Irene Hayden joined GMIT in 2005, having previously graduated in Architecture, QUB (1994) and Civil Engineering, NUIG (1999). She is a Chartered Engineer, EI (2004) and a Chartered Architectural Technologist, CIAT (2016). Irene has completed various post-graduate certificates in Higher Education and an MSc in Renewable Energy and Energy Management, UU (2011), for which she received an Energy Institute Award. Since 2015, she has been a Doctoral candidate on the ‘PhD in Higher Education, Research, Evaluation and Enhancement’, Lancaster University, whilst lecturing in the Built Environment. Her research has particular interest in blended learning, visual learning and Universal Design.
I have started the last structured module for the Doctoral programme with Lancaster University. I am very happy about that! Attached are reflections for my planned research, which were required as an opening assignment. I am looking forward to 2017 and getting my research underway, happy days!
Everything, I mean everything, comes down to language.
2/11/2016 0 Comments
How can we get Architectural Technologists to write? Once alumni start work, they should be encouraged to write. Whether a publication is a peer reviewed journal or not, the rigor of research, ethics and academic writing should follow on into their professional lives.
GMIT have instigated a Research e-Journal which is in its third year of publication. It is founded on inclusive principles, so alumni are encouraged to make a submission, as well as staff, post-graduate students and affiliates. It is great to see such progressive aspirations so soon in its infancy.
This year, submissions are being accepted for:
Other publications which Architectural Technologists could publish in might be:
I do feel that a greater awareness of anonymizing and confidentiality in such publications for Architectural Technologists in the workplace would be beneficial. If a client was not willing to allow an Architectural Technologist working in practice to publish a case study on their project, for example, it could be further explored to see if an aspect of the project delivery could be written about anonymously. There are many projects live on site which have aspects of technical information or research findings which could be shared for all Architectural Technologists to benefit from.
It would be worth considering the establishment of a working research and ethics committee (perhaps within CIAT?) to develop procedures and protocols for this to materialize. They could also offer advise as to where to publish and review through co-mentoring and sharing of exemplars.
Certainly, there is lots of scope in this area for the profession to consider. Marketing the skill sets of an Architectural Technologist and advertising the profession should be encouraged in a professional capacity within social media and publications of merit.
I am working on a paper to evaluate the effectiveness of using moodle or learnonline.gmit.ie for engagement and its effectiveness in terms of pedagogy / innovative learning initiative with first year students, using a common module I am teaching for the first time this year.
It is presenting as somewhat of a logistical challenge, principally, a good deal of pastoral care or mentoring is required to keep the majority of the cohort of students engaged on a weekly basis, because of snags in relation to the use of TEL (Technology Enhanced Learning).
However, that aside, with a cohort of almost 100 students, this exercise is beneficial, both for the lecturer, from a pedagogical point of view, but also for the individual students' learning experience. This is their first year in higher education and they have completed 4 weeks, so far. I will post the final paper when it is completed.
This exercise could be expanded beyond the basic evaluation to look at research for retention and learning initiatives. For example, the information gathered could be used to analyse the following:
I have conducted assessments such as these as part of a first year initiative when I was programme chair on the Architectural Technology programme last year. It would be worthwhile doing this first, as a joined group and then split between disciplines. It should be noted that full confidentiality should be ensured when conducting such an exercise, and ideally, if used for research purposes, it be anonymous as well.
I am delighted to announce that I have attained the professional title of 'Chartered Architectural Technologist' MCIAT. I went for an assessment interview last Friday and have been successful in my application. It is a protected title. I have been an ACIAT member for ten years, but had lost momentum to apply for full membership. It is very important to me that our students and graduates are well represented within a professional body that has their primary best interests at the forefront of the organisation. As I am the first programme board member to attain MCIAT, as a programme board, we are now in a position to progress with CIAT accreditation of our BSc (Hons) Architectural Technology undergraduate degree programme. I have also been asked to use my position within GMIT to represent CIAT in Galway, to give other members in the built environment community of Architectural Technologists a focal point through which to meet for training and mentoring purposes. It is a great honour to be asked to facilitate this and I will certainly get on-board to do this. It is so important that the profession is recognised by the wider community, that our students and graduates are well represented, that there is grounding and weight behind the Institute from all corners of the country. I am delighted with my new title and to be part of an Institute which I align myself closely with. As the assessor of the interviewees on Friday put it, 'It is the start of my new career'!
This year is the first time I will teach a large group of over 100 students. I got some great advice from a colleague who recommended Phil Race 'smarter teaching for large groups'. I have included the link to Phil's website below. It is also the first time I will use 'Skype for Business' to try to do a demonstration to staff across all GMIT campuses and record it to upload onto Moodle. So lots of new challenges this year!
I have been contemplating how to showcase the last cohorts examples of Learning and Teaching E-portfolios. Originally, it was to be included in a showcase of examples of assessments at GMIT during staff development training days in June 2016. However, this has been pushed out now until December 2016.
I would be interested in facilitating a showcase of best examples of Learning and Teaching E-Portfolios in September. Obviously with willing participants from the original cohort. However, I have reservations as to how many staff might attend, or indeed, be free to participate?
I am considering trialing a 'virtual showcase' and perhaps an 'award ceremony', given time, either through facebook or twitter or another form of social media. It would be good to get higher education bloggers involved, invite them to the showcase, either in person or virtually, and see what becomes of it. Initially, other academics within GMIT would be the main target audience.
However, if this were successful, it could be used as a marketing tool for careers advisors in second level schools, to see what makes up the bones of Learning and Teaching at GMIT on specific programmes or as an option for an example of a career path in itself. The future is out there, it's just a matter of getting the audience to the show.
20/5/2016 0 Comments
Having come through another year of teaching and adjudicating assessments, it has become all the more apparent to me that good signposting is essential. It is necessary for students to absorb, digest, reflect and learn new material which is being delivered. Good signposting is essential within lecture material and on Moodle, WebCT or Blackboard.
Explicit sample questions and answers are also essential, in order to demonstrate best practice and model solutions for students. This is vitally important both for final examination questions as well as for continuous assessments, projects, reports and dissertations. It is a key component towards demonstrating student-centred learning and constructivist pedagogy. In my observations, it can remove some anxiety for students, who are concerned about 'not-knowing' what is coming ahead of them, what is expected of them or what standards to aim for during various stages of their learning experience.