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Teaching Methodologies and Resources

  • Flipped Learning: pre-practical and lecture engagement

    Academic staff in our School strive to increase student engagement and encourage independent learning by the use of new online technologies. Much of our effort has been focused on adopting a “flipped classroom” approach by development of online learning activities to help students be prepared before attending practical classes and lectures.

    articulate learning

    Figure 1: An example of an Articulate Learning Package developed for the course Animal and Plant Biochemistry II

    A very unique application of online technology has been the development of a plant identification key used for mobile learning applications, helping students to identify flora around the univeristy campus. (Ask Amanda Able for a description and pictures).

    Many of us have used Articulate Storyline to develop these activities, if you are interested in getting started using Articulate please contact Amanda Able, Karina Riggs or Beth Loveys who will be happy to help you:

    You can also join the ‘Storyline User Group’ on MyUni.

    Within our Articulate Storyline activities we embed videos of our academics performing laboratory skills to demonstrate to our students’ correct technique in a real life situation.

    Figure 2: Photo A & B -Videos used in the online pre-lab exercises  showing the correct use of micropipettes for APBII (A) and how to streak a microorganism on to agar plates in sterile conditions for MIB (B).

  • Small Group Discovery Experience

    Many of our courses in the School of Agriculture Food and Wine offer Small Group Discovery Experience (SGDE) as a key component of content delivery. Small groups of students are assigned a mentor who is actively involved in research to guide them through a process of discovery. In our school this usually involves designing, planning, undertaking and analysing a practical experiment.

    Courses which currently offer SGDE are:

    Principles and Practices of Science for Applied Biology (Level I) Contact
    In small groups students are allocated an active researcher whom they interview and produce a short biographical video covering issues such as what motivated the researcher to embark on a career in science, what have been the most pivotal moments in their career and what continues to inspire them in science Tina Bianco-Miotto
    Foundations of Wine Science I (Level I) Contact
    In groups of 4 students interview an Active Researcher (academic or postdoc) working in a grape/wine related field, regarding their career/research pathway, what they like about research and a research topic that interests the group. They must then produce a 4-5 minute video profile, which will be played to the class and the academic unit at the end of semester. Kerry Wilkinson
    Foundations in Plant Science (Level II) Contact
    In small groups students are guided through the process of planning, designing and undertaking a research project. Each group is guided by a mentor who has active research in their chosen area of interest. At the end of semester groups present their findings to class as an oral presentation Beth Loveys
    Viticultural Science II (Level II) Contact
    In small groups students are mentored by a researcher who is active in viticultural research to design and undertake a project. At the end of semester students present their results in a poster session at which all mentors are present. SteveTyerman
  • Team Based Learning

    There is much evidence to suggest that students learn better in a team situation. Team Based Learning (TBL) encourages peer-to-peer learning and increases engagement with course content. Several of our courses use the TBL format in tutorials, students are provided with a learning pack containing readings, lecture recordings or videos to prepare them for the TBL sessions. The TBL classroom is very lively and interactive and often allows vigorous, light hearted debate.

    An example of a real life case used to explain Biochemical concepts such as
    the use of sports drinks for elite athletes.

    Several of us have used Team Based Learning in our classes, if you are interested in getting started please contact Beth Loveys or Karina Riggs who will be happy to help you.

  • Massive Online Open Courses

    Our school has one of only two Massive Online Open Courses (MOOCs) currently available in the University, developed by Kerry Wilkinson and Paul Grbin called “The World of Wine: From Glass to Grape" to be offered in April 2015 through EdX  one of the world’s leading online course platforms. As part of this initiative, Kerry is currently establishing a small recording studio in the Charles Hawker building that will be available to teaching staff please contact Kerry Wilkinson for details.

  • Postgraduate Writing Group Program

    All higher degree research (HDR) students in the School of Agriculture, Food and Wine participate in a unique program designed to develop the advanced scientific writing skills required to publish in scientific peer-reviewed journals. The Writing Group Program consists of 15 modules presented in monthly two-hour sessions from near the beginning of candidature and is based on the text “Writing Scientific Research Articles: Strategies and Steps” (Cargill & O’Connor, 2nd edition, 2013, Wiley-Blackwell). The writing program has had demonstrated success in developing the confidence and skills of HDR students and is enabling an improvement in HDR completion rates and times and the transition of AFW students towards the “thesis by publication” model.

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School of Agriculture Food & Wine


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