REVIEW ON THE DELIVERY OF GENERAL STUDY SKILLS MODULE: A TUTORS’ EXPERIENCE

Ruel F. Ancheta

Abstract


Teaching delivery is an approach based on professional identity that creates a distinct classroom culture. Delivering General Study Skills (GSS) as a core modules in the Faculty of Foundation Studies (FFS) of Gulf College (GC) combines the difficulties of teaching with institutional expectations and students’ demand for quality instruction. This study aimed to assess the delivery of GSS module and its impact on the module outcomes for General Foundation (GFP) students. It also identified gaps in the delivery of the module that contributed to the performance of the students and came up with suggestions for improvement that would help programme leaders and module leaders modify the module descriptors and device teaching and learning activities (TLAs) suited to the level of the students. Looking at the module outcomes, of 325 students who took GSS for the Second Semester of AY 2017-2018, there were 237 or 69.8 percent passed the module and 66 or 20.4 percent failed. Of the total number of students, 32 or 9.8 percent did not submit the requirements for the module or no attendance at all. Using a Focused Group Discussion (FGD) among the participants, the researchers found six (6) important themes such as student’s motivation, students’ capability, challenging role, patience, heavy assessment methods and level of difficulty. In student’s motivation, the students are not serious in their studies and they are not attending their classes regularly as most of them are working students; in students’ capability, the students faced difficulty in understanding the lessons and can’t cope with the requirements of the module due to inability to understand English language; in challenging role, the teachers need to focus on teaching the basic of research as the modules requires a research-based outputs. A big challenge is that the tutors are expected to deliver the module in such a way that students should be able to come up with a portfolio containing 800 to 1,000 words research based written report subject for turnitin. Patience of the tutors is challenged in handling this module. Despite of this challenge, GSS tutors were able to transfer learnings as far as the required learning outcomes are concerned. They believed that patience played a vital role in teaching this module that helped a lot to deliver the module with maximum efficiency; in assessment method, three heavy assessments are expected for students which they find it difficult as it requires a lot of time, preparation and research skills. Thus, the tutors are challenged to meet a 100 percent module. The module’s level of difficulty is too high to the students’ level of intellect. Considering that, the students are still in the foundation level, yet they were bombarded with research-based activities which is already done by the undergraduate students in their terminal courses. GSS as one of the core modules of GFP is difficult on the part of the students. It implies that the module needs to be reviewed in terms of its expected learning outcomes, module assessment, teaching and learning activities. In addition, students’ level of communication skills and attitudes towards their studies need to take into consideration. To address the gaps, FFS with its Programme and Module Leaders should review the current curriculum of GSS to meet the desired outcomes. The module descriptors should need to be redesigned in such a way that it should meet not only the OAAA and the partner university requirements but also the needs of the GFP students. The teaching and learning activities (TLAs) particularly the activities included in the portfolio need to be reviewed and lowered its level of difficulty.

 

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tutors’ experiences, delivery, approach, deployment, result, and improvements.

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References


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