University projects win ALTC grants

August 11 / 67

Three separate projects involving University staff have been awarded significant grants from the Australian Learning and Teaching Council this month.

Raoul Mulder, Jon Pearce and Chi Baik (Information Systems and the Centre for the Study of Higher Education) received $219,000 for their project, ‘Promoting student peer review in Australian tertiary education'. 

Wally Smith, Hannah Lewi, Shanton Chang and Andrew Saniga (Information Systems and ABP) received $212,000 for 'New tools and techniques for learning in the field: studying the built environment'.

Gregor Kennedy, with colleagues at Macquarie and CSU (Macquarie-led), received $220,000 to work on 'Blended synchronicity: uniting on-campus and distributed learners through media-rich real-time collaboration tools'. 

Director of eLearning Associate Professor Gregor Kennedy said these grants were highly competitive and hard-won, and the University’s success demonstrated its strength in innovation in using technology in teaching and learning.

He said the ways in which technology was used in higher education greatly benefitted students and teachers. 

“We know from past research, when it’s applied in pedagogically sound ways, technology can enhance students’ learning processes and outcomes, and from the staff perspective, it can be used to engage students and provide effective and efficient ways of managing teaching and learning.”

Dr Pearce said his team’s grant would allow it to extend PRAZE, the peer-review program it developed in-house, to the rest of Australia so there would be a nationally available tool for managing student peer review.

“We want to make it easy for an individual, or an institution, to implement peer review in their teaching in the simplest possible way,” he said. 

“And the project goes further than that. We are all passionate about the value of peer review in the learning process, so we’re aiming to establish a repository for resources relating to student peer review, ranging from print guides to video tutorials, case studies, libraries of review forms and links to external sites.” 

He said eLearning projects made an enormous contribution to the quality the students’ experience by using technology. 


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