The impact of coronavirus on students this past semester has been significant as units moved to online delivery due to national and state gathering restrictions. The University is vitally interested in the experiences of students, and has conducted a semester one 2020 Student Unit Evaluation. The results show that students have risen to the challenge of online learning. University staff are delighted to see that students have maintained a positive learning experience and high satisfaction.
In the survey, students have made comments which show an appreciation of the importance of active participation in learning. They particularly noted their positive experiences in the provision of resources and new ways of learning online through the Learning Management System, ARK and the Library Hub. Many commented that at first, reduced physical access to libraries seemed daunting, but they found the resources in the Library Hub catered to their learning needs. Some students noted that some units were better suited to online delivery, whilst others missed blended delivery. Many students also said that they gained new perspectives on their role as a student and their relationships with staff, seeing new skill sets and sides of their lecturers or tutors not seen before.
Overall, one theme was clear: active and diverse participation and support in learning online or in any mode is important. Thank you, students, for your time and effort in sharing your experience. The University can grow and change because of your input.
The Student Unit Evaluation, Semester 1, 2020
Out of 1026 responses throughout the student body of the University surveyed, the percentages of those that agreed or strongly agreed to each of these aspects of their learning were:
- Developing knowledge: 97.46%
- Accessing Library Hub and ARK: 95.78%
- Learning Skills: 95.25%
- Clear Communication 94.97%
- Gaining a Clear Purpose: 94.76%
- Receiving Helpful and Supportive Feedback: 94.02%
- Participating Actively Online: 93.84%
- Encouraged to Participate: 93.67%
Dr Carolyn Alsen is an educator, linguist and researcher in education, religious and biblical studies, particularly Hebrew Bible/Old Testament. She is currently the Learning Specialist at the University of Divinity, based in the Office of the Vice-Chancellor.