Clinical reasoning is considered a core skill in healthcare and this is a skill that is difficult to teach using traditional teaching methods. Amy Lawton, Academic in Victoria University’s College of Health and Biomedicine explains that there is no ‘cookie-cutter’ approach when it comes to teaching clinical reasoning. It it is a combination of areas […]Read More
Author: Connected Learning Team
Student Project: Creative Outdoor Space for Campus Life
In the unit NEA2102 Architectural Design and Theory, students from different disciplines come together to work on real-life projects. For this project, students worked together to design an outdoor space for VU’s Werribee Campus. The collaboration between design and engineering students provided a unique experience for students to gain hands-on industry experience without even leaving […]Read More
No placement: Early childhood students getting creative with pop-up playground
When Victoria University’s early childhood students couldn’t go to childcare centers for placement, they decided to take the matter into their own hands. The Mini Maddern pop-up playground in Melbourne’s West is a collaboration with Public Realm Lab and Maribyrnong City Council and is providing a place for children to play and connect with the […]Read More
Camera use in Zoom: make the right choices for your class
For many teachers – students not turning on their cameras in Zoom can sometimes feel like teaching in a black hole. Paul G Moss suggests that most students are actually “on the fence” about turning their cameras on, and can be persuaded by the benefits if you clearly articulate them. Benefits like: increasing student attention […]Read More
VU Accessibility Fix Your Content Day
VU has a commitment to increasing accessibility for all. All universities are required to provide accessible learning resources and websites under Disability Discrimination Act (1992). Next Friday 28th of May we are holding workshops at VU in line with the Worldwide Accessibility Fix your Content Day! On this day, we will be running a series of short […]Read More
The new Victoria University demonstration green roof
*Drumroll…* We are very excited to present to you the new Victoria University demonstration green roof at our Footscray Park campus!!! This is a place for research, demonstration and education, and will be used with VU students and the wider community. Watch the video below to see what the finished green roof looks like (2 […]Read More
The purpose and benefit of using lesson plans
Lesson plans are standard issue in primary and secondary education but to date, have been less commonly used at the tertiary level. In Block Mode at VU, lesson plans are used extensively to assist learning design, prepare for and facilitate active and engaged learning. Listen to VU academics discuss how and why they use lesson […]Read More
Teaching with tech in 2021
It is a new year with new possibilities, yet for many of us, it looks like 2021 is going to be another year of remote and blended learning. The difference? This year, with hours of practice and peer collaboration under our belt, we are going to do it better. Why not try some new tools […]Read More
2020 is coming to an end…
And just like that 2020 is almost over… It feels like this year has gone extremely fast and slow at the same time. The end of 2020 is particularly special because our first Block Model graduates received their bachelor degrees, having studied exclusively in Block Mode since 2018 – a first in Australia. At the […]Read More
Students as Partners and the power of the VU Block Model
In this episode of the Student Experience podcast Trish McCluskey (Interim Pro-Vice-Chancellor Learning & Teaching at Victoria University) explains how the transition away from traditional university teaching to the VU Block Model, has set VU up for success during COVID-19. Trish also describes how their Students as Staff (SAS) have been a crucial part of […]Read More
No two blocks are the same: A paramedicine case study
In this video First Year College lecturer, Meg McInnes shares how she has adapted to digitally supported remote teaching and how the block model supports online learning and teaching. By July 2020 she was already in her 6th block teaching Bachelor of Paramedicine units remotely, allowing her to rapidly adjust and improve. Meg says that […]Read More
Gamifying Learning 101
A challenge many instructors are facing, not only in the online classroom but the physical classroom as well, is how to keep students active and engaged. In this podcast, we get to meet Nick Lekakis, a Learning Designer at Victoria University and expert on gamifying learning. Listen to the podcast below to find out what […]Read More
Digital Pedagogies: industry leading live performance events
In this video, we get to meet Nick Cooper, the Unit Convenor of Live Performance Management at Victoria University. Nick explains how he helped his students to deliver real live music events online during COVID-19, including local emerging and established artists and superstar DJ’s! “Student feedback has been overwhelmingly positive, with many serious they considering […]Read More
“Doing a presentation in a very quiet Zoom classroom… it takes a lot of guts!”
What new skills have you learnt during your virtual teaching/learning? Let’s hear what new skills VU students have gained during their online studies in this short (3 min) video…Read More
Active Learning: how is it received by students?
