LTEA 2009 and Reading Teaching and Learning Conference
The fourth Learning Through Enquiry Alliance (LTEA) Conference was held at the University of Reading on 14 and 15 July 09, and built on previous successful events at Sheffield (2008), Surrey (2007) and Manchester (2006). The conference welcomed over 160 delegates from all over the UK and from overseas, providing delegates with the opportunity to exchange research and practice with each other across disciplines, professional roles and institutions.
The conference featured a mixture of papers and workshops around the core themes of Academic Literacy, Enquiry-Based Learning Case Studies, Technology-Enhanced Learning and Enquiry-Based Learning and Policy. Papers showcased the varied approaches to engaging students and the impact on their learning experiences, whilst a number of interactive workshops focused on the staff perspective of using Enquiry-Based Learning in the curriculum.
Our keynote speaker was Professor Phil Race who delivered a keynote on 'How Does Learning Happen' and ran a workhop on 'Effective Feedback'.
Developing academic literacy, the creation and the communication of knowledge, is crucial to success in HE. Much enquiry-based learning involves the development of these skills, be it through developing appropriate research skills hunting down information (information literacy), critically evaluating that material and presenting the results in an academic style appropriate to the medium. These sessions featured papers on academic literacy and information literacy at different stages of the degree programme.
Enquiry-Based Learning Case Studies
In these sessions we drew on examples from many different HE Institutions and across diverse discipline areas, such as Business Studies, French, Pharmacy, Oral History, Engineering and others.
Technology Enhanced Enquiry
The drive towards e-learning continues but the tools at our disposal are now always well used, or used to their capacity. For example, Virtual Learning Environments (VLEs) are increasingly ubiquitous, but many are just being used for basic communication and as repositories of reading lists and handouts. These sessions featured the use of wikis, electronic voting systems and other technologies, along with their use in such areas as teaching ethics.
Enquiry-Based Learning and Policy
EBL and its linkage to fostering the next generation of research is a live political issue. In these sessions papers looked at EBL at the strategic level, such as incorporating it within programmes across an institution, or broader papers that looked at its impact on the student experience and development.