Reflective practice allows the individual to think about their practice, and to analyse their decision making processes and choices. It is a common tool used to promote learning and critical thinking. Using reflective practice techniques can be particularly effective for teaching practitioners to critically analyse their own teaching and learning design.
Leon Teo, course coordinator from School of Business IT and Logistics uses reflection as a means to improve the student experience in his courses. Leon believes that feedback from students undertaking the courses, and staff delivering courses can provide valuable information towards improving learning outcomes and experiences for students.
To gather feedback Leon uses a number of sources of data and information. Formal feedback is obtained through the course evaluation survey and provides his teaching team with a baseline of student expectations. Qualitative data informs them more about the student pain points. He also uses Pulse like surveys in the early weeks of the semester to get an understanding of how students are ‘travelling’ in the course, seeing this as a quick window of opportunity to rectify any issues early in the semester before they escalate.
Leon’s teaching philosophy is about getting fundamentals right and enriching learning through active student engagement to achieve excellence in teaching. By reflecting, Leon can identify opportunities for improvements. He believes a course coordinator needs to ensure course-related information is clear and accurate (eg. course guide, LMS, learning materials) and that the enrich course is enriched with authentic learning activities. If delivering to big classes that involve a large teaching team, a formal and structured communication method between coordinator and sessionals is critical for the success of the course. By gathering feedback and data Leon can identify areas to make a change to improve outcomes for all.