Honour for DkIT schools in National DELTA Awards21 March 2018
21st March 2018. Dundalk, Ireland. DkIT’s School of Health & Science and the Department of Hospitality have both been shortlisted for the prestigious DELTA awards.
It is the first year of the Disciplinary Excellence in Learning Teaching and Assessment (DELTA) awards from the National Forum for Teaching and Learning.
“Only 38 percent of the submissions that applied were actually short listed so the fact that DkIT has been shortlisted for two awards is really significant,”
said Dr. Edel Healy, Head of the School of Health & Science.
It has been nominated for one as has the Department of Hospitality which is the only hospitality department to receive a nomination.
“I think securing two nominations reflects the work of the Centre for Learning and Teaching (CELT) here in DkIT and the culture that we have nourished.”
The project nominated is for ‘Embedding a culture of learning and teaching scholarship within the School of Health and Science, Dundalk Institute of Technology.’
She explained that
“In our School of Health and Science we have very practically focused degrees and we used the opportunity the awards presented to showcase what we are doing.”
“We also wanted to look at how well we are bridging the gap between the two disciplines and how it is leading to excellence in how we are teaching our students.”
“We had to show the innovations we have in teaching and learning, the cross school project we have, the research that is going on within the school and the activity of the staff in the school in teaching and learning activities.”
“It was a way of collating all of that and saying right we are a School of two disciplines but we are also actually doing a lot more too.”
Edel said that whether the final award is secured by the School, that she is delighted with the nomination.
“Even if we don’t get it, it is an opportunity to reflect on what we have done really well and then we will try and figure out why we didn’t get it and try and improve on it.”
Dr. Ronan Bree, lecturer in Applied Sciences at DkIT said,
“We are different departments that work together on so many different aspects and applying for DELTA has made us reflect and see that.”
“We have so many cross discipline approaches amongst the staff. What we really wanted to develop and what we saw we were building, was a culture of learning and that is what we wanted to show.”
“This culture of shared learning has engaged our staff, it has given them new research areas to get involved in and improved their teaching but all the time we have had the students as our partners.”
“A lot of our projects are all aimed at having the student right in the centre of everything and making sure we are enhancing their learning experience on campus and in particular within the School,”
Brainain Erraught, Head of the Department of Hospitality said,
“to be nominated for a DELTA award is a recognition of work that has gone on in the department particularly in the last five years.”
It’s nominated project is ‘Embedding Graduate Attributes into all Programmes,’ and she said the Department,
"has been working on our approach to emed graduate attributes in all our programmes and we were able to show those projects were very successful in their own right."
Part of the programme involved talking to former students and,
“One of the things we do to develop graduate attributes is to run the pop-up restaurant. We spoke with the graduates who had done that in previous years about the value they had got from it.”
“We have another project where we work with children from a special needs school and we spoke about the value students get from that. That is about developing the softer skills so we did a lot of things with value to our graduates outside of the academic arena.”
“We are the only hospitality department from around the country selected for the short list which is a huge accolade in itself.”
Also speaking today, Dr. Moira Maguire, Head of the Centre for Learning & Teaching at DkIT commented,
“We are very proud that our colleagues in the School of Health and Science and the Department of Hospitality have been shortlisted by the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning for the prestigious DELTA awards. They are two of only 18 teams shortlisted nationally. It is wonderful to see their significant achievements in enhancing learning recognised and celebrated in this way.”
The inaugural national DELTA Awards (Disciplinary Excellence in Learning Teaching and Assessment) will be presented by Minister for Higher Education Mary Mitchell O’Connor in the Mansion House on Wednesday 21 March 2018.
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Notes to editor:
There are five overall criteria for the Award: Excellence: The submission is distinctive, and it showcases excellent work by the team. Exceptionality: The submission is exceptional. It shows knowledge and understanding of teaching and learning enhancement in the discipline and where the project team is located. The project team is doing more than would be expected of a good team/department. The forward planning is exceptional i.e., both ambitious and achievable. The collaboration within the team and how the team works together is evident and celebrated. Impact: The submission shows a clear impact on student learning and on the team, highlighting the changes achieved and planned for future achievement. Robust evidence supports the submission.
Communication: The submission is written in plain English and the key features are communicated effectively to the reader.
Authentic to the discipline: The submission is authentic to the discipline, although it may challenge discipline norms. The key targets, indicators of success and their achievement are coherent, authentic and achievable.
Dundalk Institute of Technology (DkIT) was founded in 1970 and has earned its reputation as the leading higher education provider in the North East of Ireland through its first-class teaching and learning, research and enterprise engagement.
Set in a state-of-the-art campus in Dundalk, County Louth, DkIT provides quality educational and training opportunities to approximately 5,000 students across four Schools in Business and Humanities, Health and Science, Engineering and Informatics and Creative Arts from undergraduate and master’s degrees to PhD level.
DkIT also offers a multitude of part-time academic and vocational courses to the North East community aimed at helping students to enhance career development and personal growth.
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