Preserving Guest Lectures on MA Illustration: Authorial Practice

Overview

This case study looks at one way in which guest lectures are being preserved by Steve Braund, course coordinator for MA Illustration: Authorial Practice. By using tools available to all members of staff, Steve, working with the Educational Technology team, is able to offer students 24-hour access to valuable course materials from experts in the world of illustration.

The Absurd Event: Approaches to Absurdity in Illustration, 2012

Bringing Experts Together

Steve and his colleagues have organised the MA Illustration: Authorial Practice annual Illustration Forum since 2003. The event brings together world-renowned illustrators & publishers that speak to an Authorial Illustration Practice. Famous names from past events include, Lorenzo Mattotti, Audrey Niffenegger and Sara Fanelli.

Unlike a conference, the Forum’s speakers are hand selected, which allows the team to create an interesting mix of voices and opinions around each year’s particular theme. This has unintentionally led to picking up on many very early career practitioners who have gone on to become stars of the illustration discipline including; Laura Carlin and Anna Bhushan – the forum archive offering retrospectively, rare, and fascinating insights into an artist’s early practice.

2009 Forum: Under the Covers: a one-day forum
exploring convergences in illustration, literature and design.
Left to right: Prof. John Vernon Lord, Sara Fanelli, Dr. Leo de Frietas,Viviane
Schwarz, Steve Braund and Audrey Niffenegger.

The Challenge & Solution

Initially each forum event was captured by audio only, with video being adopted later on. Over the years these have been hosted on various technologies e.g. Echo360 and Falmouth OnAir – but as technologies change, content was at risk of being lost. There was also an important extra requirement that content should be restricted to Falmouth students only and not accessible by the general public.

To solve this, the Educational Technology team worked with Steve to create a Forum archive on the Learning Space. It was advised that all video files should be retrieved, backed up and uploaded to a password protected Vimeo account. Then, the Learning Space Forum activity was used to organise the videos and audio into a catalogue of content on the MA Illustration course page. This allows the students to search and find videos by year, presenter and theme.

The university has so many renowned guest speakers that it makes sense to build archives of these, as they make such a rich resource for future students and staff and, as with our Illustration Forum, they eventually take on historical significance too. Much thanks to the Educational Technology team.

– Steve Braund

Opportunities

The solution is scalable as the technology is secure and new videos can easily be added at any time by a member of staff. It could also be used to build repositories of example dissertations, internship opportunities and other collections of useful resources. Steve is now looking even further to the future by live-streaming the most recent Forum so that the Falmouth Flexible MA Illustration students can also participate.

Further Support

For help with creating an archive of valuable course content, please get in touch with the Educational Technology team using etsupport@falmouth.ac.uk

Flipping the Classroom on BA(Hons) Creative Advertising

Overview

This case study exhibits an innovate flipped classroom approach used by Lucy Cokes, Senior Lecturer for BA(Hons) Creative Advertising as part of a final year module. A flipped classroom reverses the traditional teaching structure by asking students to learn material outside of the classroom in exchange for more meaningful face-to-face activities. Through careful planning and maximising the potential of features available in Learning Space, students found the new approach to be an engaging way to learn.

Flipping the Class

Lucy’s flipped approach focused on teaching students the laws and regulations that marketing campaigns must adhere to. Traditionally this was delivered via a 2-hour lecture with no time to put the knowledge into practice inside the classroom. By swapping the lecture with an online series of short video lectures, students could instead use the 2-hour class time to apply the knowledge using interesting small group activities.

 Is the traditional lecture on the way out? | © Arabelle Zhuang/Mayn Creative

An Innovative Strategy for Teaching and Learning

To help the students adapt, Lucy was clear in outlining her expectations of the students on the Learning Space. With the learning resources hosted online, students could access them anywhere at any time. Students could pause, speed-up or slow-down video lectures to meet their individual learning needs and then test their knowledge using a multiple-choice quiz activity and immediately receive feedback.

“The use of audio as opposed to reading is particularly helpful for students with dyslexia, of which we have a significant number in our cohort. I was touched when some of my students made a point of thanking me for producing these online resources as they found it really helpful compared to attending lectures.”

– Lucy Cokes

You may be wondering how can staff be sure that students are participating with the online resources… The activity completion setting is a handy tool built into Learning Space which can be used to track student progress. Checkboxes appear next to each activity which can either be ticked off by students, or automatically triggered when certain conditions are met, such as by completing a quiz. Staff can then view an activity report which provides an overview of where each student is at.

A challenge when using a flipped approach is ensuring that not only students are on board but also that staff are fully invested too. To sell the benefits of the approach, Lucy piloted a flipped session with the course team as part of her PGCHE with Falmouth Flexible, to great success. One colleague noted that ‘all students could benefit from a flipped class structure’.

 A flipped classroom accommodates multiple learning styles. | © Ignas Vincerzevkis

Opportunities

Lucy has already applied what she has learnt from her first flipped classroom to a first-year module. Although by her own admission, it can take some time to initially create the online resources – the benefits to the students however, is invaluable. From a pedagogical perspective, the approach is forward thinking, as higher education continues to adopt blended learning.

Further Support

Thinking about incorporating a flipped classroom within your own module? Get in touch with the Educational Technology team using etsupport@falmouth.ac.uk. We can help support you find the right technologies and provide top tips for incorporating them within a flipped classroom.

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