March 23, 2015, by Teaching at Nottingham
Perspectives and Priorities from UNMC
As the University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus (UNMC) approaches its 15th year of operation in Kuala Lumpur and its 10th year of operation on the campus in Semenyih, 2015 provides an exciting backdrop to drive forward the teaching and learning agenda, which is being developed across the University through TTP as well as to develop local initiatives.
The past year has seen increased engagement from schools with TTP in cross-campus initiatives, with a number of schools engaging in TTP workshops and activities at UNMC and it is hoped that this will continue into 2015.
Particular attention will be placed on the use of learning technologies (with new posts to support this planned) and a focus on transitions into university. Included in this will be the piloting of a peer mentoring programme that has been led by a working group made almost entirely of student members (with only a single staff representative) – truly putting students at the core of what we do by empowering them to lead on campus-wide
The year 2015 will also see completion of a new teaching building which will incorporate novel and innovative teaching spaces, as well as flexible spaces. In addition, part of the new building is being set aside to provide a focal point to support Foundation-level students in provision of learning support, transition support and a dedicated social learning space.
Whilst there will be many cases of institution-wide and school-wide initiatives that will be implemented, there will also be resourcing and encouragement towards local initiatives, including expanding the provision for activities piloted in 2014. One such pilot activity to be reviewed and likely expanded is the Student Observers of Teaching. This scheme offers staff the opportunity to request a trained student observer to view their lecture and provide feedback in the same way that a staff peer observer might, but from the view of a student (who wouldn’t normally be in that class or interact with that lecturer). This scheme has proven both successful and more popular than expected in the pilot phase.
UNMC continues to face challenges in areas such as the delivery of the Malaysian government Compulsory Subjects, teaching innovation is also being looked at in this area trialling a flipped classroom approach in 2014 that will be expanded to other components in 2015. A further challenge in 2015 will be the requirement to undergo a full campus audit by the Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA) in order to retain UNMC’s Self-Accreditation status.
In short 2015 promises to be a year of both challenge and excitement at UNMC, although hopefully also one where innovation and development of teaching and learning can flourish.
Prof Stephen Doughty
Vice-Provost (Teaching and Learning), UNMC
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