A digital ‘bookcase’ as a mechanism for ongoing access to resources for improved student experience. 

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Research and Development in Higher Education Vol. 41: [Re] Valuing Higher Education

July, 2018, 266 pages
Published by
Dale Wache and Don Houston

This article describes the steps taken to support students of the University College, University of Tasmania, to allow them access to learning resources both during and after completing a unit of study. The University College commenced operation in February 2017. Curriculum design for all associate degree programs in the College is based on broad principles of experiential education and a practice-based pedagogy. The programs incorporate paired subjects providing learning through practice underpinned by relevant discipline theory. Mandatory foundation modules for the learning through practice component were made available to students through the University’s online learning management system (LMS) only during the first term of the course, with access to those modules closing at the end of that term. New students entering the programs in the second term were unable to access the foundation modules. Students who had accessed these and other teaching and learning modules expressed a desire for a continuation of access. To overcome these challenges a repository of learning and teaching modules, including the foundation modules, was created within the LMS. The repository is known as ‘the Bookcase’. Mandatory foundation modules can now be accessed by new students of the College irrespective of the term they commence their study. Teaching staff can access the Bookcase for curriculum design purposes. More importantly, the Bookcase and its resources are open to all students enrolled in any associate degree program offered through the College for the duration of their study. Early data indicates increasing utilisation of the resource.

Keywords: student experience; resource repository; lifelong learning