Two collegial sharing sessions during this spring brought teaching staff across departments at UNIS together to discuss and share their experience on teaching matters. The sessions which will continue also this coming fall are open to teaching staff and PhD students. They are run as 45-60 min sessions where people can bring their lunch along for an unformal discussion with their colleagues on different themes.
First out to share was Lena Håkansson, associate professor from Arctic Geology, who raised the interesting question on how to involve the students as teaching assistants (TAs) during fieldwork and her experience with this. The theme is highly relevant as field work on Svalbard can pose a demanding learning enviornemnt, challenging both for students and for teachers. It is also very worthwhile for students to practice their own knowledge by teaching other students. The use of TAs varies widely between countries and universities and can be a valuable teaching resource when it is used and planed for properly.
Another important topic for teachers at UNIS was forwarded by Pernille Bronken Eidesen from the Arctic Biology department who shared some of her thoughts and ideas on how to evaluate the students research process, not only as an end product which often is a scientific report. This fall Pernille will test out some new ways to evaluate the research process in her bachelor course AB-201 by e.g. including a reflective diary for students to write during the course period.