Active learning is a term you probably come across frequently if you work in Higher Education. Extensive research shows that students learn more when they are actively engaged, but the question is how is it received by students? A recent article by Louis Deslauriers et al. explains why students’ perception of active learning is often negative […]Read More
Digital Pedagogies for Remote Learning: Bringing the bush online
In this video, we are meeting Dr Christine Connelly a senior lecturer in Environmental Science at Victoria University. Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, Christine couldn’t take her students on their usual field trips and therefore she decided to create virtual field trips for her students instead! Watch the (4 min) video to find out […]Read More
Digital Pedagogies for Remote Learning: Hairdresser Apprentices
How do practical disciplines like hairdressing adapt to the new online study environment? In this short video, we meet Veronica Di-Girolamo, a teacher in Certificate III Hairdressing at Victoria University Polytechnic. It turns out that this challenge has led to new and better ways of teaching and engaging with industry. Watch the (3:45 min) video […]Read More
Student voice: web accessibility through alternative formats
In the web accessibility for all series part 3, we are interviewing VU student Sharyl Brockett about her experience using the new web accessibility tool ‘Alternative formats‘ in VU Collaborate (Victoria University’s LMS). Sharyl explains that being vision impaired and studying online has its own set of challenges. What can we do to be more […]Read More
Student voice: online vs face to face learning
How does the online study experience compare to face to face learning? Let’s see what VU students had to say about this…Read More
The Perfect Score – web accessibility for all Part 2
Following on from Part 1 of The Perfect score – web accessibility for all series, in this post Academic Jane Hickey shares her 4 key learnings from making her LMS site more accessible. “The tool makes it so easy,” Jane says, “it highlights what the issues are and tells you how to fix them.” Jane […]Read More
The Perfect Score – web accessibility for all Part 1
Online learning in universities has come of age during the Coronavirus crisis and publications daily extol how we have risen to the challenge. But online learning creates barriers to some of our students even while it liberates others. What should university’s do about this? Clearly, we need to make our online materials accessible, but why […]Read More
Student voice: what is it like studying from home?
Receiving feedback from our students is essential in order to be able to offer the best possible study experience at VU. Let’s listen to what our students think of studying online and how their experience has been so far!Read More
Student voice: staying connected while studying online
At Connected Learning, we believe in staying connected. Let’s hear what students think about staying connected with VU while studying online.Read More
Getting more out of your Zoom classroom!
By now most of us are familiar with how to facilitate sessions online using Zoom. But how do we keep our students engaged online? That’s the million dollar question… Watch this video to find out how to use engaging visuals in Zoom!Read More
Extended Classroom: Plan B for the Block
In the current environment, certain circumstances might require you to extend your class online with minimal notice. Building on the principles of the Block, in the event that you may not be able to come to class, we want to continue to foster a sense of belonging for our students. We want to mirror our […]Read More
What did VU students think of their first week of uni?
In 2020 Victoria University will have successfully transitioned all undergraduate degrees into Block Mode. In the VU Block Model, students undertake only one unit at the time over four weeks. Our approach is designed with students’ needs in mind. Studying in smaller classes, students learn better with more access to their teachers and close contact […]Read More
Return to learn to earn: micro credentials in the Australian context
Emeritus Professor Beverly Oliver articulates the need for more certified granular learning in this 15 min podcast. Also check out the 2019 report ‘Making microcredentials work for learners, employers and providers‘, it gives a comprehensive overview of the current state and future needs.Read More
Making screencast videos with a pen-enabled device
If you want to record material that is highly visual, consider using a pen-enabled device (or Tablet PC) such as a Surface Pro or iPad to give your screencast videos an extra dimension. With these devices, you can quickly make sketches or draw pictures as you explain your ideas in the video. You can also […]Read More
2019 is coming to an end
There have been a number of highlights this year, including: Hitting the 400 block unit mark with our revolutionary VU Block Model. We are particularly proud of this in the Connected Learning team at VU. In 2020, we’re looking forward to starting on designing block units for our post grad courses too! Investing more time into performing […]Read More
Trish McCluskey, Miriam Gelotte & Aleksandra Trifkovic. The VU Connected Learning team attended the 4th annual TEQSA conference last week. The theme of the conference was ‘Partnerships driving quality’. Trish McCluskey, Miriam Gelotte and Aleksandra Trifkovic spoke about ‘Partnering with Students to Co-Design Quality Learning on the Block’. The presentation emphasised how the Student-as-Staff program […]Read More
What is Design Thinking?
In its most basic form, Design Thinking is a problem-solving process, but it is much more than a set of rigid steps. It is a skill-set that involves unique abilities like empathy, integrative thinking, and a tolerance for risk and ambiguity. Design Thinking has been called a ‘mindset’ or an ‘attitude’ or ‘worldview’. David Kelly, […]Read More
What is it about the VU Block Model that makes it so special?
