Like last week, most of the week was spent reading, analysing and writing.
I keep having conversations about hybrid teaching and in some cases hybrid working. Having partaken in hybrid meetings (a lot) before the pandemic, my overall opinion is to avoid them. Just have everyone in the room, or have everyone online. Avoid going hybrid with a mix if you can.
With the BBC reporting that new staff are to gain day one right to request flexible working many universities I am talking to are talking about flexible hybrid working.
Hybrid flexible working sounds all right in practice, but unless challenged and planned, what you may find is that all your staff want to work from home on Mondays and Fridays and come onto campus for the middle three days. As a result your campus is dead quiet at the ends of the week, with loads of room and free spaces, whilst it becomes more cramped and busy in the middle three days. Combine that with possible thinking, well as staff are only in 60% of the week we can sell off 40% of our office space and you start to realise that flexible, doesn’t necessarily mean a free for all.
Finished and published this week was the report from a workshop I worked on with the University of Cumbria and Advance HE.
Supporting Student Transitions into HE was an excellent event in which many generously shared viewpoints and challenges and having such a variety of institutions and roles added to the richness of the content. A little later than expected, we have published a resource pack we have created as an output from the event. We hope you find is useful in drawing up plans for the new start of term in September and/or January.
The pandemic forced a swift move to online learning in March 2020 which for many was the first experience of teaching and/or learning in the virtual environment. The sector news focussed in the educational aspect of the move in that initial phase reporting on concerns of quality, parity and applauding the pace of change with the digital skills agenda. The announcement of further lockdowns meant the initial, emergency, move now needed to be re-shaped into a more considered response that would potentially lead to sustained change across the sector.
When it comes to designing an online module or an in-person module with online elements, we can design the online aspects without the physical, geographical and chronological constraints of an in-person session.
My top tweet this week was this one.
For breakfast this morning I had brioche and coffee. What did you have? #thisiswhattwitterwascreatedfor
— James Clay (@jamesclay) September 18, 2021