Penfold, Brian (University of Wolverhampton, 2001)
With very large groups, individual assessment is becoming increasingly difficult. We are constantly aware of the cost of the time taken in traditional forms of assessment and the effect of marking fatigue on quality. The system described here is a ‘home-grown’ system to present summative multiple-choice question (MCQ) papers in an efficient, cost effective and simple way. The system directly replaces manually marked MCQ tests and because of its nature opens up new more sophisticated multimedia assessment formats.
Salter, Pam; Peacock, Diane (University of Wolverhampton, 2001)
A short diagnostic learning support questionnaire was designed and issued to ascertain individual and generic levels of key skills of all incoming level 1 students in the School of Art and Design (SAD). This was completed at induction with the intention of providing an indication of an ‘Individual Learning Profile’ (ILP) for each student. It was anticipated that the ILP would assist both staff and students in their understanding of their strengths and weaknesses and how best they might achieve their potential. It would also indicate at the earliest opportunity the need to implement support for study. Recent emphasis upon widening access into Higher Education (HE) has highlighted variations in student profiles. The very terms non-standard entry, mature, returner, disadvantaged, precede the notion of concealed social and educational inequality. Primary concerns centre upon lack of IT skills and the number of students with dyslexic difficulties in the School. Early identification of students requiring and/or requesting help, and those ‘at risk’, is expected to be ‘cost-effective’ for all concerned. The ILP is intended to underpin the goal of achieving true equal opportunity for learning, in addition to maximising student retention and achievement across the School. Initial research into the development of the Individual Learning Profiles (ILP’s) centred upon the need for a brief overview from each student rather that detailed information, which, if necessary, could be extended later during individual counselling. Reference to previous models of good practice included the work undertaken in other UK HE Institutions, in particular that of De Montfort University (DMU) who were contacted (June 2000) in relation to their HEFCE funded work on a national Key Skills survey of entrants.
At the beginning of the 1999/2000 academic year, the School of Art and Design at the University of Wolverhampton introduced all students to new module guides. The aim of this project was to evaluate the module guides and assignment briefs currently used in the School of Art and Design and to propose any modifications. In particular, the objectives were to identify key issues and constraints by means of a literature review; to identify and use methods by which relevant, reliable and unbiased information might be gathered; evaluate collected information; identify aspects of the guides and briefs which might benefit from changes as well as aspects of good practice. Although originally identified as an ‘innovation’ bid, the innovation (the introduction of new module guides and assignment briefs) had already taken place. The primary concern of this project was therefore to review the innovation.
Shannon-Little, Tony; Brett, Paul (University of Wolverhampton, 2001)
Between 90 and 110 Direct Entrant students arrive from overseas partner institutions each year and undertake the English as a Foreign Language (EFL) Business Language Programme. The overall aim of the modules is to increase students’ command of English and communicative skills in order in the short term to allow them to cope well with undergraduate Business Studies, and in the longer term to enhance their communicative capabilities in an international professional environment (Assiter 1995, Ramsden 1992). In addition to the traditional communication skills of oral presentations, meetings, and report writing, today’s graduates will need to develop a familiarity with virtual written interaction—e-mail computer conferencing and document exchange—(Gruba & Lynch 1997), which will involve a recombination of a variety of skills for this new medium, including an ability to develop an appropriate range of professional relationships using the spectrum of formality styles, balanced with an unambiguous and explicit method of signalling intentions and requirements (Chapelle 1998), and an understanding of the advantages and disadvantages of virtual interaction in terms of time management, all with interlocutors who are anonymous in the sense that little or no face-to-face contact has taken place. It was assumed that the sensitivity required to perform this type of interaction effectively could be fostered through a virtual, asynchronous, anonymous simulation task (Warschauer et al 1996), which recent research suggests could at the same time increase the motivation, time on task, and development of linguistic accuracy of students (Freeman & Capper 1999, Gibbs 1999, Harper & Hedberg 1997, Li 2000, Liaw 1998).
Burke, Deirdre (University of Wolverhampton, 2003)
The Black and Ethnic Minority Experience (BE-ME) is a collaborative project involving the local community, council, colleges and the university to demonstrate the potential of the (BE-ME) archive for undergraduate teaching.
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