The Vice Chancellor requests feedback from students on how to improve the services provided by the University. What should Massey alter or change to make your study experience more rewarding? Submissions need to be in by June 14th, 2013.
There are many ways your opinions can be counted. You could leave a message on the Massey University Extramural Community Facebook group , email me with your ideas at email@example.com or make a submission directly on the Massey web site Road to 2025. There is also a Consultation Pack and a Video Blog from the Vice Chancellor on the link.
Make your opinion count and pro-actively engage in your learning environment.
This coming Monday the 27th May, from 5 pm onward the Massey University Recreational Centre are re-launching their services. The relaunch includes free demonstrations of the classes they have on offer.
Those attending on Monday can go into a draw to win a $200 voucher.
Their prices are competitive for membership, extramural students can get silver membership for $189 which entitles you to an all access pass. I am told and 99% of their equipment is free to hire.
I found the staff friendly and recommend our members give it a try. There also trial memberships available before you join.
This presentation highlights EXMSS’ services to students.
Click on the image to view pdf.
The Foundation has given the students’ associations the opportunity to have a say in how to spend YOUR money – the Foundation levy.
We need your ideas now.
The spend is not for something that is already funded by another agency; it needs to be unique and supports all students, no matter where or what mode. But as an extramural student, what do you think would make YOUR university experience better? What do you need or want or wish for? Let us put in the best bid on your behalf that we can.
Hello and welcome to 2013. My name is Jeannette Chapman. My friends call me J.V, so please join them. I am an extramural student and the elected President of the society. My main job is to provide group advocacy to ensure all students get the most out of their education through Massey University.
Studying extramurally can be challenging and rewarding and sometimes even a little scary; but without this opportunity, access to education may be out of reach for some individuals due to home or work issues. We want you to know that we understand from personal experience. That is why our society is made up of dedicated individuals with a common goal: to make your study experience more rewarding.
Many of our services are applicable to all students, however now that our society is funded through paid membership, we also offer exclusive benefits for members only. This small fee will keep you updated on all the changes happening and
allow exclusive access to EXMSS scholarships.
We also coordinate the Review It Survey to obtain feedback to ascertain what students want and need to aid in their successful completion of their qualifications.
Check out our web site for more information regarding all the ways EXMSS can be of assistance. Don’t hesitate to contact me on any issue that concerns you. Share your ideas or suggestions so that together we can make a difference. A quality education should not be based on luck.
Wishing you all the best for your future endeavours.
Jeannette (JV) Chapman
So Long and Thanks For All the Fish
My time is up and I leave EXMSS in good shape and good heart. It has been the best of times and the most interesting of times (not as good as the original). I also remember some pretty dark times, particularly when trying to balance study and work, and fit in some family time.
Now it is time for new work opportunities (anyone know of any?) and a new direction. With a shiny new qualification and lots of experience (can’t beat that part time study for work experience) I am sure to succeed (even if it means going overseas).
I hand you (this blog) and EXMSS over to a fantastic and professional group of staff (they were always there), a competent and committed executive, and a new President, Jeanette Chapman. I will always think of EXMSS fondly. EXMSS has given me a huge leg-up and it is appreciated.
I will recall this blog and the implied readers it evokes with pleasure. I have really enjoyed committing my thoughts and opinions to this forum. Your comments and discussions have been a source of inspiration and at times, confusion.
Go well, keep up with the study, don’t forget yourself, and surround yourself with people you care about.
Postgrad living cost support has been stripped from 2013. Without support postgrad study is very difficult. Some would say pointless, insomuch as the student will not be able to focus on the study at the level required to get good marks. It is like asking someone to cook a restarant quality meal for six while they bathe the tots and clean the house. Something will be put on the table, but despite the best intentions the quality will be compromised.
At postgraduate level the student needs to give their studies complete attention for significant periods of time. Without support students must work to make ends meet and this affects their grades. Some gain support though their family or, occasionally, their workplace. The reality of postgrad study is six to eight hour days over the semester: that is the expected workload. Without rest between these mind-breaking sessions, students simply cannot achieve their best.
The Government calls this dampening demand: making it more difficult to succeed. Students and educators say it is putting so much pressure on those that give it a go that they do not reach their potential. In particular, good students from less priviliged backgrounds are being pushed out or towards poorer marks through this draconian mentality of weeding out the ‘weak’.
