Learning and teaching
Our programmes will be delivered using a flexible hybrid learning model that will combine on-campus engagement with an interactive, technology-supported experience, in line with national guidance.
- High-quality hybrid learning experience
- Online lectures
- Laboratory-based study in line with government guidance
- Assessment mostly through coursework, presentations and practical assessments
- Excellent student support available
- Small group face-to-face teaching on-campus
- Flexible study
Our programmes will be delivered using a flexible hybrid learning model that will combine on-campus engagement with an interactive, technology-supported experience, in line with national guidance. It is our aim to provide an excellent teaching and learning experience, with a mix of on-campus and online learning as appropriate to your programme of study. You will also have access to support services and extra-curricular activities on campus and/or online, in keeping with current government guidance. The hybrid model of learning will allow you to enjoy a high-quality experience.
Find out more about the learning and teaching you can expect in September 2020 here.
Learning and teaching
Q: What will UWS’s new hybrid model of learning and teaching be like?
A: We will deliver a hybrid learning model that will combine on-campus engagement with an interactive, technology-supported experience at the beginning of the academic year, in line with national guidance at the time. While observing latest national guidance, and in order to optimise the student experience, the intention is that each student has the option of at least one on-campus experience per week. You will also have access to UWS’s fantastic support services and extra-curricular activities on campus and/or online, in keeping with current government guidance. The hybrid model of learning will allow you to enjoy a high-quality experience.
Your learning and teaching will vary based on your chosen area of study. However, all courses will give students the chance to engage in learning and teaching via a range of methods to ensure you are able to make the most of your student experience, demonstrate your understanding of the course content, and achieve great academic success. There will also be a range of support available prior to you joining or returning, to help you to familiarise yourself with the technology.
You may notice references to the techincal terms 'synchronous' or 'asynchronous', which are often used to describe online learning. These just mean in real time, or available for you to do at whatever time suits.
Q: What will teaching look like from September 2020?
A: In Term 1, lectures will be online for all programmes, with scheduled on-campus learning activity limited to elements of the hybrid delivery model that can be safely delivered on campus, such as timetabled laboratory, practical and skills work and small tutorials. While observing latest national guidance, and in order to optimise the student experience, the intention is that each student has the option of at least one on-campus experience per week. Term 1 2020/21 Student Timetables are now in Outlook365 Calendars and MyDay. Timetables will only display on-campus and online scheduled events, which make up part of your full teaching schedule.
Q: What will my online learning look like?
A: You will experience a highly-engaging, interactive and inclusive online learning experience at UWS. Your learning and teaching activities will be delivered using a range of live, timetabled and non-timetabled activities such as online lectures, webinars, seminars. These activities will be supported by recorded presentations, podcasts, video resources and guided online activities including discussion forums, reflective activities and workshops where appropriate. Group working will be facilitated through tutorials, workshops, collaborative activities, and online debate and discussion.
There will be different approaches used depending on your subject or programme, and of course modules that rely on on-campus learning activities such as practical classes, laboratory and skills-based activities will be prioritised in term of access and any professional body requirements. These practical aspects can also be supplemented via virtual lab sessions and simulations.
Teaching and learning activities are designed to be flexible, promote peer-to-peer engagement and interactive learning, while building a real sense of community amongst students and academics. Whatever the online option used, you will still experience high-quality teaching and learning and we are committed to ensuring that none of our students are disadvantaged as a result of the current situation.
It will be very important that you ensure you make time to fully engage with your timetabled learning sessions and the full range of other online learning required as part of your programme.
Q: How do I access my campus and study spaces safely?
A: From Monday 5th October, students will be able to download a new Study Spaces app, which combines scheduled on-campus timetabled activity with the ability to locate and book available rooms and study areas (including the library) across our campuses. You should normally only access campus for pre-arranged activity or bookings – as noted in your timetable, or booked by you through the app.
Students on campus for booked/scheduled activity will also be able to use our social spaces, such as the Hub, Atrium, Neuk and Crannie. Campus residents can also use these spaces, as well as accessing the catering outlets – which will be offering a take-away service only.
Q: How can I access books and articles from the library if I have to study online?
A: UWS Library has an extensive collection of online resources that support teaching, learning and research. For more information about our online resources, please visit our Finding Books, Articles & More page of the Library website. You can search our library collection 24/7 using One Search. If you require library support, including 1-to-1 online appointments with our Academic Librarians, you can access this online via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or via the Self Service Portal (hub.uws.ac.uk). Our staff will be available remotely to assist you. We also offer a number of online guides, videos and FAQs which you can access at #uwslibTalks Padlet. Find out more about library resources here.
