One of the main aims of KSU, as clearly indicated in its statute, is working to protect students’ rights, which are outlined in this Students’ Charter. The education office has always been an active body in KSU, working closely with students, listening to their queries and providing advice. The Students’ Charter is an essential reference tool which helps them understand what their rights and duties are.
The Student’s Charter is a document which enlists the rights and responsibilities of the University of Malta student, the responsibilities of the University of Malta towards its students and also the responsibilities of KSU as the official representative of the student body. The Students’ Charter outlines the unique relationship between the University and its students as equal stakeholders in higher education. It illustrates the entitlements and responsibilities of both, as well as provides a framework for the University to develop and improve its services, where appropriate.
It is in the University of Malta’s interest to safeguard the well-being of students and therefore the University advocates the guidelines outlined in the Student’s Charter. The University is expected to foster this amongst its academics in order to extend the University’s views across the exercising of its duties and service to students.
KSU believes that a positive step would be the formal recognition of the Student’s Charter in the Academic Staff Collective Agreement. This would signify an act of goodwill from the academics/University of Malta’s side to ensure that the guidelines in the Student’s Charter are being implemented. KSU is holding the necessary discussions during the current renegotiation of the collective agreement so that the above proposal may be included as a provision.
This KSU proposal is being voiced in the spirit of creating a more widespread commitment toward the well-being and protection of the University of Malta student.
In the spirit of identifying areas of improvement for the benefit of the Gozitan student body, KSU has recently met Gozo Pro-Rector Prof. Joe Friggieri. The talks with Prof. Friggieri provided interesting insight on current efforts by UoM with regards to services towards Gozitan students.
KSU must again highlight and recognize the pronounced increase in the number of students which are allowed to the exams in Gozo. This initiative first saw the light of day following pressures by Gozitan students themselves through Grupp Universitarji Ghawdxin (GUG) where KSU has constantly shown its support. Since then, it has been continued and improved upon and we are now seeing a record number of students being able to do their exams in Gozo.
During the meeting, the Gozo Campus Library was discussed and it was highlighted that an area of improvement would be the addition of computer facilities. In light of this, KSU will be seeking support from Library and IT Services in order to look into the possibility of further investment in the area. KSU will also plan for a scheme through which printed resources at the Gozo library may increase.
Currently, UoM offers video-conferencing facilities to groups of Gozitan students following courses from Gozo. One must appreciate the logistical challenge of video-conferenced lectures and this is therefore available where justified, such as where the number of students at the receiving end is reasonable. This is currently implemented for a number of postgraduate courses such as evening courses and was found to work quite well. In light of this, an increase in video-conferencing units can be a good step forward in improving the facilities available. KSU will be seeking support from IT Services in order to assess the possibility of increase in such facilities.
At the same time, KSU is also working on increasing promotion of the online (e-learning) academic tools at UoM. Among these lies the uploading of assignments to VLE, an initiative which is expected to benefitGozitan students significantly.
On a sidenote, it was concluded that Gozo campus could also benefit from project by KSU which supports students’ daily lives at University. Therefore KSU is currently liasing with Precincts Office in order to extend its water fountain project by installing one at Gozo Campus.
Prof. Friggieri augured that KSU continues its effort in representing students. In the spirit of collaboration, KSU will also maintain contact with GUG so that improvements for Gozitan students can be sought collectively.
The KSU education office is working hard to ensure that ideas for improvement in the quality of education materialize in an effective manner. KSU is always seeking to suggest methods which may allow an even better academic experience.
In light of this, KSU recently held a meeting with Pro-Rector for Academic Affairs – Prof. Alfred Vella, to discuss and review certain proposals as constructively as possible. Matters discussed and respective way forwards mainly include the following:
- KSU is committed to ensuring that valuable academic tools such as VLE and Turnitin are being used across the board at UoM. UoM is equally committed that these tools are made use of by academic staff. The current Academic Online Tools Survey will allow KSU to inform UoM of any gaps, in order to take immediate action
- In line with the availability and use of Turnitin, KSU is suggesting that Online Assignment Submission is promoted and made widely-available across UoM. In such a digital age, this will facilitate academic commitments. Such a proposal will be put forward for discussion through Senate.
- Quality assurance in education is a subject at heart for both UoM and KSU and both parties work with full interest in this area. The Study-Unit Feedback is an interesting quality assurance exercise through which academics may improve the delivery of education. With this in mind, KSU is proposing that a system is implemented by which students’ own improvement is facilitated through feedback from their lecturers. ThisAssignment Feedback can be considered a feedback mechanism reciprocal to the study-unit feedback. The education office is currently consolidating a proposal which suggests an implementation of a standardised means which allows students to receive feedback on their work. In the near future, this will also be proposed to Senate.
The meeting with Prof. Vella was very productive. From the outcome, KSU can evaluate the valuable input received in order to identify the best course of action to take so that the student body’s proposals reach their target. This augurs well for a more consolidated education system for the benefit of UoM students.
