Professor Roger Eccleston (DVC Academic) has recorded a video update explaining some of the measures taken to enable us to confidently offer students safe access to the best learning experience while Covid restrictions are in place, ensuring a safe return to campus for all. The video highlights many of the safety precautions put in place on campus as well as some of the guidelines mentioned below.
Teaching space guidelines
Teaching guidelines for classroom and specialist facilities are now available in the Course Delivery section of Academic Essentials. These cover, in detail, classroom and specialist/technical spaces set-up, safety mitigations and what’s expected of staff and students, managing your teaching space, and information on risk assessments and fire safety.
Within the guidelines, staff are asked not to move furniture around, as this has all been planned and set up to manage social distancing requirements and changes affect the safety of staff and students coming into spaces for later sessions.
Practice teaching spaces
Practice teaching spaces are now available to book in the Cantor building, for academic colleagues can practice your teaching delivery in the new settings. 25 rooms on floors 0, 1 and 2 in Cantor are bookable until 25 September, from 9.00am to 5.00pm. Book your space via resource booker by choosing the model classrooms option.
This will enable staff to see how teaching rooms will be set up, understand the control measures in place, familiarise with any new technology, and to practice delivery of the mixed model of face to face and online. Working together in teaching teams, if required. Support in sessions will be offered remotely by Digital Learning and DTS. Links to relevant guidance, return to campus working information and support links will be provided on booking.
Teaching reorientation seminars
In addition, teaching reorientation seminars, facilitated by Digital Learning and Health and Safety colleagues with support from the Teaching and Learning Leadership team, are running from 14 September to 25 September – with 40 sessions in total. They will focus on the practicalities of teaching delivery, the technology to use, and teaching approaches to help you manage simultaneous face to face and online teaching. They will also cover support arrangements and some of the safety-related changes in place.
The seminars will take place in Cantor 9132 and can be attended in person or live online. One of the sessions will be recorded so there will also be the chance to watch it later if staff are unable to attend live. Each session can accommodate a maximum of 18 people in the room and 30 people online at the same time.
Office space and meeting rooms
Any room being used for timetabled teaching delivery from 28 September does not need to be booked. Office space to use before, between and after teaching sessions does need to be booked – whether this is desk space in the building in which you were previously based which is now open again (departmental space), or ‘open office space’ within another building. Meeting rooms also need to be booked. This is so that we can manage building occupancy levels and maintain social distancing.
Currently there are meeting rooms, classrooms, and departmental and open-desk spaces available for booking in Charles Street. From 21 September, these will be extended to include a range of buildings on both campuses. All bookings should be made via Resource Booker. Detailed information about how to book different types of spaces, and what is available in which buildings is on the Estates intranet.
Staggered start and finish times
A simple approach for staggering the start and finish of timetabled teaching sessions has now been agreed, which is based on room numbers as follows:
- Odd rooms – students/staff turn up on the hour for a 5 past the hour start and then leave by 10 to the hour
- Even rooms – students/staff turn up at 5 past the hour for a 10 past the hour start and then leave by 5 to the hour.
Further improvements to Panopto
- Panopto is now available through AppsAnywhere for University laptops and desktops. This offers benefits such as allowing offline recording, automatic index generation from PowerPoint slides, and makes slide text searchable.
- From 21 September Panopto will be integrated with Blackboard making it possible to create new recordings and upload existing audio and video files directly into Blackboard sites, as well as make it extremely easy to embed videos in the module and place them into context with other learning materials. This integration will also enable students to submit their own video and audio files.
- A series of training sessions is being offered on using Panopto features through Blackboard. Details about session times are available through the Digital Learning blog.
Code of Practice for when teaching is recorded
A Code of Practice for recording taught sessions has been approved and provides information on the rights and responsibilities of the university, its staff and its students related to recording teaching. The Code of Practice has been developed with staff from across the University and the Students’ Union and applies whenever teaching is being recorded. It outlines your responsibilities as a member of staff and best practice relating to recording of taught sessions so please familiarise yourself with it before using tools such as Panopto, Zoom and Bb Collaborate.