Digitising Present in Person Material

With Richard Whalley and Nilanjan Chakraborty

School of Engineering

Faculty of Science, Agriculture and Engineering

What did you do?

Around 25 face to face lectures and a further 12 to 15 tutorial sessions were condensed down to just seven live sessions. All lectures have also been condensed into 15 minute very short and very snappy videos. There are around 15 lecture videos making the material more manageable for students to consume.
Supplementary learning material has been created, which students complete (or are encouraged to complete) before live sessions so that conversations during the sessions are better/more constructive/more useful. Course – Applications of Thermofluid Dynamics – MEC2003 and Computational Modelling – MEC3028
Students – 200 and 180 respectively

Who is involved?

Dr Richard Whalley, Senior Lecturer Mechanical Engineering and Marine Tech (for MEC2003)

Professor Nilanjan Chakraborty, Professor of Fluid Dynamics (Multiphase Flow) Mechanical Engineering and Marine Tech (for MEC2003 & MEC3028)

How did you do it?

The steps that were taken included the following,

  • Condensed 25 face to face lectures and 12 to 15 tutorial sessions in MEC2003 without sacrificing the course coverage.
  • Created around 15 smaller lecture videos, around 15 minutes in length in MEC2003.
  • Created seven face to face sessions
  • In MEC3028, 10 face to face lectures are condensed to 5 online lecture videos without sacrificing the course coverage. The 9 live sessions are treated as tutorials for clarifying doubts and solving example problems.
  • Created online learning material including tutorial sheets and questions
  • The live sessions are used to discuss the online learning material and go through any theoretical content, reinforcing theory with real-world examples
  • Had more conversations with different types of people from across the course and more real-life examples
  • Created a structure for students to follow and a guide to where they should be at any given time. They could do all of this in one go but they must be at certain points at certain times to ensure they were on track
  • Students had access to all of the material and Zoom links in the canvas course
  • Used breakout rooms to discuss different aspects of the learning with the main room controlled by the teacher if required


Why did you do it?

This was a golden opportunity to flip teaching, something that was talked about and something that has been considered for some time.

This approach allows the teachers to have better conversations with the students and discuss aspects of the work they may need further support in or provide real life examples of their studies in practice.

Contact time is saved and this will allow teachers opportunities to complete their own research.

Designing of new modules can include PhD students to deliver sessions. If the recorded material is good, anyone can teach the content.

Does it work and Student Voice

From a teaching point of view this way of working makes teaching much easier. When the teaching returns to campus and a more traditional model some of these innovations will be kept because the benefits are so important.

The learning material is good quality.

Students found the short digital content assigned to each lecture helpful. General feedback has been that MEC2003 has been one of the most well-structured modules this year.

Comment from students of MEC3028 include:

Plenty of opportunities to ask questions in synchronous sessions- whilst not being used to the full advantage now, these will come in much more useful later on in the module.

Clear explanations giving everyone a chance to have a repeat explanation if they have not understood

Both live and pre-recorded lectures help to better absorb the information as it is delivered slightly different each time

Graduate Framework

  • Critical Thinkers
  • Confident
  • Creative, Innovative and Enterprising
  • Digitally Capable
  • Curious

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