Global Education

Using Video to Support Teacher Training & Development

A webinar featuring panelists from Sussex University and University of Warwick

Panelists from Sussex University and University of Warwick discuss how video assessment enhances teaching practice for trainees by helping providers fulfil requirements of the ITT framework.

SEE FULL TRANSCRIPT

Jenny Gordon:

My name is Jenny. I lead the GoReact business outside of our domestic territory, which is the US. And GoReact is the leading provider of video-based assessment in more than 750 colleges and universities around the world now. We believe that the combination of video capture, self-reflection, peer review, and instructor coaching is the recipe for successful learning. And we’ve seen significant uptake of GoReact throughout the UK and Europe, and also Australia and New Zealand, as well as in our home territory, the US, over the last 18 months in a variety of disciplines. But of course, today we’re focused on teacher training. I’ve worked within the edtech industry for nearly 20 years, nervously saying that. I’m very passionate about education. I’m also a mum and a school governor. So teaching and learning is kind of at the heart of my life and those around me every day.

Jenny Gordon:

I’m really thrilled to welcome our panelists who are joining us, Karen Gladwin and Jonty Leese. Welcome and thank you for being here. I’ll ask you both to introduce yourself in a moment. I’m very sorry to say that Gavin Lumsden from Essential Teaching had to withdraw at the last minute due to a family emergency, and we wish him all the best. How lucky we are to be joined by colleagues at the cool phase of teaching and learning. Those responsible for our new, newly qualified, and in-service teachers to make sure that they’re the best that they can be.

Jenny Gordon:

When COVID-19 forced campus closures worldwide, many universities turned to video solutions for remote observation. It gave students a really simple way to practice and demonstrate skills online, and instructors a powerful way to observe and assess them. But for some skill-based programs, such as teacher training, the trend towards remote observation was in motion long before COVID. Now, as more programs experience the ease and effectiveness of using video to capture and assess hands-on learning, and the flexibility of doing so from anywhere, we see remote observation changing the future of skill development.

Jenny Gordon:

Universities face increasing demand from employers and students to better prepare graduates for the workforce. As a result, technology and online pedagogy are evolving to better support skill-based learning. An example of how many institutions are improving skill development in everyday modality is through video assessment. Although video isn’t new to education, its applications continue to evolve, creating new ways for instructors to personalize learning, and new ways for students to master skills. One of the most effective uses of video for skill development is reflective practice. As inherently reflective tool, video gives students the opportunity to go beyond the marks and final exams with an unbiased view of their own performance and progress.

Jenny Gordon:

Well, I’m hopeful we can talk about some of those things in just a minute, but first of all, I would really like it if Jonty and Karen could introduce themselves to us. Karen, can I ask you first to introduce yourself to us all?

Karen Gladwin:

Hi, as Jenny said, my name is Karen Gladwin, and I’m working down in the beautiful location of Brighton at Sussex university as the secondary maths education lead here. I have been teaching for about 25 years, that’s scary to realize now, and I’ve been in teacher training for about 15 of those. I’ll hand over to Jonty, I think.

Jonty Leese:

Great, thanks ever so much, Karen. My name’s Jonty, as the rather handsome photo of me appears on the screen there. I work at the university of Warwick, which isn’t as attractive as Brighton can be, because it’s based in Coventry, which has many beautiful strengths. Being the capital of culture, being one of the many things that’s happening excitingly at the moment. I’m an associate professor on the secondary program, specialism around computer science. And I’m really interested and engaged all things sort of technology based, which is how we first worked with GoReact around a partnership of getting GoReact in schools, to engage in feedback for pupils and the student teacher relationship.

Jenny Gordon:

Thank you both. Thanks so much. I’ve been working with you both now for a little while, and it’s really a pleasure to have you here, both to talk to a broader audience and to meet each other and to share some of the things you’re considering and working through. And for the first 30 minutes of our discussion today, I’ll be asking Jonty and Karen a range of questions relating to their current approach to teacher training, and how in a COVID secure way, they’re ensuring that teaching students continue to get the best mentoring and support they need from schools and from instructors back at university, while developing the skills that they need so that they’re really ready to enter the teaching profession. And then after that discussion, we’ll have a live Q and A as well.

Jenny Gordon:

If you’d like to submit a question for the Q and A, and there is a tab below the video feed. And if you see a question that someone else has already posted that you’d like answered too, then can just use the up vote feature for that. And also don’t forget the chat feature, it’s located on the right of the video feed. This is where you can all discuss ideas, share resources, contact details if you want to, and connect after the workshop. This will be recorded and available for you to watch after this session as well, and to send on to any colleagues that couldn’t make it. Most importantly today, we want to leave this discussion with you having at least one idea for a new way to use video in your teaching program.

