Collaborative teaching and learning in large quantitative units

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Massification of education has brought about new challenges in the fore of teaching and learning. This paper investigates the challenges facilitators encounter when teaching a large postgraduate statistics unit with heterogeneous student cohorts. Postgraduate students with varying levels of statistical literacy/numeracy and understanding of basic concepts as well as low level interaction in classes are identified as some of the key teaching and learning problems. Managing multiple tutorials in a traditional setting is also causing difficulties in terms of inconsistency in delivery and application of key statistical concepts. There seems to be a lack of support provided for the professional development of less experienced tutors. This paper proposes an approach to combining group work and “super tutorials” that produce an effective and interactive learning environment for quantitative units. The use of an ‘audience response system’ within a large tutorial that caters for group work allows facilitators to effectively engage with students and obtain real-time feedback. The use of such technology can enhance student collaboration and student-instructor interaction. This paper also explores challenges faced in implementing changes and the effectiveness of co-teaching in super tutorials as a “check and balance” element.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationOZCOTS 2016
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the 9th Australian Conference on Teaching Statistics
EditorsHelen McGillivray, Michael A. Martin, Brian Phillips
Place of PublicationBelconnen ACT Australia
PublisherStatistical Society of Australia Inc.
Number of pages6
ISBN (Print)9780980595024
Publication statusPublished - 2016
EventAustralian Conference on Teaching Statistics 2016 - Canberra, Australia
Duration: 8 Dec 20169 Dec 2016
Conference number: 9th


ConferenceAustralian Conference on Teaching Statistics 2016
Abbreviated titleOZCOTS 2016
Internet address


  • Collaborative teaching and learning
  • Super tutorials
  • Audience response system

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