Computer Science lecturers jointly teach: Scaffolded online approach

Lecturers, Michael Norman, Mehrdad Ghaziasgar and William Tucker jointly teach a 3rd year Computer Science module (CSC 312), which focuses on Human Computer Interaction, Databases and Software Engineering.

A blended learning and teaching environment has been created within the iKamva platform, and enables lecturers to create interactive lessons. This environment also enables students to submit assignments and engage in online tests. The Announcements eTool is used to communicate relevant information to their students related to assessments and feedback.

Students are further provided with a Discussion Forum, where they are able to communicate with their lecturers, tutors and peers regarding the various course topics and chapters.

  • Interactive Scaffolded Lessons

The lecturers used the Lessons eTool to scaffold resources into sections over 14 weeks of the first semester. The sections consisted of a range of components such as articles, videos, and external resources (websites). These components were used, not only for dissemination purposes – but to further assist in assimilation anditeration of content discussed in face-to-face lectures.

In addition, weeks 8 – 12 (first semester), consisted of chapters which were shared and directly linked to group work assignments. This allows students to engage with each other in critical discussions and to consolidate their understanding.

**Lectures and tutorials (face-to-face) focus on specific chapters/sections. These are further aligned to assessment tasks, which enables the lecturers to engage in continuous monitoring and tracking.

  • Formative Online Assessments

Students were required to submit 4 group assignments. Hence, the lecturers created ‘Groups’, which allows students to upload a single assignment submission for their group. The ‘groups’ feature can also be used to assign assessments, announcements and discussion topics to specific student groups. Hence, tutors are able to post relevant information – to their specific groups.

Furthermore, students were expected to complete formative assessment tasks in the form of ‘Pop Quizzes’ which were set up via the Tests & Quizzes eTool. These pop quizzes consisted of a number of Short-Answer/Essay type questions. Students had 15 minutes to complete each quiz, and were able to submit (unlimited submissions). Hereafter, the students were able to view feedback for each question; reflect on their learning progress and revise accordingly.

Please contact the CIECT team to assist with the effective design and development of your blended online environment and the further explore the possibilities that exist.

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