Jenny Gordon:

So without further ado, Jonty and Karen, let’s begin. Karen, we’ve had a challenging couple of years, and everything we talk about in a COVID secure way. And I’m sure that’s the forefront of everything that we think about. But how are you ensuring that your students continue to get the best mentoring and support they need while developing their key skills required to enter their teaching profession?

Karen Gladwin:

Look, it feels almost normal again this year, with some caveats, of course, because we are back on university campus for our university sessions, which are every Friday. So we have a really nice pattern here at Sussex, where they’re in school Monday to Thursday, and then come back to campus on Friday. And to be able to meet again after basically having a year last year where we didn’t feel like we saw our trainees at all face to face and the year before… Six months, I think that they left at Easter, didn’t they? So it feels like a long time since we’ve had trainees here with us. And as I speak to you now, they’re in another room with a colleague being taught now, and it’s really nice to catch up with them.

Karen Gladwin:

We do mentoring, training with our mentors, which are our subject specialists in school. We do that through Zoom now. That’s one of the COVID keeps that we’ve kept, because we found our footprint down here on the South, because we’re on the coast, tends to be a semicircle if you were to draw it on a map. And it road wise takes about two hours to get either side of us to where our schools are. And we probably go up to the M25, if not above that. So we’ve got a huge footprint down here. And so we’ve found doing mentor training on Zoom or something similar to be really beneficial, to save people trapesing around.

Karen Gladwin:

And we’ve also kept up weekly contact with the mentors and weekly tracking with our trainees. So we have like electronic tracking, I’m sure many universities do something similar where they have to gather observation feedback for us. There’s links to the CCF and the teacher standards. They make notes from the mental meetings. They have weekly focuses, they link back on their reading and their theory. And we check that, if you like, every week so that we touch base with everybody, and it gives us a chance, by email, at least, to contact everyone.

Karen Gladwin:

But we have a sort of big picture being available system here at Sussex. So within reason, we are fairly available, as much as we can be. And for teacher trainees, that tends to be out of hours often, because they’re in school during office hours. So being willing to take the messages and things out of hours is something that we do to support them when they need it.

Jenny Gordon:

Yeah. And Jonty, did you see, what was the impact of that lack of seeing students for such a long period of time, when we were restricted to that face to face engagement through COVID at its height, if you like?

Jonty Leese:

I think it puts on a really challenging point there that for us, and I’m sure the same for Karen, we’ve only just started stepping back in schools again. So I think my last school visit was in February 2020, and we’ve had almost like 18 months of where we just couldn’t get into schools. And quite rightly, they were saying they didn’t want us in for sort of your health and safety reasons, obviously. So a lot of the relationships we formed were based online.

Jonty Leese:

So most, in fact, all our teaching last year was online. And so, having to teach online simply meant that we were demonstrating what the student teachers are having to be modeling in the schools. And I found that actually, they’ve adapted very well to that, because they’ve had to adapt to it in their final year of their undergrad, or if they were working in a school as a teaching assistant or so on.

Jonty Leese:

But I think that the real thing is, as Karen has echoed, it’s great to be back, great to be face to face. And it’s really an important place to have that face to face contact, but being aware that having that online support… So we all do our tutorials on Teams now. That’s something that I’ve had for many years, but suddenly, lockdown forced people to embrace technology and to consider how it could be used as a powerful ally. And suddenly, we don’t have the problem of having half of our empire in the sea like Karen does, but we’ve got the M69 spaghetti junction to deal with, which is equally as challenging.

Jonty Leese:

And actually, being able to have a Teams meeting with somebody an hour and a half away is so much more efficient for us when it’s a student, but also when we’re trying to get the message out to schools in partnership. Being able to have video conferencing online means that schools are willing to invest in it, because what was most of a day is reduced down to a two to a four slot. So it means that we’re getting more people involved, and they’re much more willing to participate and engage.

Jenny Gordon:

Absolutely. And I think, that this, the pandemic has forced these changes that were coming anyway, that they forced them to come sooner. And for us to potentially sort of accept that they’re coming. It’s always a matter of change management, isn’t it, and bringing all of the stakeholders along with us. But the force down that route has allowed us to open up and look at things a bit differently.

Jenny Gordon:

So I know that schools… I’m a governor, as I mentioned, and we restricted the number of people coming into our school, of course, including student teachers. But in a world pre COVID, how did you feed back to your students that were in the classroom? How did you give them effective feedback to let them know things were going well or things needed improvement? What were the key things that you used to do that, Karen?

