Tip of the Week 2/2024

Toolkit for Online Teachers

Now available in English, too! The Toolkit includes both pedagogical reflection points and edtech tips with links to resources. The Toolkit for Online Teachers now published equals to the first level of the Toolkits in Finnish, “Digiopettajan starttipaketti.” It is compiled as a Microsoft Sway presentation.

Here is a link to the Toolkit on this website: https://sites.uef.fi/verkko-ja-monimuotopedagogiikka/toolkit-for-online-teachers/

Accessing the Sway presentation does not require a sign-in, however, some of the UEF-internal links within the file are accessible to UEF staff only.

Tip of the Week 12/2023

UEF Campus Development Webinar

Welcome to a UEF Campus Development webinar on Tuesday, 28 November 2023, 9:00–11:00.

The webinar summarises the results of the work carried out during the autumn, presents scenarios for the development of both campuses, and provides an overview of the progress of the project.

The webinar will be attended by the Rectors, directors of University Services and representatives of the campus development organisation, as well as Piia Viitanen and Aapo Huotarinen from ARCO, the architect agency.

Follow THIS LINK to join the webinar. A recording of the webinar will be published in Viva Engage (Yammer) after the event.

The main language of the webinar is Finnish; however, the presentation material and summaries of the discussion themes will be in English.

The UEF Campus Development Viva Engage community will serve as a commenting platform during and after the webinar.

Tip of the week 11/2023

Participate in the survey: Online exams and remote monitoring

Dear Teacher or Student, please answer the survey, and influence the procurement of proctoring software for online exams!

Do you think it should be possible to monitor remotely conducted online exams more closely? Would there be users for this kind of software in the University of Eastern Finland?

What kind of features should the software have?

The mapping of the procurement of remote monitoring software, aka proctoring software, for online exams continues. Now we are investigating UEF teachers’ and students’ opinions and views on the matter: whether there is a need for procurement, how much use the software would have and what kind of features should be found in it.

The survey was created based on the responses to an online exam-related survey conducted earlier in the autumn. This survey is only aimed at the staff and students of the University of Eastern Finland, so that we can get a better idea of what kind of needs and ideas exist in our organization in particular.

Answer the survey no later than 30 November 2023 and have your say on future exam practices!

Open the survey from this link. All responses are anonymous.

Tip of the week 10/2023

Use Turnitin Draft Coach for assistance during the writing phase of your assignment

Turnitin Draft Coach is a tool that helps writers during the writing phase. The Draft Coach service operates within Word Online, and you’ll need to log in using your UEF credentials. You can find instructions for enabling Draft Coach in the Turnitin plagiarism detection system course (course key for the course is “turnitin”). With Draft Coach, you can check both the originality of your text and the references within the text and sources. In addition, Draft Coach includes an English language proofreading tool.

Draft Coach provides the familiar originality report found in Turnitin. Draft Coach identifies similarities in the text from extensive databases, such as the internet, student papers, and publications. Draft Coach does not report or archive work anywhere. It is designed to assist students in addressing any potential issues before submitting their assignments. You can use Draft Coach instead of the assignment check in the Student Turnitin course in Moodle.

Tip of the Week 9/2023

Help us find the best way to develop the future of electronic exams!

WHAT? University of Eastern Finland, Laurea University of Applied Sciences and Turku University of Applied Sciences are in cooperation preparing a procurement of a software for supervising electronic remote exams.

WHY? The software enables taking proctored exams from anywhere, without the need to travel to the campus. The aim is to guarantee fair and equal exam situation for everyone and provide more flexible opportunities for taking an exam for students who study remotely.

HOW? This is Your chance to participate in the process! We encourage You to answer this short survey and share Your experiences to help us develop better online exams and find the best solution for proctored exams for both students and teachers.

WHEN? Please answer the survey by 24.9.2023 and join in developing the future of electronic exams!

Open the survey here.

You can change the language of the survey to English from the drop-down menu on the top-right corner of the page.

Tip of the Week 8/2023

Panopto video service – benefits & tips

Have a good academic year! Panopto video service is one of the newest digital learning environments in UEF. You can find the service from https://uef.cloud.panopto.eu/ or via UEF’s App menu.

