Curriculum Enhancement Internship Projects 2017

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Building on the success of the Curriculum Enhancement Student Internships, funding has been made available by the Offices of the Vice Chancellor and Pro Vice Chancellor (Education) to support a further round of curriculum enhancement internship projects across the institution this Summer.  The intention is that these projects will be proposed and undertaken by academic staff working with LJMU students.  Academic staff will lead and supervise the internship projects.


We are inviting proposals for projects that could be undertaken by a student intern working alongside academic staff.  Projects may also be undertaken in partnership with Professional Service Teams. Further details with an application form can be found here , alternatively please contact Liz Clifford in the Teaching and Learning Academy for more information. Summaries of previous internship projects are available from LJMU-Share.Curriculum Enhancement Internships 2017

 

Deadline for receipt of Project Proposal Forms: Tuesday 21st March 2017 (to be sent to Liz Clifford, Teaching and Learning Academy e.clifford@ljmu.ac.uk )

Confirmation of Successful/unsuccessful Project Proposals: Tuesday 4th April 2017

Research and Practice Seminar – Undergraduate Retention & Attainment

IMG_20170208_164629Professor Ruth Woodfield, from St Andrew’s University presented, to a full house, some of her research examining the complexities confronted when trying to establish why some students fail to complete their studies. The talk looked at demographics of those not completing degrees and also went into detail regarding the difficulties of identifying and encapsulating disengagement for the purposes of research.

In discussion, the audience considered a range of factors relevant to students’ differing retention and attainment patterns, including:

  • Sense of belonging and identity with the programme/institution
  • Specificity of threshold concepts
  • Accessibility to and perceptions of specialist support services

 

The seminar presented well the complexity of factors at play but also the possibilities for institutions to affect outcomes for individual students.

The Presentation Audio and a link to the slides can be found below.

Presentation Slides

 

Shyness and the University – Joe Moran, Professor of English and Cultural History at LJMU


In the recent Research and Practice in HE Seminar Joe Moran shared insights gained from personal reflections, as well as research, into shyness.  In a thought-provoking seminar with rich references to a variety of contemporary sources, Joe asked us to consider for a while the impact of shyness on academic practice for both staff and students.  By tracing changing cultural norms of the representation of shyness and related concepts of introversion and extroversion, he challenged us to think about the acceptability, or not, of such personal attributes in an age of what Susan Cain calls ‘the extrovert ideal’ (Quiet, 2012, p.17).  Shyness should be accepted as part of a jigsaw of human behaviour but, it is acknowledged that, at its extremes, it can cause real problems for staff and students trying to function in a modern world.  Related to this ideas and theories around the increasing ‘pathologising’ of social anxiety were considered.    Why are increasing numbers of young people being diagnosed with social anxiety disorders? How do our working and learning environments, following an increasing trend for large open plan spaces, aid or impede shy students, and those experiencing crippling anxiety in social situations?

Virtual learning environments and ever more opportunities for engagement at a distance may aid the shy student, and members of staff, but do their ubiquity serve to impoverish face to face contact?

Much consideration was given during Joe’s presentation and in the discussions that followed to how learning spaces might be configured to offer spaces for quiet, individual working: offering a retreat from what Joe described as an increasingly noisy world.  However, the university needs also to offer opportunities for students to interact with one another: group work and collaborative activity are important.  Notwithstanding the many other obligations that increasing numbers of students have in addition to their studies,  Joe observed that there is an apparent reluctance by many students to stay on campus, beyond what’s seemingly required.  Drawing on Oldenburg’s work (The Great Good Place 1999) how might our buildings encourage a sense of belonging and invite students to stay a while longer and engage more deeply with the life of the University?  Might traditional style refectories and common rooms with inexpensive food and plentiful tea and coffee making facilities, and familiar faces be part of an answer?

 

 

For details of other previous seminars please go to the RaP Seminar page

 

The next Research and Practice in HE Seminar is coming up on Wednesday, 8th Feb and will be led by Professor Ruth Woodfield, University of St Andrews, on a theme of disciplinary differences in retention and attainment. https://www.heacademy.ac.uk/resource/undergraduate-student-retention-and-attainment)

Research and Practice Seminar. The State of HE Policy: Opportunities amid the policy chaos.

RAP_jpg1At a critical time for Higher Education, post the EU referendum and as we await the passing through parliament of the HE Bill, Professor Peter Byers welcomed Ant Bagshaw to give a WONKHE perspective on the policy landscape and its implications and opportunities for universities. In the opening seminar of this year’s Research and Practice in HE Seminar Series, Ant, in surveying the main discourses around the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF), Research Excellence Framework and Brexit, gave an honest, critical, and often wry, account of the challenges, opportunities and shortcomings of current policy.  Alongside this, the audience of academic and professional services staff were provided with an overview of other developments of interest to HE, for example: degree apprenticeships; changes in NSS and DLHE methodologies, the pensions deficit, as well as changes to quality assessment.  Degree apprenticeships, for example, are seen to offer potential for new or different partnerships with business and industry and may address shortfalls in applicants from elsewhere.

