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Ms Sarah Heiser

Profile summary

  • Regional Academic Staff
  • Associate Head of School - Student Experience
  • Faculty of Wellbeing, Education & Language Studies
  • School of Languages and Applied Linguistics
  • Languages
  • sarah.heiser

Professional biography

I have been Staff Tutor for Languages at the London Regional Centre since 2004.  This involves the appointment, staff development and management of a team of Languages Associate Lecturers in London, and working with collegues from elsewhere in the Open University on a variety of projects. 

I originally joined the Open University in 1999 in the West of England as an Associate Lecturer on the first Spanish course L140 En Rumbo. 

I previously worked teaching Spanish and French in Adult and post 16 education.  I was an 'Advanced Practitioner' at North Devon College and worked in quality management.  I was also responsible for a portfolio-based course accredited by the OCNSW 'First Steps in Teaching'.

For 2012 I was deputy Associate Dean for Teaching and Leaning in the Faculty of Education and Language Studies (FELS)

I am Academic Lead of the Language Studies Programme Student Support Team.

Research interests

 

 

Interests

  • technology enhanced teaching and learning
  • open and distance education
  • teacher development by experiential and collaborative learning in online spaces
  • Open Education Resources/Open Educational Practices (OER/OEP) 
  • Young students in HE
  • strategies for language learning
  • tutor skills for language teaching
  • strategies to support students of modern languages with Dyslexia and specific learning difficulties (SpLDs)

 

 

Conference Papers

Refereed    

 ‘Online Models for Professional Development of a distributed team using virtual tools; the Dyslexia in Modern Languages Project’ EDEN conference, Zagreb, 12 June 2014

Arias-Mclaughlin, X. and Heiser, S. (2013) ‘Dyslexia and Modern Languages in HE: an online staff development project’ CALRG (Computers and Learning Research Group, IET) 34th annual conference, 12 June

‘LORO; Integrating creative online repository use into teachers’ work patterns’, EUROCALL 2012, 24 August, Gothenburg

‘Collaborative online language learning: how do we develop teacher skills?’ Heiser, S and Murphy, L. LLAS (Subject Centre for Languages, Linguistics and Area Studies) Languages in Higher Education conference Raising the standard for languages, London, 1-2 July 2010

Non-refereed

Heiser, S. (2014) ‘Modern languages and dyslexia: supporting ALs tutoring dyslexic students. A Staff Development project,’ workshop at the OU Learner Support Services Disability conference, Kents Hill, Milton Keynes, 14 May.

Swindells, J. and Heiser, S. (2014) 'Specific learning differences and implications for module design', IET eLearning Group event on Accessibility, co-presented with Jane Swindells, OU Disability Advisory Services, 23 April ('stadium' recording)

Gallardo, M. and Heiser, S. (2013) ‘Dyslexia and Modern Language Learning: supporting ALs tutoring dyslexic students’ Presentation to the University Accessibility group, 1 July.

'Dyslexia and Modern Languages in HE: an online staff development project’ Sarah Heiser and Ximena Arias-Mclaughlin. CALRG (Computers and Learning Research Group, IET) 34th annual conference, 12 June 2013

‘Engaging language teachers in open educational practices through collaborative writing and peer review’ OLRG seminar, 15 January 2013, co-presented with Christine Pleines

‘Spanish as a Foreign Language (ELE) online meetings OU-University of Córdoba’ OLRG (Open Languages Research Group) full presentation to the OLRG, with Matilde Gallardo Carmen García Manga and Anna Sánchez Rufat, University of Córdoba, April 24 2012 + presentation to the E-Learning community April 25 2012

‘Spanish as a Foreign Language (ELE) online meetings OU-University of Córdoba’ OLRG (Open Languages Research Group) Pecha Kucha presentation, Feb 21 2012, co-presented with Matilde Gallardo

‘Integrating LORO into professional development for Associate Lecturers at the Department of Languages’ OLRG (Open Languages Research Group) Pecha Kucha presentation, Dec 6 2011

 

Current Reasearch Projects

‘Integrating LORO into professional development at the Department of Languages'. An OER project. Project team: Tita Beaven + Anna Comas Quinn, Christine Pleines, Annette Duensing, Matilde Gallardo (funded by the OU as a scholarship for teaching and learning (SofT) project, 2011-2012

'Encuentros para profesores de ELE’ Open-University-Universidad de Córdoba collaborative online project for colleagues and ALs to establish a community of practice with teachers of Spanish for academic purposes at the University of Córdoba to exchange views and experience on teaching. Staff development project with Matilde Gallardo, for Spanish teams in the South East on England and London, 2011-12

'Student training for learning languages in synchronous online spaces' - work based on 'Elluminate for All'

Dyslexia in Modern Languages AL staff development project (DMLL)

 

Recent research projects;

