Turning the Kaleidoscope – A model for online learning

Image: Emily Renner and Laura Holmes-Brown

At RMIT’s Vocational School of Design and Social Context Learning and Teaching conference Turning the kaleidoscope Andrew Newhouse and Oliver Lorraine-Wedd presented a model for online learning.

While there is no one size fits all approach to learning and teaching, there are best practices and standards that should be put in place.

How to do you create a model for online learning? By using the VE quality confirmation (QC) framework.

The quality confirmation frame work covers these seven pillars:

  1. Instruction
    Clear instructions and guidance are provided to support students in navigating the course and requirements to complete learning activities and assessments successfully.
  2. Content
    Lectures or equivalent content is available for each topic/module/week (recorded lecture, narrated pptx, topic notes). Recommended tools include Echo 360, Collaborate Ultra, Studio, Microsoft Teams and PowerPoint with audio over slides.
  3. Readings and resources
    Course readings and resources are available in Canvas. Relevant resources are available to students to support the completion of required learning activities and assessments.
  4. Learning activities
    Students have sufficient opportunities to apply knowledge and skills in preparation for assessment.
  5.  Collaboration
    Students can communicate and engage with staff and other students through the use of discussion boards and other tools.
  6. Teacher-to-student support
    Students should understand who to contact with questions. Course to provide clear opportunities to communicate directly with lecturers and tutors.
  7. Assessment
    All assessments are conducted online, and instructions and requirements are clearly communicated. Online Assessment also aligns to Course Learning Outcomes.

Why do we have this frame work?

To enhance the student experience

The current climate means students are not able to attend classroom sessions so it is important to uplift the online experience to feel as thoughtfully set up as classroom-based learning. With the right amount of care placed in the setup of the online learning environment we are able to keep the students engaged and satisfied.

Maximise the value of the Canvas LMS

Canvas is a powerful tool that many do not use to its full potential. Often Canvas is used simply as a place for teachers to store files, which is understandable based on the past use of the Blackboard LMS at RMIT. There is much more that can be done in Canvas by following these seven guidelines.

More engaging delivery

Underpinning all of this is the end goal of providing a more engaging delivery using the online space and Canvas specifically.

So how do you develop your Canvas course and presence to meet each of these seven points and why do they matter?

You can watch the video here to see Andrew and Oliver’s presentation and to find out in detail what each of them mean.

To gain access to the Canvas course used in this presentation please complete this access form.

Additional useful links

Flexible delivery of VE programs

VE quality confirmation (QC) framework (available as a PDF download)

Additional guidance and tips on meeting the QC framework

Using Microsoft Teams in Canvas (see the How to use key online tools section)


Reader notes: Some links are to internal RMIT resources. If you’re from an external institution and would like more information, please contact us at vedt@rmit.edu.au.