Skip navigation

Search Site

The Writing Centre

Strong writing skills are essential for the clear and effective communication of ideas and knowledge. Students, tutors and Dr Fionnuala Dillane talk about how the Writing Centre in University College Dublin bridges the gap between what students know and how they communicate what they know.


Digital Badges in Psychiatry

This showcase is about the use of digital badges on a 10 credit clinical module in Psychiatry which students take in stage five of their medical degree course. Read more.


Negatively-marked MCQ exams: Biased or not?

This study set out over three academic years to determine whether the negatively-marked first-year biology MCQ exams were biased or not against female students. Read more.


Consumer Law: Real-world Applications and Communications

Students learnt about real-world application and communication of complex consumer law information through poster design and Twitter. Read more.


Assignment rubrics for supportive feedback and consistent grading

This showcase demonstrates the multiple uses of rubrics for individual assessment components in modules with large students numbers and includes a sample rubric and a student guide to using rubrics. Read more.


Development and teaching of a large online undergraduate module

The module "Food Diet and Health" was moved online to increase capacity in line with growing demand. This showcase is about the development and teaching of the online version. Read more.


Think Pair Share

Here is an in-class peer approach that helps stage one students to overcome the anxiety that they can feel about asking questions, about uncertainty and about being judged by their peers and about getting it wrong. It also gives the teacher an idea about how the content is being received. Read more.

mark keane

Professor Mark Keane - Teaching Strategies for Success

How can you help first-year students to understand the practical applications of computer science from the start of the programme, expose them to research in the field and improve social interaction amongst the class? Watch this video for approaches to all three. Play.


Projects in Teaching Linguistics: Burden or Opportunity?

A group project approach has been taken in a second year Sociolinguistics module to help students with the challenging learning curve and socially sensitive subject matter. Read more.


Bringing Undergraduate Research to Life

This showcase is about how use of a Research Expo has brought research to life for UCD undergraduate business students who, as part-time students, have particularly benefited from the community developed. Read more.


Creative Challenge for Science Students

The challenge for the students is to develop a learning aid to teach the fundamentals of organ specific toxicology. They are encouraged to be creative and are free to work in any media. Play.

Turning a traditional teaching setting into a feedback-rich environment

"Le Tour de France" is a fun way for students to learn using their own devices in class. The real-time graphical display of results provides performance information for the teacher and rapid feedback for the students. Read more.

Just in Time Blended Learning

Just in Time, Blended Learning

During orientation week, information-overload can be an issue for incoming students. Business eLearning have developed a Just in Time, Blended Learning approach to communicating important technological information as and when students most need it. Read more.


Professor Anne Drummond - Teaching Strategies for Success

Professor Anne Drummond, UCD School of Public Health, Physiotherapy and Sports Science, shares her teaching strategies for success with the UCD Community Play.


Professor Gavin Barrett - Teaching Strategies for Success

Professor Gavin Barrett, Jean Monnet Professor of European Constitutional and Economic Law shares a number of strategies including enabling students to think independently, engaging them with the subject matter, trying innovative approaches and focusing on teaching itself. Play.

Danielle Clarke

Professor Danielle Clarke - Teaching Strategies for Success

Professor Danielle Clarke, Professor of English Renaissance Language and Literature shares strategies she has been using for many years to engage and teach students, particularly in humanities and literature-based subjects. Danielle says: "Teaching should be objective-led, student-focused and discussion-driven." Play.

Professor Pat Gibbons

Professor Pat Gibbons - Teaching Strategies for Success

Professor Pat Gibbons, Jefferson Smurfit Professor of Strategic Management shares his Teaching Strategies for Success. Pat predominately teaches strategic management to graduate business students. He follows a participant-centered approach, where students are co-creators of knowledge. Pat talks about the detailed information he provides to students in order to set clear expectations and he talks about his own process for improving his teaching strategies. Play.


A UCD Veterinary Hospital Rotation Experience

Sinead Sheerin, Veterinary Nurse from the UCD School of Veterinary Medicine is the recipient of a national Teaching Hero Award. Sinead and her students talk about the experience of a busy placement in the UCD Veterinary hospital and the importance of approachability, demonstrations and tutorials. Play.


Using Wikispaces Classroom for Student-2-Student Dialogue

Time and technological restrictions along with a need for privacy led to the adoption of an innovative approach to teaching survey research using Wikispaces Classroom, a social writing platform for education. Read more.


