Higher Computing- Pupil support and Pupil Voice


Last session, the Computing Department in John Ogilvie High School, South Lanarkshire, decided to create a Glow Group to host all of the resources that pupils studying Higher Computing would need access to throughout the year. Joe Kane is Head of the Business Education and Computing faculty and undertook the task of building the Group,


Click to see full image

Click to see full image

Joe was keen to ensure that pupils studying Higher Computing had easy access to all information and resources they would need for the course and also would have a place where they could give feedback.

He wanted to simplify the look of the Glow Group and aid pupils’ navigation around it and so decided to use a graphical interface along with hidden pages.

On the Noticeboard page of the Group, Joe deleted the default web parts from the page, added a Text Editor web part and uploaded an image to it. He then created ‘hot spots’ on the image to provide links to each of the hidden pages.

Some pagesEach part of the image then acts like a button, linking to a separate hidden page and gives pupils access to course notes, tests, past papers, homework, study information, useful web links, a pupil voice feedback area and a blog giving specific course information.

Because of the use of hidden pages, only the Noticeboard page tab is visible in the Group, so Joe chose to create a navigation system on each page, to enable pupils to go from page to page without having to go back to the main page each time.

Like the Noticeboard page, this was done by uploading an image to a Text Editor Web part and creating hot spots to each page.

The Pages

Each page in the Glow Group is beautifully simple and easy to use, containing only a few web parts. For example:

Past Papers Page

Click to see full image

Click to see full image

This page contains only three web parts – two text editors and a Document Store. Both text editor web parts have had their borders and title bars removed so that only the images which have been uploaded into them are visible.

The Document Store hosts Past Paper exam questions and marking schemes to aid pupils in their exam preparation and enables the staff in the Department to ensure that all relevant information is shared with pupils.



Notes Page

Course Notes PageThis page also contains Text Editor web parts (3) and a Document Store.

In order for Joe to ensure that each page contained a different Document store, containing the folders and documents relevant to the purpose of the page, he had to create new Document Library web parts from scratch for each page, using the Advanced Settings link in the Glow Group. Had he not done this and had simply added a document store to each page from the web parts gallery, he would have had the same document store, containing the same documents, on every page. You can find out more about this and how to create new web parts from scratch in the ‘how to’ videos in the Recipe section below.

Blog Page

Blog pageJoe created a Higher Computing blog to enable him to give up to date information to pupils. Once he had created the Glow Blog, he copied the web address of the view of the blog. Joe then removed the blog web part from the page and instead added a Page Viewer web part, adding in the web address of the view of the blog to it. This enabled pupils to have a direct view of the blog content.

In the blog, Joe was then able to write posts to share information about the course revision guides, holiday revision and Supported Study.

Pupil Voice Page

Pupil Voice pageThe Pupil Voice page gives pupils the chance to give feedback on the Higher Computing course, to enable staff to then make changes in order to help them continually improve the learning experience for pupils.

Survey sampleOn the page there is a Document store with evaluation documents which pupils can use to give their opinions on Positive, Negative and Interesting elements of the course. In here also are the results of a survey which Joe did with pupils last session to gather their thoughts on the course. This was done using ‘Survey Monkey’, however this year, Joe has decided to use a Glow Survey instead and so the web part for this is also on the Pupil Voice page. Using the Glow Survey will enable Joe to have an overview of the whole class’s feedback, as well as being able to see individual pupil responses. Results can be displayed in a variety of ways, including graphically.

These are just four of the pages in the Glow Group. In the following video we can take a look at the whole Group:

Tour of Higher Computing Glow Group (13:44)

Higher Computing- Pupil support and Pupil Voice



Joe chose to create the Higher Computing Glow Group using hidden pages, with links made to them via a graphical interface. This is done by uploading an image to a Text Editor web part then creating ‘hot spots’ to each of the pages on selected parts of the image.  In order to do all of this, Joe therefore needed to do the following:

–    Create a Glow Group at school level
–    Delete the Documents, Discussions and Glow Groups pages
–    Create Hidden Page
–    On the Noticeboard Page, delete the default web parts, upload an image to a Text Editor web part and create hot  spots on the image to link to each of the hidden pages
–    On each of the hidden pages, upload an image to a Text Editor web part and create hot spots on the image to link to each of the other hidden pages.

