Skills for Learning

Skills for Learning > Information for Academic Staff

Information for Academic Staff

What we do

The Library’s Learning Support Team provides research, academic and digital skills training for your students. Sessions can be tailored to your needs and linked directly to particular assignments.

How to work with us

The best way to incorporate skills support into your programmes is to make it specific to an assignment, have a clear learning objective, time it at an appropriate point of the semester and schedule the session into the timetable. We also find that the more involved academic staff are in the process, the more successful the learning outcomes. Students are more engaged when sessions are relevant to their needs and co-delivered by tutors. Collaboration between the Library Learning Support Team and academics works! There are a number of ways that we can work with you:

  • Design the content
    Help us to design the workshop by providing subject-specific material, examples, assignment briefs, sample assignments, etc. that we can incorporate into the session.
  • Co-deliver the session with us
    This works particularly well when we give the skills advice and you provide the discipline-related detail, guidance and examples.
  • Use our resources
    We can assist with designing or providing resources such as PowerPoint slides and handouts that you deliver yourself. You can also use the interactive resources from the Skills for Learning website and choose the student engagement level (i.e. optional, directed, integrated or contextualised).

    Watch this short animation to learn more about how you can help your students develop academic skills through Skills for Learning.

Skills we teach

Research skills

The Academic Support Librarians provide information skills sessions for your students at all levels. We cover a variety of information skills topics and tailor these to meet your students’ need.

  • Getting started using the Library
  • Researching for your assignments using the Library
  • Researching at dissertation level
  • We also offer bespoke training for researching using specific resources or information that your students require.
  • Endnote

Academic Skills

Our Academic Skills Consultants offer bespoke design and delivery of study skills support on a range of topics such as:

  • Referencing APA Harvard style
  • Academic writing including reflective pieces, essays, blogs, reports and dissertations
  • Critical analysis (including writing and reading)
  • Presentation skills
  • Revision and exam techniques
  • Effective group work

Digital skills

The Digital Skills Trainers help students make the best use of IT and digital resources through face-to-face and online training sessions. Topics include:

  • Word
  • Excel
  • PowerPoint
  • Social media

Unsure where to send your students for support?

Our flowchart will help you to identify where to direct students who need support in specific things.

Contact us

To discuss research skills contact the Academic Support Librarian for your School

To discuss academic skills contact the Academic Skills Consultant for your School

To discuss digital skills contact the Digital Skills Trainers

What we don’t do

The Library Learning Support Team does not offer proofreading, maths, counselling, disability or language support. Mathscope provides maths and statistics support to students. Contact the Wellbeing team for information and advice about counselling. To find out more about disability contact AskUS. For language support for native English speakers contact Wordscope or LEAP (Learning English for Academic Purposes) for students have English as their second language.

Keep in touch

See what the Library is doing to improve students' digital literacy skills with our latest blog posts.

You can follow the Skills for Learning and Library on Twitter - @skillupUS | @TheLibraryUoS

Keep up to date with all things Library Search related with our informative blog

Add our eLearning to your Blackboard modules

Adding our eLearning and video content into your Blackboard modules at appropriate points in delivery is a great way of ensuring that students have the right academic skills to underpin their subject knowledge and understanding. If you are asking them to do a presentation for example you could add our Presentation Skills eLearning to Blackboard. If they need to write critically then our Critical Analysis eLearning would be perfect.

You can view a complete list of our content here.

Instructions for adding eLearning

Download instructions

Watch a video demonstration

Adding video content

We have uploaded all of our videos onto Medial, this means that you can easily search for and add a video to your module using the MEDIAL tool in Blackboard. You can access this tool from the Build Content menu. Simply give your video a title and description and then click on the Mashup button in the menu bar, select Medial and following the on-screen instructions.

You can view a complete list of our content here.

Avoiding Academic Misconduct

This material clearly sets out what academic misconduct is and its implications. Through hearing cases we regularly find that students, and some staff, do not have a clear understanding of all aspects of issues such as plagiarism, self-plagiarism and collusion. This material provides a consistent message which ties in with the University procedures and which, in conjunction with discipline specific support in the school, will hopefully reduce the number of students that have to have cases heard.

We strongly advise that you embed this content into your Blackboard module. We suggest you agree across your programme team which module would be most appropriate for delivering this content. Ideally it should be placed in a module or programme site that all students have access to as this will make reporting on completion easier for you.

Instructions

Step 1 - Add the eLearning

Download instructions

Preview before you add

Click on the image below if you would like to preview the eLearning so that you know what you are asking the students to complete.

Step 2 - Add the test

Download instructions

Preview before you add

Click on the image below if you would like to preview the test so that you know what you are asking the students to complete.

Step 3 - View test scores

Download instructions

Case Study

Our Academic Misconduct Case Study takes a look at the benefits of embedding this content in your modules.

Introduction from the Students Union

The Students’ Union speaks with many students each year who have fallen foul of academic misconduct, particularly plagiarism. In most of these cases, students have received formal training on good practice, have sat in induction talks, have been told about content available online, but then during the crucial assessment period still make errors and mistakes that constitute misconduct. There is no simple solution to this; but as the Union for Salford students we are keen to look at new and innovative methods for reminding and reinforcing the messages around academic good practice.

Through close working and liaison with the Skills for Learning team, a new approach has been developed which we believe will help students and academics with this issue. Interactive and engaging content is now available for embedding in Blackboard module and programme sites. This will allow students to engage with the content at any time, complete a short quiz to test their knowledge and then using the feedback improve their understanding of the issue. Each time a student completes the quiz, the ‘mark’ will be recorded in their Grade Centre; reinforcing the importance of the content, and allowing academics to report on completion rates. It is hoped that this innovative method will improve the level of understanding within the student body, and will also help academics identify areas in need of further development or guidance.

The Union is grateful to the Skills for Learning team for the development of this initiative, and to the wider academic community for their enthusiasm in using this to improve student outcomes.

Working in partnership with the Library to help students make the transition to higher education and ensure that they have the basic tools and skills to develop as learners.


Help your students to understand and avoid academic misconduct


Guiding Students through a Large Scale project: a partnership between the Academic Skills team and SOBE.