Karen Gladwin:

Well, I suppose to be honest, it would be the observational visits. And again, we plan to do two visits a year, which doesn’t sound a lot, but with weekly contact and seeing our trainees once a week on campus, does mean that you can keep in touch with them. But I think to answer your question would be to physically be in the classroom, to watch them doing their thing, to talk to the colleagues around them and their students, and just to see them in place. And to give them those top tips that we’ve collected over our many years of teaching, and just to support them and see them in that live situation. And that felt like the rug was being pulled out from under us, I think, when that all stopped in March 2020. And that cohort finished quite early.

Karen Gladwin:

And then the next cohort, we just didn’t get to see at all here, but the schools, like Jonty was saying, we just couldn’t get in. So the first set of visits turned into just conversations on Zoom with their mentors about a lesson we’ve not seen. And that became very hard to do an unseen observational visit. It’s strange to just try and chip into a conversation about a lesson that you’ve not witnessed in any format. And then by the second half, Jenny, I’d found you and GoReact. So in maths, we were using GoReact, which was a massive move forward for us. Other colleagues were using Zoom, and some other ways of doing things. But in maths, we started to use the GoReact. We were starting to use the fantastic facilities that it has to give those timed feedback moments. So I could be watching live or catching up later. And that’s really, really helped.

Jenny Gordon:

Yeah. And Jonty, I suppose that, I mean, you talk about the role of Teams, for example, in that kind of synchronous collaboration, and I know you’ve looked at video for a long time and the role that it could play in observation and that sort of thing with your schools. How do you think that video or other technologies can make that feedback loop better or more efficient in a post COVID world?

Jonty Leese:

So I think there’s always a place for that face to face contact in school. And I don’t see us ever going to a completely virtual sort of remote role in the English education system. I think there’s a place where potentially for an IPGC or something like that, where you are dealing with a remote cohort, then that by its very nature would lend itself beautifully. I think one of the interesting things that we’ve adapted this year is we’ve gone very heavily down the instructional coaching model, where instructional coaching, one of the key principles is the idea of actually videoing is one of the powerful ways of self reflecting. And I was privileged enough to attend a seminar by Jim Knight, who’s one of the gurus of instructional coaching. And he emphasized that point, and that really struck a chord with us when we spoke about it in our department.

Jonty Leese:

And so a lot of our paperwork is around the instructional coaching model, which gets students to self reflect, gets them to get evidence of what they’re doing. I think that’s where video, by its very nature, is incredibly powerful. So our model is there’s a weekly coaching meeting using the instructional coaching paperwork, and that’s driven by the students. But if you can then build in that loop, that regular weekly loop of where you’re getting evidence, demonstrating where the problem with your questions are. And as Karen said, you can time stamp, you can review synchronously or asynchronously. If you’re the teacher, you can then get other people to drop in.

Jonty Leese:

Then you’ve got very powerful evidence to show where a student is, and ultimately, very, very easily, you can record them again over several weeks and they can then actually self reflect and see actually you’re right. I wasn’t very good at asking questions, or I actually didn’t use the room very well. Here’s the evidence, and here’s the evidence now of how I’ve progressed and how I’ve moved it forward, and actually turn that into a strength. So I think it’s all about tangible evidence that can impact and actually help students move forward and develop.

Jenny Gordon:

How have your students taken that so far? How have they taken watching themselves? I mean, some of us like it, some of us use video all the time, whether it be TikTok or Instagram or whatever, and they’re validating both their own behavior and other people’s by liking things and putting a heart on it. But in real professional practice, how are your students finding watching themselves on video, and how are you sort of supporting them overcoming any kind of challenge or obstacle to that, Karen?

Karen Gladwin:

I think nobody likes hearing their own voice today on a recording, or watching themselves in a video. And we have for years and years, always done a micro teach in our induction period. So they teach something for about 10 minutes to the rest of the cohort, and we’ve videoed it. One, because we think if they can teach their colleagues, their peers, they probably can cope with 30 kids in the classroom, to be blunt. And that’s often the way, because they’re more worried about their peers than anyone else. And the video thing, there’s always somebody every year that just doesn’t want to watch themselves. And you remind them that we were all there for the live event. We saw them do it. We know how big their bum is or whatever the issue is for them as an individual. And I’m one of those girls that has that phobia, if you like.

Karen Gladwin:

And then we’ve always encouraged them to record themselves as time goes on, at least once a term, and discuss it with their mentors in school. But so many times they found a reason not to, the technology, using videos in school. It’s all been very difficult to do. And then suddenly COVID has, I think, paved the way for that to be much more acceptable now. And like you said, the use of TikTok and all those other things out there as well, the use of video just doesn’t seem as quite as scary to them anymore. So we’ve done the same policy this year. Every one of my trainees has used GoReact already within their induction period. We did the micro teach as normal, but we used the GoReact app in order to be able to record it in Canvas, and they did their own evaluations of that, so they know their way around it.

