Learning and Teaching Conference 2022: Tomorrow and Beyond

Parallel Sessions

The focus of the event this year was ‘Learning and Teaching: Tomorrow and Beyond’ exploring how recent experience can inform innovative solutions to future pedagogic challenges. Delegates were invited to book on to a range of sessions based on research and practice, including but not restricted to:

All sessions were 45 minutes long and were either focused on a single topic or made up of two presentations paired together.

Session A1 – OL1 Lecture Theatre

A data-driven approach to assessment: An approach to automating the feedback process to create quality feedback whilst also improving the efficiency of the marking process for Staff

Rebekah Marangon and Dr Tim Marangon. College of Business, Law and Social Sciences.

This session proposes a new approach to constructing feedback. Making use of Microsoft Forms and Power Automate, the approach enables markers to create their feedback in a speedier manner whilst simultaneously generating relevant data on student performance. This data can be used to efficiently identify trends and themes within students' work, to inform and develop student interventions, and to enable a proper analysis of the entire cohort during the moderation process. Through the approach, staff can quickly and easily identify common errors in student understanding, as well as being able to identify any skills deficits that need tackling in future modules.

Session A2 – K203 (Kirtley Building)

Two presentations in a 45-minute session

Can reverse mentoring help improve the awarding gap? 

Sian Burgess, Kirsty Wood and Hassan Ali (Student). College of Health, Psychology and Social Care.

Reverse mentoring has been used in a variety of professional, community and educational environments, not just to identify and solve organisational needs, but also to understand the needs of marginalised groups within our communities. This session will explore how reverse mentoring can support unique dialogue between students and academic staff to enable staff to appreciate their own lack of knowledge and experience in terms of culture, spirituality, and race. Ultimately it is hoped this will ensure action and changes are made to address the awarding gap and improve student experience.


Voices of the Awarding Gap: Students interviewing students on their university experience. 

Dr Ian Baker, Dr Alice Doherty, Dr Chris Howard, Dr Peter Macaulay, Dr Malcolm Schofield, Saarah Yaseen and Anika Sharif (Students). College of Health, Psychology and Social Care.

This Seedcorn-funded project aimed to explore the experiences of university life for our students from Black, Asian, and other minority ethnic groups using focus groups and analysed using Thematic Analysis. There was a particular focus upon what “student success” means to them, and what barriers and facilitators there are to that success. This research also utilised student researchers to lead the focus groups in order to acquire a different type of information than that which would be acquired if the groups were led by staff.

Session A3 –K102 (Kirtley Building)

Two presentations in a 45-minute session

Embodying the disembodied: Where do HE students learn? 

Paula Shaw. Provost Teaching and Learning.

The Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) differentiates HE from compulsory education by the high proportion of independent learning. Given that this may account for two/three of a student's learning outside the classroom, where do HE students learn? This presentation aims to open our eyes to 'other' place-based learning; indoors, outdoors, at work and at home. It draws parallels with the literature to validate the challenges of sonic, space and time invaders and proposes a model for embodying the learning that takes place in other spaces.


Long time no see: The importance of socialisation in student development and employability. 

Dr Daithí McMahon, Mark Randell and Michael Brown. College of Arts, Humanities and Education.

The research-led experimental collaborative approach at the centre of this case study involved students from four undergraduate BA and one postgraduate MA programme to produce eight, fifteen-minute original audio dramas that would be specialised acoustically to create a cutting-edge surround sound audio experience. This paper highlights the value of socialisation in a group working or learning environment and the need for enhancement of this fundamental skill in HE curricula to improve employability. The increase of social interaction opportunities through exposure to interdisciplinary collaborative projects where there is a shared goal and shared responsibility amongst individuals is recommended.

Session A4 – K103 (Kirtley Building)

Two presentations in a 45-minute session

Augmenting the learner experience through skills and knowledge sharing: A management apprenticeship case study

Dr Olivia Ramsbottom, Dr Sarah Digby and Spencer Ryan-Prewett. College of Business, Law and Social Sciences.