 

Reasons to be cheerful?

In a wide ranging discussion following Ant’s presentation, the focus returned to RAP_jpg2Brexit and TEF.  In both, it seems, there are reasons to be optimistic.  EU applicant numbers have so far been maintained and there are indications that international students will still see the UK as an attractive destination for study and not be deterred by prospects of higher fees.  However, the university sector must exercise its lobbying power to, amongst other things, ensure that students are not included in net migration targets.

 

Despite serious reservations that the Teaching Excellence Framework, in its current form, will not deliver the government’s original intentions, Ant saw definite value for universities in using the metrics.  They might be used to celebrate, both internally and externally, what is being done well but also to prompt honest and critical reflection on areas to target for enhancement in respect of the student experience.

The presentation is available to listen to in full here.  Recordings from previous Research and Practice in HE Seminars are available from the Teaching and Learning Academy’s website.

WONKHE is a non-partisan organisation that seeks to improve policymaking in HE.  They welcome contributions from all within the sector, for further details please view their website: http://wonkhe.com/  or contact Ant Bagshaw directly.

Hosted by the Teaching and Learning Academy and the PVC Education, Professor Peter Byers, the Research and Practice Seminars will continue throughout the year.  The next seminar will take place on Wednesday 30th November and be delivered by LJMU’s Joe Moran, Professor of English and Cultural History at the Faculty of Arts, Professional and Social Studies.  Through a seminar entitled Shyness and the University, Professor Moran will reflect on his research on shyness and explore the implications for academic practice and teaching in HE.

 

For further information about the seminar and to book a place please contact TLAcademy@ljmu.ac.uk

 

Research and Practice Seminar Series – The state of HE policy: threats and opportunities.

The first Research and Practice seminar of this academic year will feature a talk by  Ant Bagshawe, Assistant Director at Wonkhe.  A question and answer session will follow.
This session will explore the big issues in HE policy including the HE other topical developments. The aim is to weigh up how the shifting sands of HE policy are likely to impact upon universities.

The seminar will take place 4pm at Roscoe Boardroom Egerton Court to book a place, please contact the teaching and learning academy

For further details about the role of WONKHE please see their website: http://wonkhe.com/

Research and Practice Seminar Series. Joanna Williams – Why Learning Can’t Be Bought

RAP-BAnner

Joanna Williams delivered the final RAP seminar for this academic year in the auspicious surroundings of LJMU Roscoe lecture room. Through an engaging presentation and extensive Q&A, Joanna expanded upon her ideas regarding “Why Learning Can’t Be Bought” and eloquently extolled the importance of placing knowledge at the centre of Higher Education.

The presentation was recorded and audio and slides are below.

 

Joanna Williams is an author, academic and writer. She is the education editor of Spiked and was recently profiled in the Times Higher Education. Further information about Joanna and her work can be found here

The timetable for next years RAP seminar series is currently in development. Recordings and details of previous RAP Seminars are available at this link

 

Curriculum Enhancement Internship Projects 2016

curriculum-enhancement

Building on the success of the Curriculum Enhancement Student Internships, funding has been made available by the Offices of the Vice Chancellor and Pro Vice Chancellor (Education) to support a third round of curriculum enhancement internship projects across the institution this Summer.  The intention is that these projects will be proposed and undertaken by academic staff working with LJMU students.  Academic staff will lead and supervise the internship projects.

 

We are inviting proposals for projects that could be undertaken by a student intern working alongside academic staff.  Projects may also be undertaken in partnership with Professional Service Teams. Further details with an application form can be found here , alternatively please contact Liz Clifford in the Teaching and Learning Academy for more information. Summaries of previous internship projects are available from LJMU-Share.

 

Deadline for receipt of Project Proposal Forms: Monday 14th March 2016 (to be sent to Liz Clifford, Teaching and Learning Academy e.clifford@ljmu.ac.uk )

Confirmation of Successful/unsuccessful Project Proposals: Wednesday 23rd March 2016

LJMU Response to the Green Paper

Fulfilling our Potential: Teaching Excellence, Social Mobility and Student Choice.

In November 2015, the Government published its Green Paper setting out its vision for higher education. LJMU submitted its response to the BIS in January 2016.

The institutional response covered a broad range of topics and included feedback on the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF), Office for Students, widening participation, graduate employability, market entry and research.

The Government will now consider all feedback to inform the next stage of development. It is understood that further details are likely to emerge.

Original BIS Green Paper

LJMU Response to the Green Paper 150116

 

£500k grant fund for cyber security in learning and teaching awarded

LJMU has recently been awarded a grant to improve cyber security in teaching and learning. Institutions have been awarded up to £80,000 to ensure higher education students get high quality, innovative teaching giving them the skills to help protect the UK against cyber attacks.

See more at:

https://www.heacademy.ac.uk/about/news/%C2%A3500k-grant-fund-cyber-security-learning-and-teaching-awarded