TEL Quality Framework
The aim of our TEL Quality Framework is to assist staff to meaningfully incorporate technology into learning, teaching and assessment, using the principles of the 3E Framework. Frameworks for TEL can adopt an approach driven by either the technology itself, or the pedagogical principles that underpin the learning that happens within the virtual environment. Each approach has merits and pitfalls. It is for this reason that we have adopted a combined approach that prompts staff to consider not only what tools they will use but how they will use them to facilitate student learning and what type of learning it is they wish their students to engage in.
Recognising the iterative nature of adopting technology, the 3E Framework is based on a tried and tested Enhance-Extend-Empower continuum for using technology to effectively support learning, teaching and assessment across disciplines and levels of study.
This section combines the 3E Framework with a set of Minimum Expectations for VLE use, developed through consulting with staff and students on their minimum expectations for VLE use, benchmarking by investigating sector-wide subscription to minimum standards, and identifying current best practice at YSJ. It also includes a more qualitative measure, in the form of the Exemplary Course Rubric, and advice and guidance for VLE Accessibility & Inclusivity.
The checklist is intended to establish a minimum standard in the use of the institutional VLE (Moodle), and to ensure a consistent student experience across the University. The minimum expectation checklist could be expressed as the lowest standard expected regardless of whether the VLE is used to Enhance, Extend or Empower students’ and their learning...
The 3E principles are underpinned by a socio-constructivist approach with a focus on active learning, learning as a community, frequent formative assessment and personalised learning through choice. The aim is to improve student engagement, achievement and retention...
Exemplary Course Rubric
The ECR is intended to facilitate and encourage a consistent approach to the use of the VLE across the university by allowing staff to measure their practice in four major areas: Course Design, Interaction and Collaboration, Assessment, and Learner Support...
Inclusivity & Accessibility
Use of technology to enhance learning, teaching and assessment should be considered and appropriate, and should never exclude any learner from engaging in the process. The burden of inclusivity lies with all staff, by curriculum design, and it should not be left to students to adapt...
How to Use the Framework
The primary aim of the TEL quality framework is to facilitate and encourage a consistent approach to the use of Technology Enhanced Learning across the university. The intended audience of this framework is academic tutors who are responsible for teaching on credit-bearing modules. To achieve this, it is recommended that tutors use the framework to:
- Help them consider how they want their students to learn and to what extent they would like them to be independent in their learning. Tutors should consider that this means in terms of the 3E framework and how they might use technology.
- Help them consider the tools they will use to facilitate that learning and check the quality statements to ensure that they are using the tools in ways that meet minimum expectations.
Embedding the Quality Framework
Tutors and academic managers might consider embedding the quality framework into existing practices such as:
- Programme Validation Documentation
- Peer Observation of Learning and Teaching (POLT)
- Programme Evaluative Reports (PERs)
- Performance Development Reviews (PDRs)
For further information about the Framework or to discuss how it can be most effectively used, please contact TEL@yorksj.ac.uk.
The checklist is intended to establish a minimum standard in the use of the institutional VLE (Moodle), and to ensure a consistent student experience across the University. The minimum expectation checklist could be expressed as the lowest standard expected regardless of whether the VLE is used to enhance, extend or empower students’ and their learning. These recommendations may be covered within a combination of module, programme and departmental courses. The list was developed after consulting with staff and students on their minimum expectations for VLE use, benchmarking by investigating sector-wide subscription to minimum standards, and identifying current best practice at YSJ.
Course Design and Layout
Dedicated Course for Each Module [Essential]
Content should be clearly grouped and labelled, unused blocks or topics should be removed, and additional blocks (Activities, Latest News, Recent Activity) added where appropriate. Use appropriate file types (e.g. PDF) and display file size & type.
Module Description/Outline (Learning Outcomes, Credits etc.) [Essential]
Display core module details, such as module description and learning outcomes.
Lecture Notes/Handouts [Essential]
Presentation slides, notes, handouts, or lecture recordings should be made available to students in a timely manner. Include a range of media and ensure that each is as accessible as possible.
Student Expectations Statement [Desirable]
How students are expected to use Moodle e.g. which activities are optional, assessment process, tips for succeeding on the module.
Student Activity Reports [Desirable]
Enable students to view their own activity reports via their profile page. Activity reports show a list of their contributions, such as forum posts or assignment submissions, and also include access logs.
Assessment Details/Requirements [Essential]
Include details (instructions, marking criteria), coversheets (where appropriate) and weightings for assessments etc., using the Generic Assignment Brief Template. Ensure that grades/feedback are returned within 3 weeks of deadline.
