Podcast: Can blogging be used as an effective form of assessment?


Welcome to episode 4 of the Teaching Matters podcast: Can blogging be used as an effective form of assessment? 

The Teaching Matters podcast accompanies and complements the Teaching Matters blog, adding another space for students and staff to have conversations and debates around learning and teaching at the University of Edinburgh. Students and staff are invited to engage in topical conversations, which are recorded and edited as podcast episodes. In general, the podcast topics align with the Teaching Matters’ mini-series, but will also aim to capture other important discussions across the University around learning and teaching.

The next two episodes accompany the Academic Blogging mini-series. In episode 4, student guest host, Lila Pitcher (Academic Blogging Intern in Information Services), leads a discussion with Dr Nina Morris (Lecturer in Human Geography) and Dr Hazel Christie (Lecturer in University Learning and Teaching) about the benefits, and challenges, of using blogging as an innovative form of assessment. Their discussion is based on their recent PTAS research, which explores how assessed blogs are being used across the University.

In this episode, they chat about the use of blogs as a form of assessment with regards to marking criteria, course design, staff investment, technological limitations, writing style, and digital footprint. Nina and Hazel also provide some strategies and tips for teaching staff who may want to use blogging as an assessment tool, and for students working with blogs as part of their courses.

In episode 5, which is released next Wednesday, Karen Howie (Technology Enhanced Learning Team manager in Learning, Teaching and Web, Information Services) hosts a conversation about blogging to develop your professional profile. She talks with University of Edinburgh staff members, Eli Appleby-Donald and Lorna Campbell, and PhD student, James Lamb, about the difference between various types of blogs, the art of blogging, maintaining and promoting a blog, and engaging with your audience.

Read the full PTAS report: Every student a researcher: blogging as a form of student assessment.

Read the HEA Case Study, Using blogs as a form of Assessment, in Transforming Assessment In Higher Education (pp. 99-103).

Teaching Matters podcast credits:

Guest host: Lila Pitcher (Edinburgh College of Art)
Director and Editor: Jenny Scoles and Sarah Thomas (Institute for Academic Development)
Advisor: Karen Howie and Lorna Campbell (Learning, Teaching and Web, IS)

Lila Pitcher

Lila Pitcher is an Academic Blogging Intern in Information Services. She is a fourth year student studying History of Art and English Literature at Edinburgh College of Art.

Nina Morris

Dr Nina Morris (N.Morris@ed.ac.uk, @_NinaJM) is a Lecturer in Human Geography at the University of Edinburgh, and a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. She is Course Organiser for the geography Honours option course Space, Place and Sensory Perception, which is partially assessed by blog.

Hazel Christie

Dr Hazel Christie is a Lecturer (University Learning and Teaching) in the Institute for Academic Development. Her main responsibility within the team is as Programme Director for the Postgraduate Certificate in Academic Practice. An important focus of her work is to raise awareness of the range of CPD opportunities offered within the IAD, and to encourage staff to engage with these.

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