With a wide-ranging learning and teaching community at UTS, we’re lucky at Futures to work with experienced and knowledgable practitioners who generously share their ideas with us and the wider community through blog posts. 2019 was another year of excellent content, and we’re proud to share some of our favourite pieces with you here to round out the year.

Spotlight on students

Many of our contributions have highlighted the complexities and importance of our roles in ensuring that students have a positive learning experience.

If being courageous means showing strength in the face of challenging situations, then I think our students have it in spades. I see acts of bravery every day at UTS.

From Helping students build courage and connection, by Kaitlin Moore

Working with my student leader team is the reason I’m still here after 10 years. They are amazing. They inspire me every day. It gives me hope that the next generation is coming along and will help make the world a better place.

From 5 things I have learnt about working with students as partners, by Georgina Barratt-See

One crucial aim of personalised learning is to develop students’ agency, as learners and as citizens who will graduate and make a difference in the world.

From Creating ‘brave’ spaces in curriculum, by Giedre Kligyte

To study abroad is a once in a lifetime opportunity to experience all the peculiarities of a different culture and broaden your knowledge on different things. I was lucky to come to Australia to study, and since the first day, despite challenges, I have no regrets of having such experience in life.

From Looking back, and forward: an international student’s learning experience at UTS, by Monika Plokhaya.

Teaching tips

Take a look at a new video from the LXT team to hear from a number of representatives across the faculties from UTS on the positive changes that have taken place so far in the transformation process. From preparing students for professional environments to evolving the student experience as a whole, there’s a lot to look forward to with the LXT.

Not only do we need to teach science, we need to teach science in a way that is contextualised within the ethical and social considerations of broader society that graduates will face as they become professionals. That is, science does not happen in a vacuum.

From Teaching the difference between biological sex and gender identity in first year science, by Lucy Mercer-Mapstone.

There are a few things to be aware of as an educator when taking into consideration the needs of your students. Because disclosing things such as visual impairments aren’t required for students to share, how will you know if all of your students are receiving an equal opportunity to access and to succeed in your subject?

How to make your subject more accessible, by Intan Endah-Bonsu.

Designing for authenticity means responding to complexity in student experience so that they can start to identify projects that are meaningful to them and also opening up the audience of student work beyond the boundaries of the academic realm.

Universal Design for Learning: what’s behind the practice?, by David Yeats

Connecting with students

Discussions are a great way of sharing understanding and building and constructing knowledge. We often use discussions in face to face classes, and think little of opening the floor to comments and opinions. We might do this a few times in a face to face class. But how does this work in the online environment? What are the things we can do to make these discussions more useful, more productive and more engaging?

How do you make your online discussions more engaging?, by Ann Wilson.

Many educators get the inkling that students are not opening their official university email accounts regularly. So how can we reach students if they don’t answer their email? Given students are accessing their social media accounts more frequently than their university email, my goal is to disrupt their social media viewing with education-related material.

Students not reading their emails? Try connecting via social media, by Amanda White

Feature image by Caley Dimmock.

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