Teaching tip

Padlet is a versatile tool that allows for individuals, small and large groups to easily collaborate together in one place. Check out the guide below for more information.

A guide to Padlet for online learning [PDF] Guide to facilitating online discussion [PDF]

This approach combines the resources for self-study (video and written) but adds some elements of interactive learning. This could include:

  •  A lecture with some stopping points – questions for students to think about. See this case study for an example of a session involving both synchronous and asynchronous elements.
  • A short (formative) quiz testing students’ understanding of the concepts presented in the material. You could easily add a quiz on Blackboard, design one in Qualtrics or embed a quiz in your Panopto recording (see ICT Guidance). Looking at your students’ answers will help you determine which concepts are still unclear and where additional support/ instruction is needed. 
  • Forum discussions – this can be a useful way to encourage a wide range of students to contribute. See this guide to Facilitating an online discussion forum.
  • Elements of group work – you can encourage students to work together to produce a resource. This can be asynchronous and doesn’t need to happen in a 'real time' session, rather students go away and decide themselves how to approach the work and in what timeframe. 
  • Students being invited to ask the tutor questions, including via Padlet (see guidance above right).
  • For his Talking Teaching session Brett Harmony pre-recorded his talk for participants to watch beforehand and embedded it within a Microsoft Form, so participants could use this to send him questions.

Useful technologies for students

The following technologies are useful when asking students to produce something together and have been used across College:

Microsoft Teams – for communication and real life editing without the need to save multiple versions of the same document. MSTeams also has chat and video conferencing functions.  

Padlet – can be a more creative way for students to present research on a topic or gather resources about an area of their curriculum. For more guidance you can download A guide to Padlet for online learning [PDF].

Microsoft OneNote – this is a virtual notebook that can serve as a useful tool for planning, organising and recording  individual and group work.  See video tutorials on using OneNote for studying.

Please note that these guides occasionally refer to software packages that are unsupported by Faculty EdTech teams and ICT. Therefore, it is imperative that before you plan to use any software for teaching purposes you discuss your requirements with your Faculty EdTech team. Please click below to be redirected to the individual faculty’s webpages below:

They will be able to advise you of the support status of the software and, where necessary, will be able to suggest alternative supported software. Imperial College's ICT Digital Education team can offer support with the following technologies that support students' independent learning and interaction:  BlackboardPanoptoTurnitinMentimeterMöbius and Ed discussion.