Karen Gladwin:

So none of them have got an excuse now as they go into schools, that they can’t just video themselves, and keep it safe on our Canvas site, and know how that system works. So we are encouraging our trainees by Christmas to have videoed something just for their own self improvement, something that they’ll watch, perhaps make about six statements on moments in time, and then take that to their mentors to discuss and bring it to their tutors for a review meeting before Christmas. So that’s a new thing, but I think that’s going to go well, hopefully.

Jenny Gordon:

And I suppose the students adapting to the use of video is one thing, but what about other instructors, Jonty, both from the university perspective and potentially our partner schools as well? Teachers will come onto their role, safeguarding and the use of video in the classroom in just a second, but I just wondered about your staff and your departments, how they felt about observing through video and that adoption of that.

Jonty Leese:

Yeah. So there’s two parts to the answer. The first part is that we did a trial, a small trial last year with a number of schools and that was successful. It’s temporarily put on a hold, though, because I’ve got a wide ring this year, which is looking at bringing more people into using technology, which includes video conferencing well. So where we were last year, we haven’t taken too much further this year, simply because my role has changed. But what I would say is that the schools who used it last year found it a very positive experience.

Jonty Leese:

We did have some trouble with GDPR, which I think all schools and universities will have, where you’ve got sort of complicated policies, and many different schools and regions, and LEAs all dealing with it. I think as well, at secondary level, there’s an acceptance. This is more a general point around video conferencing, that because we’re so familiar with it, because I look at my calendar and you know, I might have three or four Teams meetings in a day, that they’re very confident with using that technology face to face. And I think students are very comfortable with that now.

Jonty Leese:

And one of the real benefits I’ve found with GoReact in particular is just because it uses no extra technology, that makes it quite an accessible thing. And the feedback I’ve had from the schools is that actually, sticking a laptop down is okay. We work with other schools who use different software. I think Swivl is one that is… We have to buy a bit of software for it. And it’s like a spider, I think that sort of sits in the sky and sort of moves around.

Jonty Leese:

And I think there’s different things, but I think it’s the case of, we are trying to get a steer on what’s what’s the right approach for us. And then we can, as Karen has said, lead from the front and say, this is the approach that we would like to do. We will do something similar like Karen, which is we’ll be investing on behalf of all of our trainees, which then means the schools can use it as well. But the feedback from the small trials have had is that it’s a very popular thing and the staff are also very willing to engage with it, in terms of actually trying to see how they can use that to support their own CPD.

Jenny Gordon:

Yeah, I see. I mean, the early careers framework is something that we’re all sort of making sure that we’re aligned with now, with the updates to that and the CCF and such like, and the relationship that we have with our mentors in school is more significant than ever. And one of the things that some of our partner organizations use our software for is to support the sort of quality assurance of the mentoring that’s going on as well.

Jenny Gordon:

So let’s say that there are fewer face to face visits happening, not no face to face visits, but fewer. And our students are out for a long time, and we want to ensure that they’ve basically been given the training in the field to the highest possible standard. And I guess you can see that in the videos that they submit, but it does offer a way for you to sort of quality assure, I guess, the mentoring that’s going on as well. Do you have any, does anybody ever sort of raise any concerns around that, or do they see that as an aid for them to ensure that they’re doing the best possible job for those training teachers as well, Karen?

Karen Gladwin:

Well, it’s interesting. Because when we do an observation visit, whether that’s live or in some other format, actually our role as tutors from the university is to moderate the mentors. And sometimes you need to remind them of that. So for the trainees, the fact that we’ve gone into watch a trainee so that we have a common point to discuss, and obviously top tips for the trainee, if you like. My job really while I’m in there is to moderate that mentor. And if they’re telling the trainee they’re wonderful, that that is true. And it goes across this year’s cohort, as well as the 15 years I’ve been doing teacher training and so forth, and vice versa. So I think it’s not seen as a problem to the mentors. I think they understand that that is part of what we do, and we’re looking for. The same way that we collect weekly, their comments. That comes into a system here at our university, and so we can see their written comments as well as those physical things that are happening in the classroom as well.

Jenny Gordon:

Absolutely. And in terms of sort of sharing between peers, Jonty, if you have student teachers in either the same school or across a range of different schools, how do you encourage your students to work together to develop their skills, both either through the content that they perhaps are seeing through video, or just through collaboration, I guess?

Jonty Leese:

Yeah. I think as well that the role of a teacher isn’t it, is to be helping students learn, whether it’s a student teacher or a student. And by the very nature, the best way to do it is to demonstrate what good stuff looks like. So the principle is if you can record a good session on behavior management of a teacher teaching a bottom set maths on a Friday afternoon when there’s just been a thunderstorm and it’s a full moon, well actually that’s a really powerful tool that you can use to unpick and actually scrutinize and actually identify what they’re doing, and that can then be applied to multiple settings. Because once it’s recorded, a student can always go back to that. And they can build up that repository of really high quality resources that they can always access.