This is a joint project between academics leading higher apprenticeships at two levels: the Senior Leader (SL) level 7 and Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship (CMDA) level 6. Apprenticeships have a unique structure in that learners not only undertake an academic qualification, but also demonstrate their knowledge, skills, and behaviours (KSBs) in a professional portfolio against a national standard. To enhance this experiential learning process, an opportunity exists for SLs to augment the learning of those on the CMDA through sharing their specialist skills and knowledge was identified whilst also building KSBs towards their own professional portfolio. The project draws on a wide body of supporting literature and evidence from the areas of andragogical teaching, real-world learning and peer-assisted learning.


Invisible Journeys: practice-research informed teaching

Dr Christina (Xristina) Penna. College of Arts, Humanities and Education.

Creative Project in Performance Design (5TT507) engages students with the creation of participatory, immersive and site-specific performances and looks at collaborative processes. The project INVISIBLE JOURNEYS – a participatory performance installation – was developed as part of this module with Year 2, BA (Hons) Costume and Set Design students. In this presentation, I will reflect on the importance of incorporating practice research in teaching Level 5 as a way of enhancing the students’ own creative voice on their way to Level 6.

Session A5 – K204 (Kirtley Building)

Two presentations in a 45-minute session

Using low-immersive virtual reality in online learning: lessons from environmental management education. 

Dr Becky Rawson and Dr Uche Okere. College of Science and Engineering.

Virtual reality (VR) in education primarily focuses on high-immersive experiences. This technology is not, however, accessible to online students studying remotely from the equipment. This presentation will share our experiences of designing 360° virtual spaces and using low-immersive VR as a desktop tool for online environmental management students to undertake an environmental management system audit of the University. Low-immersive VR facilitates real-world learning within a virtual space that students can access on their own devices. This technology also provides an opportunity for campus students who could use the tool to revisit a space or site and continue their learning remotely.


How we have used Virtual and Mixed Reality Technology to create an inclusive learning experience. 

Melanie Lanser and Glyn Pickering. Derby College (DCG).

Virtual (VR), Mixed Reality (MR) and 360 technologies are being utilised to provide students with opportunities to interact with educational content within environments that otherwise would be inaccessible. However, what benefits are there for replicating the retrieval process, virtually, to provide students with opportunities to not only familiarise themselves with assessment strategies but also the situational and environmental cues to promote enhanced recall opportunities? How can such technologies promote inclusivity for neurodiverse students? This presentation explores how such technologies are being utilised within a General Further Education College. (DCG)

Session A6 – K104 (Kirtley Building)

Developing more inclusive reading lists

Benjamin Veasey, University Librarian.

What makes an inclusive reading list? Explore, reflect and discuss the need to ensure materials in support of the education experience are inclusive including some practical approaches to consider.

Session B1 – OL1 Lecture Theatre

Let's talk about a more flexible learning future

Paula Shaw, Ann Minton, Dr Justin Steele-Davies, Dr Alice Doherty, Fahmida Khan, Rachel Spink Amy Cudworth and Merin Mathew (Students). Provost Teaching and Learning with The London College.

'Let’s talk about a more flexible learning future' is a panel discussion with members of the QAA supported Flexible Learning Toolkit project. The audience is invited to pose questions about flexible learning to the panel that have created a toolkit to support flexible module design. During the session, the audience will be provided with a tour of the toolkit’s resources which aim to close the gap between strategy and practice, by exploring the world of future-focused blended pedagogy, ways of evidencing impact and the sharing of good practice.

Session B2 – K203 (Kirtley Building)

Two presentations in a 45-minute session

Variability not disability; Universal design for learning in HE

Helen Gascoyne. College Arts, Humanities and Education.

‘How using the Universal Design for Learning (UDL) framework to guide the design of learning experiences can proactively meet the needs of all learners.’ Focusing on engagement and attainment, this presentation will consider, conceptualise and illustrate the way UDL can 
leverage the power of digital technology to develop a more inclusive and supportive learning environment for students with neurodiverse differences in HE.


Digital assessment for personal development: Insight from a Level 7 module

Dr Charlotte Chandler. College of Science and Engineering. 

