Teaching Enhancement Grants (TEG)

offer funding opportunities for scholarly projects that can have a positive impact on student learning and teaching practice

Teaching enhancement grant (TEG) TALKS - November 2016

Fostering scholarly investigation of teaching and learning to enhance education at NUS.

Date: 14 NOVEMBER 2016 (MONDAY)
Time: 9.00am-1.00pm
Venue: Dewey Room, CDTL

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The Pressure to Innovate: Wither Legal Education?

Asst Prof Swati Jhaveri
Faculty of Law

Legal education in common law jurisdictions has for a long time remained static in its curriculum design (focus on cases and journal articles); classroom experience (large lectures or tutorials and seminars spent discussing case studies and hypothetical legal problems with doctrinal or jurisprudential essay questions) and the level of engagement with technology (used as a mode of delivering materials prior to classes versus as a learning experience in its own right). However, the pressure to change from fellow educators, students, the profession and other stakeholders (including the public) is increasing. Different jurisdictions are having to confront questions of changing expectations of students in what the classroom experience should be (with a growing need to tap their reliance on technology as a learning tool); changing expectations of legal competency and readiness for the profession; shifting areas of legal practice within jurisdictions; the increase in cross-border and global influences on the law; issues of quality and oversupply of lawyers and questions generally about the role of legal education and lawyers in society. These pressures prompt questions about how to update and innovate. For example, legal curriculum has historically prioritised delivery of doctrine over skills or values – whereas the pressure is on to re-balance this emphasis. Legal education is thus at an intersection ripe for innovative curricular and pedagogical change. This paper looks at the issue of plurality in curriculum and assessment design. It will explore whether change is necessarily required and, if so, how that may look in the Asian common law context in particular.



Using standardized patients in enhancing undergraduate students’ learning experience in mental health nursing

Dr Goh Yong Shian
Alice Lee Centre for Nursing Studies

Nursing students often express the lack of confidence when conducting mental status examination in the clinical setting. With the use of standardised patients, this provide an opportunity for students to practice in a simulated environment before their attachment. A pre and post-test, single group quasi experimental design was used in this study. Outcome measures includes Student Satisfaction, Self-Confidence in learning scale as well as qualitative feedbacks comments. Results from this study showed that the use of standardized patient significantly increased students’ satisfaction and confidence level before their clinical attachment. Qualitative feedback showed a positive outlook towards the use of standardized patient in augmenting didactic learning into practical skills.

Presentation Slides


ShowNtell: An easy to use tool for answering students’ questions with voice over recording

Dr Bhojan Anand
Department of Computer Science

Answer your student’s questions involving equations, diagrams, photos, etc effectively with annotations using a lightweight tool, ShowNTell (www.sntboard.com), which is,

  1. Easy to use (you can master in five minutes!),
  2. Designed with features for following-up with successive questions and group discussions,
  3. Powered with real-time collaborative annotation and drawing capabilities,
  4. Installation and plug-ins free (no hassle of installing and maintaining browser plugins or heavy tools like Camtasia Studio or Breeze),
  5. Tested to work with any browser-enabled device of your choice.
  6. Simple to edit and export the discussions as a video.


Presentation Slides


A Multimodal Virtual Learning Tool for human anatomy education

Emeritus Prof P. Gopalakrishnakone
Department of Anatomy

Human anatomy is a complex visual subject. Teaching and learning of this subject needs a variety of tools, especially 3D surface rendering, rotation etc. The objective of the project was to develop an interactive 3D/4D teaching and learning platform with flexible structure supporting multimedia course materials with an intuitive interaction interface with multi touch support. The module will also have an on line version providing remote and mobile access. CT Scan datasets were used, passing through slice filter and colour segmentation followed by 3D model reconstruction. On this platform, multimedia such as videos, annotations, animations, quizzes were added and the module was evaluated by medical students.


Presentation Slides


Grading “Grade-free” Learning at NUS

Dr Chris McMorran
Department of Japanese Studies

The implementation of gradeless learning throughout the NUS campus in 2014 caused both excitement and trepidation. Would students take advantage of the learning opportunities enabled by the policy? Would they work hard without grades as motivation? What unforeseen benefits and innovative tactics would emerge from this learning experiment? This presentation answers these questions by reporting findings from three online surveys given to students and faculty in six-month intervals in 2014- 15. Conclusions are based on more than 3000 survey responses, plus focus group interviews conducted with first- and second-year students.