Let’s hear what our students think of the VU Block Model:Read More
What makes a great teacher?
Let’s hear what VU students think makes a great teacher (maybe we can learn a thing or two!)Read More
Students ♥ VU
We went out and asked students what they love about Victoria University. We love that you love VU so much! Read More
VU Polytechnic wins outstanding award!
At the 65th anniversary of The Victorian Training awards night, VU Polytechnic won the Inclusive Training Provider of the Year Award! Amazing work VU Polytechnic, well done. The award recognises exceptional training providers within the Victorian Government’s vocational education and training system. Winners have demonstrated outstanding improvements in the achievement, engagement and well-being of students […]Read More
Eric Mazur visits VU to deliver workshop on assessment
Assessment For and not Of Learning The challenge of breaking the shackles of the Assessment paradigm in the Sciences and Engineering to empower our students with 21st Century skills was the focus of a thought-provoking workshop delivered by Harvard University’s Professor Eric Mazur. Assessment informs the way we teach and dictates the way we learn, […]Read More
5 ways to create great rubrics
There’s no doubt that good rubrics help student learning and make marking less of a chore. It’s also true that a badly designed rubric can make learning and marking more difficult for everyone. So, how do you create a great rubric? Here are five tips on how to get the most out of your rubrics: […]Read More
Do you flip?
Are you familiar with ‘Flipped Learning‘? Flipped Learning is a great approach for academics that are teaching in the Block Model, as it encourages a dynamic and interactive learning environment for students! Martha Ramirez explains in the video below how she flips her classes. One important take away from this video was that Martha raised […]Read More
Website accessibility is everyone’s business
Hey Learning Designers/Developers: do you format VU Collaborate resources with a view to their accessibility? Accessibility is complicated. The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG vs 2.1) distills a set of thirteen guidelines for designing web pages for people with blindness and low vision, deafness and hearing loss, limited movement, speech disabilities, photo-sensitivity, and learning and cognitive restrictions – but at twenty thousand words, it’s a pretty hefty read. Here’s […]Read More
How do we teach our students to write better?
In this podcast, Cheryl E. Ball tells us about her “Editorial Pedagogy” approach. She discusses the real work of the publishing process and how students can learn how to write better by using “real-world projects.” Cheryl has also written a series of articles where she first introduces the approach. In this episode Cheryl E. Ball […]Read More
What is it like being a Student as Staff at VU?
Our Students as Staff are our greatest asset and we say it often and with good reason. But what is it that they really do? Watch this video to find out:Read More
VU Students @ HERDSA 2019
During the first week of July, our students as staff (SAS) Jodie Gibbons and Aleksandra Trifkovic presented at the Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia (HERDSA) conference held in Auckland, New Zealand. The topic of their presentation was ‘Students as Co-creators of Curriculum’ which was based upon the unique SAS contribution to each […]Read More
Victoria University App wins Australia’s coveted Good Design Award
The Victoria University App received a prestigious Gold Accolade in the Digital Design category for outstanding design and innovation. An innovative mobile ‘super app’ created by a student-led team of Victoria University technologists and designers was given Australia’s highest honour for design and innovation at the peak industry Good Design Awards. Big congrats to our awesome colleagues for […]Read More
David Helfand visiting VU
This week David Helfand visited Victoria University to discuss the Block Model with staff and students at our Footscray Park campus. Who’s David Helfand? David Helfand is the pioneer behind block teaching and learning. In 2005, David became involved with creating Canada’s first independent, non-for-profit, secular university, Quest University in Canada. He was appointed as […]Read More
How to improve your MCQs
6 takeaways from a session with Brett Vaughan from Melbourne Uni on how to improve your MCQs: BLUEPRINT – map your learning outcomes, to your content, to your MCQs Focus one ONE concept per question with significant meaning and consequence Don’t use not, double negatives or all/none of the above The cover test. Can you […]Read More
Should exams resemble real-world tasks?
“What is the defining image of the academic side of undergraduate life? For many centuries, it has surely been the student bent over the exam hall desk or library table, scribbling furiously. And although the modern library image would more accurately feature a computer screen with a vast amount of tabs open, the time spent […]Read More
Got 5 mins to think about lesson plans for active learning?
Check out our VU Lesson plan info and template and presentation regarding Lesson Plans for Active Learning: Read More
How to escape grading jail: strategies to better manage the workflow
Three strategies found most helpful in the continuing quest to better manage the grading workflow and stay out of trouble.Read More