Bringing Bees Back to Belfield

Students have an opportunity to handle bee colonies in the apiary and experience at first hand bee activities and behaviour within the hive environment on campus. Bees play a vital role in the food chain. The honey bee colonies were established as part of a programme of staff-student projects aimed at enhancing university and community life. Play.

maths support centre video

Maths Support Centre

The Maths Support Centre in UCD is a drop in service for all students and provides a valuable support to students in transition. It can also provide a first step in self directed learning. Play.

champions league

Enhancing Performance through a Competitive Team Tournament

Structures-related civil engineering subjects requires a maturation time in the student’s mind before being fully understood. This project aims to develop highly efficient group activities that will help students to meet their learning outcomes in traditionally difficult subjects. Read more.


The Writing Centre

Strong writing skills are essential for the clear and effective communication of ideas and knowledge. Students, tutors and Dr Fionnuala Dillane talk about how the Writing Centre in University College Dublin bridges the gap between what students know and how they communicate what they know. Play.


Failure to Follow Instructions Impairs Novel Assessment Strategy

The laboratory notebook exercise has been perceived by some students of the Physiology module to be a "colouring competition" and those without artistic abilities were at a disadvantage. Although not so, we decided to modify the assessment on foot of that feedback. Read more.


Using a Wiki to Share Undergraduate Student Project Ideas

The process of selecting a suitable project topic can be a daunting one for undergraduate students. The wiki enables students to share ideas and to make suggestions to each other assisting in refining their topic focus. Read more.


Using Smartphones in Class to Access Irish Language Resources

The introduction of the smartphone into a lecture theatre with 100+ first year students seemed risky but so far the response has been very positive. The students were given deliberately ambiguous sentences to translate together using the dictionaries, ranging from excerpts from Harry Potter to pieces on nautical terminology and trade unionism. Read more.


Lessons Learned from Lecturing in Guangzhou, China

An Introduction to Horticulture, Forestry & Land Use and Environment is a core module taken by all UCD/ South China Agricultural University (SCAU) students. It introduces the major global issues in horticulture and forestry in conjunction with other interactions between human beings and their environment. The challenges relate to delivery, the nature of the material and the differences in lecture/tutor-student interactions. Read more.

Mechanics Video Tutorials for 320+ First-year Engineering Students

Mechanics for Engineers is a core module taken by every engineering student in semester one of first year. It is one of the first modules that some 320 students take upon entering university and is traditionally regarded by students as one of their most difficult stage one modules. Read more.

Paper Tower Challenge

Paper Tower Challenge

A class of 320 first year students of UCD Mechanical and Materials Engineering have been set a challenge to build a one meter tall paper tower that will hold one kilogram. The students work in teams and use only paper in the construction. In the video the students and the lecturer, Professor Michael Gilchrist talk about the positive impact of this learning approach. Play.

Using a Virtual Classroom to Support Part-time Business Students

This module, BMGT3002D Undergraduate Dissertation, is a core module on the Bachelor of Business Studies (BBS) part-time programme at UCD Lochlann Quinn School of Business. Read more.

Interactivity for 200+ Sciences Students in Statistics Modelling Module

This module was designed to give first year science students the basic tools to think about their ideas in a rigorous statistical manner and to understand that this is not a dry subject which requires strong mathematical ability, but rather a necessity of life which can be of huge benefit to all. Read more.

How to ‘Articulate’ the research process for students

The goal for the delivery of this module was to develop a reusable learning object which would present the key messages of the module topic in a visually attractive and engaging fashion within the Blackboard elearning environment. Read more.


Online Dairy Herd Health

Professor Michael Doherty talks about the development of an Online Graduate Certificate in Dairy Herd Health at University College Dublin and how this mode of delivery suits busy vets. Play.

Enhancing Student Learning and Engagement with E-learning 2.0 Applications

This module discusses the concepts and specific skills related to electronic marketing (eMarketing), Social Networking & Web2.0. This practical oriental module requires students to design and implement an online marketing strategy for a small or medium sized organisation as part of an international online marketing challenge organized by Google. Read more.

Chemistry Pre-Lab Quizzes

The principal aim of the work carried out (with the support of funding through a Module Support Innovation Grant funded through the HEA’s SIF II, Enhancement of Learning project) was to encourage engagement of the students with the work they were going to be carrying out during a particular session before they arrived to the lab, and in this way change the practical sessions from a mostly-by-rote exercise to a far more planned and active learning exercise. Read more.

