Lunch and Learn episode 5 – Claire Scott

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Claire Scott, Learning Support Coordinator at UCA Canterbury, discusses several projects she is involved with that aim to create a more inclusive learning environment for students at UCA.


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Lunch and Learn episode 4 – David Anderson

David Anderson, Course Leader of Advertising at UCA Farnham, explains how he reimagined the philosophy of his course and why he encourages his students to think of themselves as researchers.


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Lunch and Learn episode 3 – Chris Jones

Chris Jones, Learning and Teaching Librarian at UCA Farnham, explains how he reframes the concept of research as ‘creative discovery’ to help his students engage with literature.

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Lunch and Learn episode 2 – Mary Carson

Mary Carson, Senior Lecturer on the Fashion Management and Marketing course at UCA Epsom, discusses how she uses LinkedIn to enhance employabililty.

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Lunch and Learn episode 1 – Phil Gomm


Phil Gomm, Course Leader of Computer Animation Arts at UCA Rochester, explains how he uses assessment criteria to frame attendance within the context of professionalisation.


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Peer assessment ideas

When students first arrive at university they are usually highly dependent on the direction and feedback provided by their tutors. But as they move through their degree, it is vital that they are able to critically reflect on both their own progress and that of their peers. Providing opportunities for students to engage in effective peer assessment is a powerful mechanism to support their transition to becoming independent learners.

Peer assessment is a valuable way to help students reduce their dependence on the views and advice of tutors. But although peer assessment activities can significantly enrich students’ learning, asking students to engage in peer assessment is unlikely to work unless they are properly introduced to it.

Example: using peer assessment with international students

When Jane Armstrong, a tutor on UCA’s MBA course, noticed that her students struggled to provide effective feedback on the work of their peers, she designed an activity to help them. The cohort consisted of a significant percentage of international students, and Jane had observed that while the students provided supportive comments during a group crit, their feedback was more complimentary than constructive and lacked criticality.

The activity consisted of three parts:

  • a written brief, advising them what questions they would need to address during the crit. These questions were aligned to the assessment criteria.
  • a face-to-face briefing, during which students could raise any questions they had about the approaching crit.
  • the crit itself, during which students were given the questions to answer along with ‘prompts’ to guide their observations and feedback

Jane talks through the peer assessment activity in this video,


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Guest blog post – Dr. Tomasz John

The 16/17 academic year has been packed with plenty of reasons for me to celebrate professional development as I successfully completed my PhD and received Senior Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy (SFHEA).

I truly believe that it is fundamentally important for universities to create a supportive environment in which academics are encouraged to positively influence their surroundings, learn and develop themselves both individually and with their colleagues. I have been very fortunate in having the opportunity to become an ‘agent of change’ as, from 2012 to 2016, I was able to pursue a PhD at the University of Reading thanks to UCA’s Professional Qualification funding, which supported my professional development and directly fed into my work at UCA. My PhD thesis sought to explore how international postgraduate students and university staff dealing with international students take advantage of the opportunities and tackle the challenges that globalisation and internationalisation bring to the landscape of HE in the UK. Continue reading

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