TEACHING AND LEARNING STRATEGIES 2023
Staying in line with the latest trends in the Higher Education sector internationally, CTU Training Solutions will continue implementing a Blended Teaching and Learning policy. This policy allows for a mixture of interactive virtual and face-to-face interaction—an approach aligned with the learning and social needs of the new generation.
Over the last five years, CTU Training Solutions has opted to start using a “Blended Learning” approach. Blended learning is a knowledge and skills learning process (learner-centered) that uses various teaching methods which integrate digital (internet and mobile) and traditional face-to-face class activities in a planned manner. The technique ensures that students direct their learning process by choosing the learning methods and materials that best fit their characteristics and needs to reach competence in the required outcomes.
Generation Z students are bandwidth-connected students who have been immersed in technology for their entire lives. At CTU, the Blended approach to course delivery combines face-to-face classroom instruction (theory and practical) with online teaching and learning activities (VLIT-Virtual Lecturer-led Interactive Teaching; O’Reilly- Online books and CampusOnline) as well as group and research activities. Each learner must have a device with data to enable students to be fully active in the Blended learning approach. Please see the “Bring your own device” information.
The Blended Learning approach is NOT a distance learning approach, and students must be able to attend on-campus activities as per their Programme timetable.
The Blended learning approach includes some of the following methods:
As of 2020, CTU made use of a flipped classroom approach. The flipped classroom approach will blend online learning and face-to-face learning environments. Students use independent study time to watch lecture video content introducing new concepts. They then use class time (either on campus or in virtual instructor-led sessions) to discuss this information, do exercises with the support of their lecturer, and engage in group work and discussions.
All CTU study guides will guide the student to ensure that all prereading on subjects and topics takes place before the student attend a face-to-face class. Students can engage in an authentic, collaborative learning experience with the lecturer and other students during classroom instruction. The underlying premise is that students review information outside of class and come prepared to discuss concepts instead of simply receiving data from the instructor.
Webinars are a great way to bridge the gap between in-person and online training. It is a happy medium and ideal for the CTU blended learning environment. Students can ask questions and message peers, and webinars can be recorded for students who cannot attend on the day.
Webinars will be used for those topics identified per programme that proved challenging to students in the past. It will also be used to prepare students for international exams.
Webinars will be scheduled far enough in advance to avoid schedule conflicts. Reminders with an outline of what will be discussed before the training day will be communicated to the students. This will ensure that students can better participate in the subject matter.
Group and Research
The hybrid instruction method allows the students to interact with content and engage in learning activities before, during, and after the face-to-face class. This interaction will take place in the group and research classes. Students also develop teamwork during group activities, an essential soft skill required for the 4IR workplace.
Virtual Lecturer-led Interactive Teaching (VLIT)
Through the Microsoft Office 365 platform, CTU uses Microsoft Teams as a virtual classroom to deliver face-to-face interactive learning virtually. Teams allow lecturing staff to facilitate a training session live to students with a whiteboard and recording capability. It will enable the lecturer to access the student’s computer to assist with problematic areas.
As of 2022, CTU will implement a Microlearning approach in some Programme modules. Microlearning is a skill-based approach to learning that delivers information in small, highly focused chunks. It is the ideal way to find quick answers to specific problems. As the name implies, microlearning is fast. A particular topic can be completed in about five minutes. A study in the Journal of Applied Psychology found that microlearning was 17% more efficient in transferring knowledge than regular classroom training. Researchers found that information delivered in short, focused chunks was easier to comprehend and recall than the learning delivered in a longer, more comprehensive format.
Gamification of education is a developing approach for increasing learners’ motivation and engagement by incorporating game design elements in educational environments. CTU will apply this approach in various modules and Programmes. Games are about problem-solving, making them an excellent tool for teaching, learning, and assessing. It has been shown that gamification helps students focus on information and improve their performance. This is mainly because younger generations are so used to video game dynamics that seeing them recreated at college benefits their overall performance. Because younger generations are so used to video game dynamics seeing them played at college is guaranteed to increase their engagement.
TEACHING METHODS IN 2023
Theory VLIT sessions
All theory classes will be conducted virtually through facilitator-led interactive teaching nationally. A flipped classroom approach will be followed. This means that students are introduced to content at home and practice working through it during the applicable session, either the virtual theory sessions or the practical sessions. Students can attend some practical, group, and lab sessions on campus or virtually. The same work and time will be spent on both methodologies with students. The Campus Operational Manager can book extra lab times at the campus.
All students will be allocated to lecturers not necessarily based at the enrolment campus but who will always be subject matter experts. CTU implements a national academic standard, and all lecturers have been appointed on the same criteria and use the same educational content in the teaching and learning process. The Academic Management team at Head Office monitors the adherence to a national academic standard. Therefore, all students will continue to receive the same quality of education.
Students might also have different lecturers for all modules or all learning units within a module. Various subject matter experts will facilitate multiple aspects of learning outcomes per learning.
Face-to-face activities on campus:
Students will be expected to attend the practical, group, and some student supports extra classes on campus for a minimum of TWO days a week as per the campus schedule.
Summative Assessments will be conducted on campus in an Invigilated controlled environment.
Student Academic Support
Student support sessions with the facilitator will also occur on a one-on-one basis, virtually or physically, at the campus per appointment or per the academic schedule.
ACADEMIC CALENDAR FOR 2023
- 1st-year student orientation: 20-24 February 2023
- 2nd and 3rd-year student induction 21-24 February 2023
- Classes commence: 27 February 2023
- Vocational 1st-year student orientation: 10-13 July 2023
- Vocational 2nd and 3rd-year student orientation: 11-13 July 2023
- NATED Humanities student orientation: 10-13 July 2023
- NATED Engineering student orientation: 28-29 August 2023
- Vocational and Humanities classes commence: 17 July 2023
- NATED Engineering classes commence: 4 September 2023