Digital Education Newsletter Vol 3 Iss 2

21 June 2021

In this issue, you’ll find information on module creation, the baseline, guides in My Dundee 101, and you’ll get the opportunity to give a shout-out to colleagues who need a bit of public appreciation. You’ll also see some articles on making your videos short, preparing your students and if all else fails, why you should play with Lego.

CTIL Updates

Modules beginning in Semester 1 (this includes SEM0100/SEM0120/SEM0000 modules) for academic year 2021/22 were created in My Dundee last Wednesday (16 June), appearing under ‘Upcoming Modules’ on the main module selection page. There are usually a lot of questions about staff enrolment, releasing your modules, etc.,  so we have created a handy FAQ page.

Student feedback throughout 20/21 highlighted that the use of templates, aligned to the module framework significantly contributed to a positive, consistent online learning experience. Building on this and in consultation with all Schools involving staff and students we have reviewed and updated the module templates for 21/22 and all modules will be created based on these templates. Part of the work on the template creation was to streamline the Baseline (starting by renaming it from “Exemplary Module Framework” to “Baseline”). You can see the updated Dundee Module Baseline on our blog.


This year, CTIL has been working hard behind the scenes to create the My Dundee 101 (staff) organisation. Everyone with the role of Instructor or Support in a My Dundee module will be automatically enrolled on it. If you don’t see it, give us a shout in Help4U and we can get you enrolled!

You can use the Index to see the complete list of guides and go directly to the information you’re looking for. Alternatively, you can peruse the Learning Modules that contain information on the following:

  1. Introducing my Dundee
  2. Assessing student learning
  3. Adding material to your course
  4. Managing course access
  5. Communicating
  6. Live teaching in Collaborate
  7. Pre-recorded content
  8. Attendance monitoring

Each of the sections also contains useful links to guides and forms from the University of Dundee, or the specific vendors such as Blackboard, YuJa, or Microsoft.

Screenshot of My Dundee 101 with the Communicating Learning Module open


Over the past few months, we’ve started to see a significant increase in publications related to aspects of online learning, some triggered no doubt by the pandemic, others that would have been in preparation for much longer. Many staff in Dundee have expressed concerns about student engagement and socialisation, both with their learning, and, perhaps more critically, with their peers and with staff.

We’d like to share three papers that have attracted us recently on this subject:

  • Castelli, F. R., & Sarvary, M. A. (2021). Why students do not turn on their video cameras during online classes and an equitable and inclusive plan to encourage them to do so. Ecology and Evolution11(8), 3565–3576.

Many thanks to Derek Robertson (ESW) for originally sharing this – it’s something that we’ve all found useful. It looks at cameras on/off, taking into account both staff & student view points.

This is an essay from Robert O’Toole, a National Teaching Fellow from Warwick. If you’re more of a listener than a reader, there’s a podcast version.

Finally, a look at the psychology surrounding the need for humans to connect with others.

Penguins in the rain with one penguin sharing an umbrella with the other

Sharing kind words

In lieu of any tool updates this week, we wanted to share an activity that we recently did in CTIL. We created a Microsoft Form to be anonymous and put everyone’s name on it as the ‘questions’, and left a blank text box for the response. After a week or so, we shared the compliments that each individual received with that person. We’ll also be sharing the compliments that were given about a person in the group for those that were happy for this to happen. We rather enjoyed hearing lovely things about ourselves (not to brag too much, but we’re a pretty great bunch – check out a few of the comments here).

After having done this ourselves, we think the wider UoD community would benefit from this as well. To that end, we have created this Colleague Appreciation Form for you to use! It is completely anonymous, and you can enter the recipient’s name, email address, and compliment. We will then send the compliment directly to them and, if you’ve ticked the box saying we can share it here, you’ll see it in a future issue of the newsletter, too!

Tippy’s updates

Tippy the penguin has been created to provide ‘tech tips’, advice and guidance on digital education topics – from using tools to sharing practice. But now Tippy wants to hear from you! Which topics do you want to learn more about? What would be most useful for you?Let us know by taking this short anonymous Menti – Tippy Tech Tips Survey.

Decorative image only

Fortnightly round-up

What we’re doing:

The library are continuing with their Summer Sessions for StaffThe next two are:

  • Digitisation – What is digitisation? How do you apply for a digitised paper or chapter? Come along and the Digital Skills and Resources Librarians will show you how and when to apply for digitisation:
    Friday June 25th: 10am- 11am Session Link
  • Getting to know your Resources Lists – this will be very handy as you start on your new Module!
    Thursday July 1st: 2pm- 3pm Session Link

What we’ve made:

We’ve noticed that ‘what we’ve made’ has been covered in other sections!

  • Updated Dundee Module Baseline
  • My Dundee 101 (staff) organisation
  • All of the modules that start in Semester 1

CTIL Recommends:

As everyone’s been so busy recently, we thought we’d share some recommendations for totally non-work related books: 

  • The Dune Trilogy – Frank Herbert: While it has some stylistic issues, after you’ve read the first couple of chapters it leaves you with that feeling of ‘just one more chapter’.
  • Official Secrets – Andrew Raymond: The first of a trilogy (right now…) that’s all about intrigue, plots and full of double twists, MI5, MI6, the CIA and journalists are all trying to discover who really killed the Prime Minister.
  • The Ready Player Two – Ernest Cline:  Ready Player One was awesome, so this is in the read-this-next heap. 

Need more help?
IT ISSUES: 6 places you can go to for help by Laura-Jane Logue
CTIL Drop-in gif

Leave a Comment