Educating students about academic integrity

Katherine Seaton (Mathematics & Statistics) talks about a scenario-based approach to educating students about academic integrity. Click here to view the 8-minute video. Scenarios can form the basis of class discussions, but also transformed into a quiz format. She illustrates this approach using a lockdown contract cheating story, and points to a rich source of scenarios in the form of her OER book, available through the library at

The scenarios in the book focus particularly on SEMS disciplines (Maths & Stats, Engineering, and Computer Science and IT), but can be adapted for any discipline.

Advance HE Events and Resources

As part of our institutional membership to Advance HE, all La Trobe staff may access a range of resources to enhance their teaching or learning support role.  These resources draw on the expertise of the global AHE community and are geared to address the current issues and dynamic landscape the sector operates in.

Highlights from September AHE newsletter:-

New AHE publication launched focusing on assessment comprising 18 papers by more than 40 authors – On Your Marks: Learner-focused Feedback Practices and Feedback Literacy

Upcoming events including:

Assessment Symposium 2020 (28 Oct 2020) Assessment and feedback in the pandemic era: A time for learning and inclusion – call for abstracts

Governance Conference 2020 (20 Nov 2020) Transforming Governance for a new normal

STEM Conference 2021 (19 May 2021) – call for papers

Example academic integrity statements and declaration

Several staff have reported success in minimising academic integrity breaches by reminding students of their responsibilities before starting their online exam. This can be easily achieved by simply inserting text at the start of the exam, or even requiring students to declare they have read and understood key instructions before they are able to access their exam.

Debbi Weaver (LTLT) has collected some examples of text you may wish to use, or adapt. In addition, there are instructions on how insert a declaration into the LMS that students must accept before commencing their exam. You can also watch the short how-to video prepared by Heath McGowan in his post of 19 August.

Virtual labs

Alison Brown (Microbiology) describes how she has used photography, video and H5P to create online labs that students have found highly engaging. Click on the slide to hear about how she used a College teaching grant to re-employ casual staff to carry out this work. She presented on this project at the most recent Community of Practice for teaching focused academics.

Top Performing Unit Awards: Open Universities Australia (OUA)

Congratulations to three of our OUA subject coordinators and their teaching teams who recently received Top Performing Unit Awards for study period 1.  

  • Michael Coldrey and the teaching team for DTN101
  • Deanna Horvath and the teaching team for HBS101
  • Melissa Buultjens and the teaching team for PHE101

These subjects, part of La Trobe’s Bachelor of Food and Nutrition which is delivered in partnership with OUA, are considered to be performance leaders in the delivery of online programs across OUA’s portfolio and partner networks.

This is an outstanding accomplishment and a wonderful example of what can be achieved with online learning.

Online exams LMS update

With semester 1 exams done and dusted, our online exams community of practice has reconvened to discuss what worked well, what could be improved and what is needed for semester 2 exams. 

Debbi Weaver (Acting Deputy Director, Digital Education, LTLT) provided an update on an issue experienced when large cohorts (over 1600 students) tried to log on to the LMS at the same time (i.e. 9am or 2pm).

Debbi has advised that multiple strategies will be used to minimise the risk of this happening again:

  1. The service capacity of the LMS infrastructure has been increased,
  2. Exams of >1200 students will be flagged and scheduled to start at different times to other exams on the same day, and
  3. Where a window of availability is offered for exams (e.g. 12 hours), academics are asked to ensure students understand that the window applies and suggest they don’t necessarily need to log on at the advertised start time (e.g. they can log in early, or later during the window).

If you would like further information or have any comments / feedback in relation to online exams please contact Belinda Thompson (