Announcing the recipients of this year’s University of Worcester Teaching Award Scheme

We are thrilled to announce the recipients of this year’s University of Worcester Teaching Award Scheme, individuals who have showcased excellence and innovation in teaching. Among the distinguished achievers are educators who have exhibited outstanding leadership, support, and mentoring, driving innovation in teaching and learning across various disciplines. Their dedication to fostering inclusive learning environments, implementing impactful curriculum redesigns, education for sustainable development and enhancing student experience underscores their unwavering commitment to the highest standards of pedagogical practice. Through their exemplary efforts, they have not only inspired students but also elevated the overall teaching landscape at the University of Worcester. We extend our heartfelt congratulations to all the awardees for their remarkable achievements and meaningful contributions.  University of Worcester Teaching Award This award focuses on… Read moreAnnouncing the recipients of this year’s University of Worcester Teaching Award Scheme

Building student resilience

Resilience is fundamental for student retention and it is one of our graduate attributes.  Resilience enables students to cope with the challenges, obstacles and setbacks they are likely to experience on their learning journey, and to graduate with the capabilities and mind set for success.  The term can be applied to both academic and personal aspects of the student experience and is increasingly associated with student well-being, academic buoyancy and a ‘growth mindset’. A proactive approach to developing student resilience as part of the curriculum at Worcester is therefore important because it will support our objectives to improve student retention and graduate outcomes.  We want our students to understand and demonstrate the behaviours, actions and mindsets that constitute resilience, and to be able to articulate… Read moreBuilding student resilience

Framework for Evaluating the Impact of Projects

Strong evaluation is crucial in order to ensure that projects, initiatives and interventions remain efficient and are achieving impact. We have put together a Framework for Evaluating Impact which is designed to provide a useful overview for anyone undertaking such work to encourage thinking around how evaluation will be carried out prior to committing resource (typically time and effort). The Framework also includes useful information about the key considerations that might be taken into account when evaluating for impact at interim and end stages of work. At its best, building in evaluation from the start will make tracking progress and recognising impact both much easier and more powerful.  It is therefore considered best practice to include plans on how evaluation is to be incorporated when… Read moreFramework for Evaluating the Impact of Projects

Psychology’s approach to engaging students and monitoring attendance

In line with the University’s approach to monitoring attendance/engagement, Psychology introduced a simple process to record attendance/engagement in classes electronically and online via students’ completion of short, password-protected quizzes on Blackboard. The password is available only in the class (it is generally included on a slide), so that only those attending can complete it.  It may be worth highlighting to students that monitoring of attendance is supportive, not punitive, so if they share the password with absent peers they are preventing those students from receiving support that they may need. For example, a question might be: “What is the one ‘take home message’ you’ve discovered today?” Of course, as the object is to measure engagement, the actual answers to the quiz are less important than… Read morePsychology’s approach to engaging students and monitoring attendance

Supporting Student Transition to UW: 2020

Background Over the past few years we have explored the various issues regarding students transitioning into HE, both at Level 4 or Level 6 and directly to UW or via our partners.  Given the particular circumstances we are faced with this year, it seems useful to revisit some of the outcomes of this work as well as to look across the sector at the work others are doing to make transitions as easy as possible for new students. This piece then, outlines the issues facing us in terms of students’ transitioning to us in September and provides an overview of the steps our staff – and others across the sector – are taking in order to ensure that they join us ready to engage appropriately… Read moreSupporting Student Transition to UW: 2020


Welcome to the Realising Teaching Excellence blog at the University of Worcester, where we hope to keep you informed about teaching and learning developments, create dialogue around developing excellence and introduce you to examples of interesting practice. The ‘Teaching Excellence’ page has the latest news on learning and teaching The ‘Interesting Practice’ page has a range of learning and teaching case studies See the ‘Resources’ page for useful guides and information including the “Busy lecturer’s Guide to Inclusive Practice” and information on student transitions and Teaching Awards The ‘Tried and Tested’ page contains examples of enhancement activities undertaken at module and course level which have been evaluated and proven to have been effective. Our ‘Projects’ page shows updates and outputs from the various learning and… Read moreWelcome

Supporting Transition for Direct Entry Students – Report now available

The Project ‘Supporting Transition for Direct Entry Students’ has published its findings and examples of effective practice in a Guide for Staff ‘Improving Direct Entry Student Experience of Transition to Top-Up/Honours Degree’ (July 2019).  The Project set out to identify the key challenges and factors that may impede successful transition and establish ways to improve experiences of ‘Direct Entry/Top-Up’ students entering an Honours Degree. Based on research, students’ views of their transition experience and the personal experiences of staff working with Direct Entry students, the Guide aims to provide practical advice for course leaders and staff who deliver Top-Up degrees or encounter students who enter Honours Degrees at Level 5 or Level 6 (Direct Entry students) with a view to improving students’ experiences of transition… Read moreSupporting Transition for Direct Entry Students – Report now available

Bronze, Silver or Gold – how’s your Blackboard site looking?

Baseline standards for VLE use were introduced in September 2015 and an audit of modules from the 2016/17 academic year has found that 94% of modules now have a tutor enrolled indicating a minimum level of engagement with the VLE. An increase of 2% from last year. A further spot check of 50 random courses found that the vast majority were complying with baseline standard requirements with many exceeding the minimum and providing online learning resources and activities which were engaging and attractive and clearly enhanced the students’ learning experience. With this high level of engagement, we wanted to encourage teaching staff to think about their Blackboard sites and  consider ways that they might provide a better learning experience for their students. With this in… Read moreBronze, Silver or Gold – how’s your Blackboard site looking?

Journal Clubs – Level 4 Students Tackle Scientific Literature

Dr Jennifer Joyce, Lecturer in Sport & Exercise Science and Link Tutor for HND Sports Coaching, Institute of Sport and Exercise Science One of the most notable transitional challenges for students when coming to University to study science is the expectation that they will now need to read primary research and effectively utilise it to support their work. There is sometimes the expectation that students will already possess the necessary skill set to read and critique this research. However, my experience is that this is not the case and that they require guidance to build strong reading habits.

Our Heads in The Cloud: Using Padlet to Enhance Learning & Professional Practice

Dave Hunt, PGCE Computer Science Course Tutor, Institute of Education As a teacher trainer from a secondary school setting, my arrival in the HE sector provided me with some immediate insights into how staff and students could potentially benefit from the use of Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL). Schools have historically benefitted from significant investment in this field and perhaps their smaller size makes them more agile in terms of institutional change. I felt the need to raise my trainees’ awareness of the range of learning technologies that were available to them whilst on their school based training placements.