 academic year. The immediate questions are: If Cambridge are doing it, should the rest of us follow? If it is good enough for a hallowed and respected institution like Cambridge – is it good enough for the rest of us? …” (more)

[Careful With That Axe, Eugene, 20 May]

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‘Blended Learning’ Could Spell Trouble For UCD

Posted in Teaching on May 19th, 2020 by steve

“Sir, – The College Tribune’s report on Jim Miley’s concerns regarding Teaching and Learning in the next academic year hints at wider problems that UCD (along with all other universities) now has to face. In March and April, lecturers transitioned material designed for face-to-face delivery to the virtual realm, yet this stopgap measure is not something that can be repeated for a full trimester …” (more)

[Wolfgang Marx, College Tribune, 18 May]

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First Years Prioritised, No Large Lectures and Campus Rotas

Posted in Teaching on May 18th, 2020 by steve

“The return of all universities in autumn could see no large lectures, ‘blended learning’ between virtual and on-campus, large cutbacks in numbers of on-campus accommodation, and a rota for students on when they can be on campus with first years prioritised, according to Jim Miley, Director General at Irish Universities Association (IUA) …” (more)

[Conor Capplis, College Tribune, 17 May]

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Colleges, Take Note: A Third-Level Expert Just Poured Cold Water on Online Teaching

Posted in Teaching on May 18th, 2020 by steve

“When it comes to online teaching, we’ve heard a lot of positive talk from Ireland’s university heads in recent times. Almost all of it has seen colleges going out of their way to laud the work of academics forced in the blink of an eye to confront a new pedagogical reality. You can’t blame the institutes – good news, and good PR, are more important than ever in a pandemic, and most teaching staff deserve the plaudits they’re getting …” (more)

[University Times, 17 May]

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Phase 1 Approaches

Posted in Teaching on May 17th, 2020 by steve

“Phase 1 of the Roadmap for relaxation of its Covid-19 restrictions would commence as planned on Monday 18th May. This won’t make a huge difference to those people working in third level institutions because it means that anyone who can work from home should continue to do so …” (more)

[In the Dark, 16 May]

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Irish Colleges to Struggle to ‘Compete’ With Online Teaching, Warns SFI Chair

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration, Teaching on May 15th, 2020 by steve

“Irish universities will struggle to ‘compete’ in the sphere of online learning when it comes to attracting students over the coming years, a top research official has warned. Peter Clinch, the chairman of Science Foundation Ireland, said the ‘centralised’ approach to IT of Ireland’s universities means it will be difficult for them to implement ‘blended learning’ – a combination of online and in-person learning – in the coming months and years …” (more)

[Sárán Fogarty and Donal MacNamee, University Times, 15 May]

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DCU sets September 21 as start date for first year students

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration on May 15th, 2020 by steve

“Dublin City University (DCU) has set September 21 as the start date for first years, two weeks ahead of the general return of students on October 5. The September 21 date is provisional and will depend on the final timelines for the Leaving Cert results and CAO offers …” (more)

[Katherine Donnelly, Independent, 15 May]

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The Drive to Working from Home

Posted in Teaching on May 13th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“I’m glad I am not a property developer building a new office block, or a landlord sitting on an empty building right now. I am wondering if some companies who are considering expanding their workforce still feel the need to rent/buy new offices. Perhaps there is even another property crash ahead? Some offices in Dublin have been empty for years already! …” (more)

[Careful With That Axe, Eugene, 13 May]

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Tuition fees should be refunded

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration on May 12th, 2020 by steve

“It was surreal for the college community when Trinity closed its doors in March, leaving a lot of people unsure as to what to do in both a personal and an academic sense. Without strong contingency plans in place for many departments and schools in Trinity, the closure left many students unmotivated, frustrated, and forced into impractical and difficult study environments with little to no resources …” (more)

[Dearbháil Kent, Trinity News, 11 May]

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Online Teaching to Continue Into Next Year, Provost Confirms

Posted in Teaching on May 9th, 2020 by steve

“Online classes are likely to continue into next year, along with a return to real-life contact ‘in a responsible way’, Provost Patrick Prendergast said this evening. While large lectures will be delivered online, smaller lectures, seminars and tutorials will return to campus, Prendergast said, in a video released on Twitter tonight. Groups will, however, be moved into larger lecture theatres to allow for social distancing …” (more)

[Cormac Watson, University Times, 9 May]

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Medics, paralysis and the class of 2020

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Teaching on May 6th, 2020 by steve

“I’m in lockdown for what seems like forever and although there is a feeling of being in the movie, Groundhog Day, I’m actually quite happy. I think I needed a break from ploughing into DCU every day for too many years to mention. It has been interesting to observe how the country is coping with the Covid crisis …” (more)

[Tales from Academia, 6 May]

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‘I can’t get motivated’: the students struggling with online learning

Posted in Teaching on May 5th, 2020 by steve

“Loretta Charles-Cregan, an 18-year-old A-level student, considers herself lucky because her school gave her a laptop to help her do her GCSEs when she was made temporarily homeless after her house flooded. ‘It’s the only reason I can do my work now’, she says. ‘It was a blessing in disguise’ …” (more)

[Rachel Hall and David Batty, Guardian, 4 May]

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