Assessment Marking/Grading Criteria [Essential]
Provide clear details of the assessment marking/grading criteria. Ensure assignments are accompanied by plain English marking criteria. Exemplify not just model answers, but weak answers as well.
Online Submission for Coursework [Essential]
Information on how students are to submit electronic documents via Moodle.
Draft Assignment (Formative) Feedback [Essential]
Provide appropriate opportunities for formative assessment and feedback. This does not necessarily have to take place within Moodle.
Sample Exam Questions/Past Papers (Where Appropriate) [Desirable]
Where appropriate, provide links to sample exam questions/past papers.
Communication & Forums
Staff Profiles and Contact Details (Module Tutors) [Essential]
Name, position, telephone, email, location, office hours, as appropriate. How students and staff will communicate, and expected staff response times. Profile pictures (for staff and students) help personalise the online environment.
This is a one way channel for important news, and should be the primary means of communicating with students within the Moodle course.
Mid-Module Evaluation [Essential]
Mid-Module Evaluation should take place at the mid-point of the module. Feedback should be returned to students following the evaluation date/period.
Staff Profiles and Contact Details (Module Leader/Head of Programme) [Desirable]
Name, position, telephone, email, location, office hours, as appropriate.
Forums (Q&A/Learning Forums) [Desirable]
Provide forums for tutors and or students to pose questions and answers, or for discussions related to specific course activities.
Resources and Learner Support
Your Reading List [Essential]
Create, develop & select your course readings, using the Talis resource. Please discuss your reading list requirements with your Academic Liaison Librarian (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Module Timetable [Desirable]
Include a link to the module timetable.
Plagiarism and Academic Integrity Information [Desirable]
Include information on plagiarism & academic integrity, as well as a link to the ‘Develop Your Academic Writing with TurnItIn’ course in Moodle (in accordance with the YSJ policy on the use of TurnItIn).
ILE Information [Desirable]
Provide link to ILE homepage for students.
Student Support/Study Development Information [Desirable]
Provide links to relevant support services and policies, such as Student Services & Student Systems & Records.
The 3E principles are underpinned by a socio-constructivist approach with a focus on active learning, learning as a community, frequent formative assessment and personalised learning through choice. The aim is to improve student engagement, achievement and retention. The 3E Framework considers how activities can be incorporated as a minimum (Enhance), through to uses of technology that give students more responsibility for key aspects of their learning (Extend), and to underpin more sophisticated, authentic activities that reflect the professional environments for which they are preparing (Empower). The Framework encourages the use of technology as a pedagogic tool. It should be used by tutors to aid the design and planning of the use of technology to support or facilitate a learning experience. In essence, it should help tutors to ‘think through’ what it is they want their students to do and how they want them to learn, using technology.
Implementing the 3E Framework
In considering the 3E Framework, the following points should be kept in mind:
The three Es do not match against academic levels. For example, you should not be limited solely to enhance activities at level 4, extend at level 5 and empower at level 6.
Although the 3E levels can be seen as a continuum of change in TEL and teaching practice, they should not be viewed as mutually exclusive. In any single module context, there may be a range of learning tasks and activities that align with any of the three levels within the Framework.
The 3E Framework can be applied at programme level where common technology enhanced approaches are used across modules to support student progression to more advanced learning.
In being part of a continuum the 3E levels are not clearly distinct categories, and it is to be expected that some technology-enhanced activities will blur the boundaries between one level and another. This point perhaps applies particularly at the Enhance and Extend levels, and maybe less so at Empower.
Where students are new undergraduates or likely to be largely unfamiliar with the subject matter then activities at primarily the Enhance level may be most appropriate.
Enhance activities can work well in any subject at any level of study. In encouraging the development of learner autonomy and other key graduate attributes required in the workplace then an increase in Extend and especially Empower activities would be more appropriate.
The 3E Framework does not promote the Empower level as an ideal, and an important part of the approach is that tutors and their students will start from (and may end up at) different points on the 3E continuum in terms of applying and using technology in a particular learning, teaching and assessment context.
If the tutor is doing a lot of work at the Extend level, then aiming for the Empower level in some aspects of what they do would be very worthwhile. However, if a tutor wants to begin by Enhancing several aspects of what they already do, this is an equally valuable step in the adoption of TEL.
Classroom to fully online? Although Enhance represents simple adjustments to existing practice, and Extend a more purposely blended approach, Empower does not imply fully online.
