Study skills, expectations and diversity

Kärt Lazić

 

Newbold College of Higher Education, St. Marks Road, Binfield, Bracknell RG42 4AN; klazic@newbold.ac.uk

5th May 2017

Abstract 

The paper explores the opportunities of blending study support with enhancement projects in Study Skills classes offered to students of Theology at Newbold College of Higher Education. While the module has traditionally focused on specific academia-related topics, such as providing an overview of the peculiarities of academic writing, giving an introduction to using the library, and outlining the major assessment methods in academia, in 2016/2017 the classes have also addressed matters such as learning preferences and expectations. Certain Study Skills classes were dedicated to students’ self-evaluation and in-depth group discussion about their specific needs, learning preferences, and expectations to the programme and teaching methods. What was initially devised as an exercise that aimed to raise the students’ self-awareness and expose them to the diversity of expectations in their study group also proved to serve as an excellent insight into the students’ learning patterns and responses to teaching methods. While the exact procedures of how to make the most efficient use of this data in enhancement are still under construction, it is clear that such detailed feedback is invaluable in informing the lecturers’ teaching patterns and pedagogical choices. The paper provides an overview of the main categories discussed during these special sessions, highlights some of the conclusions drawn, and presents potential ways forward.