Writing myself out of a job

6 Apr

Today is my last day of working on the University of Sheffield teSS Scholarship circle project, with staff aiming to get their work about teaching and learning published. Today we are discussing refining one’s own written style and language, coping with rejection, finding an authentic voice and developing personal strategies for publication. The handouts I am using are here. teSS-handout-Thurs-6-April-v2.doc (70 downloads)   teSS-Scholarship-Circle-Evaluation-and-feedback.docx (53 downloads)   Edit-this.docx (49 downloads)
It’s been a real pleasure to work with colleagues over a six-month period and seeing a significant amount of growth both of confidence and of capability. A feature of the workshops is that colleagues attending have been getting to know each other better and plan to write together in the future. It is of course what I’m supposed to be doing,  that is writing myself out of a job by building colleagues’ own self efficacy!

Benvenuto la dolce vita

26 Mar

On Monday 27th March Phil and I are flying to Venice then on to Padua where we are delighted to be presenting alongside Kay Sambell, Fabio D’Arico and David Nicol at a conference on assessment at the ancient University of Padua. We will be seeing some Giottos while  we are there as well as visiting the oldest university botanical garden in the world. Then later in the week we are going to Venice for a three day break with no work at all! Our slides for our workshop and presentation at Padua are here Padua-1st-sessionn-2017-2.pptx (80 downloads)   Padua-Assess4Engagement-pr2.pptx (70 downloads)

CANTF (the partial UK tour)

24 Mar

This week and next week, members of the Committee of National Teaching Fellows and friends will be supporting the HEA by running a series of workshops in England, Wales and Northern Ireland on this year’s  application process for National Teaching Fellowships. With the deadlines having been so short this year, I am delighted that my NTF colleagues and host organisations have worked so hard to bring these events together in record time. Thank you everyone who has work so hard to make things happen!   I am looking forward to leading  the Newcastle gig on Friday 24th March, hosted by Steve McHanwell at Newcastle University and other events are running (or have run) in Belfast, Cardiff, Leeds (thanks Phil), Cambridge, Southampton,  Oxford and London (special thanks to  Simon Lancaster).  Sadly  Scotland is not part of the NTF scheme hence it’s only a partial UK tour! The slides we are all using, which have been endorsed by the HEA, are here:  ANTF-prospective-NTFs-2017-New-Deadlinelogo.pptx (62 downloads)

Tea, Tango and teSS

12 Mar

I’ve got an  exciting week this week as on Monday I am going to Lucas’s Nursery School morning cream tea for mums and grannies as role models.

Then on Tuesday, Phil and I fly to Amsterdam to work in Utrecht, keynoting at their annual teaching and learning conference on ‘internationalization’ and running a workshop for their Science Faculty on assessment. The title they gave me for the former was ‘It takes two to tango: internationalisation at the University of Utrecht’ so of course I have bought an appropriate frock (photo of me in the Hall where the Treaty of Utrecht was signed). My slides for the two sessions are here:   Utrecht-Science-Assess-march17-ww.pptx (101 downloads)   Utrecht-keynote-March2017Final-version-w.pptx (91 downloads)


Then I’m flying back on Thursday night, ready for my fourth workshop in the teaching excellence for Social Sciences (teSS)
series of workshops on writing for publication, for colleagues on teaching-focused contracts. This time it’s all about co-authoring, linking conference outputs and publications and getting past writer’s block: the slides are here:  teSS-writing-workshop-March-2017-w.pptx (66 downloads)

You can’t get much more fun than that!

Networking with novice assessors

1 Mar

Very early (for me) on the morning of Wednesday 1 March I am leading a webinar within the ascilte  e-Assessment special interest group ‘Transforming assessment’ webinar series, hosted by Geoff Crisp and Matthew Hillier  at the University of New South Wales. The slides for my session  on ‘Getting started in assessment and feedback in higher education’ are here: TA_webinar_1_mar_2017_slides.pptx (80 downloads) . It’s designed for novices in HE assessment and the people who support them. This for me is a crucial area, since every person undertaking assessment needs to be competent and confident in doing so, otherwise validity and reliability suffer.