KSU is ever committed to enhancing its healthy relationship with the Rectorate of the University of Malta and looks forward to engage in more similar colloquial discussions in order to tap benefits for the University student.
KSU is once again collaborating with the University of Malta Library to bring you another session of Extended Library Hours from 6th to 31th January 2014!
For the first time ever, through its healthy collaboration with the Library, KSU has managed to secure earlier opening hours of both Main Campus and Health Sciences Library. From this January session, opening hours shall start from 8:30am rather 9:00am as a pilot project to test effectiveness of this initiative.
The opening hours for the January 2014 Extended Library Hours session will be the following:
KSU would like to encourage all University students to make most benefit out of this service. Please also take note of the following message from the Library Administration:
Exams are approaching and the amount of patrons visiting the Library for research and study increases substantially. In this regard, the staffs of the University of Malta Library want you to feel comfortable while pursuing your studies in our buildings. The following rules are intended to balance the needs of the Library with the convenience to our users.
- Observe the silent study areas and be considerate of others by helping to maintain an atmosphere of quiet.
- Food or drink (except water) is not allowed in the Library. Food and drink can damage library material, equipment and furnishings, and it may disturb other library users.
- Due to the limited amount of lockers, every student is required to empty the locker and return the key on a daily basis.
Please observe these rules and encourage others to do so as well.
KSU thanks the UoM Library administration for their consistent cooperation and urges students using the Library to behave appropriately and respect the staff and students making use of this facility.
One of the foremost purposes of KSU is the betterment of education and the promotion of student-centred learning. In this context, the academic tools available at University of Malta should be promoted and their availability to students furthered.
KSU firmly believes that such tools support a smoother academic experience to the student and also facilitates administrative commitments from the academics’ side. In light of this, KSU shall be lobbying with the University of Malta to further ensure the maximized use of the following academic tools by lecturers and students alike.
In highlighting the importance of these tools for students, KSU has issued a survey collect personal feedback from students on how relevant and important such tools are. The survey can can be accessed here and should take only a couple of minutes.
Students are encouraged to provide suggestions on how VLE’s features can be maximised. Amongst the current uses of VLE one can find the availability of the following per study unit:
- Lecture Notes
- Additional Reading Material/Links
- Assignment Submission (including Turnitin draft)
- Examination Past Papers/Sample Papers
The access for VLE is available here together with further information.
Further information about Turnitin as a plagiarism detection software may be accessed here. This link also includes means of self-training on how to avoid plagiarism and how to make use of Turnitin, amongst other useful resources.
Any issues can be highlighted by sending an email to the KSU Education Office through email@example.com.
KSU has invited board members of student organisations and student representatives of the University of Malta to the first KE/KPS Seminar of the 13′/14′ term.
This took place on Saturday 19th October at Microsoft Innovation Centre at Skyparks, MIA, Luqa. The seminar programme consisted of the following agenda KE-KPS Seminar 1 – October 2013 – Agenda
The seminar started unfolding with the first session delivered by Mr. David Pace from KPMG and a former KSU Alumni. The session was about financial aspects and budgeting for a student organisation. The main outcome was that for effective budgeting, an effective workplan is imperative. Other themes discussed included; risk taking, payment schemes, importance of documentation and sponsorships.
Following a short coffee break, Dott. Fabio Giangolini from Strategic Communications delivered a session on the importance of branding and online presence with respect to a student organisation’s marketing strategy. He provided multiple tips on a student organisation can maximise the benefits out of digital marketing and the available online media channels.
The next session was about CV Enhancing and the tools which enhance employability. This was floored by Ms. Olivia Bilocca and Mr. Josef Said from KONNEKT, a local recruitment agency. The presentation was a very practical one as they explained the requirements in preparation for a CV and an interview from the perspective of the recruiter’s expectations. They highlighted the importance of extracurricular activism to employers when shortlisting potential candidates. The speakers closed the session with an interesting ice-breaking game in order to deliver a strong message not to ever surrender when seeking an employment.
After pausing for lunch, the student organisations’ Freshers week video – Keepin’ It Fresh – A Student’s Story – was launched:
A short intervention from Dr. Josann Cutajar from the Cottonera Resource Centre also followed were some voluntary schemes for students were explained. The group then was divided according to the selected workshop:
The Youth Employability workshop as delivered by Mr. Karl Grech from JCI Malta. The participants were first given a task where they were divided in groups and used a chart to mention a famous person and list down all his/her good attributes. A discussion was then started where the teams spoke about how these people used these qualities to their advantage to succeed.
Mr.Grech also spoke about the importance of teamwork and how useful that attribute is when working in a company.
The Youths and Volunteering workshop was delivered by Ms. Miriam Teuma from Agenzija Zaghzagh. Th workshop was very informal in nature and together with a discussion on aspects of volunteering and what it truly defines; participants shared their personal experience from student organisations. An outcome was that there is still much to do in raising awareness of what volunteering is about and the indirect benefits so as to appeal more individual to engage them in voluntary work.
Theses seminars are a joint initiative between KSU’s Social Policy and Education Offices.