Dr. Sarah Dowling
Subject Leader: Literature, Trinity College Foundation Studies, Trinity College, University of Melbourne
Australia and New Zealand, Higher Education
Dr. Sarah Dowling, Subject Leader of the Literature Department at Trinity College in Australia, serves a diverse population of post-secondary, international students. Because the students are not eligible for direct entry to an Australian university, Trinity offers Foundation Studies programs which guarantee entry into the University of Melbourne for those who achieve an average final score of 80 or above in their best four subjects. Sarah and her colleagues work hard to prepare students for university, which means initiating them into a culture of critical and independent thinking, as well as helping them to understand Australia’s academic expectations.
“We’re very sensitive with our particular group of students [to] the impact of shame, and of losing face… we really have to be careful not to send that message that you’re a bad person or you’re a bad student, but rather, ‘You haven’t quite done what we want you to do yet, do you want to have another go?’”
After arriving to Trinity College, Sarah promptly began to promote ways to better utilize Turnitin, from attaching digital rubrics to submissions to linking QuickMarks to specific assessment criteria. Sarah was an early advocate for giving students access to their Originality Reports immediately following submission, so they could identify and fix their own referencing errors. Sarah’s colleagues see her as a champion of academic integrity:
“Sarah is an example of someone who combines the tools in Turnitin with great personal resourcefulness. Her story demonstrates not just the ways that an educator can use Turnitin to improve their own practise, but the ways in which an educator can use their own expertise to improve how Turnitin is used at their institution.”
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