SOEd staff at the Curriculum Alignment Workshop at the Grand Pacific Hotel in Suva.
The University of the South Pacific’s (USP) School of Education (SOEd) successfully completed a Curriculum Alignment Workshop at Suva’s Grand Pacific Hotel on 16-18 August 2018.
Professor Govinda Lingam, Head of SOEd said the workshop was organised to take stock of the School’s progress in relation to curriculum review and development work to date, including documenting and planning.
“The workshop was also conducted to prepare us for the upcoming SOEd programme review,” Dr Lingam explained.
In opening the workshop, Ms Janice Febey, a member of the Australian Volunteers International programme working at USP, described her experiences helping to implement Australia’s quality teaching policy as well as a significant review of teacher education undertaken in 2014.
She explained that as a result of the review, universities in Australia are redesigning their curriculum, and considering assessment approaches to ensure their graduate teachers are well prepared for beginning work in schools.
Ms Febey suggested that a curriculum alignment workshop gave SOEd staff valuable time to consider and share experiences on current curriculum, and presents an opportunity to refine the outcomes of courses to ensure the greatest value to students.
“It also provides an opportunity to consider how useful current assessment items are in building the skills development of students towards achieving curriculum outcomes,” she stated.
Ms Febey concluded by expressing her delight at having the opportunity to work with SOEd staff over the course of the workshop, and hoped that her career experience in Australia could provide some valuable additions to the discussions.
Professor Lingam explained that the first day of the workshop included reviewing the alignment of course learning outcomes (CLO) with assessment tasks, programme outcomes and USP graduate outcomes (GO). With active input from all the participants, review assessments were also done across each programme offered by SOEd.
Day two saw participants developing rubrics for assessment tasks and evaluating student achievement of programmes and USP graduate outcomes. Each programme team developed action plans and timelines for the remaining work, including tools for evaluating student achievement of programme and university-wide outcomes.
On the final day, there was much discussion on strengths and challenges identified for the self-review tasks and reports.
Professor Lingam stated that as expected, outcomes of the workshop include the confirmation of SOEd programmes’ progress with curriculum review and development work and assessment review and rubrics.
“We have also managed to complete the alignment work for each programme and developed some assessment rubrics in the core courses,” he stated.
“I am also pleased to report that we have been able to successfully develop the action plan and timelines for each programme and completed the first cycle of curriculum review and development work, including design of tools to evaluate student achievement of programme and USP graduate outcomes,” he further remarked.
Another result of the three-day workshop included the formulation of time lines for Self–Review Report.
Professor Lingam also commended the core role played by the office of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Learning, Teaching & Student Services (LTSS) especially Ms Dorothy Spiller, Assessment and Curriculum Review Consultant and Ms Sujlesh Sharma, Curriculum Review Coordinator for designing and facilitating the Workshop.
Participants over the three days included all staff of SOEd as well as Dr Yoko Kanemasu, Associate Dean, Planning and Quality, FALE; and Dr Irene Mary Chief, Instructional Designer from the Centre for Flexible Learning.
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