Academic Skills Development - A Disciplinary Approach

The Centre for Distance Learning has developed two academic skills modules which form part of the Diploma in Business Studies (DBS) programme. The modules, Induction and Returning to Learning and Developing Learning Competencies, are a core part of year one of the programme. Read more.

Student Participation for Social Learning

The capacity of students to recall and understand material covered in the latter parts of lectures is shown in educational literature to be low. The role of the active learning environment is to re-engage students at points in lectures where concentration levels are seen to be in waning. Read more.

Six Ways to Engage Students with Feedback

Dr Geraldine O'Neill looks at how we can rethink our definition of feedback, moving away from a retrospective approach, to an approach which develops students' own judgment and self-monitoring skills. Play.

Putting Students at the Centre of Learning Outcomes

Dr Ann Bourke aims to provide insights on learning outcomes (programme, module or session) and how they can be used to promote and support student learning. Play.

Get Students to Think Scientifically

Professor Mark Rogers describes an approach which has been developed for the Science Programme, and is delivered in part through a module taken by all first year common entry science students at UCD. This module "Principles of Scientific Enquiry" encourages students to develop the key skills required by all science students through a combination of lectures, workshops and small group activity facilitated by academic staff. This episode describes the thinking and approach used in developing this module. Play.

Sustainable Group-project Learning for Large Numbers That Works

Dr Amanda Gibney describes an approach which has been developed for the 'Creativity in Design' module, a core module for all first year engineering students at UCD. A key focus of this module is on small group studio work. This episode describes a sustainable approach to facilitation of these small group sessions. Play.

Future Fit: Engaging and Developing from Day One

In "Future Fit:Engaging and Developing from Day One" Dr David Foster, Director of the UCD Career Development Centre highlights the expectations of graduate recruiters and the role personal development planning from day of university can equip graduates to meet these expectations and fulfill their aspirations. Play.

Developing Skills for Professional Practice

'Developing Skills for Professional Practice' addresses the issue of how first year students can best be prepared for professional practice, particularly in areas where they are coming into contact with members of the public. They require support in coming to learn the skills needed to work competently and professionally with the public they serve. This episode will focus particularly on the role played by simulated learning environments in enhancing the ability of first years to enter the professional workplace safely. Play.

It's all in the Marks

"It's all in the Marks" provides a bird's eye view of good practice in grading and considers how grading as a planned activity can be used to deepen student engagement and ease the possible dread of the grading season. Play.

Is it on the Exam? - Revisiting Assessment

"Is it on the Exam? - Revisiting Assessment" examines the power of assessment to drive students' learning behaviour. In particular how to use assessment in first year to move away from a surface-learning approach driven by terminal exams to more engaged deeper learning approach. Play.

Peer Mentoring - Get Connected

"Peer Mentoring - Get Connected" describes peer mentoring as a support to first year undergraduates as they transition into the university learning environment. Play.

Introduction to Applied Psychology - New Elective Developed

The module was designed to introduce students to key principles of psychology and to encourage them to think critically about the strengths and limitations of research methods and findings in psychology and other human sciences. Read more.

Careers Professional Development Planning Module

Preparing students for life beyond UCD, the Careers Centre talks about the Professional Development Planning module and how it can equip students with the key necessary skills. Play.

Using Blogs and Twitter to Encourage Student Engagement

The use of Blogs, and to a lesser extent Twitter, was explored to see how student engagement with assessments and the module in general could be improved. Read more.

Using Wikis to Facilitate Small-group Learning

The goals of this assessment, the second of three, were to help to (a) develop group skills; (b) demonstrate effective reading and (c) develop effective writing and communication skills. Students had been exploring the impact of renaissance planning ideas on European cities. Read more.

One Minute Paper

Introduction to Applied Psychology is a large general elective module taken by approximately 520 students each year. It is run in both semesters, with half of the students in each offering. The module was designed to encourage students to think critically about the strengths and limitations of research findings in psychology and other human sciences. Read more.

Now We've Got Them - Let's Keep Them

"Now We've Got Them - Let's Keep Them" draws on UCD and international research exploring the challenges particular to first year and highlights action points required to foster learning behaviours that will ensure success at university level. Subsequent episodes deal with a range of first year student engagement related topics including practical advice and UCD case studies. Play.

Study Skills for University Learning

Feargal Murphy, a lecturer in the UCD College of Arts and Celtic Studies talks about a module he developed for the Humanities to teach Study Skills for University Learning. Play.