Undergraduate student researchers – the Ultraversity model for work-based learning (2007)
Service Oriented Approaches and Lifelong Competence Development Infrastructures: Proceedings of the 2nd TENCompetence Open Workshop. Technology is creating a global learning landscape for the 21st century; if Higher Education Institutions are to continue to meet the needs of today’s learners they must explore approaches where the role of technology is central to new models for learning. The four year long Ultraversity project was set up by Ultralab at Anglia Ruskin University to explore the development of a wholly online, three year duration, undergraduate, work-based degree with students using action research methodology. The experience is designed to be highly personalised and collaborative in nature, rather than individualised and isolated. Students engage in the processes of inquiry together, making it possible to collaborate and support without plagiarising because they are studying in their own work context. This paper describes this model of personalised work-based learning and the Internet technologies used to connect the distributed student body and teaching team. Issues are identified relating to the model and the tools used to support it. Keywords: Work based learning, personalised learning, e-learning, learning technologies, assessment for learning, higher education, independent learning, critical thinking, creativity, e-portfolio, institutional risk.