BOLD learning and teaching practices

The Blended, On-Line and Digital (BOLD) initiative was a strategy devised in 2015 to support the move towards a more innovative and progressive delivery of learning and teaching practices in an emerging digital context. The BOLD Learning and Teaching Practices were developed in 2018 to provide clear guidelines about recommended BOLD teaching practices for different delivery/study modes (see Teaching Practices | Learning | Delivery modes for learning for full definitions). They are presented as a check-list to afford staff the opportunity to inform, evaluate and reflect on their current teaching practices and address identified needs. This check-list has been developed to provide staff with:

  • clear guidelines about recommended and optional teaching practices for different Federation University delivery/study modes.
  • the opportunity to self-assess and reflect about their current online teaching practices, and address identified needs.
  • opportunities for collaborative discussions with colleagues and CAD learning designers to enhance their online teaching practices.

The BOLD L&T Practices were discussed at three university-level Learning and Teaching Committee meetings (during Semester 1, 2018), and have been recently endorsed (L&TC4/18/3) to be piloted during the second half of 2018. As part of this endorsement, Deans of Schools have been requested to provide feedback at the end of the year as to the value of the BOLD L&T Practices check-list in assisting with ongoing development of staff teaching practices.

The BOLD L&T Practices are intended to be used as a guide when designing and developing a course, or as a check-list before or after teaching to ensure preparedness or to identify potential enhancements. Its use is also recommended for ongoing teaching and learning development as part of Federation University Australia’s Strategic Plan 2018-2022.

Download BOLD L&T practices

There are two versions of the BOLD Learning and Teaching Practices available; a flat version to read, and an editable version with interactive check-list and comments section. Last updated: 1st July 2019.

Focus areas

The BOLD Learning and Teaching Practices contain recommended learning and teaching criteria under five focus areas:

Focus area 01 - Course information and learner support

Good organisation and presentation of course information and learner support resources helps orient students to the delivery/study mode and their course of study, and helps achieve a consistent student experience across Moodle course sites. Teachers also benefit as they are familiar with the location of items and can update them quickly and efficiently.

Focus area 02 - Teacher presence and communication, facilitation and interaction

While the level will vary depending on the delivery/study mode, teachers should establish an online presence and outline how they will, and students are expected to communicate in a Moodle course. Students need to know where in the course to ask questions and when they can expect a response. By frequently and actively participating in the online learning community teachers facilitate ongoing interactions and connectedness, which is critical to student retention and success.

Focus area 03 - Learning activities

Different types of learning activities that help students engage with learning resources and collaborate and interact with their peers and the teacher are crucial for active and dynamic learning. Individual activities help students acquire and consolidate their knowledge and assess and reflect on their learning. Group activities provide opportunities to ask and answer questions, workshop ideas and be exposed to others’ perspectives. A range of activities that assists student comprehension and the development of critical thinking and analysis skills is key to a successful online student experience.

Focus area 04 - Learning resources

Selecting a diverse range of high quality learning resources and carefully planning how they are organised and presented will motivate students by maximising their opportunities to engage in ways appropriate to their learning preferences. Learning resources should support knowledge building activities, be informed by learning outcomes and focused on enabling students to achieve them. Learning resources should also be monitored for currency and relevance, for compliance with copyright legislation and license agreements, and for their accessibility by all students.

Focus area 05 - Student progress, assessment and feedback

Assessments should be aligned to learning outcomes and designed to enable students to demonstrate they have met them. Formative assessments (i.e. self-tests and self-paced lessons) allow students to work at their own pace, reviewing concepts, consolidating their learning and receiving feedback about their progress. They may be worth zero marks or contain a summative element e.g. ‘completion of all online quizzes comprises 5% of your total mark for this course’. Summative assessments are therefore a tool for measuring what students have learned.

Resources, strategies or assistance

Contact your CAD Learning Designer or member of your Institute Support team for support in utilising the BOLD Learning and Teaching Practices to ensure quality in your course.f