Q. How will my programme be assessed?
A. UWS is committed to ensuring a fair and reasonable approach to assessment, progression and degree classification for all students. Our priority is to ensure that you are not disadvantaged as a result of the ongoing impact of COVID-19, while at the same time, maintaining the integrity of your higher education journey.
We will continue to use our wide range of assessment measures throughout this period including coursework, presentations and practical assessments which are common elements of university study. Given the current circumstances, examinations are not expected unless there is a specific requirement by relevant professional bodies and you will be notified by our academic schools if this applies to you.
Q: What student support services are available and how can I access them?
A: We are aware of the uncertainty that many students are facing as a result of this unprecedented situation. A broad range of support continues to be available to students and you can find out more about these here. Online and phone appointments are also available, which can be made with the Counselling, Disability, International Advice, Academic Skills, Careers and Funding and Advice teams, by emailing email@example.com or calling 0141 848 3800.
Q: When will I be able to access my timetable?
A: : Timetables are now published but may be subject to change due to government guidance or other needs, but you will be automatically emailed should there be any changes to your timetable starting from 28 September 2020. You may notice references to the technical terms 'synchronous' or 'asynchronous' in your timetables, which are often used to describe online learning. These just mean in real time, or available for you to do at whatever time suits. Your module leader will discuss your timetable with you during Induction Week. Induction week schedules can be found on our Welcome Week webpage.
Q: I’m unsure if my timetable is correct?
A: In some cases, you may see your timetable continue to populate, and you will only see scheduled online or on-campus activities which are only part of your full timetable. Please keep an eye on your timetable over the next few days as some changes are possible due government guidance.
Q: Where will my timetabled classes take place?
A: Due to COVID-19, timetabled events this year are either scheduled on campus, scheduled online or as self-study where your lecturer will provide all material and recorded lecturers for you to access at your own convenience. Because of this hybrid approach, you will only see timetabled events at days and times on campus or online you must attend. The other course material and modules will be online which you may access and study at any time.
Q: Is there any financial support available to me?
A: The Funding and Advice team in Student Services provides advice on a range of financial support available for students. If you are funded by SAAS, funding to support your living costs and childcare may be available through the SAAS Discretionary Funds. Students must meet the criteria set by SAAS and details are outlined in the following link. Further information is available via the Funding Team website.
Q: I have a disability – how can I arrange support for on campus and remote learning?
A: If you have a disability, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. We will send you a support request form and once completed and returned, we will arrange for you to speak to an adviser to discuss your support requirements for both on campus and remote learning. We can also help you complete an application for Disabled Students Allowance.
Q: Can I access any support to help with technology costs?
A: If you are concerned that your student funding might not cover the essential technology needed for your studies, the Funding and Advice team in Student Services provides advice on a range of additional financial support that may be available to students.
Funding to support living costs and childcare may be available through the SAAS Discretionary Funds, which may also provide additional funding to help you through your studies. Full eligibility criteria, and guidance on how to apply, can be found online here.
In addition, new care experienced students may wish to apply to the UWS Care Experienced Grant for additional funding, and can find out more here.
If you are not eligible for the additional funding described above and require access to technology please contact the Hub (by emailing email@example.com or calling 0141 848 3800) and you will be advised about available support.
Practical learning and teaching
Q: Can I access labs for my laboratory-based teaching?
A: Public health measures currently in force mean that there will be some changes to normal programme delivery, however students will still experience some laboratory-based teaching and learning during Term 1, in keeping with government guidelines. Our academic schools will provide more detailed information at programme level before your start/return date.
Q: What happens to my laboratory-based teaching if I can’t be on campus and have to study online?
A: Colleagues from across UWS have been working hard to develop a comprehensive model of hybrid learning and teaching, which means that, even if you can’t be on campus to take part in laboratory-based teaching, you can still access activities and watch demonstrations of the practical elements online. This approach will apply to a range of disciplines such as conventional science, computational work and engineering activity.
Q: I have placements as part of my course, will they still take place?
A: Where placement is part of the programme, we are working with partners to ensure that the high-quality placements we provide will be available for students as soon as is appropriate and meet any professional body requirements. Schools will be in contact with students regarding placements as soon as there is more detailed guidance, and in consultation with our partners.
Q: My course includes clinical skills-based teaching. Will I be able to access this on campus?
A: We will use a mix of online delivery for clinical skills learning, where appropriate, and also clinical skills teaching on campus where that is required in line with the requirements of national public health guidance. Your academic school will contact you directly with more details for specific courses and all decisions will be made in line with official guidance.