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.

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 (

Teaching well during COVID-19

The University of Sydney’s Learning & Teaching blog has some great articles on surviving and flourishing in the time of the COVID-19 pandemic. Recent posts include:

  • How do ordinary people teach well during extraordinary times?
  • Five ways to make online videos better for student learning
  • Getting students talking through masks and mics
  • Collaborative, peer-reviewed assignments via Zoom
  • Assessing clinical skills online.

Click on the image below to access.

Thanks to Birgit Loch for bringing this to our attention!

STARS STEM Education Network event

The STARS STEM Education Network Team are holding an online catch-up event on Wednesday 19 August from 2:00pm – 3:00 pm (1400 – 1500 AEST).

The purpose of the catch-up is for STEM Educators to share practice, with a particular emphasis on how STEM teaching and learning in higher education has responded to the impact of COVID-19. This will be done through ten 3 minute presentations plus time for questions and answers.

Event details:

  • Zoom link
  • Zoom meeting ID: 952 8084 0486
  • Passcode: 589457