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Cambridge Centre for Teaching and Learning


Introductory guides to teaching in 2020-21

Teaching online isn't simply a matter of 'converting' face-to-face teaching. Our introductory guides identify some differences between teaching in person and teaching online, and offer some ideas and examples of ways to make the most of each.

While these guides address accessibility considerations throughout, we would also recommend taking a look at the DRC's pages on Remote Teaching and Learning, which contain some deeper guidance and signposts to further information.

While we continue to live with disruption, there are opportunities to build on Cambridge's educational traditions to address the very distinctive challenges of teaching and studying during the pandemic. Supervision is at the heart of Cambridge education. Larger-scale teaching provides the essential broader context for this focused, personalised and flexible mode of study.

Collaborative activities (before, during or after supervisions) have both educational and wellbeing benefits for students. They can be of particular benefit to new students in developing academic proficiences and getting to know each other. Examples might include group research and presentations, peer review of work, collaborative annotation or student-led discussions.

Larger-group online teaching should include opportunities for students to engage actively with the subject matter, each other, and academic staff. 'Flipped' teaching, with a combination of synchronous and asynchronous activities, may help to develop and maintain rapport between students and lecturers through live interactions and also to realise the potential of online and self-paced learning. Short recordings, with questions which guide active listening and/or reflective activities which encourage students to make connections between topics or questions, may be designed to enable synchronous or asynchronous learning, or a combination of the two. Collaborative editing tools can provide a focus for purposeful interaction among students before, during or after live teaching sessions.

In this section

Supporting postgraduate students

Guidance for those supervising and supporting research students

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Lectures, classes and seminars

Information about large-group teaching - lectures, classes and seminars - and the differences between online and face-to-face teaching

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An introduction to how supervisions online differ from those conducted face-to-face

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Reading on screens (LibGuide)

Find out how you can make use of reading technologies and accessibility software to alleviate the effects of reading on a screen in this guide from the Libraries.

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Sourcing online readings

Guidance on how to source and link to online readings and ebooks for your students, as well as resources and information about copyright and making accessible scans.

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