Our University-wide focus will now be exclusively on teaching through digital channels and we are making the necessary adjustments to provide location flexibility where possible for all our students and staff with digital solutions and platforms in order to deliver work and to study remotely.
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Top 10 Tips for Students
1. Treat your day like a workday
Set your alarm, get up and out of your pyjamas, and be at your workstation at 9am.
Have a ‘to do’ list.
Set measurable, realistic, achievable goals.
Schedule coffee and lunch breaks as you would if you are in a full-time job.
2. Set a fixed time to engage in your course work
Set a fixed time for each of your semester 2 modules so they each get the attention they deserve.
This may mean devoting certain times of the day to each module or dedicating different days for different modules.
It is easy to put off work and assessments, so being organised and self-disciplined is really important.
3. Don’t rush through your work.
While you may save the time driving to and from class, remote learning is not “easier.”
In some cases, remote and online learning can take more time particularly if you are not someone who likes to read a lot.
Take your time and focus on quality. Take the breaks you need to stay fresh and focused
4. Take the time to ask questions and keep in touch with your module coordinator/lecturer
You may be required to interact with lecturers and/or peers to collaborate and learn.
Just because the course is delivered online doesn’t mean you should not ask a question about the content or assessment.
In fact, please know that questions are welcomed and encouraged. Your module coordinator will also be happy to provide feedback on amended assessments.
5. Explore the technology being used in advance of getting started
Seek out instructional videos or tutorials made available to you.
Taking a little time upfront to complete the appropriate technology orientation will save you a lot of time later and ensure you understand when instructions are provided that require use of the technology.
Don’t hesitate to ask questions if needed.
6. Use alarms and calendars to ensure your assessment and module milestones are met
Once you get work and assessment tasks, record all important dates on your calendar and set reminders.
7. Social learners
If you are a person who really likes social interaction in the learning process, consider making an online study group so you can discuss work, content and assessment.
8. Stay Healthy
Using the guidelines provided on COVID-19 get outside if and when you can – walk, run etc.
If stuck indoors there are lots of good exercise programmes online and on YouTube that you can follow.
Equally stack up on healthy snacks as everyone tends to eat more when in the home.
Student Wellbeing Services are here if you need them.
9. Communicate and embrace technology
Reach out to module coordinators if you are unclear on anything and check your email daily. Download skype – it’s free. Embrace technology, be self-aware and be considerate and kind to other peers and staff who may be juggling care for children or parents, whilst managing their workload.
10. Stay Safe
Make it a priority to follow all the official directives and guidelines that will keep you safe.
How do I access online material?
Your module areas within Blackboard will be your central point for teaching, learning and assessment during this period. Your lecturers will post additional online material in Blackboard and in some cases, you may expect to see an increase in video content, some of which may be live streamed.
Given the likely disruption and caring responsibilities for staff and students, it may therefore be challenging to follow a normal timetable. You can therefore expect to be given tasks to complete in your own time and use discussion boards in Blackboard to communicate with your class mates and lecturers.
How can I make best use of Blackboard during this time?
You should use the communication tools in Blackboard, or email, to keep in contact with your lecturer and you should not worry if you do not have suitable technology at home to complete the tasks you are given.
The important thing is to remain in contact with your lecturers and let them know if you have any concerns.
Blackboard is available at https://learning.ulster.ac.uk and you login with your B student number and network password (the same one you use for the Portal or Email). If you have any password problems you can reset your password.
If you have a smart phone, you can also download the app via your app store:
Once downloaded, you can search for Ulster and enter your username and password. Your messages and notifications will then be received on your phone.
System statuses and updates will be posted online during any disruption.
Your questions answered
When will remote teaching and learning begin?
From 9pm on Tuesday 17th March all teaching and social activities on campus have been suspended and material should be made available online over the remainder of the semester.
Lecture materials will be made available online as quickly as possible over the remainder of the semester and there will be a transition phase for other forms of teaching. Course Directors and Module Co-ordinators will provide updated information and you are encouraged to visit your relevant Blackboard module areas regularly.
What teaching and learning support is available online?
For the remainder of the semester all lecture material will be available to students online through Blackboard.
All academic staff have been asked to liaise with students via Blackboard on any further local arrangements that may be required.
Will my seminar, tutorial, field trip, block delivery go ahead?
As a result of the latest UK Government updates, from 9pm on Tuesday 17th March all teaching and social activities on campus have been suspended.
Lecture materials will be made available online as quickly as possible over the remainder of the semester and there will be a transition phase for other forms of teaching.
There will also be major changes to assessment practice to allow us to graduate and progress as many students as possible within this academic year.
Course Directors and Module Co-ordinators will provide updated information and you are encouraged to visit your relevant Blackboard module areas regularly.
How will this affect my studies?
The University has been working to ensure that students whose studies may be affected by the COVID-19 pandemic are not disadvantaged at the point of assessment.
There will be major changes to assessment practice to allow us to graduate and progress as many students as possible within this academic year.
Priority will be given to the final year of courses to ensure that award decisions are not delayed and as far as practicable, steps will be taken to protect student progression in a timely manner.
Consideration is being given to Semester 2 assessments and any potential scope for revision, however no change is planned to semester dates for students at this stage.
Any module changes whether in terms of content, assessment or delivery will be communicated to students as soon as possible.
Students will not be assessed on content or materials not delivered by any course or module.
If the delivery of a module or the content contained in an assessment are affected by the move online, this will be taken into account, where appropriate, when the work is marked.
Is there help and support online about how to use online learning facilities?
The University has produced guidance and collated useful resources to support students and staff to aid remote study.
This is an evolving situation and we will add resources as they become available.
What if I am having issues accessing online material remotely?
Will University accommodation remain open?
University accommodation for students will remain open and fully operational and students in that accommodation will be given all necessary support.