Jonty Leese:

So I think it’s around, looking sort of long term, that it may take a bit of time and effort to build up. But as a school builds up its resources and its powerful exemplars and learning objects. And actually, that’s a great place for a student to go to. So ultimately, they can become the first point of course. So a student doesn’t necessarily come to you to say, oh, I’m really struggling, because they’ve already known that they can go and look at the video of a teacher demonstrating an outstanding set of questions, a great bit of behavior management, and so on. I think the other one as well is, the heart of being a student teacher is reflection. And being able to reflect on what you’ve read or what you’ve seen and actually being able to actually unpick it is really crucial. So that skillset of reflection, whether it’s applied to videos, whether it’s applied to an article they’ve read, or a lesson plan, or just them breaking something down, is going to be a skill that’s going to really help them develop and become an outstanding teacher.

Jenny Gordon:

Absolutely. Karen, in your case, we integrate with Canvas at your university, that’s your learning management system. From a GoReact perspective, we know that we are a small part of a much bigger edtech kind of ecosystem, if you like. Why was integrating with Canvas important to you and your team back at Sussex? Why was the integration an important thing, both from a safety perspective and security perspective, but also from a user experience perspective?

Karen Gladwin:

I think Canvas came to Sussex, oh, I think it’s two or three years ago, now. It’s definitely a second system since I’ve been here, and it really has become that one stop shop. And I think that’s important for trainees. They’ve got university emails, and school emails, and different websites, and a thousand places to look, so to try and put everything in one place that they can find it quite easily at the push of a button, I think was really important to us. To make sure it was being used effectively and efficiently.

Karen Gladwin:

But as you said, the other thing for colleagues and for students in schools was knowing that it was in a safe repository through Canvas, and with you with the recordings. So I think the fact that there are several layers of security just trying to get into Canvas and therefore into GoReact from our end, that it wasn’t just out there for anyone to find. It’s quite a difficult situation. In fact, we haven’t found a way around yet of giving access to our mentors. So at the moment, our trainees would need to show their mentors any recording via their own access and materials. So that I hope will mean that they’re talking about it and sharing that experience together, but it definitely has helped putting it all into one place and knowing where it is.

Jenny Gordon:

Absolutely. And I think it can work both ways, I think, depending on the way that you intend to use a tool as part of a broader platform, or independently. You have options in terms of the way you want to integrate.

Jenny Gordon:

Coming back to the kind of security questions, because in my role, one of the most common things I talk around is safeguarding GDPR, ensuring that if there is video footage of children captured because of a student teacher conducting a lesson, how do we ensure that it’s in the safest possible place? And I know working with both of you and your university legal departments and those responsible for data protection, that it’s top of the list of priorities, and rightly so. Data is posted here in the EU, if you’re a UK customer of ours and the way in which you access that data is very much through a very strict protocol.

Jenny Gordon:

The biggest issues, I think, Jonty, that we’ve seen come up with some of your schools or questions, and they’re not necessarily issues as such, they’re questions, is what can we do most to protect our students? And so, we recently released a piece of functionality that blurs the background for all of the videos that are being recorded. How did you see that as an advantage for how you would use this piece of software with your schools and student teachers?

Jonty Leese:

I think the key thing that you’ve hit there is that in all of these procedures, it’s about minimizing risk, isn’t it? And demonstrating that due thought has gone into how any piece of software is A, going to enhance the learning, or the ability for the student or the context to learn, and also to make sure that we have thought things through. And I think the example there of the blur technology is great. You know, it’s a thing that probably people are quite used to with sort of their filters and other things like that. But it simply means that you are minimizing and doing what you can to ensure that students aren’t recorded. And I think that’s a really powerful thing.

Jonty Leese:

Because it’s demonstrating that A, it works very well. And B, it’s actually something that is tangible, so you can turn it on or off. You can immediately see the difference in the picture quality. And by doing that, it gives you that confidence that actually there’s an algorithm that’s working very well, keeping the stuff that you don’t want to be recorded out, but keeping the stuff that you do want recorded, which is the student teacher going around that regular daily business of teaching, nice and clear and in focus. So I think if we view it as, it’s a sensible step that just helps us keep our information secure and safe. And I think that’s a really positive step. And certainly, the schools seem to be very happy with the feature and functionality of that.

Jenny Gordon:

Great. Thank you. Before I ask my last question to you both, I just wanted to open the Q and A up to anybody that is watching this discussion, and we’ll invite you to ask any questions of our panel today. So please pop them into the panel to ask any questions. And we’ll ask those of Jonty and Karen in just a second, when they come through.

