Monthly Archives: September, 2020

TIPS for Lecturers: Provide clear instructions when setting up assessment [short & long answer types]

It is important that lecturers take note of the following tips to consider, when you develop online exams.

TIP 1: Use ‘Upload File’ Question Type

  It is advised to make use of the ‘File Upload’ question type within Tests and Quizzes. This question type provides a student time to type it out on a text editing document (off-line); and upload it into the system.

  The test is still timed and requires students to complete within a specific time-frame.

TIP 2: Short Answer Essay Question Type

Lecturers are advised to give clear instructions to students when making use of this question type. Students should be advised to:

  Firstly, type answers in a text document first;

  Save the word document; then

 Copy and paste it within the text editor (within iKamva); and

  Save.

Please note that the ‘Short Answer Essay’ type requires students to be online for a specific time-frame. Should they lose connection they will lose their answers if they have not saved. This leads to students requesting that a lecturer re-opens a test.

TIP 3: Remind the student to save the Assessment

Lecturers are advised to give clear instructions to students with regards to saving off-line and online activities.

  Always use Google Chrome (Version 83); OR Mozilla FireFox (Version 77)

  Use the latest versions of the Internet Browsers

  Do not open multiple tabs/windows while taking the test

  Click on the ‘Save’ button to record each answer

  Click ‘Next’ to proceed with test

  Click Submit

NB: It is important that students are given sufficient time to submit short & long answer types.

See example of Law lecturers who have provided their students with clear instructions. Hence, when designing the online assessment, the lecturers provide the guidelines within the ‘About section’ – of the assessment settings.

Example: Law lecturers provide students with clear instructions (when setting up the question types & parts) EXAMINER’S INSTRUCTIONS: This is an official University Examination, and individual answers are required. No consultation or discussion of the examination questions with fellow students or anyone else is allowed. Any answers presented that bear an undue similarity to that of another student will be treated as examination dishonesty. Any form of dishonesty will be referred to the Proctor. For queries email: Dr Kondo tkondo@uwc.ac.za & Prof Hamman dhamman@uwc.ac.zaGENERAL INSTRUCTIONS: Answer all questions in the paper. This examination consists of five parts. Part 1 consists of 8 questions in MCQ format. Complete the MCQs on iKamva. Remember to save each answer as you proceed. Part 2 consists of 12 questions in MCQ format, Complete the MCQs on iKamva. Remember to save each answer as you proceed. Part 3 consists of match the concept to the scenario questions. These will also be filled online on iKamva. Part 4 consists of a long question. These will be answered on a separate word document. The document should be properly identified with the student no as the file name. The student number of the student must appear on top of the document and the document should be adequately numbered. Once complete, the answer will be uploaded as a document by browsing, selecting and submitting to Part 4. If you are not able to upload, email your document to your lecturer. Part 5 consists of a long question. These will be answered on a separate word document. The document should be properly identified with the student no as the file name. The student number of the student must appear on top of the document and the document should be adequately numbered. Once complete, the answer will be uploaded as a document by browsing, selecting and submitting to Part 5. If you are not able to upload, email your document to your lecturer. NB: The lecturers also provided their email addresses to the students via the announcement tool within iKamva.   

BigBlueButton (Online Meetings tool) within iKamva vs. preferred Google Hangouts Tool

CECT in collaboration with lecturers across faculties, have extensively explored the BBB Online Meetings tool (3rd party tool that has been integrated within iKamva) – during this lockdown period.

We have reflected on this pilot phase/lessons learnt; and specifically the challenges related to BBB in comparison with the Google Hangouts Meeting tool.

The CIECT team is currently experiencing many challenges with regards to this 3rd party tool within iKamva (BBB). Users have experienced challenges, including:

 Hardware challenges and could not hear the lecture (sound issues)

  Live recordings cannot be downloaded and is only visible within the Meetings tool

  It only allows one file type to be uploaded at a time

  Some students and lecturers struggled to enter the Meeting

  Some lecturers had trouble sharing their screens in order to showcase specific content

  The Notification functionality repeatedly sends error messages

  The platform incurs data costs for certain Internet Service Providers (ISPs)

NB: More importantly, the external party has not provided adequate technical support for this 3rd party tool.

NB: We have recently informed our users – that it would be best to make use of the functional meetings tool, namely Google Hangouts (for live lectures and video conferencing).

Thank you to all the lecturers who engaged with the exploration of  BBB. We apologise for the inconvenience.

Augmented & Virtual Reality [AR/VR]: EON-XR Platform

EON-XR is an easy-to-use platform for Augmented & Virtual Reality academic solutions. EON-XR can supplement traditional learning and teaching methods by introducing user-friendly immersive lessons and content.

Access the Content Library

The EON-XR platform has an easily accessible content library. You will be able to access all published lessons that have been made available to the whole institution, from the library. Within the ‘Workspace’ section you are able to view previously authored; and lessons that have been shared with you by others.

In order to access the full list of 3D assets/objects, the user will need to toggle the advanced display mode. This can be done by clicking on the profile icon in the top right corner and selecting “ADVANCED MODE”. 

