EUSA teaching awards – nominate us!

Many of you will have seen that the student union are now requesting nominations for the annual teaching awards. It means a lot to members of the programme team to get your individual nominations, and we’ve had nominations for the programme as a whole every year since the scheme began. So if you’re enjoying your studies with us, please consider making a nomination! You can nominate in the following categories for this programme:

The teaching awards nomination page is here – please help support the programme by giving us your good word!


Those of you on the MSc programme who are interested in MOOCs (and that’s probably most of us!) might want to follow some of the activity that’s happening at the moment on our own MOOC, which launched on Sunday night. We have 40,000 participants on this 5-week course: quite a different style from this MSc programme!

You can see what the MOOC is all about from our Coursera page:

And you can get a sense of the activity by taking a look at the hashtag:

The course teaching team are also blogging the MOOC, so there will be new posts from us daily at:

Students currently on the full MSc course ‘E-learning and Digital Cultures’ course will be working in the MOOC as teaching associates next week, so look out for contributions coming from them – we’ll make sure they are tweeted to #mscel so those who are interested can follow up.

Nominations for teaching awards open!

If you’ve enjoyed your semester on the programme, why not spread some festive joy by nominating us for one of the EUSA teaching awards?

You can nominate across several categories, including best feedback, teaching with technology, supporting students’ learning, best research or dissertation supervisor and best course.

We do get nominations every year, but we’re still waiting for EUSA to actually give an award to a distance, rather than on-campus, course. So help us build the pressure to make distance learning programmes like this one a central and core concern for student representation!

On another level, nominations mean a lot to the team, so if you’re tempted, please don’t hold back. You can nominate from the EUSA Teaching Awards site (you’ll need to log in with EASE.)

Help us run our MOOC, while you study!

You may have seen the article in this week’s Observer, which talks about MOOCs and mentions the Edinburgh courses running through Coursera. You may also have seen that the MSc in E-learning team are teaching a MOOC on ‘E-learning and digital cultures’ at the end of next January.

We’ve had a couple of queries about how the MOOC is different from the full ‘E-learning and digital cultures’ (EDC) course, which you currently have the option of signing up for. Here’s how!

1. The MOOC version is at first year undergraduate level

2. It doesn’t carry any credit

3. It covers similar themes to the first weeks of the full course, though in less depth

4. It has peer assessment, not tutor-marked assessment

5. It’s only 5 weeks long

6. It’s…massive (currently around 25,000 people signed up)

One of the things we’d like to do with the EDC MOOC is to explore ways of linking MOOCs with more ‘mainstream’ distance courses. So students signing up for the full EDC course will have the opportunity to help us run the MOOC during the first few weeks of semester. We thought our students would relish the opportunity to be involved with MOOCs as teachers: the intention is to give those on the full course the chance to engage in the MOOC as teaching assistants in a structured and time-limited way, for one or two weeks of their time on the course.

This is a chance to experience from the inside what ‘massive’ might mean for education and for digital culture, and to experiment a bit with your own MOOC teaching. There probably won’t be another chance to do this coming up soon, so anyone who is interested in MOOCs might well want to consider signing up for the full course for next January.

If you’re not  especially interested in MOOCs don’t worry – EDC will still be primarily focused on exploring all that’s most interesting for education in current movements in digital culture. This is the programme’s only ‘open’ course, and one which gets exceptional feedback from students (One student reported, “I can honestly say this is the most fun I’ve ever had on a course. Ever. I’m simply loving every minute of it.”) : )

Take a look at the 2010 run of the course, to get a sense of what it’s about. If you want to know more, contact me (