It’s been a delight and surprise to discover that  120+ participants from around the world will be joining in in a session that is billed as a preview session for the excellent Assessment in Higher Education Conference: I look forward to making  a number of new friends and colleagues!

Here is the U-tube link to the recording of this webinar: it lasts nearly an hour, and it’s best to go to full-screen mode to see Sally’s slides well; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jQn_IBkmPLw&feature=youtu.be

​​​Doris Day, Developments and Dancing

26 Feb

On Thursday 23 February I was working again with colleagues at Lincoln University helping then to draft HEA Fellowship applications.  I normally post web updates on or before  the day of the workshop, but ghastly weather meant I was preoccupied with getting home afterwards (and I did successfully thank goodness). For the workshop, I mainly used the UKPSF grid. grid-2015-11-1-2.docx (92 downloads)

For those of you who have enjoyed using my Biscuit game Biscuit-game.docx (67 downloads)  as a means of making people think about assessment criteria, you might enjoy listening to the podcast of the BBC Radio 4 programme The Philosopher’s Arms, broadcast at 8pm on Monday 20th February.

Cake or biscuit? Why Jaffa Cakes excite philosophers​​

This week, Phil and I and our sons and families  (including 4 grandchildren) are off to Center Parcs at Woburn for family delights so not much work will be done.

Normal service will resume  shortly after that with a mentoring weekend with our PhD by Publication group, then a trip to Utrecht University where I will be talking about Internationalization under the theme of ‘It takes two to tango’: I have already bought the frock so watch out for the pictures!

Sheffield Sets the Standard for Scholarship: 15th February

9 Feb

The third of the five sessions I am doing for the Faculty of Social Sciences at Sheffield University  supporting the scholarship of teaching-focused staff is  on Wednesday 15th February and is about  writing effective bids for small grants for teaching and learning projects. The slides are here. tESS-workshop-handouts-15-February-2017-w.docx (72 downloads) .
I am delighted to support this excellent initiative to encourage staff to write about and research their pedagogy, and it is very enjoyable to get to know a cohort of around 30 colleagues over several months and see their ‘writing-for-publication’ confidence and competence advance significantly.

Busy times in Blanchardstown: 3rd February

31 Jan

I am delighted this week to be working with Phil on a dynamic workshop for the Institute of Technology at Blanchardstown in Ireland,  where we will be working with  course teams from computing and creative digital media who are coping with increased student numbers. We are starting with a quick fire  ‘Ten things that really matter about assessment” where we will each attempt to keep the other to time with ten slides in total  for 3 minutes each Blanchardstown-plenary-opening-version-5.pptx (79 downloads)  and then we are doing parallel workshops. You will find Phil’s slides on his site, but mine are here on Streamlining assessment   streamlined-assesment-Blanchardstown-w.pptx (69 downloads)  and Designing and Managing Authentic Assessment tasks   Authentic-assesment-Blanchardstown.pptx (73 downloads) .It’s great to be working alongside Phil in this my 67th birthday week!


25 Jan

Today I’m delighted to be co-briefing the new cohort of National Teaching Fellows at the Merchant Taylor’s hall in London with Alison Robinson-Canham of the HEA. As chair of the Association of NTFs I will be discussing with the new 55 Award winners how best to engage with the rest of this exciting community and then joining them for their celebratory dinner with Deputy Chair Pratap Rughani. Congratulations to all and also to the finalists for the CATE awards who will also learn their fates tonight!

And tomorrow I continue working with Erica Morris and Margaret Price as we continue to develop materials for the Anglia Assessment Album for Anglia Ruskin University: link here: http://www.lta.anglia.ac.uk/practice.php/LTA-Practice-Assessment-and-Feedback-Anglia-Assessment-Album-32/

Learning and Linking at Lincoln

19 Jan

On Friday 20th January, I will be working at Lincoln University, helping colleagues with their HEA applications: my main workshop resources will be the grid grid-2015-11-1-2.docx (92 downloads)  and my slides:  UKPSF-recognition-slides-2015-w.pptx (230 downloads)

My aim is to help  staff in the Business School at all levels to prepare applications to become Associate Fellows, Fellows, Senior Fellows and Principal Fellows of the Higher Education Academy, including staff who teach face-to-face and at a distance. It will be really nice to be back in Lincoln again after  a gap of several years.