As students transition along the 3E continuum the tutor is relinquishing more control and responsibility to their learners. While this brings benefits, it can require the tutor to adjust and to be comfortable with assuming a facilitating role or, for some kinds of activities, a co-learning role (e.g. student-led seminars).
Adopting technology in simple and effective ways to actively support students and increase their activity and self-responsibility.
Further use of technology that facilitates key aspects of students’ individual and collaborative learning and assessment through increasing their choice and control.
Developed use of technology that requires higher order individual and collaborative learning that reflects how knowledge is created and used in professional environments.
Moodle and the 3E Framework
Here are some ideas about how you might meaningfully incorporate the use of some of Moodle’s activities into the 3E element of the TEL Quality Framework...
Create assignments to enable students to submit their work electronically. Ensure that there are clear instructions and information for students in the description.
Have students peer review each other’s assignments. (See Workshop).
Have students contribute to the assessment criteria for assignments and then peer review. (See Workshop).
Big Blue Button
Make recordings of virtual classroom sessions available to all students. (See Extend).
Schedule live virtual classroom sessions with students around key topics -assessment and feedback, for example. These sessions could be student-led, where they are asked to bring along specific questions to ask the group.
Have students suggest and vote on themes for virtual classroom sessions. Students are tasked with facilitating the online sessions.
Create a one-off chat, based around a specific theme, e.g. final assessment. Make transcript available for students.
Arrange regular ‘out of office hours’ chats around specific themes e.g. final assessment or how to reflect. Students participate in a facilitated chat. Transcripts are made available.
Ask students to suggest themes for ‘out of office hours’ chats. Allow students to organise and facilitate chat sessions. Transcripts are made available.
Set up a choice activity to quickly test students’ understanding of a topic.
Use the choice activity to facilitate student decision-making, for example allowing students to vote on direction for the course, on assignment questions/titles or on topics for online debates.
Have students propose choice questions to ask other cohort members. Use the data generated to come to conclusions or inform learning.
Create entries in a database related to key concepts within the chosen academic discipline. Ensure that each entry contains: concept, name of the main academic theorist, link to a journal article, link to a key text, link to a key website, link to any relevant media.
Ask students to conduct their own research and add entries to the database. Allow students to rate, review or comment on each other’s entries.
Have students create entries around their specific research interests or questions. They can then use this data to identify any areas of common interest amongst peers.
Create a general help forum for students to ask questions about the course.
Create a discussion forum to encourage debate around a specific theme, topic or reading. Have students rate and comment on their peers’ forum posts - students should justify the rating by responding to the post with an added comment.
Nominate student groups to moderate weekly forum debates. Student moderators should be responsible for encouraging participation, keeping the discussion on track and summarising the key outcomes.
Create a primary glossary of key terms related to a specific academic discipline. Have the entries autolinked throughout the Moodle course.
Create a secondary glossary for each theme or topic which students have to populate by doing their own research.
Have students rate and comment on each other’s glossary entries - students should justify the rating by responding to the entry with a comment. The most highly rated terms get promoted to the primary class glossary.
Create a short quiz for students to formatively test their understanding of the subject area.
Create several themed formative quizzes drawing random questions from a question bank. Provide students with detailed feedback and scores.
Allow students to generate their own quiz questions for a practice question bank (requires the use of the Quiz Creator role). Create a formative quiz drawing random questions from the student question bank.
Create a module/assignment knowledgebase for students.
Create a lecture notes wiki. Ask student groups to take responsibility each week for populating the wiki with a summary of the lecture/seminar.
Have students work in groups to create and manage a wiki to demonstrate evidence of planning and preparation for a group work project.
Exemplary Course Rubric (ECR)
The ECR is intended to facilitate and encourage a consistent approach to the use of the VLE across the university by allowing staff to measure their practice in four major areas: Course Design, Interaction and Collaboration, Assessment, and Learner Support.
The ECR uses weighting values and numerical scores. For each sub-category (within the main categories of Course Design, Interaction and Collaboration, Assessment, and Learner Support), a weighting value (from 0.5 to 3) has been assigned to indicate the relative importance of that sub-category.
The points available for each of the levels of mastery are indicated in parenthesis (for example: Exemplary (4), Accomplished (3), Promising (2), Incomplete (1)).
For each question, choose which level of mastery best applies to your own Moodle course before moving onto the next question. There are 17 questions in total. You will get a score for each section and then a report at the end, which you can download and save. You will also have the option to email the report to yourself.