Since Joe needed separate document stores on many of the pages in the Glow Group, he also needed to create new Document Libraries from scratch, to avoid simply having the same Document store duplicated on every page.

A Glow Blog had to be created. Joe chose to then use the Page Viewer web part to show the view of the Blog.

A Glow Survey was created, with multiple choice questions using the ‘ratings scale’ option, to enable Joe to gather pupil feedback on the Higher Computing course.


The following videos explain how to replicate some of these elements of the Higher Computing Glow Group. The context of these videos is different, but the process is exactly the same.

How to remove pages from a Glow Group and close web parts from a page (2:22)
Higher Computing- Pupil support and Pupil Voice

How to create a hidden page and hyperlink text to access it (10:39)
Higher Computing- Pupil support and Pupil Voice

How to hotspot an image and link it to a hidden page (6:22)
Higher Computing- Pupil support and Pupil Voice

How to create a new Document Store (5:57)
Higher Computing- Pupil support and Pupil Voice

How to add a Glow Blog to a Glow Group and create the blog (6:12)
Higher Computing- Pupil support and Pupil Voice

How to view a Glow Blog through the Page Viewer web part (4:53)
Higher Computing- Pupil support and Pupil Voice

How to create a survey (14:16)
Higher Computing- Pupil support and Pupil Voice

How to respond to a survey (5:19)
Higher Computing- Pupil support and Pupil Voice


Perhaps the best way to judge whether the Glow Group has been beneficial is to listen to the thoughts of the pupils who used it. Here are what some of them had to say:

I thought that the glow group was very useful as it had all the required course notes which was easily accessible from home. I liked this because it meant that if I had missed a set of notes or lost a set I could easily get a new copy without using up the teachers time”. Sean

Sitting Higher Computing last year, I felt glow was a great study tool.  With the online daily guide of what to study each night, it really helped me keep my studying on track, as it gave you a guide line of what to study, for how long and what was coming up. This section also updates us on homework or tests that were coming up. It allowed you to submit homework online at any point. This was great as you could receive immediate feed back, the following day. It also prevented you from losing or forgetting sheets.   It covered all the course and recalled on subtopics that we had done at the start of term. The notes on power point were also a great help to look over if I was unsure on any particular parts of a topic, these notes went into further detail and helped explain when I did not understand. With the past papers and marking schemes, this was a great study revision, as they were easy to access and find. Also the previous class test that we had sat were available online, this was a further study guide that was available nowhere else. The site was very easy to use and navigate around. I personally feel this would be a great revision and home tool for all subjects.  All of this helped me greatly to stay on track and achieve my grade B that I had hoped for.” Alix

The Glow program was useful by providing remote and digital access to homework as well as a balanced revision timetable. Being able to download homework meant that the problem of losing sheets disappeared completely and being able to upload digital documents meant that when homework was handed in there was no loss of a jotter and thus access to notes, so studying could carry on in lots of little chunks instead of needing a big rush to catch up after a few days. I would recommend using Glow just because of how useful digitised work is when you have written notes, and having a good revision timetable always handy is a bonus. Daniel

Glow last year was good as Mr Kane was able to set us a study plan every week so we knew which to study every night in order to achieve the best grade possible. We were also able to access past papers as well as the marking instructions. Glow was effective when coming up to our exams as I was able to know what to study for when at home as well as at school. Tommy

I think glow was a useful, educational tool in which we were able to access at home and see our study plan and online past papers. This benefited me greatly and allowed me to work the best of my ability and achieve a high grade.Stephen

Good points about using the glow group in Higher Computing last year were that it allowed the class to gain access to all resources needed for the course and all past papers that would be needed for revision. It also gave us a study guide for specific subjects to study when at home which was optional which was good as it gave us areas that people may need help on as well as being able to issue homework and do homework on computer and send it back to the teacher”. Connor

Joe Kane also talks about the benefits that he got from using the Glow Group with the pupils. He feels that the blog has been the most useful element: 

“For me, the blog had the biggest impact as pupils would come to school having checked the revision guide. They would then be able to informally feedback on the aspects of the course that they found tricky when revising.”

Rating: 5.0/5 (2 votes cast)