Teaching Matters 2020 | Presentation Details | 2 December 20202 Dec 2020
Connecting Tasmania through exercise and sport science
Using multiple digital platforms to track and complete practicum experience in exercise and sport science
Courtney McGowan, School of Health Sciences, CoHM
The unit CXA327, Professional Experience in Exercise and Sport, provides a high-impact learning experience (Kuh, 2008). Placed in diverse industry settings throughout Tasmania and, over 13-weeks, students participate in the work of an exercise professional.
Since 2019, PebblePad has been used to streamline necessary assessment paperwork; enabling academics to live-track student progress, and students to document experiences for future reflection and representation. Positive feedback collected from 2019 students cemented the efficacy of the new PebblePad system, with minor improvements made for 2020. Students use logbook and reflection templates to record learning experiences weekly. Creative control is then empowered with students utilising PebblePad to develop and, share for assessment, materials linked to multiple industry-related projects.
One such project, the UTAS Running Program, requires students to work in small groups (simulating a real-world exercise-clinic) over 6-weeks to conduct health/fitness assessments and produce reports, as well as develop and deliver individualised programs face-to-face and via Zoom (using smartphones) with real clients. Zoom sessions were added in response to the COVID-19 climate, enabling students to still gain experience facilitating an exercise program. Students’ reflection entries and client feedback was used to evaluate the value of participating in this project.
Students use PebblePad artefacts as evidence of competency in accreditation applications to ESSA, and industry site-project artefacts become part of their work portfolio; providing lasting, tangible displays of their skillset. Alterations to the UTAS Running Program enabled students to experience delivering exercise services remotely; a now critical skill in the COVID-19 workplace these graduating students enter.
Kuh, G. D. (2008). High-impact educational practices: What they are, who has access to them, and why they matter. Association of American Colleges and Universities.