Yesterday (11 July 2011) I was presented with a UCL Provost Teaching Award! It was a great ceremony and the evening went really well. I was very pleased and honoured to be in the company of people that have done some great work. Mine was a team effort with Rachel Benedyk.
The award was for an innovative idea for improving the experience of students at UCL. The idea I came up with, which I developed with Rachel, was to teach our MSc students Digital Stories during induction week whilst engaging with a real public engagement challenge, i.e. explaining what HCI is to teenagers. Our students really engaged with the task and greatly impressed us in what they were able to achieve in such a short space of time. This exercise taught them valuable communication, teamwork, and peer assessment skills; and this fun activity also facilitated this multi-national and multi-disciplinary group to get to know each other quickly – which is so important for their induction week experience.
We have already presented this exercise to the UCL Learning and Teaching Network, at a workshop at CHI, and the HCI Educators workshop at British HCI (the latter two reports can be found on my publications page). The students’ favourite video, Why Buttons Go Bad , has been applauded in all of these venues and was shown at the CHI video showcase. Thanks to all the students for such a great contribution and on making the exercise a success… here’s the favourite video: Why Buttons Go Bad.