Introduction Video: Desktop & Mobile Tutorials

Explore the platform, and familiarise yourself with technical requirements:

●       Introduction: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xCUbgKK19N8

●       Desktop Windows 10 QuickStart: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3I_qo9z00-0

●       Mobile Phone QuickStart: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aj1DLUvlXrk

**The platform is available on mobile devices (iOS and Android) as well as Personal Computers (Windows 10 and Latest MacOS – big Sur).

Access the Platform

UWC users:

  • Visit the link https://eon-xr.com/
  • Select the Google sign-in option; and
  • Enter your UWC Google account credentials (Gmail).

NB: Watch this space for more information on how to ‘Create Lessons’ [Augmented & Virtual Reality].  

Science Faculty: Pre-recorded videos, Tutorials, Model Answers & Assessments

Lecturers Clement Nyirenda and Louise Leenen, in collaboration with their Tutors have created  an online structured module for the 2nd year students. They have made use of a multimodal approach in order to engage and accommodate students during the lockdown period.

Structured learning content and pre-recorded videos

The ‘Course Resources’ eTool was effectively to structure the content:

●     Lecture presentations,

●     Pre-recorded lecture videos,

●     Tutorials and,

●     Practical exercises and solutions

Students were able to view the content online and download for offline usage from any geographical location, with internet connection.

Tutorials & Practicals aligned to Assessments

Structured weekly tutorial exercises and practicals were created within the ‘Assignments’ eTool. Students were required to submit their bi-weekly Tutorial activities, after engaging in the online tutorial session. A test was also created within the Tests and Quizzes eTool which consisted of two parts: Part A had multiple choice questions and Part B had short answer essay type questions. The second part of the test was marked online by the lecturer and students were provided with their assessment scores and specific comments to their essay questions.

Online Consultation Sessions & Model Answers [Tutorial Solutions]

Weekly online consultations sessions were created for students to engage with the lecturer regarding specific questions related to the tutorial topics. During these sessions the lecturer guided students through tutorial questions and shared the model answers with those who were able to join. The discussions were recorded so students could view it after the class to reinforce their learning of the topic. In addition, a downloadable version of the tutorial solutions was shared via iKamva in order to accommodate those students who could not join the live sessions.

Law: Themes, Podcasts, Questions Pools & Student Groups to ensure the Integrity of Assessment

Lecturer Debbie Hamman in collaboration with the CIECT team has created a structured online environment for First year Mercantile Law (MER102) students. The lecturer shared course resources, structured lessons; and set-up an online test.

Lessons aligned to themes & self-directed learning

The lessons are structured and aligned to themes (1 – 12) whereby students:

  • view content (which can also be downloaded for offline viewing);
  • track their knowledge of a specific theme; and
  • download a quiz for reinforcement and self-directed learning (no marks assigned).

Podcasts aligned to themes

Podcasts are shared with students on a weekly basis in relation to the specific themes; as well as the course outline.  Regular course communication and announcements are shared with students via the announcements tool.

Online test: Question pools & student groups to ensure integrity of the assessment

Approximately 540 students have engaged in their first term test which entailed 5 parts. Various question types were applied, namely, Multiple Choice (drawn from a question pool), Matching, Fill-in-the-blank, and practical question responses. The students were divided into two groups (according to surname); to ensure that each group engaged in different question pools. Two assessment sessions were set up on a specific day, to allow the student groups to engage in the online test.

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Anti-Plagiarism for Student Success: Turnitin – Rubrics & Voice Comment Tool

Traditional text review methods would require lecturers to copy-paste text into Google or the Google Scholar search engine. Lecturers would repeat this process for each student submission. This method is cumbersome and is unable to access softcopies within paid websites.

Turnitin training during the lockdown period

Student training entailed generating and downloading a Turnitin report. During the training workshops, the students were able to pose questions on how to submit assignments, resubmit assignments and interpret their reports. To date (20th March till 1 September), CIECT has assisted more than 432 UWC members (staff and students) on queries related to the use of Turnitin. 

Turnitin Tools

Turnitin Report

The Turnitin search engine instantaneously locates sourced text from multiple submissions. This process is executed by the Turnitin search engine as soon as assignments are uploaded by students. Reports are generated within a one to twenty-four (1H-24H) hour window period. All students’ submissions are checked against the UWC local repository, online submissions as well as journals, periodicals and publications (including paid sites). The use of the ‘Originality Check Tool’ has increased across faculties and is the most requested tool within Turnitin. 

Rubric Tool integrated within ‘Assignment’

The Turnitin (Tii) platform enables the seamless integration of a Rubric within ‘assignments. Lecturers/Instructors are able to create Rubrics tailored to their niche discipline.  The Rubric Scoring Tool assists the lecturer to complete the rubric accordingly. It should be noted; multiple Rubrics can be created and used across various assignments. Students are able to view their accumulated total mark within the Rubric.

Voice Comment Tool

The Turnitin ‘Voice Comment’ tool allows lecturers to give audio feedback in relation to student papers, submitted to the Turnitin (Tii) platform. The tool forms part of several online tools, within the Turnitin Grade Mark Tool. Students are able to listen to the lecturer’s audio feedback, whilst reading the report/feedback.

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