Our aim is to provide you with an outstanding education while ensuring your health, safety and wellbeing during Covid-19.

This will be delivered through a mix of on-campus face-to-face and digital activities. This is called “blended learning” and we are here to provide support so you can benefit from all that this method of teaching offers, ensuring you succeed in your studies.

What to expect from blended learning?

We’ll be focusing on a “flipped” form of blended learning, where the presentation elements of a class (i.e. a lecture) will be provided through digital services such as our lecture capture system, ReCap.

Each programme will tailor their blended learning to the needs of their students and the requirements of your programme, which may require access to specialist rooms or equipment. The programme team will explain to you how they intend to do this, but most programmes will expect you to:

  • Engage with digital elements (such as lecture recordings, digital readings etc.) before attending an on-site or digital face-to-face session
  • Participate during on-site and digital face-to-face sessions, connecting with your peers and lecturers
  • Take time to reflect on what you have learned after each session

Some teaching online will be synchronous (it happens live) and some will be asynchronous (pre-recorded so you can work through it in your own time). You will most likely experience a combination of both.

On-site face-to-face classroom sessions will follow Government and Public Health England guidelines

Through blended learning you will develop as a confident independent learner with an ability to engage with a range of digital tools.

Don’t forget to liaise with your personal academic tutor or module tutors for academic support - together you can identify any skills you need to develop. Also, think about connecting with a Peer mentor who can share their own experiences of blended learning and give you tips on what has worked for them.

We are here to help you get the most out of your blended learning experience through:

  • The Learning Skills Hub where you can improve your study skills, including managing your time, connect with your Learning Skills team or collaborate on new ways of working with your friends. 
  • ReCap and other recordings accessible on your module Blackboards, which means you can access pre-recorded lectures at a time that suits you, pause, rewind and revisit as much as you like. This allows the classroom time to be used in the most effective manner, focusing on engaging activities such as Q&A, case study discussion etc. Active listening and note-taking will be key to benefit from ReCap and you can begin developing these two skills through the Learning Skills Hub or Skills4Study
  • Free productivity tools - whether it’s text to speech software, or time management programmes, there’s something to help everyone do the best that they can. 
  • IT training opportunities - the Microsoft Imagine Academy provides online self-paced training to help you succeed in today’s technologically evolving world.
  • Microsoft Teams  - is a supporting online platform for more informal one-to one or group communication and collaboration including instant messaging, video chat and file sharing.

If you have specific learning needs, you can also contact the Student Support, Health and Wellbeing Team for specialist advice and support.

Assessments that would normally take place in a face-to-face setting, such as in a lab, will be reviewed and where appropriate an alternative assessment method proposed.

You may find that exams which would normally be undertaken in an on-site face-to-face setting are replaced, either with digital take-home exams or with other forms of assessment. Your programme team will inform you of exactly how your assessment will be handled.

Throughout your studies programmes will also often provide formative assessments, using a mixture of approaches such as discussion, problem solving, active learning and peer learning. Formative assessment does not contribute to your final grade, but will help you prepare for summative, marked assignments and help you achieve the grade you want.

Turnitin, via Blackboard, will allow you to digitally submit work and receive and review feedback and grades. This will continue to be the case for most assessments run in a blended learning programme.

Blended learning can involve more screen time than other forms of study, so it is important that you consider your digital wellbeing:

  • Make sure that you take regular breaks from your devices.
  • Take time for meals.
  • Establish a routine.
  • Keep a covered bottle of water beside you while you study and take regular drinks.
  • Take time to connect with others, both those you study with and those in your home.
  • Try to have regular exercise, particularly if you will be sitting at a screen for a long period. Don't forget to check out what is on offer from Christ Chruch Sport and Active Health with a gym, fitness classes and much more. 
  • Remember that while you are learning online, your learning tools need to work for you. Make sure you have the right IT equipment and learn how to make the most of the technology you have. But also use pen and paper to make notes if that’s easier for you.

Further support

If you find you are having difficulty with your technology, you can contact the IT Hub for guidance. Support for using your learning platforms can be found in the Blackboard Help Tab.

I truly felt like a working journalist in the industry. The encouragement we have had by our lecturers evidently gave us the confidence and belief that we could do the newsdays remotely. It has filled me with confidence as the amount of content and stories we were able to find and produce from the limitations of our own houses was impressive.

ChloeJournalist student on her virtual newsroom experience

The online sessions for Forensic Biology, especially the crime scene exercise, were very informative and interactive, with being placed into groups with different scenarios to complete a task.The online sessions still gave us the opportunity to ask the questions we would have asked in class and receive an answer. Overall, I feel the sessions were just like being in class but online and therefore, interesting, informative and interactive.

CourtneyForensic Investigation student describes her positive blended learning experience

The Learning Skills Hub.

The hub has been developed by Learning Developers and Learning & Research Librarians with your needs in mind.

Each module will offer you the opportunity to develop your skills, assess your understanding and apply your new knowledge for continued development.