Global Innovation Awards 2017: Winner

Category: Moving Forward with Integrity | UK

Northumbria University

Northumbria University, Tyne and Wear

Nominated by: Dan Price, Technology Enhanced Learning Senior Analyst

“By the end of our Turnitin training they’ll say ‘Oh yes, it’s brilliant. I can see how this is beneficial for my students. It’s going to save me time. It’s got pedagogical benefits. I can link all my feedback together.’”

Northumbria University is reinventing itself to set the standard as “a new kind of excellent university”, according to its stated vision. Once a polytechnic, it’s now focused on becoming a top-ranked UK university by strengthening its research programs and student outcomes.

Dan Price, a Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL) senior analyst, leads staff development to help academics “upskill” and embed new technologies into their daily practice. Currently his team is focused on moving from paper-based interactions to electronic assessments, using tools such as Turnitin and Blackboard.

Price says one of the biggest challenges to overcome for his team is engaging academics who are resistant to change. He says some staff members who have been working a certain way for a long time question why they should adopt a new approach. Others have preconceived notions about this or that technology based on hearsay of someone else’s experience.

Last year, Price’s team delivered more than 450 hours of training to more than 300 staff members across all disciplines. Price explains the difference the training makes: “By the end of our Turnitin training they’ll say ‘Oh yes, it’s brilliant. I can see how this is beneficial for my students. It’s going to save me time. It’s got pedagogical benefits. I can link all my feedback together.’”

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