Less Lectures, Greater Engagement

Uploaded by CurtinUniversity on 23.11.2012

When I became head of Curtin's chemistry department, it was obvious the curriculum
for undergraduate students was unwieldy, duplicative and silo-driven.
there was also a department wide recognition that we had to modernize to
maintain the relevancy of chemistry. With the commitment at every area within the
department including academics labour and administrative staff, we set about
redesigning the undergraduate chemistry program, placing students learning
experience at the center of everything we do
at the start of the review we had twenty three first year chemistry units teaching
similar content across different courses and faculties. Now we deliver six
carefully designed units in which the approximately fifteen hundred enrolled
students, irrespective of their courses, naturally fit.
This process has increased efficiencies, and freed up valuable staff resources to
concentrate on further improving teaching and research performance.
The result is a redesigned curriculum that's introduced innovative classroom and
laboratory active learning techniques.
Our teaching staff are now recognised national leaders in the effective use of non-traditional
learning strategies within the chemical sciences
achievements from the review include a sixty six percent drop in didactic
lecture content consistently improving student evaluations and almost
thirty percent increase in the number of first-year students going onto second
year, while our honors cohort and PhD enrollments have nearly doubled.
this is tangible evidence that we've created an environment where students
are active, engaged, and have a positive attitude towards chemistry