Jenny Gordon:

I guess I just wanted to ask you both really, if there were anything that we haven’t mentioned so far around how video is enhancing the experience that your student teachers are having at the moment. And not just your student teachers, but I guess all the stakeholders. Your instructors, who don’t have to travel hundreds of miles around the country to do observations, your mentors, who can look at something over and over again with that student teacher to develop that skill. What are the areas that you see most being enhanced by the use of video in your programs, Karen?

Karen Gladwin:

Well, I think you just summed it up really nicely there, to be honest. We are not trying to replace live visits by any means, and I think Jonty said the same. But the thought of these sorts of things, being able to compliment what we do. If a student’s in crisis and my diary is full and they’re two hours away drive, I’m not going to get there while school’s open. So the fact they could video a lesson, and I can then get there as soon as I can, and we can talk about it out of hours and we can develop things through, I think is going to be really helpful as the year goes on. And who knows what crisis is going to be the next thing to hit us, or the country, as it stands.

Karen Gladwin:

And then the other thing I think that we haven’t mentioned is the opportunity perhaps for students to collect evidence against teaching standards and other things they might be assessed against. And I think that the ability to perhaps refer to video clips, moments of live classroom practice as a piece of evidence, just adds some authenticity that perhaps just memory and writing a reflection of it might not add to it. Or an email from somebody saying this trainee took part in this activity, where actually here’s a video of me working with a bunch of kids in maths club or whatever, I think will add something new as well. And I’m looking forward to that being a way forward as well for us.

Jenny Gordon:

Thank you. Jonty?

Jonty Leese:

I think for us then, it’s slightly different. So I think for us, it’s, we’ve embedded the instructional coaching model. I think the next step is really then is to now get video recording at the heart of that, so that it just becomes that regular thing. So just as they have a regular weekly cycle of coaching, then they use that as a regular five minute start or five minute little bit of a lesson to really have evidence as to how they are meeting the standards.

Jonty Leese:

I think as we’re looking forward, it would be great if we could build up a bank of really good resources so that we can get the schools working together. So where you got an expert who’s willing to demonstrate something, then we can record that, we can share that within our alliances. I think using what we’ve got, but to actually bring other schools in and actually for them to see as a benefit of working with either Karen or myself and our institutions as something that we can do that other providers can’t, I think would be a really strong place for us to be in.

Jenny Gordon:

I think that’s a great idea. Any it’s certainly something that we would like to do as a partner as well, is to enable a sharing opportunity, not just with your own institution, but with others. So where you can have a piece of content that is exceptional or exceptionally bad that you want to use as a what not to do, but in the exceptional piece of content, best practice that you want to share to get us to a point where we can share those and collaborate with them nationwide.

Jenny Gordon:

We’ve got a few questions that have come in whilst we’ve been chatting. So I’m just going to read the first one out. It says, how can we ensure that the positives in terms of remote working, teaching, mentoring can be maintained or even amplified as we slip back into normality? So I think we route right back to the beginning of the conversation and say, what are the positives that we’ve taken from COVID big time, although, question of where we are in the whole thing at the minute, but what can we take from it and how can we ensure we take it and make it better or sustainable within our programs? Karen?

Karen Gladwin:

Well, that was literally the theme of one of our departmental meetings at the end of last academic year. And that’s where I think the decision here about mental trainings staying online, at least for the short term, but definitely that seems to be up in our attendance. I’m sure this is the same for other institutions. And it reminds me of being a teacher on parents evening, and you never see the parents that you really want to, and it feels like that with mentors as well. And we used to, for this sort of autumn term, which is always hard and dark and miserable, our turnout was about a third, if I’m honest, of mentors coming in. And now we are nearly 90%, I think, and everybody that didn’t arrive had a reasonable reason, if that makes sense. You know, parents’ evenings and things like that, not just that it was a long way and all the other things. So I think that was a keeper for us.

Karen Gladwin:

And definitely this idea of GoReact as a support for students in crisis in the short term, and a way of recording things and sharing good practice across trainees and mentors at the moment are probably the things that we are going to go through. But I think each department perhaps needs to talk about what it’s used and how well it’s worked for them.

Jonty Leese:

Yeah. And on the back of that, I think as a HR provider, it’s really important that we assess what has worked well. And we have tried to embed that, so similar to, repeating Karen, tutorials have gone online and will remain so, because they’ve been hugely popular. It then means that students can look at my calendar and just book in a slot where I’m free. We’ve also got the mentors have gone online, and that’s certainly something we’re going to do. We’ve also moved some subjects online as well. So where we’ve had people who have been unable to attend because of COVID or whatever, we’ve then moved some sessions online. And the PRE, which is like the sort of the personal reflective part of the course where we look at big issues, we’ve actually moved some of those groups online so that they can stay at home if that works for them.

