Co-creation of LIT111

  • Bacchus, R. (Participant)
  • Geraldine Rurenga (Participant)

Activity: Engagement and professional developmentContent creation/deliveryAcademic


Reflection on Co-creation of LIT111

Over the Summer of 2020-2021, I worked with members of the Division of Learning and Teaching to create the subject Texts and Meanings (LIT111) as part of the broader Bachelor of Arts Revitalisation process.

The DLT staff most closely involved in this work were Geraldine Rurenga and Wendy Harris.

At first, I was reluctant to embrace the idea of ‘links to industry’ that were required, as this seemed irrelevant to a first-year Literature subject. I was also rather hesitant, as many academics may be, to involve others, particularly those without direct experience of the discipline of English, in the design of the subject.

As our work together progressed, however, it became clear that each of us was learning from the others.

The team most closely involved in the details of the subject design had previously worked with colleagues in Business, a field where issues of correct answers are more important and more clearly articulated. In a Literature subject, there can often be many perspectives to draw upon, and sometimes there are no absolutely ‘correct’ or ‘incorrect’ answers. I try to help students to feel less nervous than they otherwise might about the possibility of being ‘wrong’. This means elements of subject design such as True or False quizzes may not be as useful as they might be in other disciplines.

As we gradually became more accustomed to and appreciative of each other’s approaches, I realised how much I was learning from Geraldine. Her ideas about the organisation of the subject in terms of the schedule were very helpful, as were her suggestions about the layout of content material. She also helped design assessment tasks according to first-year principles. In many ways Geraldine taught me to articulate more clearly to students my expectations of them as well as what they might gain from the subject.

I think we came to enjoy our Zoom meetings and email contact more and more, especially as we could really see the subject really coming together.

Other members of the Division helped add videos, links, and interactive activities. The Library, with Geraldine, helped set up a list of Readings and Resources. It became clear to me that this collaborative approach to subject design was very effective, and that such value lay in the ‘team effort’. Sometimes academics can feel quite isolated, and I came to love working with others, especially Geraldine.

The students’ responses to the subject were very positive, as shown by comments in our Class Blog as well as in the Subject Experience Surveys for all cohorts, which can be accessed at the following link:

I hope I may again be given the opportunity to work collaboratively with such a great team, as it was a wonderful learning experience and also a lot of fun.
Held atSocial Work and Arts