Preparing students for the ‘virtual’ world
(Posted on 08/03/18)
Most university courses are coordinated through online environments, complemented by traditional lectures and workshops. If you compare this with teaching in schools, the transition to university can be quite daunting. At CIS, our inquiry-based approach to teaching and learning helps to better prepare students for this transition. It allows students to become independent learners, whilst providing them with the necessary support and tools to excel. We deliver our courses through the Virtual Learning Environment (VLE), Canvas. A VLE is a cloud-based resource where students can submit assignments, review course materials, and access their grades. Teachers are able to provide feedback directly to students, which establishes an impactful working dialogue that is not simply limited to the classroom. Parents also take a more active role with their students learning, as they have full access to courses online.
During our founding year, students have been quick to adapt to our digital approach to learning, strengthened by the intuitive design of Canvas. Students have praised how our approach offers consistent access to differentiated resources, tailored quizzes, written and verbal feedback, and recorded materials. Using flipped-learning, we communicate information through recorded lectures, video conferences, or even class chat rooms, allowing students to access the support they need at any time. At university and work, students must be proficient in modern communication methods, so our approach will bolster their digital literacy and independence. Through our inquiry-based approach in all subjects, students continually develop excellent research skills, supported through access to online journals. Not only does this allow students to develop the necessary independent skills, but encourages them to become life-long learners.