Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences

Transforming Gerontology courses


The LTU has been working with the Gerontology team at the School of Nursing to work through a slow but steady pedagogical transformation. The focus of work has been around planning and ensuring that changes implemented are pedagogically sound and suited to the specific learning context.

Originally, the gerontology papers were supported with a CD learning resource that was sent out to students each year. Anne Williamson (School of Nursing) worked with Pauline Cooper (LTU) to update the CD resources, using the University's own web development tool CourseBuilder. A total of seven courses needed updating and revamping within two years - and Ann was only employed on a 0.2 appointment. So, it was decided to stage the project in two phases.

The first phase involved simply transferring the current resources into CourseBuilder; Anne used this time to become familiar with the tool and get her head around its functionality and capabilities. The second phase focused almost exclusively on design and pedagogical issues; aligning curriculum elements and transforming the tools from a supplementary resource to a vital hub where students could go to converse with their peers, give and receive feedback, and ultimately stimulate a community of practice.

The peer review tool, Aropa, was employed to encourage students to actively reflect on their coursework (and the coursework of their peers) and the Cecil discussion board function is now used to ensure that students can apply theory to situated practice through the use of scenario-based learning. Additionally, a much clearer course structure, in the second phase of the project, has allowed the team to identify the measurability (or lack there of) of learning outcomes, which we remedied by ensuring each learning outcome was covered in assessment.