by Jeanette Sakel
The first two weeks of TB1 are almost over – and I don’t know about you, but to me it feels like no more than 10 quite tiring, yet exciting minutes!
As always at the start of the year, there were a few things we needed to look at, and we couldn’t have done this without your invaluable feedback! Here are just a few points on how you have influenced what we are doing. We’ll continue to act (when that is possible, of course) – so see your rep, personal tutor, lecturer or me (as Programme Manager) if you have any questions or suggestions!
Here’s the list:
– SRSF (student rep staff forum): we held a small SRSF with last year’s reps, and discussed amongst other things the timetables, exam and course feedback and how the term has worked out so far.
– Timetables: even before these were published officially, we made the lecture times available here on the blog. That took a bit of doing / persuading the right people on my part, but feedback from you shows that this move has been really good. Next year, we (still) hope for earlier timetables, but if that is not possible, I aim to publish a ‘preview’ again.
– Once the timetables were up, we changed some of the sessions that did not work very well time-wise. E.g. the Analysing Culture workshop was turned into practical sessions (rather than a 5-6pm run). Anna changed some of her seminars around to suit the students in those.
– Level 3 modules choices: some of you had not been sure which modules to choose, and had a chance in the first two weeks of term to change into another module. There were a few hick-ups, where people were initially not allowed on to certain modules (because of room-sizes, rather than us capping modules). We have worked with you on this and I believe all of you have now been accepted on the modules of your choice.
– Overlap between English (Lit) and English Language at level 3: some traveling times didn’t work out, and we worked with each students to find solutions, so that everyone can study their modules of choice. This issue will fall away in June, when St Matts will move to Frenchay.
– Video tutorials: some of you reported struggling with certain approaches to language, or with revisions when missing a lecture. I have started to record ‘summary’ videos for my classes (EPPF and ‘language contact’ at the moment). I’ve also started to help colleagues put together videos of the same type. For example following feedback on some complicated points in ALFA, I recorded videos for those lectures as well.
– we have introduced personal tutors at all levels.
– Something we’ve done for a while now, but which we discussed in last year’s SRSFs: feedback for exams as well as essays, which some of you took up and found really helpful; policing seminar groups, so the ‘popular’ ones don’t go out of hand. We’ve now got policies for both in place, and they are working out for now.
All of this is only possible because of your engagement in the course – so thank you! The blog, and the Facebook page really help as well to find out ‘what’s going on’. For this year, if you want something to change: let us know!
– student rep for your module (the full list of student reps will be posted here on the blog soon)
– your personal tutor (APT)
– your tutor or lecturer
– your Programme Manager (me > come to see me in 3E2 or email me at jeanette.sakel AT uwe.ac.uk)
– PAL sessions
If any issues can’t be resolved – or need to have a whole-university approach – let us know! The student reps can take them forward to the Departmental Committee, and we can recommend them for discussion at even higher level.