In a recent survey, 40 per cent of student respondents indicated postgrad study in NZ was now out of the question. Our Government seems hell-bent on preserving pathways that require personal resources while reducing opportunities to rise above poverty through education. To me it appears to be part of the next step: positioning tertiary education as a private good.
Massey has upgraded its Online Learning Environment – Stream. The upgrade to Stream² provides enhanced tools and is better able to cope with our changeable technology environment. This upgrade, which is part of the University’s commitment to ensuring its students have access to high quality teaching and learning facilities, was essential.
While there is no ideal time to upgrade a critical system such as Stream, the Summer School period was chosen because of the relatively low number of papers that run over this period. There are still a small number of Summer School papers that are still to be opened, but if you are looking for first, double or second semester sites then login through http://stream1.massey.ac.nz.
As with upgrades of this size it is not unusual to have some teething problems. Massey has been working hard to resolve Stream site problems and as a student advocate I have seen a passion for getting it sorted in the staff at the coal-face. Massey has learned from this exercise and has committed to work with Massey and student media to better inform students of planned upgrades in future.
While the look and feel of the new version remains relatively familiar there are some obvious enhancements that will not only save time but also make the learning experience richer and more rewarding. One of the stand out features is drag and drop functional which allows you to drag a file from your computer into Stream, this could be real time saver when it comes to assignment file uploads.
Integration with other Stream tools such as myPortfolio and eventually virtual classrooms (Adobe Connect) are also new, along with a mobile theme which will allow those using tablets or other mobile devices to interact with Stream in way that it is suited to their device.
The Stream Guide has been redesigned and includes instructions on how to use some of the most commonly used Stream tools. It also has information on how to request print versions of digital material and a browser-check page that tells you whether you are have the right equipment to get the best out of Stream.
If you have an issue with your Stream site post on the facebook extramural community site, or send an email to me, Ralph@exmss.org.nz. Look out for more information on the Stream upgrade in the Massive and the Off Campus magazines.
If it were not for Massey’s commitment to distance study, part time study could become a thing of the past in New Zealand. Massey is under pressure to improve its completions and part time distance students are the group that is under-performing according to the Tertiary Education Commission.
Can you afford this?
Fortunately Massey does not see things the same way. Distance study and the associated internationalisation strategy are cornerstone endeavours for Massey. Massey sees a future of web-based provision, with students studying across the world and many disadvantaged groups capitalising the flexibility of part time web-based study. I would agree. The exponential expansion of massive open online courses (MOOC’s) is just one example of the democratization of education through the web.
The future of tertiary education is seen differently by the Government. Current funding models favouring more traditional on-campus teaching of youth flies in the face of global trends and academics’ advice. Applying an “Economic Powerhouse” model, the Government appears to be looking for international students to live and study in New Zealand. Universities will be supported to develop structured on-campus programmes with high numbers of staff and high levels of pastoral support.
Under this model the cost increases and education become exclusive to those who can attain scholarships or be supported financially. Forgotten are those seeking to step up from poorer communities, those who missed their chance as youth students, and those who are seeking specific knowledge relevant for the work.
Does study from home work for you?
The forgotten group in this model are youth from low decile schools, women seeking tertiary education while bringing up families and those who are looking to gain an education as a working adult: the majority of distance students at Massey.
EXMSS remains unimpressed with the direction the of tertiary education in New Zealand. Opportunities are being lost, not just for individuals, but for our tertiary system which will be superseded by eloquent, professional web-based courses delivered by international providers.
It is time to rethink the Tertiary Education Strategy and deal with the reality of a global education market rather than the New Zealand model of education for the privileged few.
Last week the Tertiary Education Commission were forced to explain why they had not acted to replace the student member of their Board, or advised the members of the TEC’s Learner Advisory Committee that they will no longer be required. The answer appears to be that they feel they do not need student views.
Literature supports the notion that tertiary students benefit from having a say in how their learning environment evolves. Academic audits in New Zealand universities carry an expectation that the institutions engage with learners to better understand their current needs. So why is the Government exempt from the expectations they place on providers?
It would seem that National care little for the voice of students in the tertiary sector. When pressed for discussion of the perverse effects of the curent Tertiary Education Strategy, Minister Joyce has responded with misleading letters incorrectly explaining that institutions can do what they want.
The Government is riding rough-shod over students. With no student voice in the decision making rooms of the Ministry of Education or the TEC, and blatant mis-information in responses to student advocates, it is clear that whatever the Minister wants to happen will be happening, regardless of what students think.