We set out as a cluster to explore a variety of alternative models for supporting learners. This task became even more pertinent once the pandemic hit and we were forced nationally to move our teaching online.
Suffolk New college decided to build on their successful action research project as part of OTLA 6 with their exploration of the use of visualisers in English to maths and ESOL for OTLA 7. Likewise, Leeds City College set out to explore a similar tool, but as the project evolved discovered that for them, the remote tool ‘Mote’ was far more beneficial for their learners.
Develop’s staff largely maintained face to face teaching during the pandemic and their investigation into the use of Learning Support Assistants proved to be absolutely invaluable and relatable to almost all.
Lastly, West Suffolk College’s focus on building connections between learners proved to be very timely indeed, and this impact and the strategies discovered will have long lasting effects I’m sure as many providers move to a blended model of teaching from now on.
I hope that you find this cluster of reports both interesting and stimulating; the providers were an absolute joy to work with and remained focused and positive throughout what was a difficult time both professionally and personally for us all. I certainly learned a lot as their mentor!
Using Visualisers: Suffolk New College
This project aimed to explore the use of visualisers to enhance the learning experience of learners studying Functional Skills Maths, GCSE Maths and ESOL.
Feedback in remote delivery: Leeds City College
This project looked at the improvement of feedback in GCSE English with the aim of improving learners’ engagement with their teacher’s comments. We focused our investigation on the provision of verbal feedback during periods of remote learning.
New Support Models: Develop
This project aimed to explore ways of improving the effectiveness of Learning Support Assistants (LSAs) when working with learners to improve their confidence levels in maths. Our research activities together with the challenges presented by the pandemic have highlighted more clearly than ever before the critical role of the LSA in providing essential pastoral and academic support and how we can use them more effectively within our organisation.
New Support Models: How can we help learners build social connections whilst studying online?: West Suffolk College
This project aimed to find ways to enable learners to connect with each other whilst studying online. Opportunities for collaborative working in small groups and a whole department approach to induction led to learners getting to know each other better, increased confidence and improved learning outcomes.
Watch the group presentations at the final dissemination event by clicking play (to the right).