This is the first of many posts regarding how our member institutions are responding to the new challenges brought upon by the COVID-19 pandemic. UALL's hope is that by sharing these practices, we can provide new approaches and tips to all our members and colleagues during these difficult times.
New approaches at Leeds
The University of Leeds Lifelong Learning Centre (LLC) has responded very quickly in developing new models of delivery for its work in outreach, academic skills, general student support and student/staff wellbeing and programme provision. Key to the LLC’s work with its students, outreach participants and staff is the importance of community and engendering a sense of belonging and wellbeing. We are continually seeking ways to problem solve issues of digital exclusion which are particularly pertinent for our part-time and mature learners from under-represented communities.
Latest developments from the Lifelong Learning Centre: here we look at our most recent work in the areas of student support and wellbeing; outreach and partnership work; and staff wellbeing and community building. Some of this work includes:
- Development of a guide to online learning targeted at both LLC and other mature students at the University of Leeds.
- Various pre-entry online taster sessions
- LIVE interactive sessions on social media platforms
- Supporting local partner organisations
- Staff Community activities including a ‘fun and chat’ channel in MS Teams
Reflections on teaching and learning from our tutor, Nadine Cavigioli, who teaches on our Foundation Degree and BA Learning and Teaching. Nadine considers how the social and emotional dimensions of the student experience in online learning have informed her practice.
Many of us in the lifelong learning sector have not been trained as online educators. Similarly, most of our mature and part-time students did not sign up to be online learners. But we can share good practice whilst having empathy and compassion in supporting our peers, students and ourselves during these unprecedented times. We would really welcome the opportunity to discuss practice with UALL colleagues.