Improvements to Hybrid Teaching Facilities Project

The Improvements to Hybrid Teaching Facilities Project has been formed to help safeguard the University’s ability to support teaching and learning to those attending either in person or remotely. 

About the project 

The number of teaching spaces equipped to enable the hybrid teaching model needs to be increased, to prepare the University for a range of scenarios in the 2021/22 academic year. 

This Hybrid Teaching Facilities project was approved by the University’s COVID-19 Response Silver group in June 2021, to make improvements to around 17-25 shared teaching spaces; and provide additional guidance and support for staff providing hybrid teaching as part of a flexible and inclusive approach.  

The overall aim is to create a positive experience for staff and students, in light of the increased likelihood that a number of students will need to start the year studying remotely owing to the pandemic.

Project objectives

a.  Improve audio-visual and IT in a selection of Oxford’s teaching spaces for Michaelmas term 2021.

  1. The rooms to be equipped will be decided based on input from Teaching Spaces Co-ordination Group (TSCG), Divisions and Estates. 

  2. Equipment will be re-used where possible.

  3. The desired specification will take into account accessibility requirements for in-person attendance, ease-of-use for academics, supportability, and long-term benefits for the quality of lecture recordings.

  4. The project will cover the purchase of equipment, installation, project management and transition to local support teams.

  5. An evaluation will be carried out towards the end of Michaelmas term 2021 on the utilisation of hybrid teaching methods and the upgraded teaching spaces. This information will be used to review whether further rounds of implementation are required in 2022. 

b.  Provide hybrid teaching guidance and standards, via workshops, webinars and one to one support, for further improvements at a departmental level.

Expected benefits

a.  Provide additional support for students who are not able to come into residence, due to being in red list countries – through the provision of remote, hybrid and online teaching. 
b.  Extend the inclusivity and flexibility that have been brought about by the enhanced integration of digital technology beyond the pandemic, for the benefit of all.
c.  Improved audio-visual technology that provides academic staff with confidence that material is being recorded and shared as planned.
d.  Increased opportunities for space sharing, and improved  use of space.

Current status

Given the very short timeframe for implementation, the project started rapidly, engaging with members of the Teaching Spaces Co-ordination Group, representatives from the Divisions, and other relevant stakeholders such as IT Services, and Estates Services. This group was set up as a working group and the Divisional representatives consulted with departments on rooms to be considered for upgrade. 

The project engaged a preferred supplier of AV equipment, and a site audit has taken place. Having established the specification of existing equipment, and taking into account local improvements that were already planned/underway, an implementation plan and budget, for c20 rooms, has been prepared. 

A review of the hybrid teaching guidance that currently exists on the Teaching Remotely webpages, and areas of current best practice, is being carried out by a Learning Designer. 

Next steps

The Learning Designer is designing workshops and updated guidance on the pedagogic side of hybrid teaching. The workshops are being jointly delivered in September by the project and the Centre for Teaching and Learning, and places are now avilable to book. One-to-one support can be requested from the project, or the CTL, once departments are ready to engage.

Further information about the project will be made available as soon as possible - if you have any questions, please contact the project team at htsproject@it.ox.ac.uk

Rooms

The following rooms are being upgraded by the project. This list will be updated as further rooms are confirmed.

Division/Department Building Room
Continuing Education Rewley House, 1 Wellington Square Pickstock Room
Continuing Education Rewley House, 1 Wellington Square Sadler Room
Continuing Education Rewley House, 1 Wellington Square Tawney Room
Humanities Radcliffe Humanities Seminar Room
Mathematical, Physical, and Life Sciences Dyson Perrins Building Main Lecture Theatre
Mathematical, Physical, and Life Sciences Plant Sciences Lecture Theatre
Medical Sciences Academic Centre, John Radcliffe Hospital Lecture Theatre 1
Medical Sciences Academic Centre, John Radcliffe Hospital Lecture Theatre 2
Medical Sciences Medical Sciences Teaching Centre Goss Lecture Theatre
Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics Sherrington Building Large Lecture Theatre
Social Sciences 64 Banbury Road 

Ground Floor Seminar Room

Social Sciences 11 Bevington Road Seminar Room
University Administration and Services Examination Schools East School
University Administration and Services Examination Schools North School
University Administration and Services Examination Schools South School

 

Contact

Email the project team at htsproject@it.ox.ac.uk