well into the lockdown and moving to level three,a degree of peaceful normality exist within the personal bubble.  I should have been on my way to Uk today 🙁

NZ appears to have the virus under control, bring on level 2, although I will miss the peace and quiet.

Dog gets more walks but is a little confused as to why she can’t say hello to people or doesn’t get any cuddles from them (I know the feeling). Garden continues to improve on immaculate and rain has arrived at last.

Extra time at home provides a chance to de-clutter and rifle through the boxes in the loft containing treasures; not much luck there. Did come across some scraps of paper with some ‘ditties’ written on them by A.Non (very prolific writer) dating back to 1930’s. Best so far is this one:-
Tobbaco is a nasty weed
And from the devil doth proceed
It stains your fingers
Burns your clothes
And makes a chimney of your nose
Mesage to those who indulge methinks

As for the educational scene, there appears to be a lot going on, online. NZ has provided oodles of resources for school kids, including TV programmes, computers and Internet access. Time will tell how well it will all work. Lots of guides online to help at all levels.

Mum’s and Dad’s will be into a new theory of learning called ‘Directivism’: I tell, you do as you are told🙂 Kids are normally good at responding as long as the feedback is supportive and encouraging . Can’t be easy for those not used to home schooling, might have to do a bit of late night reading of basic maths and Winnie the Pooh to stay one step ahead. As for the more mature students, they should be able to adapt, keep calm and carry on.

In the posting this month there are links to Collecting and Using Feedback,Competency Based Assessment,Toolkit to support students, Alternative approaches to exams,Online readiness, Innovative assessment, Supporting struggling students, Horizon 2020report,SAM for Instructional designers, Information Literacy,  A Poll, Conferences (most of which probably won’t go ahead unless they turn virtual) and the odd one out.

Keep well, stay safe and enjoy the quiet moments.

1. Top Tips:Supporting Student Learning Online Toolkit. There is a proliferation of guides and how to’s on the web in relation to the impact of Covid19 for teaching and learning; most identify common themes and approaches. The link below presents elements of a toolkit developed by Heriot Watt University in Scotland. Might provide some additional help for your efforts to look after the students during the lockdown. There is more from the main menu if you wish to explore.


AND if you want a few more common sense suggestions on a raft of issues associated with online exams , have a look at

Kay Sambell & Sally Brown: Coronavirus Contingency Suggestions for replacing on-site exams
N.B this is a direct download from the link and is an informal guide as an open educational resource.


2. Competency Based assessment.I’m always interested in how different countries approach competency based learning and what type of assessment they use. In previous eWatch I have highlighted the use of Rubrics for competency based assessment; there are some useful and effective examples available on the Web. This site provides a comprehensive overview of Competency Based Learning and assessment.

3.Collecting and using student feedback – a guide to good practice. Produced a few years ago, this guide is sill highly relevant and especially in todays climes. Well worth perusing to hone your own approaches to effective and efficient use of feedback and feed forward.

Compare with this excellent guide from and Australian University (across the ditch)

and this one which looks at helping students understand and use the feedback they receive.Unusual in that it has been essentially written and compiled by a full time student. Very practical.
A student guide to using feedback.

and finally, for a balance

Gathering Student Feedback: A teacher’s guide. Lots of useful tips and ideas.


4.Evidence of innovative assessment: Literature review and case studies.This publication is a Technical report by the Joint Research Centre (JRC), the European Commission’s science and knowledge service. The report presents the outcomes and analyses of the study ‘Evidence of Innovative Assessment’. It provides an overview of innovative (digital and non-digital) assessment approaches and evidence on how these have been implemented to various settings.
The first part describes the rational of the study, defines innovative assessment and gathers evidence on the effectiveness of a variety of assessment practices such as self- and peer-assessment, open badges, simulation and learning analytics.
The second part presents eight case studies that have integrated innovative assessment approaches from a range of different contexts (formal, non-formal learning, employment, elderly care), covering different age groups, assessment purposes and implementation strategies.

5. Online Learning Readiness Questionnaire.No explanation required. Try it and se whether or not you are ready let alone your students 🙂

6.2020 EDUCAUSE Horizon ReportTM Teaching and Learning Edition. As always lots of interesting information and predictions for the future.

7. When the Tide Goes Out: Identifying and Supporting Struggling Students in Online Courses. An option piece based on experience which provides some useful insights into supporting student online.

8. Constructing a Syllabus: Whilst you are in lockdown and have all that time ( not) on your hands (washed of course), you might want to think about creating new course or rethink existing ones. This guide might come in useful


9. An Introduction to SAM for Instructional Designers. The Successive Approximation Model is touted as the successor to ADDIE in instructional design.

10. Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education. Worth exploring to glean some useful information and ideas on developing information literacy.

11.Conferences: NOTE: Details are given of various conferences in the pipeline. As a consequence of the Corona Virus , it is highly likely some will be cancelled

11.1  HEAd’20: Call for Papers: 6th International Conference on Higher Education Advances
June 2 – 5, 2020. Valencia, Spain


11.2 Annual Blackboard Teaching & Learning Conference. The first Asia Pacific conference being held from 25-27 August in Cairns, in conjunction with James Cook University.

11.3 The highly successful International Students as Partners Institute (ISaPI) will be held for the 5th time at McMaster University, Ontario, Canada (approx. 45 min south of Toronto Airport) from 20-22 May 2020.


11.4  Save the date for the ALT Annual Conference 2020!
9 Sep 2021 9:00 AM   to   11 Sep 2020 5:00 PM



An interesting Covid 19 initiative :[Mick Healey(Prof) Gloucester, UK]

Learner-teacher partnership in times of COVID-19: A community poll to share practices and perspectives

The results are ‘community property’ and will be publicly shared via a ‘live results’ dashboard that is viewable by anyone.


12. Odd one out. Plenty of time on your hands? Try dong a few jigsaw online. Can get addictive once you’ve got the hang of it. Allows you to vary the number of pieces in some jigsaws. Try the baby animals for starters

Keeping your Distance education is good for you! See you in the other side:-).

Richard Elliott
The Eternal Macademic
Auckland New Zealand

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