Panopto provides great tools for creating video materials to your courses either via browser or via Panopto app, which is available for Mac and Windows. You can easily record “talking head” type of videos, either with your PowerPoint slides or other materials, or without it. Also, it is a great tool for recording screen casting type of videos.

There are multiple benefits of using Panopto, for example automatic caption, easy sharing of videos, great search engine and analytics tools.

Also, Panopto is available via UEF eLearn Moodle as activity type.

Panopto’s support page on UEF Heimo: https://studentuef.sharepoint.com/sites/heimo_en/services/elearning_support/Pages/Panopto.aspx

Panopto has a lot of useful online resources available at https://support.panopto.com/s/.

  • Online documentation
  • Video tutorials
  • Forums
  • Webinars

Jani Lemmetyinen, Development Manager, Digital Learning Environments

Tip of the Week 7/2023

The influence of AI in learning, teaching, and assessment?

Centre for Research in Assessment and Digital Learning (CRADLE) of Deakin University, Australia, has been organising a webinar series this semester, among many institutions of higher education, on the influence of AI in learning, teaching, assessment, and in the development of teaching and assessment.

As we haven’t yet organised an English-language discussion on the topic at the University of Eastern Finland, I warmly recommend taking some time to listen to or also listen to and watch this webinar series by CRADLE.

Why not also join their third webinar in the series, coming up on June 5, titled “The impact of ChatGPT on higher education: what have we learnt?” As they are webcasting from Australia, it will be an early morning session for us in Finland, starting at 7 AM in our time zone. Nevertheless, their focus on assessment makes this all the more pertinent for us teachers.

As per their own description, “The Centre for Research in Assessment and Digital Learning (CRADLE) researches assessment practices in the changing settings of education, which are increasingly embracing digital learning. Our aim is to improve and optimise learning in higher and professional education”.  

Best wishes, Susanna K.

Tip of the Week 6/2023

Why do we assess the way we do?

This Tip was also published in English in the Finnish version of the Tips of the Week.

Assessment, assessment, assessment. All of us teachers do it, but do we give enough thought to what it is we are actually doing?

As UEF Professor of Education Science Päivi Atjonen has put it, when discussing what students will focus on in our courses: “Sitä saat mitä tilaat”. That is, literally translated, ”You get what you order”, with the meaning of “You reap what you sow”. To put it simply, students will focus their effort on what will be assessed (and graded).

So, to use Atjonen’s metaphor, what kind of orders are we placing to students in our courses? Have you recently reflected on your own assessment and grading practices?

Why not listen to Juuso Nieminen’s interview titled Toward Assessment Utopias for the podcast Teachers Going Gradeless as your end-of-semester personal and professional development. In the interview, Nieminen (an Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Education, University of Hong Kong, a Banting Fellow at Ontario Tech University, Canada, as well as an Honorary Research Fellow at Deakin University, Australia) discusses for example his own personal experiences as a teacher when trying to put into practice co-created assessment rubrics with his students.

While listening to the podcast, why not also take a look at Nieminen’s article Assessment for inclusion: rethinking inclusive assessment in higher education, published in Teaching in Higher Education in 2022.

PS: Finnish-language speakers: Have you noticed how many useful resources on assessment Professor Atjonen has online, for example her channel on YouTube? Not to mention our UEF Digiopettajan starttipaketti, the audiovisual guide available online (in Finnish at the moment, will be published in English, too), and the links within its section on assessment to Atjonen’s resources.

Tip of the Week 5/2023

How to Measure Student Workload in Your Course

Have you ever received student feedback with comments that your course included “too much work”? How much is too much? What kind of assignments and tasks would equal the amount of work required for example in a course of 4 credit points (a total of 108 hours of work)?

You can calculate an estimate of how much work each type of learning task will take by using some of the available workload calculators, such as the UEF’s or Fitech’s. Naturally there are elements not covered in these calculators to take into consideration, too. Nevertheless, these calculators will give you a rough idea of the average workload for students with each assignment type you use in your course:

Below, a screenshot of the UEF “Mitta-peruslaskuri” in English, and a screenshot of the page 6 of Fitech’s Learning Design Toolkit: Workload Estimation.

A screenshot of the UEF Mitta-peruslaskuri.
A screenshot of Fitech’s Learning Design Toolkit, page 6: Workload Estimation.