Thursday, 2 October 2008

The Union's View

Rebecca Watson

Education Officer, Union of Students

One common goal that the Union and the University are working towards is making students conscious of academic skills. When a student enters University, the learning and teaching resources available to them are infinite: the problem is knowing the channels to access them and using them appropriately.

However, these academic skills are not extrapolated from books, or monotonous sheets of paper. Many academic skills are intangible; students acquire them when they are put into the appropriate environments, stimulated by ideas and tasks. These ideas are catalysts to student learning.

This is why TASH is a much needed navigational and promotional tool for those learning resources both for students and staff. It gives students an opportunity to identify with themselves what they need in their learning environment and more importantly how they get there. It will also appropriately disseminate the material in an accessible format, ensuring that as many students as possible receive it.

Furthermore, one of TASH's greatest assets is that it is tool open to any student of any year of study. There is a common consensus that first years are the only group of students that need to be guided along the learning journey but there is in fact a growing recognition of the need to develop academic skills at many different levels of study.

University Projects are expanding and developing all the time and therefore can benefit students at whatever stage they are in their academic development paths. TASH provides that accessibility – identifying paths for all levels of academic study. In addition, TASH will provide an interface for all existing university projects such as ELTC, MASH, Dyslexia Support, and Library Information Literacy tutorials, bringing together a wealth of learning resources 'under one roof'.

We are delighted as the student's union, to see that TASH is keen to involve students before its launch – putting a large emphasis on student contribution, participation and interestingly, student leadership in the project. This will ensure that the project stays up to date, student focused, and meeting the needs of all students. I urge you to forward your examples of best practice, which can be used institution wide and improve the learning experiences of all students.

1 comment:

Willy Kitchen said...

Many thanks to Rebecca for meeting with us yesterday and for posting her views here. You can read more about her work as Education Officer on her NUS blog at