Since our students are only on campus for one day on a Wednesday, on Go Higher we use a range of strategies to support them during the rest of the week when they may be working, at home looking after a family or doing other things. In this way, we can provide teaching and contact to help students complete any research and assignments they need to complete for class. One of our most vital tools is VITAL – The University’s online platform for learning (view one of our online lectures below).
On VITAL, students can access from home all their course materials, communicate with staff and fellow students in discussion forums (general ones and others for posting homework), follow links to resources on the web, listen to podcasts and, for some modules, view lectures.
The emphasis on Go Higher is preparing students to go on to undergraduate degree programmes, in single or combined subjects, across a range of arts, humanities and social sciences (for example English, History, Sociology, Business, Philosophy, Criminology, Egyptology, Law and more). We use Online teaching to support face-to-face learning in the classroom and it is also one of the ways that we make connections across these topic areas. Go Higher modules in in the first Semester are multidisciplinary, so students get an introduction to a range of subjects and have enough knowledge to make an informed choice of degree.
In Semester One (October to Christmas) students study a combined Social Science module and a combined Arts module. The Arts module, Understanding Cultures, is a mix of English, History and Philosophy and we use short online video lectures to make links between these different aspects of the module. Here is one that asks students to reflect on the way that Literature and History connect – after viewing this, students discuss with each other and tutors in an online forum.
Of course, some Go Higher students are able to come on to campus any time to use the library and University computers and so on, but many are busy during the week. Online activities in addition to our main face-to-face classroom sessions are a really effective and engaging way to stay in touch and keep learning all week, whether you can easily get on to campus or not.
Image Left: Apollo & Daphne (Ovid Metamorphoses): John William Waterhouse: johnwilliamwaterhouse.net