This presentation will provide an overview of the two summative digital assessments used on the level 7 module ‘Psychology of Exercise and Physical Activity’, namely a PebblePad e-Portfolio and a recorded video reflection. The presentation will also cover the benefits of digital approaches for students’ personal development and how they can provide choice and flexibility in assessment. Recommendations for how digital assessment can be used to promote student creativity and ownership and support the development of their theoretical knowledge, applied skills, and self-awareness will be offered.

Session B3 – K102 (Kirtley Building)

Assessment feedback as an additional opportunity for embedding education for sustainability in the curriculum

Dr Uche Okere and Dr Becky Rawson. College of Science and Engineering.

Education is a critical tool for achieving sustainable development hence the continuous drive for effective approaches in embedding sustainability in Education. In addition to increasing sustainability content in teaching material, we propose that including sustainability in standard student assessment feedback will increase students’ confidence in their sustainability competencies and equip them for making meaningful contributions to the realisation of a sustainable future.

In this workshop, participants will review a Sustainability Assessment feedback template and explore its use on a chosen assessment. Colleagues will leave the workshop with an example of improving students’ confidence in their sustainability knowledge, skills and attitudes.

Session B4 – K103 (Kirtley Building)

Two presentations in a 45-minute session

Sustainable tourism education in a rapidly transitioning industry: The future of tourism education in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) region

Dr Ali Abdallah and Dr Ivan Ninov. Al Rayyan International University College.

In a rapidly transitioning tourism industry, tourism education is expected to reflect the transitions of the industry while delivering sustainable programmes. Sustainable programmes secure the quality and standards of education while delivering the latest industry knowledge is essential. The research explores the gap in sustainable teaching in higher education and rapid tourism industry transformations. The research focus is on the GCC, and three higher education institutions that deliver tourism programmes are chosen for this research. Understanding the gaps between sustainable education and industry transitions will ensure effective education is delivered in classrooms.


Teaching with impact: The use of live briefs to develop employability skills and confidence

Sanita Nezirovic and Emmie Wood (Student). College of Science and Engineering.

Struggling to help your students find industry work experience? We have found a solution – Live Briefs! In a Live Brief, students work independently with employers and organisations, on existing challenges faced by the industry. The work created by students is used by the organisations in national databases and research initiatives for consideration of current industry practice reviews and future directions.

Session B5 – K104 (Kirtley Building)

Two presentations in a 45-minute session

Bridging cultures - Meeting the needs of international postgraduate students undertaking postgraduate studies in disability and inclusion. 

Wendy Conrad. College of Arts, Humanities and Education.

How can the traditional concepts of disability and inclusion truly be internationalised to bridge the multiple paradigms of international students? Concepts of disability, special education and inclusion have historically been rooted in western hegemonic discourse, so for those students undertaking pathways in SEN/D whose paradigms do not fit with this viewpoint, there can be multiple conceptual challenges. Using a framework of inclusivity and equity, this presentation will explore how bridges of commonality can break down conceptual barriers and strengthen and unite a classroom full of multiple truths enabling the voices of all students to be heard.


Identifying potential barriers to D/deaf students undertaking undergraduate courses within Biosciences. 

Dr Louise Robinson. College of Science and Engineering.

Have you ever taught a D/deaf student? I haven't, and I would like to try and understand why. After ten years teaching at Derby, with the Royal School for the Deaf just over the road, is there more which needs to be done to support students entering a science-based career? Although considering science-based courses and education, this presentation aims to promote all those in attendance to consider the inclusivity of their field to D/deaf and Hard of Hearing students.

Session C1 – HEAP Lecture Theatre

Two presentations in a 45-minute session

The impact of peer-teaching at the University of Derby's Covid-19 Asymptomatic Test Centre

Dr Laurice Fretwell, Dr Bill Whitehead and Nang-Tege Ekumah (Student). College of Science and Engineering.

The University of Derby set up an asymptomatic test centre (ATC) during the COVID-19 pandemic. This was initially staffed by academic staff and trained student workers; however, this model was not sustainable once academic staff had to return to their usual duties. For continuity of service, selected student workers were upskilled to become student supervisors who had responsibility for training, assessment, and leadership of student workers. This presentation reviews the impact of this formal approach to peer-to-peer training on both student workers and student supervisors and assesses the impact of working at the ATC on their employability skills.


