Utskrift från Malmö universitets webbplats www.mah.se

Students' needs during the first weeks of the programme/course

As with all communications, information needs to be repeated, clarified and elaborated on in order to be effective. It is also important for students to understand that they are largely responsible for finding information themselves. As teachers, we can assist by pointing them towards available resources and guiding them. If you would like to develop your skills as a teacher, The Centre for Teaching and Learning (AKL) offers workshops, seminars, themed days and courses in pedagogy. AKL has also developed the magazine WE MAKE KNOWLEDGE TOGETHER!, as a complement to the Student introduction guide. It is possible to order the magazine and get more information by sending an email to Lasse Lindhagen at AKL.

Inform students about what studying at a Swedish university involves

  • Provide a run-through of the Swedish academic system and how the University works.
  • Inform students of what is expected of them in terms of responsibilities, adhering to scientific standards, critical thinking, analytical capability, and independent problem solving.
  • Introduce students to academic texts and academic writing early on in the programme/course.
  • Provide clear information regarding how to use references and citations, and what is considered plagiarism.

Feel free to provide additional resources created for students by the University:

There is a filmed lecture on the Swedish academic system given by Adam Gray, Lecturer in English with a specialization in Academic Writing, from Centre for Teaching and Learning (AKL) that may be useful for students. The lecture, which is not subtitled, is split into six parts:

The credit system, the academic year and degrees 
Independent study, course literature, web portals and evaluations
Examinations, group work and re-sits 
Support and service for students, disciplinary measures
Critical thinking
Plagiarism and referencing/citation

Malmö University Library offers information on:
Scholarly texts and search information  
Referencing styles 

Here is further material from other universities:

Lund University offers an internet based course called Writing in English at University. The course also has a Youtube channel which includes a playlist of video lectures.

Students need an in-depth understanding of the course/programme

Students need an overview in order to plan their work, understand what is expected of them and be able to take responsibility for their studies. This is what you can do to support students and facilitate your own work as a teacher:

  • give students a run-through of the syllabus and explain key terms that are specific to the University;
  • explain how the learning outcomes, activities, examinations and assessment in this particular course are interconnected;
  • provide feedback via previous course evaluations in order to motivate them to complete a course evaluation themselves;
  • give students an outline of the career and further study opportunities the education can lead too. Visits from alumni are one way to do this;
  • present any internships or vocational education opportunities to the students and let them know if the course offers the possibility to study abroad; and
  • make sure students thoroughly understand the communications systems used at the University such as Canvas, Kronox and Ladok.

Some courses provide a written study guide (also known as a course guide, course memo, or study instructions) which describes the outline of the course.

Here are some examples of study guides previously used by teaching staff at Malmö University.  (in Swedish only)

Help the students get to know each other 

You can help students to get aquainted with their classmates. This could be through social activities or exercises that are directly connected with the programme/course. For instance, you might want to introduce small group assignments. Here are some examples of activities/exercises you can use:

Social activities connected to the course content and Social activities not connected to the course content.

More examples that teachers at the University have previously used:

Draw an engineer (or any other profession): an exercise designed to help students get to know one another by working with expectations, preconceptions and future goals.

Speed socialising

Student services at the University

By informing students of the types of support available to them at the University, (e.g. the library, writing workshops, mathematics workshops, study guidance and career counselling, student health services and learning support for students with disabilities) you reduce the risk of them dropping out of their studies.

You can use:

Information about student support is also provided via the University’s student newsletter, which is sent out four times during the academic year, and via the Student Calender.There is a filmed lecture (not subtitled) about perfectionism and study techniques given by Student Health Service that that may be useful for students. 

" When perfect isn´t good enough"

Students' rights and obligations

Student influence is an important part of higher education and the quality of education the University offers. Students are entitled to evaluate courses and participate in student councils. When student representatives are selected, it is in accordance with the Student Influence Policy for Malmö University. Feel free to contact the Student Union with any questions regarding student influence. Contact details: Student Union Malmö and the Student Union of the Faculty of Odontology in Malmö (Odontologiska Studentkåren). Other key documents and important information can be found here:     

Student rights and responsibilities

Rules on the recording of lectures and other teaching situations

Corresponding information for students who are admitted late

Students who are admitted late to the course/programme should receive the same information as students who have already been admitted.