Preparing for COVID: Zoom class meetings

While we all hope that COVID alert levels do not rise, we want to make sure you are prepared in case they do. 

One of the tools you might find most helpful if the COVID alert levels were to rise again, would be a Zoom meeting room where you can meet synchronously with your students. When set up through LEARN | AKO recordings of these meetings can be uploaded automatically into the Echo360 block for a chosen course site.

There are instructions for setting this up on this page from the Echo360 support site. If you would prefer to see a demonstration of how this can be set up, you could watch this video.

For any queries regarding this, please log a support request through the Assyst system.

Aropapaki: Online Course Design

Future Learning & Development is supporting the design and development of online courses through a co-design process called Aropapaki. The word “Aropapaki” is based on a Ngāi Tahu whakataukī: Me aropapaki te whiu. It speaks of perseverance to reach goals. Ngāi Tahu explains, “Be unyielding, like the waves that relentlessly hit the shore. A phrase encouraging people to persevere and keep strong.”

During the Aropapaki process, we work with academic staff to co-design an online course. The process begins with a series of three workshops, where you will be joined by a team consisting of learning designers, kaiārahi, Pasifika advisors, subject matter librarians, educational technology consultants, academic developers, and video producers. We’ve worked to make sure everyone will be in the room so that we have the best design possible and you are fully supported through the process. By the end of the three workshops, we will have the storyboard for your course and an action plan so that a learning designer can begin the build of the course in AKO | LEARN.

Following the workshops, we will continue to support you over the next 12 weeks to develop your course. Future Learning and Development will also provide additional resources to support you during the implementation of your online course.
If you have or are planning an online course and would like to engage in Aropapaki, let your Head of Department or Dean know. The call for the next round of Workshops will be going out soon.

Meet the Academic Development Team

The Academic Development team is available for consultation on teaching methods, assessment and curriculum design, programme (re)structure, academic processes, teaching portfolios, and research on teaching and learning.

Since January, two new academic developers have joined the team: Dr Trevor Nesbit joined us from Ara where he taught accounting and information systems, and he previously taught at UC as well. Trevor got his PhD from UC focusing on educational technology. Dr Brad Hurren joined us from Otago University. He holds a PhD in anatomy and has taught extensively into the large first-year health science courses at Otago. The last academic developer in the team is A/Prof Erik Brogt, who’s been in the role at UC since 2009.

The Academic Development team can collectively be reached via a new email address:

We are Future Learning & Development

Welcome to this first newsletter from the Future Learning and Development team. As a newly formed team it is exciting to communicate more widely about some of the work that we are doing and new initiatives that we are currently working on.

The University of Canterbury 2020-2030 Strategic Vision| Tangata Tū, Tangata Ora, communicates a vision to utilise technology to transform teaching and learning capability to develop flexible, accessible and future focused education. This digital transformation will scaffold delivery to a larger more diverse domestic and international audience whilst promoting development, growth and success of the city and region. The vision responds to the current global context, future needs of work and society, and supports the needs of all generations of learners and employers ensuring a more sustainable future. Recent events have given us a timely reminder of the importance of having robust, quality, sustainable digital teaching and learning solutions for all of our students.

Our team comprises Instructional Designers, Flexible Learning Advisors, Educational Technologists, Project Managers, Academic Developers and Video Production specialists. Members of the Future Learning and Development team are highly experienced practitioners, supporting teaching and learning with particular emphasis on digital transformation of teaching and learning. We are here to help academics to maximise the student learning experience and to support the development of the new 2020-2030 vision. We work with colleagues to enact quality teaching and learning for our on-campus students whilst also enabling access for students requiring more flexibility through digital engagement. I am proud of the skills and experience that this team brings to the University of Canterbury and I encourage you to take up the opportunities that this team offers.

I do hope that you enjoy reading this newsletter and that you find our regular updates useful. We look forward to working with you in UC’s mission to become more flexible, accessible and future focused.

Professor Michael Grimley
Amo Ako Anamata | Dean Future Learning and Development

New in AKO | LEARN: Mass Actions Block

We have added the Mass Actions block to AKO | LEARN. This block allows instructors to perform actions upon multiple resources or activities, rather than having to perform repeated actions on individual items.

Supported actions include mass selection, indentation, deletion, hiding, showing, and moving. To select items to perform actions on, simply click the checkbox to the right of it in the course home page or use select functionality, then click the action you would like to perform in the block.

You will see the block on the right hand side of your AKO | LEARN courses when you turn editing on.

There is a help sheet linked below, but if you have any queries let us know.

Mass Actions Block