An evaluation of a one-week simulation-based education package designed to support first-year diagnostic radiography students during their clinical placement. 

Alex Partner, Naomi Shiner, Dr Emma Hyde and Sue Errett. College of Health, Psychology and Social Care.

Previous research has shown that Diagnostic Radiography students find the transition from the academic environment to their clinical placement challenging. Alongside this, current NHS workforce shortages and the ongoing impact of COVID-19 are putting increasing pressure on diagnostic services. Simulation-based education (SBE) provides a way to support students’ transition to placement and increase placement capacity. SBE provides a safe environment for students to practice their clinical, technical and communication skills, and develop person-centred approaches. SBE provides rich opportunities for structured reflection and debriefing to maximise learning experiences. In this session, the Radiography team share their experiences of introducing SBE.

Session C2 – OL1 Lecture Theatre

Two presentations in a 45-minute session

Tomorrow and beyond: Age and student identity

Jennie McCann. Lincoln College.

Is age the forgotten protected characteristic? Research in the UK, related to the widening participation agenda, focuses on matters of previous injustice related to class, race, disability and gender. Yet, more than 37% of undergraduate starters are described as ‘mature’ learners. How do providers attract and retain such adult students, when their identity is affected by stereotypes related to age. “I didn't ever think that I would be capable of doing a degree course…I can remember saying to him (tutor), I think I'm probably a bit too old to be starting to do this now” (Student age 50).


Employing authentic assessment and formative feedback to promote deep learning: past research, current projects and future directions

Vic Curtis. College of Business, Law and Social Sciences.

This session will focus on three areas: (i) research undertaken over the last six years which demonstrates embedding experiential authentic assessment and dialogic formative feedback in modules promotes deep approaches to learning and enhances the student experience, (ii) a current EdD project which builds on this body of evidence to determine the relationships between student activity, formative feedback and levels of deep and surface learning, and (iii) how this ‘ready-made research project’ could be further expanded by anyone into broader pedagogical research across the wider University (including the new Business School).

Session C3 – K203 (Kirtley Building)

Two presentations in a 45-minute session

Using discussion-based teaching to enhance postgraduate students' engagement

Dr Charlotte Chandler and Dr Andy Hooton. College of Science and Engineering.

This presentation will provide examples of discussion-based teaching techniques with postgraduate students and offer insight into where this has been successful, as well as the challenges associated with the approach. The use of discussion-based teaching to develop a community of practice will be reflected within the presentation, and the authors will share some critical reflections on why discussion-based teaching can be of value to the postgraduate student learning experience. Recommendations for how discussion-based teaching can be embedded within postgraduate modules will be offered.


Negotiating relationships in the language of written feedback: a big-data, corpus linguistics approach to understanding the dimensions of written feedback

Dr Melanie Pope and Connor Mulcahy (Student). Provost, Learning and Teaching.

What is the reality of written feedback practice as seen from a big-data perspective? We tend to get a close-up view of our own, or our programme team's, feedback practices. Looking at a large sample of data to explore patterns in written feedback practice is in many ways more revealing of repeated linguistic and structural patterns that indicate commonalities in our practice. This presentation will share some initial findings from a pilot study of a large sample of written feedback across disciplines, and how these reveal practices focused on negotiating and preserving staff-student relationships.

Session C4 – K102 (Kirtley Building)

Welcome to a virtual classroom: Exploring the use of VR as a learning tool

Dr Vladimir Antchak, Ewen Crilley, Patrick Merritt and Chris Windmill. College of Business, Law and Social Sciences.

A showcase of Virtual Reality (VR) Hospitality and Events Learning Spaces. These spaces were developed to be used as learning tools on selected modules to enhance student learning and support the use of integrated technologies in the visitor economy sector. The success of the events and hospitality sector, in general, is affected by the application of technologies, the process of integration of VR has become a new space for attendees' interaction and collaboration. This technologically advanced environment requires a diverse set of skills and competencies that graduates will develop through designing and using virtual spaces that reflect the industry.