Students Consulting on Teaching


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Presentation given in 2009 about an innovative pilot project at the University of Lincoln

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Students Consulting on Teaching

  1. 1. SCOTS Students Consulting SC s OT s on Teaching SCOT Deborah Etherington – Co-ordinator – Student UG Acupuncture Karin Crawford – Principal Teaching Fellow in School S of COT Health and Social Care, SCOT project lead s SCOTs
  2. 2. SCOTS – the project • An innovative idea – valuing and listening to the student ‘voice’ to enhance the student experience (acknowledgement to work in the USA in this area); • A pilot project in the School of Health and Social Care at the University of Lincoln; • The student ‘voice’ as a resource or service for lecturers - objective student feedback on various aspects of teaching and learning; • A ‘teacher-driven’, confidential, flexible and voluntary service, with the lecturer and the SCOT negotiating how the task will be undertaken. • Is co-ordinated by a part-time student co-ordinator
  3. 3. SCOTs - the team • are undergraduate students who have an interest in teaching and learning and the enhancement of the student experience; • have been recruited and are paid on temporary contracts for the period of the pilot project; • as students are ‘experts’ on what it is like to sit in classes; • are not enrolled in the classes of the lecturers they work with so they can offer an objective student perspective; • have all undertaken training before working on the project and attend regular SCOT meetings.
  4. 4. The SCOTS project – some fundamentals • A project development group including academic and student representation, including engagement of the student union – student participation throughout at all levels of the project and its development; • Identified small pocket of time-limited funding; • Alignment with institution’s strategic objectives and values; • Approval from University Teaching and Learning Committee; • A willingness at all levels to ‘take a risk’ and be innovative! • Critique? – ‘validating’ expertise; power issues related to recruitment, selection, training etc
  5. 5. Challenges • Lengthy processes for approval – time delays; • Recruitment processes not always ‘fit for purpose’; • Raising awareness of opportunities amongst students (related to timing issues); • Balancing opportunity with study priorities for students; • May only engage academics who are already working to enhance their practice; • Academic concern beyond the School of Health and Social Care.
  6. 6. Opportunities • Trying something different – not only the project itself, but within the detailed work of the SCOTS; • Meaningful, timely engagement with student feedback; • Valuing the student ‘voice’; students as co-producers of knowledge and learning; Teaching in public; • To work with a very dedicated small team on a specific (currently time limited) project; • Opportunity, we hope, to expand further in the institution next year – perhaps embedding this within the peer observation policy as an option;
  7. 7. Evaluation • On-going – reflective approach from all concerned (within boundaries of confidentiality) - examples of the student voice reflecting on this project; • Supportive collaborative team approach throughout (e.g. policy development); • Data collection; • Action research approach;
  8. 8. SCOTs Students Consulting on Teaching University of Lincoln School of Health and Social Care
  9. 9. Group Discussion – some questions… • What mechanisms do we currently have in place to engage students meaningfully in the development of learning and teaching? • Could this project be helpful in your practice context? • What questions or issues does this raise for you/your group?