Jonty Leese:

I think as well, it’s accepting that we are still, crucially giving out the knowledge and the information, but it’s then just being aware that there are different ways, now, that students want to get to, in order to engage with the course. And so when we’re looking at kind of the hybrid model, the high flex and the hybrid model, around how it can then support students. But I think ultimately, video recording just means then that you’re giving the opportunity to asynchronous learning. And for a lot of students who’ve grown up in the past five, 10 years, they’re used to being able to access stuff on demand. So in some ways, it makes sense for us to provide certain parts of the course on demand, so they can then just access that 24/7. Because that’s just the way that they work now.

Jenny Gordon:

Absolutely. We’re used to having what we want when we want it. And I always say there shouldn’t be a difference to what we do at home versus what we do at work. You know, the same technologies and the same processes should be throughout. And perhaps this is a way into that. Thanks for that question.

Jenny Gordon:

The second question we had, and I don’t know whether or not either of you can talk to this, if not, I can talk for another partner that we’re working with. It’s do tutors ever video the trainee mental feedback session? Have you seen that happen as yet?

Karen Gladwin:

Not yet.

Jenny Gordon:

Not yet.

Jonty Leese:

Not yet, but I don’t think we would be opposed to that. I think that would be a very useful way… And again, I think it’s where we view our role that as providers are we concerned about the trainees, or do we trust the schools to get on and train the students? In which case, we then need to look at the layer of how the subject mentors and professional mentors are leading, and in which case, think potentially being able to see that feedback would be a really powerful way of actually seeing what the diet is on a daily basis.

Jenny Gordon:

Absolutely.

Karen Gladwin:

Actually, thinking about it, that is what we were doing last year. When I said that we were discussing a lesson that we hadn’t seen. Of course the mentor had seen it, so we were observing the feedback. Sorry, I was thinking of myself being given the feedback, which I haven’t started my business yet. That starts on Monday. But yeah, we have used that live, but I suppose not recorded, and not fed back on the video, just used that system.

Jenny Gordon:

We’ve also seen a lesson being conducted that’s been observed remotely using GoReact. And then the observer and the trainee, looking at the recording with the feedback that was given at the point of the live session together after the fact. So you look at them in context with each other, and to be able to see the practice alongside the initial recording and then reflect on it has become something that’s quite popular as well.

Jenny Gordon:

The next question was around, it’s a set of questions about cameras. And we haven’t gone into the detail around setting up the hardware or the software particularly. But the question was, I would like to hear how you set the video up. What type of camera you use, where it’s positioned, and that sort of thing. Do either of you want to talk to that particularly? Or do you want me to?

Jonty Leese:

I will happily… Oh, I’ll let Karen.

Karen Gladwin:

Well… Go on, Jonty.

Jonty Leese:

Okay, we’re too polite. The reality is that the schools that we’ve used it in simply use a webcam on a computer. And you can have, as in the built-in one, sort of the one just there. And the way it works is that you just point it where you want it to go, and you hit record. And it’s as straightforward as that. If you want to, you can get multiple webcams and audio devices, all feeding in. But it seems to me that the general sort of easiest and best practice is you just put the one somewhere appropriate that records the teachers, sort of the hotspots and the teacher where they’re going to spend the most of the time in the classroom. You hit record, and it’s as simple as that. I think this is where GoReact is quite straightforward, because there’s no extra technology to buy. There’s no extra cables, pretty much every laptop has a reasonably good audio and video technology built in to facilitate that. Karen, over to you.

Karen Gladwin:

Absolutely. My students have used their laptops, their phones, anything that enables them to go to the university Canvas site and therefore open GoReact in it. I’ve had lots of views of backs of trainees, and where I’ve only been allowed to be on the table, looking at the board, but other schools have allowed us to have full view of the room from the front or the back, depending on the schools. As Jonty said earlier, every school seems to react differently to the whole idea of data protection and children and what we can see and what we can’t see. But it’s all been really useful. And I’ve been so impressed with the sound recording. So even when a student moves out of my view, I can still hear questions being asked and things going on. So you get a real feel for what’s happening in the room. It’s been a fantastic space to use.

Karen Gladwin:

I think my top tip would be always to record straight into GoReact if there’s an option to do that, rather than to record elsewhere and then transfer it across. Purely because I don’t know what the technology side of these things is, but seems to just take a whole hour’s lesson with no worry if you go straight in, but sometimes when we’ve recorded elsewhere, we struggle to get that to a correct size to get it across. Jonty as a computer scientist knows more about those things than I do. So I just advise, we always go straight into Canvas, to GoReact through Canvas, whether we’re doing it live, synchronous, or asynchronous.

