Teaching and Learning Fellowship helps disseminate best practice in the classroom

During 2016-2017 academic year, I was fortunate enough to be awarded a BU Teaching and Learning Fellowship via the Centre for Excellence in Learning for the work I was doing around social and mobile journalism on my first-year unit, Features and Online 1 on BA Multi-Media Journalism.

In that class, I worked with our fabulous technical demonstrator, Saeed Rashid on flipping our classroom when teaching InDesign, a programme that journalists use to make newspapers and magazines, amongst other things! I also added a SnapChat assessment (more on that soon!), and really embedded multimedia skills across the unit.

The fellowship is “intended to demonstrate the university’s commitment to valuing education excellence based on a fusion with research and professional practice and to encourage the widest dissemination of these activities.” It is the dissemination part, that helps the most when you receive this fellowship.

Many of us do amazing things in our classroom, yet, we rarely get the time to sit down and write up what we’ve been doing, be it because we’re short on time, or we just don’t know where to start! Even fewer of us then get the opportunity to take that paper to a conference or get an opportunity to share our fabulousness not only here in the UK, but abroad, too.

If you receive a BU Teaching and Learning and Fellowship, you don’t need to worry about that anymore!

Back in July and August, I used my £2000 (yes, you get money to spend however you like!) to travel to the United States, first to Seattle to visit a colleague who I had met at a previous conference and also to meet with some gamers to start thinking about another research project. My second stop was Chicago, where I attended the 100th conference of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication, and wow, was that mindblowing!

5,000 academics from across the United States and the rest of the world convened in Chicago (not a bad place to visit if you get the chance!) to talk all things journalism. “Fake news” came up… A LOT, and that fella, er, Trump, I think his name is… but we also spent a lot of time talking about social media and mobile journalism.

It was here that I talked to colleagues about what I was doing in my classroom back at BU. I was able to share what I learned, the pitfalls, the unexpected highs. I shared contact details, assessment briefs, best practice. I learned new tools and apps that I have brought back to BU and will be sharing with YOU very soon!

Probably the best part of the conference, besides winning an Amazon Echo Dot (with a US plug!), was the fact that I could advertise my webinar (Oct. 3, 2017) that I promised to host as part of my fellowship. The webinar will build on from AEJMC and also a previous conference I attended last year, the World Journalism Education Council, and bring together international colleagues to discuss the issues we face around social media and mobile in the classroom. There’s a stellar lineup, with colleagues
tweeting and emailing asking if they can

The BU Teaching and Learning Fellowship has allowed me the opportunity to spread the word about what I do in my classroom, and shouldn’t we all be shouting loud and proud about what we do? It helps if you’re going for Fellowship, Senior Fellowship, or Principal Fellowship of the HEA (See Teach@BU if you’d like more information on how to apply for this); it also helps when we all need to be publishing for the REF; it even helps when going for promotion and pay progression.

This year’s fellows have just been announced: Congratulations to the four new BU Learning and Teaching Fellows who start their role this month. Camila Devis-Rozental (FMC), Nicole Ferdinand (FM), Karen Thompson (FM) and Steve Trenoweth (FHSS) will each be embarking on funded projects around education.

I would highly recommend applying for the BU T&L Fellowship, and if you want to have a chat about applying next year, just drop me an e-mail: aluce@bournemouth.ac.uk

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