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Building the new Teaching Workforce

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News created: 19 Aug 2010

FBE204 Learning and Teaching in Business is a unit designed for students aspiring to (or already fulfilling) a broad range of teaching assistants roles such as tutors, workshop or practical demonstrators, lab assistant, Peer Assisted Learning (PAL) leaders. Launched in semester 1, 2010, the unit has had a great response with 56 students enrolled in the subject. Taught by Dr Boris Handal, the unit will give these students the opportunity to develop the skills, techniques and methods to be effective and successful tutors.

Learning and Teaching in Business explores a number of instructional issues empowering individuals to develop specific teaching capabilities. These include: delivering and presenting a lesson, classroom management, providing student feedback, writing assessment items, managing group work, questioning and answering in class, conducting online discussions and developing cross-cultural competencies in teaching and learning. The unit has a strong IT component in regard to educational delivery.

Student successfully completing FBE204 receive a formal certificate acknowledging simultaneous completion of the Faculty-based Teaching Induction Program (TIP) which enables them to undertake tutorials roles.

An early evaluation of the unit reveals some immediate students’ benefits. Students have commented that the unit gave them a better understanding of their own learning needs and also gave them more compassion and understanding of the role of the teacher.  Preparation for a future teaching career also came up as an important learning outcome of incorporating the TIP resources and methodology into this unit. For example a student said:

"My learning has been a positive experience since the FBE204 unit as it has helped me understand and appreciate what it means to present a tutorial/lecture and teach it from a teacher’s perspective."

The use of multimedia such as videos, wikis and online discussion forums had a strong impact on the student’s studies: “Activities such as the online roundtables also enabled me to develop some useful IT knowledge.” Another student said: “The FBE videos gave me a much more in-depth understanding of both teaching expectations and outcomes as well as learning expectations and outcomes.”

Similarly, students perceived that knowing about classroom pedagogies enhanced their learning skills across subjects. In this regard, a student remarked: “I  have applied what I have learned from FBE204 to study better in other subjects. For example, I have applied more objective analysis when I'm doing assessments such as essays, critical reviews, etc.” Another student said:

The methods and strategies of teaching and learning that has been taught through this unit has made me see several perspectives of study and learning which has had a positive and proactive impact on my learning ability.

The unit overall has had a positive response from students, “[FBE204] certainly made use of a variety of resources & teaching methods beyond general lecturing that aided my understanding.” Similarly, another student said that “FBE 204 ... has given me the tools to learn, study and work better.”  Along the same line the following feedback was received: “I can now understand the needs of my peers in my classes and would like to help out more than what I use to.”

Examples of multimedia of educational multimedia resources produced by FBE204 students as part of their assessment tasks are: Are you thinking of doing a part-time job? and Introduction to share trading.

About Boris Handal

handalBoris achieved a Doctorate in Education from the University of Sydney in the area of curriculum development following advanced research methodology studies at the University of New England. He also earned a Masters of Education from Edith Cowan University (Perth) and a Bachelors of Education (Honours) in secondary mathematics teaching. At the University of Melbourne, he completed postgraduate studies in the area of information and communication technologies in education and training. In addition, Boris also holds an accounting credential having practised as a registered accountant in various settings and worked as a CEO of a radio station.

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