Presentation Slides


Assessing the effectiveness of a new Science Communication Course

A/P Chan Chun Yong, Eric
Department of Pharmacy

Universities increasingly recognise the need to teach communication skills. Various approaches are adopted to develop undergraduates’ academic literacy skills, including a range of collaborative approaches. This study traces the implementation of an initiative to enhance first year science undergraduates’ effectiveness in science communication through the development of a new course Exploring Science Communication through Popular Science. Using a combination of pre-course demography and English language competency profiling, quantitative pre- and postcourse survey, semi-quantitative reflective letter analysis and covariate correlation analysis with learning outcome, our study presents impact indicators of the course. Our study demonstrated that the collaboration between language and disciplinary experts in planning the science communication curriculum impacts perceptive learning outcomes positively.


Presentation Slides


Exploiting published material in the teaching of writing in higher education

Dr Wong Jock Onn
Centre for English Language Communication

The ‘Ideas & Expository’ writing program run by the Centre of English Language Communication does not expect its lecturers to develop specially designed writing materials for its students. Because the program uses an approach that is similar to David Marsh’s ‘Content Language Integrated Learning’ approach to the teaching of writing, lecturers make use of published papers as teaching material. Each lecturer, a content specialist, selects published papers from their respective field for the purposes of teaching content and, ultimately, writing. Although the module requires students to write in 3 specific genres (a reflective summary, a contrastive paper and an expository paper), each lecturer is also faced with the task of teaching students general academic writing skills. While the lecturer could refer to literature on writing, they could also exploit the reading material to teach writing. This presentation suggests how papers written by and for humanities scholars might be exploited for the teaching of writing to university students, even if that is not the purpose for which the papers were written. It offers practical suggestions to writing teachers and perhaps even faculty lecturers, and focuses mainly on clarity and organization.


Presentation Slides


The Ideas & Exposition Modules at the Writing Unit of the National University of Singapore: Aspirations, Challenges and Solutions

Dr Mark Brooke
Centre for English Language Communication

What is considered educational evidence of critical thinking, and how it links to actual academic writing, may sometimes be unclear to students (Szenes, Tilakaratna & Maton, 2015). This presentation draws on Maton’s (2013) Semantics, particularly semantic gravity and explores the knowledge principles involved in the making of semantic waves and how these can inform our practice and translate into effective student writing of evidence-based arguments. Action research, from an Ideas and Exposition Module, will be used as the context for this presentation. However, it is probable that these knowledge principles are also relevant to academic writing in other disciplines.


TEAMMATES: An Online Feedback Management System for Education

A/P Damith Chatura Rajapakse
Department of Computer Science

TEAMMATES is an online feedback management system for education. It aims to provide a more flexible feedback management facility than what most mainstream Learning Management Systems offer. For example, instructors can use it to facilitate peer feedback among students with a very fine grain control. We have been building TEAMMATES since 2010, funded mostly by TEG and LIFT grants. TEAMMATES have served more than 100,000 users so far coming from over 300 universities. This talk introduces some of the new features of TEAMMATES we have added in recent years.

Presentation Slides

Spit classroom: Technology enhanced experimental learning of Salivary Biology for NUS dental graduates

Dr Chammida Jayampath Seneviratne
Faculty of Dentistry

“Spit classroom” was an innovative technology-enhanced platform that aimed to provide an active learning experience on salivary biology to the first year dental undergraduate at the Faculty of Dentistry, NUS. Students were given hands-on experience on the collection of saliva for biomarker analysis such as cortisol, alphaamylase and secretary IgA. On the day of the lecture, results were given to the students and the clinical implications were discussed in that context. Significant majority (93.8%) agreed that technology-enhanced platform improved their understanding of the clinical relevance. Students’ qualitative comments on the activity include “very interesting, engaging and fun”. Moreover, students mentioned that experimental learning is a great way to learn salivary biology compared to a theoretical lecture.


Presentation Slides

Tracking programme outcomes in Residential College Settings

A/P Tambyah Siok Kuan
College of Alice & Peter Tan

In this study, we aim to identify the learning outcomes and understand the processes that contribute to these outcomes at the College of Alice and Peter Tan, a residential college in University Town. Using Astin’s (1993) Input-Environment-Output model as a conceptual framework, we examined the effects of the institutional environment and students’ involvement on the learning outcomes, when controlling for their demographic characteristics and personal beliefs before enrolling in the college. Students’ perceptions and opinions were obtained through surveys in mid-2014 and mid-2015. We will share our key findings and the implications for managing the residential college experience.


Presentation Slides