Block teaching is a mode of delivery where students generally take one module of learning at a time, before progressing on to the next. Such an approach is based on pedagogic thinking which highlights the importance of deep and active learning strategies where students are engaged in learning that has a strong problem-based approach over a shorter period of time (Education 2030 Toolkit, 2022).
Block learning and teaching benefits include:
- Achieving better outcomes/grades: There is evidence from other universities that this model leads to better grades and student progression due to the focus, care and attention you can give each module.
- Focused learning: It will give you the space to properly focus on and absorb the teaching for each module before moving on to the next.
- Dedicated teacher contact time: Our tutors will be able to be more responsive to individual student needs and more easily identify where you may need additional academic or wellbeing support.
- Frequent and faster feedback: Assessment marks and feedback will be returned to you following each block. This means that rather than having to retain the knowledge of multiple modules and then revisit them for the summer assessments, you will be assessed more frequently and receive faster feedback.
- A stronger learning community: You’ll be with the same teaching team and group of course mates for each block, so you’ll really benefit from a close feeling of belonging. As a result of the focused timetables, you’ll also have fewer barriers to attending all classes and scheduled learning.
- Supports study life balance and wellbeing needs: The focused block approach also allows you to fit your learning and better manage your wellbeing needs around your other life commitments. Block classes and the simpler timetable mean that students have more time for work, social life, caring responsibilities, sport, and everything else that’s important to you.
- More opportunities to develop your skills: The block approach will increase the opportunities available to you to develop wider skills including entrepreneurial, wellbeing and life skills.
Time, deep learning and building a community are some of the key components of this strategy and digital technology is used to enhance the student experience and journey. Embedding digital technology will enable more flexibility and accessibility for students, aligning with our UDL framework. Students will have access to their learning material before synchronous sessions, further enhancing this time with active learning opportunities. Due to the focused nature of block teaching, digital technology gives students the opportunity to revisit and document their journey, further supporting the learning outcomes and aiding summative assessment for their modules. In short, digital technology is an integral part of unlocking the full potential of block teaching and will play a pivotal role in the student’s journey and success.
Digital Technologies for Block Teaching is Now Available
The aim of this 45-minute session is to examine the different learning technologies available to support block teaching. We will reflect upon their relevance in your own context and discuss the ‘What,’ ‘Why’ and ‘How’ these technologies can help to enhance your face-to-face teaching. Throughout the session, we will share what workshops and training sessions are available for each of the digital technologies and where you can sign up.
There are a host of dates scheduled throughout the summer and these will be hosted face-to-face and via Ms Teams.
To sign up please visit ‘My Development’ on the DMU Hub.
Knowledge Check using Digital Technology
This new course is being developed to consider a selection of different learning technologies to support knowledge checking and to reflect on their relevance in your own context. We will discuss the ‘What,’ ‘When’ ‘Why’ and ‘How’ these technologies can help to enhance your teaching and the overall student experience. Throughout this session, we will share what workshops and training sessions are available to further support your use of the technologies considered.3
Launching early-August, you will be able to register by visiting the DMU Hub, and going to ‘My Development’.