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Masters Level Assessment at Edinburgh Napier University

16 Apr

After a great trip to the rural Netherlands for a wedding this weekend and prior to a trip next week to work at universities in Segovia and Valladolid  in Spain next week I am today working at Edinburgh Napier on Masters level assessment: the slides I am using are here Napier M-level (5)   After that a peaceful Easter at home with the family, with Dutch asparagus, chocolate, flowers, beer, fruit…..( good job we took the car!)

Managing change in universities

2 Apr

Today I met with departmental learning and teaching chairs and others at Roehampton University talking about ways of managing change. Here are the slides I used. Roehampton (14).

Another busy week!

24 Mar

On Tuesday 24th, Phil and I are helping with HEA Fellowship panels at South Bank University.
On Wednesday I will be meeting colleagues from Palgrave press to discuss the Learning and Teaching series I edit for them, and particularly my own book on global perspectives in higher education teaching and learning. I will also meet a representative from Assessment Management System Livetext.
On Thursday I fly to Dublin to support the AISHE event on Repurposing your Masters or Doctoral Thesis for publication. The handout I am using is  here. AISHE handout (21). You may also find it really useful to think about the thoughts which Patrick Dunleavy has made available on the web from his Palgrave books, some of which are collected here on ‘titles, chapter starts and abstracts’ Titles, starts, and abstracts (18).

On the train to London I was responding to THES series of Tweets about about how many UK and international HEIs I’ve visited: currently my count is 109 UK HEIs and 75 international ones but I keep remembering more! I bet Graham  Gibbs could beat that total though!

Keele keynote

6 Mar

In January I spoke at the Keele Assessment Conference. You might like to see a short video of me talking about assessment made at the event.


Improving the Postgraduate Student Experience

27 Feb

It’s exciting today to be part of the launch at Kingston University of Michelle Morgan’s £2m HEFCE project exploring Post Graduate Student Experiences. The project involves nine UK universities and will last two years. I am contributing as part of the steering group, in part because of my experience running my NTFS  project on Masters Level Assessment.  Michelle’s project has the potential to really enhance learning at Postgrad level.
Here are my slides on Postgraduate Issues Pg Issues (28)

From Sheffield to Aberystwyth

19 Feb

Today I am speaking to Sheffield University’s Springboard Women’s Development Programme about my life and career. My advice to them will include:

When things go wrong:

  • get back on the bike and keep going (learned from my father who came back from WW2 a paraplegic and was made ambulant again by his mother, a Swedish physiotherapist, pushing him off on a bike downhill until he fell off, to build up his leg muscles);
  • Don’t be afraid to jump out of the window (derived from the film The Black Narcissus);
  • Remember that the boldest acts are sometimes the safest (derived from a statue by the Thames of a general of the British Army)

Tomorrow I will be at Aberystwyth University talking about my masters level assessment project The slides are here M Level: Aberystwyth (26)

At Anglia Ruskin – and beyond

29 Jan

This week I am working again at Anglia Ruskin University on Wednesday doing a Teachmeet session alongside Mark Schofield of Edge Hill University. I am leading a short session on ‘fifteen things you can do to really cheese students off around assessment (and some things you can do to stop doing them) Teachmeet: how to cheese off students (52) and a session on Thursday for their Performing Arts and Media staff on assessment  Assessment slides (34) before heading off to South Bank University on Friday for their HEA Fellowships panel.
I’m really excited about being invited to a conference in Chile in July.  Any one got any useful tips on what to do in Santiago and where to visit?  please send to

Learning and teaching this week

22 Jan

This Monday I spent a fascinating hour being trained to be an NTFS reviewer. Not only was it fascinating hearing about the HEA current system but it was also very interesting to be trained alongside about 40 others using Elluminate  virtual processes. Sitting alongside Phil, a fellow trainee in our study we were talked through the slides, could ask and hear responses to questions and communicate with fellow trainees. I’ve used Elluminate meetings before but once again it made me wonder why we don’t use this kind of training more often.
On Friday I am working with colleagues at Sunderland university on achieving all four levels of HEA Fellowship. It’s great to work so near home on a Friday when I can travel on my Metro Gold Card!

Keeping up momentum on Masters level education at Kitley Hall

17 Jan

Yesterday and today I am working at Kitley Hall in Devon with staff at Plymouth University who are contributing to the new Palgrave book that Pauline Kneale is editing (with a little help from me) on Masters level teaching, learning and assessment.

Keeping assessment discussions live at Keele

15 Jan

Today is Keele’s Learning and Teaching Conference focusing on assessment and I am contributing a keynote as well as joining in the discussions on the day. Here are the slides for my keynote: Keele Keynote (65).
Keele is one of eight universities taking part in the HEA initiative to improve assessment systemically across institutions. the associated publication ‘A marked improvement ‘ is available on their website which contains valuable resources including a valuable audit tool to enable HEIs and departments to scrutinise and enhance assessment. Here is the link: