Categories: Higher Ed, Our Product

What kind of technology can be used to support the learning process at universities?


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Keri Beckingham

In today’s world, the need to provide blended and remote learning study options for students is a key consideration for universities, especially in light of the uncertainty that the Covid-19 pandemic has created. The itslearning digital learning management system is helping universities deliver their learning process in a more flexible way. It is optimized for student-centered teaching and meets students’ expectations for their studies.

The itslearning platform has been designed to be “device agnostic”, which means that it will work with all of the devices that students use to connect – such as mobiles or laptops – and it is integrated with cloud education services such as Office365, ensuring that students can access their learning quickly and easily.

In this article we’ll explore in detail how the itslearning platform can support the learning process at universities.

The six steps of the learning process

itslearning helps empower higher education institutions across the six steps of the learning process:

Plan

When it comes to planning your lessons and modules, the itslearning Planner provides teachers with a clear, understandable overview of their courses, and allows students to navigate course materials at their own pace. In addition, it allows students to easily access their course plans, as well as Zoom and Microsoft Teams meeting links from calendar invites, enabling them to keep on top of their remote learning requirements.

Engage

It is important to make your learning content engaging. The usability of your platform should be considered as well. On the itslearning login page, the information is displayed in a clear and concise way, ensuring that it is easy to understand and doesn’t bombard the user with too much information that could impact their learning. itslearning notifies students of course updates, announcements and informs them of which tasks need to be completed.

Teach

The next part of the learning process involves teachers using their chosen learning strategy such as blended learning or project-based learning and utilizing the range of tools in itslearning so that they have more time to focus on their students.

Assess

This step is crucial to the learning process and involves using formative and summative assessment tools to evaluate students’ academic performance. The itslearning platform includes several tools, like Tasks which can be used to assess offline events such as presentations, and module checklists to ensure student understanding. The Assignment tool allows students to submit digital work such as essays, videos and portfolios.

Reflect

The itslearning platform gives both teachers and students the chance to reflect on their learning and decide what changes should be made in the future, helping to ensure that the learning process is as effective as possible. For example, students can view lecture recordings which can be supplemented with reflective questions to maximize learning opportunities. In addition, discussion forums allow students to connect, ask questions and carry out intellectual exchanges, and teachers get reports summarizing the level of interaction taking place.

Report

It is important for teachers, departments and universities to produce actionable reports that give staff an insight into what is happening with learning and help them adapt their learning processes. The Learning Analytics and Advanced Reporting features in itslearning allow educators to deep-dive into student data. This can help them determine how active students have been and allows teachers to reach out to them to see whether any extra support is needed.

What are universities’ current teaching needs?

Covid-19 radically changed the way universities teach, work and support students.

The Covid-19 pandemic has impacted teaching and learning in a number of ways. 88% of participants in the 2020 Pearson Learner Survey believe that online learning will be part of the university experience moving forward, reinforcing the shift that could take place in higher education as distance learning becomes more commonplace.

In addition, research published at the start of November 2020 by the ‘Learning and Teaching Reimagined’ initiative highlighted the tide of change in the UK higher education sector further, by revealing that students, lecturers and university leaders actually prefer a mix of online and in-person teaching in what is known as “hybrid learning”.

The study also referenced the need for universities to deliver a more personalized learning experience, move away from the more traditional classroom teaching experience, and address seven key issues to make this effort a success. These include:

• Embedding digital learning at the heart of higher education culture
• Investing in the short-term while keeping the long-term in mind
• Exploring new economic frameworks for sustainable, affordable and high-quality blended learning
• Incorporating blended learning into curriculum planning and design
• Expanding the digital skills and confidence of students and staff
• Broadly communicating the benefits of the blended learning model
• Strengthening the response to digital poverty

How can I find out more?

At itslearning, we work with teachers and universities to help them implement their learning in a way that will meet their pedagogical vision. Listen to this Podcast in which two LMS experts discuss frequently asked questions they receive from teachers, IT directors, and educational leaders around the world.

Empowering your institution with itslearning – the LMS designed for teaching

Philip Duffield, Pedagogical Consultant presents the key capabilities in itslearning supporting both blended and remote learning. Get to know the web-based interface and essential functions of the itslearning learning platform, which is optimised for student-centered teaching.


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