  • Factors for Success for YASS (Young Applicants in Schools Scheme)
  • change management in the move to e-TMA in Languages
  • UOC-OU (Catalonia and UK Open Universities) collaborative research project
  • Ab initio A-level, language learning strategies, see 'Spanish at KS5; teaching A-level ab initio' in Vida Hispánica Spring 2007, number 35, pp 20-25

Teaching interests

Since joining the Open University in 2004 as Staff Tutor for Languages in the London Region, I have been responsible for the full range of Department of Languages courses in presentation, now over 1000 students per year.  I am responsible for the engagement, induction, management and staff development and of a team of some 45 Languages Associate Lecturers in London. I am a member of L140 En Rumbo  intermediate Spanish module team and the Award Board. I originally joined this course on its first presentation in 1999 as an Associate Lecturer in the West of England. I was the Staff Tutor member of the second edition production team and presentation chair in 2010. I have been a Staff Tutor member of the Beginners Remakes (2009-2012), most actively on L192 Bon départ. Since 2005 I have worked at the Caen Residential School in Normandy each year, on the free-standing LXR122 Action in French, variously as tutor or Module Director, and in 2013 as School Director and Module Director for the residential week of L211Envol.

When the Department of Languages moved to blended tuition, I was a member of the VLE group, active in the introduction of Elluminate, which included the training of Associate Lecturers in online language teaching and supporting colleagues. I remain responsible for "Elluminate for All", induction sessions offered to all Languages students at each module start point and prior to online EMAs, for which I organise a team of ALs drawn from all regions and nations. In London, I chair the AL Staff Development Working Group, established in 2012.

Research Activity

Research groups

NameTypeParent Unit
Centre for Research in Education and Educational Technology (CREET)CentreFaculty of Education and Language Studies

Publications

Implementing Randomised Control Trials in Open and Distance Learning: A Feasibility Study (2017)
Herodotou, Christothea; Heiser, Sarah and Rienties, Bart
Open Learning: The Journal of Open, Distance and e-learning, 32(2) (pp. 147-162)
Developing pedagogical expertise in modern language learning and specific learning difficulties through collaborative and open educational practices (2016)
Gallardo, Matilde; Heiser, Sarah and Arias-Mclaughlin, Ximena
Language Learning Journal ((Early Access))
Modern languages and specific learning difficulties (SpLD): implications of teaching adult learners with dyslexia in distance learning (2015-04-17)
Gallardo, Matilde; Heiser, Sarah and Arias-Mclaughlin, Ximena
Open Learning: The Journal of Open, Distance and e-learning, 30(1) (pp. 53-72)
Developing teacher skills to support collaborative online language learning (2013-04)
Ernest, Pauline; Heiser, Sarah and Murphy, Linda
Language Learning Journal, 41(1) (pp. 37-54)
Online teacher development: collaborating in a virtual learning environment (2013)
Ernest, Pauline; Guitert Catasús, Montse; Hampel, Regine; Heiser, Sarah; Hopkins, Joseph; Murphy, Linda and Stickler, Ursula
Computer Assisted Language Learning, 26(4) (pp. 311-333)
Ready, steady, speak-online: student training in the use of an online synchronous conferencing tool (2013)
Heiser, Sarah; Stickler, Ursula and Furnborough, Concha
CALICO Journal, 30(2) (pp. 226-251)
Developing teacher skills to support collaborative online language learning (2011-11-01)
Ernest, Pauline; Heiser, Sarah and Murphy, Linda
The Language Learning Journal, 41(1) (pp. 37-54)
Learning to share and sharing to learn – professionaldevelopment of language teachers in HE to foster open educational practices (2013)
Duensing, Annette; Gallardo, Matilde and Heiser, Sarah
In: Beaven, Ana; Comas-Quinn, Anna and Sawhill , Barbara eds. Case Studies of Openness in the Language Classroom (pp. 121-133)
ISBN : 978-1-908416-09-4 | Publisher : Research-publishing.net. | Published : Dublin/Voillans
Teacher development for blended contexts (2011-05-26)
Gallardo, Matilde; Heiser, Sarah and Nicolson, Margaret
In: Nicolson, Margaret; Murphy, Linda and Southgate, Margaret eds. Language TEaching in Blended Contexts (pp. 219-231)
ISBN : 9781906716202 | Publisher : Dunedin Academic Press | Published : Edinburgh, U.K.
Practical approaches for teacher development (2011-05-26)
Gallardo, Matilde; Heiser, Sarah and Nicolson, Margaret
In: Nicolson, Margaret; Murphy, Linda and Southgate, Margaret eds. Language Teaching in Blended Contexts (pp. 232-245)
ISBN : 978-1-906716-20-2 | Publisher : Dunedin Academic Press | Published : Edinburgh, U.K.
A randomised control study about the effects of different assessment registration encouragements (2016-08-24)
Herodotou, Christothea; Heiser, Sarah and Rienties, Bart
In : 8th Biennial conference of EARLI Sig 1: Assessment & Evaluation (24-26 August 2016, Munich, Germany)

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