Ben R. Atkinson

Writer, Musician & Presenter

EDU720 Week 12: Reflecting on Online Learning

EDU720 Week 12: Reflecting on Online Learning

In this final CRJ post for my PGCHE course, I wanted to reflect back on my learning as a whole in both the EDU720 and EDU710 modules.

It was when completing a second self-evaluation against the UKPSF (something I also did back in Week 1 of the first EDU710 module) that I realised just how far I’d come over the course of this PGCHE. I now have a diverse collection of experiences which I can draw on in my future practice, including being able to plan modules more thoroughly, write an assessment and feedback strategy and defend this to a group of senior academics and, most importantly, understand the diverse way in which students learn – bringing me to the realisation that the student learning is far more important than what I am actually teaching.

Thinking about the best learning experience I have had over the course of this online PGCHE, I would have to say it has been the collaborate with my peers across the online forums, learning activities and assessed tasks. Above I have outlined what I think I have learnt most from this course, and I feel that the feedback I have received from my peers and the general camaraderie I have witnessed each week has played such an important role in making this course not only useful for my own learning but enjoyable and fun.

In this second EDU720 module, in particular, I have received a lot of very positive feedback from my peers around my own responses on the weekly forum. This has gone a long way towards boosting my confidence and reminding me that I am successful as a practitioner in HE and I shouldn’t be so hard on myself all the time. Comments that particularly stand out for me, are those I received from Mark Laville who said that my work to plan an online module of study was ‘not just informative but [is] also aiming to inspire students in the next step…their research journey’ (Laville, 2019). I also think back to some of the comments, in particular in the week of the EDU720 module that focused on learning technology (a specialism of mine) and where Graham and others were impressed by the range of tools I was able to share with peers through both the forum and the webinar for that week. Having feedback from my peers and the course tutors also helped me to overcome issues that affected my assessed work, such as using my colleagues as guinea pigs when I didn’t have an active cohort of students to work with – Federica in particularly was very helpful in this regard, pointing out that ‘feedback on the approach is likely to be powerful’ when it comes from my peers (Oradini, 2019).

Throughout this PGCHE course, I have also relied on the strong bond I have developed with several of my peers which has led to collaboration throughout the course and on each of the assessment tasks in particular. Becky Wass has been of great help in this regard, and we have collaborated on Learning Conversation forms for the micro-teach session (Wass, 2018) and the Flipped Learning activity (Wass, 2019). We are planning to do so again for the final evaluative assessment task at the end of this EDU720 module.

Overall, I feel there is a lot that I can take from the experiences on this PGCHE course into my future teaching and learning practice in HE. I will certainly be adopting a more reflective approach to my teaching and ensuring that I have time to look back and evaluate the successes and learning that I can take from each experience. Furthermore, I will go forward with a much broader arsenal of experience when it comes to writing module content, planning learning activities and developing assessment and feedback strategies. This are all areas of practice that I did not feel confident about before, but now feel that I would be able to develop while also drawing on some of the key literature as it relates to teaching and learning in higher education.

Reference List

Laville, M. (2019) Week 5: Forum – Integrating Activities in Your Flipped Classroom Designs. Available at: https://flex.falmouth.ac.uk/courses/344/discussion_topics/8479 (Accessed: 13 March 2019).

Oradini, F. (2019) Week 5: Forum – Integrating Activities in Your Flipped Classroom Designs. Available at: https://flex.falmouth.ac.uk/courses/344/discussion_topics/8479?module_item_id=19544 (Accessed: 14 March 2019).

Wass, R. (2018) ‘Learning Conversation Form – Ben Atkinson-Foster’. Falmouth University: Unpublished Manuscript.

Wass, R. (2019) ‘Learning Conversation Form – Ben Atkinson-Foster, Flipped Learning Activity’.

About The Author

Ben R. Atkinson is a writer, musician, and presenter who can be heard broadcasting on radio stations around the world, is known for his novels, radio dramas, and who writes and performs his own music in the country/folk genre. Ben is currently studying for his PhD in Ethnomusicology at the University of Lincoln in the UK.
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