Jenny Gordon:

And that is one of the things that’s commonly asked for from a safeguarding and GDPR perspective, is that authorities in schools don’t want to have videos left on personal devices. Because it is possible to record on a phone, on an iPad, any sort of video capture device, but working particularly, Jonty with your DPA. We talked a lot about training students to record straight into GoReact, which meant the video was always safe within the platform and couldn’t be left, phone on a bus or anywhere else. And GoReact offers the opportunity for you to decide. So if you’re doing a bit of reflection, you want to video yourself at home, you want to do some, let’s see how this lesson sounds. Let’s see how I can deliver it. You might choose to do that on your own device and upload it. But in a school environment, you do have the option. And we force the training of students to record straight into the platform, which supports a lot of the safeguarding concerns that come up at that point as well.

Jenny Gordon:

There was another question which was an extension of that, was around what sort of devices are used to capture video. And I think we’ve covered that. There are schools that do ask students to use school devices as well. Please, could you use the a school-based laptop to do this recording for whatever policy might be in place. I’d say that the GoReact platform is flexible enough for you to work with those policies. There’s not a one way that everybody has to stick to. There can be multiple different choices to fit in with the policies, both at school or university and local authority level.

Jenny Gordon:

I think as well, we answered a question around how it’s used within Canvas. I think Karen, you answered that brilliantly previously. One of the things I was going to add in, that if you use a rubric or a marking scheme within GoReact, the marks can feed back up into Canvas as well. So if you’re doing some of your end point assessments or final grading, that sort of thing, those results can go back from GoReact up into Canvas as well, which is quite useful. Is there anything else you wanted to mention about Canvas, Karen, or have we covered it?

Karen Gladwin:

I think the only thing I had to learn was it has to go through the assessment button. Everything in GoReact is an assessment, but once the students get over that word and realize that it’s still just self-reflection or whatever the task is that you’ve set, then that’s been absolutely fine. But yeah, we’ve had no problems. Once it’s in Canvas it’s been working great.

Jenny Gordon:

And I would say, I mean, Jonty, I’m working with your team with Moodle and we work with many Blackboard universities as well. All of the names that you’d recognize that through an LTI integration. And like we said, it’s very much an option. If you want to come through the LMS or if you want to go direct through GoReact. GoReact is just as secure.

Jenny Gordon:

I think that is just about all of the questions, I’m just going to ask if there’s any other questions last minute that you want to post, pop them through. It would be great to get those. If you think of a question after this session that you didn’t ask, or you didn’t want to ask it, you can send me an email. I’m jenny@goreact.com. And I’d love to answer your question or talk to you more about anything we’ve talked about today. And Jonty and Karen, I leave it up to you. You don’t have to decide yet, but if you are open to people asking you questions after the fact, would we be able to share your information so that they can contact you or they can come through me? We can work that out, but either way you will be able to get access to our wonderful panelists today as well after the fact.

Jenny Gordon:

Though, one more question, come through. Well, we’ve got time for it, so let’s ask. Do you know of any research which has been undertaken to capture trainees or mentors or students, school students we use, on the use of GoReact so far? Not in your programs today?

Jonty Leese:

No. I mean, the only thing I would say is that I think there’s an awful lot of research that goes into the fact that video technology and recording is a powerful ally for self-reflection and self development. So I think as long as you’re aware, there’s quite a solid, safe bank of material around that. I don’t know of any research that’s been so specific to look at GoReact as a specific type of software. But I think that the research demonstrating that it empowers students and helps them reflect is quite a safe bank of research.

Jenny Gordon:

Yeah. We have just released a paper on some of the impact of the use of GoReact with our students across our global footprint. One of the things that we can send out with the recording of this session is that paper, as a reference point. I would say Jonty, as well, we work with Warwick in a few different departments. One of them is WMG, Warwick Manufacturing Group, and we are doing some research with those teams to establish the impact and the use of video, GoReact specifically, within some of those courses. And that will be published in January. I think as educationalists as we are, we are always keen to really see the efficacy of things. We’re always keen to understand really A, what’s the point and B, is it going to have a bigger effect? Because that’s what we’re trying to do here. What’s the impact on student outcomes, ultimately? And I think those are some of the questions that we would like to answer. And we hope that we’ll be able to do that in partnership with some of our partner universities and schools in the near future.

Jenny Gordon:

Well, I don’t have any other questions that have come through. I’d like to thank again, Karen and Jonty for taking part in today. It’s just so valuable to hear your perspective and viewpoints. And I hope everybody that’s joined us today has got something from it. And I’m sure they’ll be taking some great ideas back to their departments on Monday. Thank you both so much. And thank you to everybody else that has joined us today. We’ll be sending this recording to you all, be sure to share it, and we’ll see you all soon. Have a great weekend.

[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]