New HEA Fellows & Associate FellowsMonday, 05 October 2020
Whilst coping with lockdown, the transition to working from home, and preparing for online teaching in the autumn, many of our new lecturers and teaching fellows have also been students on the Academic Practice Programme (APP) this year. After a challenging time for everyone and following a visit by our External Examiner we are delighted to confirm the successful awards of 58 new Associate Fellowships (AFHEA) and 45 full HEA Fellowships (FHEA).
The approach of the APP has always been to model effective practice and provide opportunities for participants to work with colleagues across the institution. This year, rather than model ‘in class’ practice, we modelled effective pedagogies online, demonstrating ways of supporting students, maintaining interactivity and still enabling small group work. There were times we all missed being in a room together, but we were able to demonstrate ways of staying connected with many participants appreciating the flexibility afforded by teaching and learning online.
Many APP students have mentioned that the programme this year has helped them to approach their own autumn term teaching with greater confidence and enthusiasm. One of our student reps, Dan James, a Lecturer at the Institute of Education, made the following comment: “In this tumultuous time, the APP tutors managed the transition to online teaching really smoothly. They modelled some of the techniques and tools that we could use with our classes brilliantly and I really enjoyed it when we worked in groups online for our group project and micro-teach”.
In addition to the APP, twelve former students successfully completed an optional module, EDMAP3, carrying out research into innovative teaching and learning practices. This module, combined with the APP modules EDMAP1 and 2, means that they have now gained the award of a Postgraduate Certificate in Academic Practice (PGCAP). It is encouraging to see such a positive culture of pedagogic research continuing to thrive at Reading; some participants have already presented their findings at conferences and several are now submitting papers to journals.
Overall, the standard of assessed work across both the APP and PGCAP was outstanding. A record number of distinctions were awarded and we received high praise from our External Examiner about the quality of the work submitted. Many thanks to everyone who has contributed to the APP and PGCAP this year in some way and a very special thanks to all the students for their hard work.
Our Pro-Vice-Chancellors for Education and Student Experience, Professors Julian Park and Elizabeth McCrum, commented that “It is fantastic to see so many colleagues successfully completing the APP and the additional EDMAP3 option. Under challenging circumstances this illustrates a strong commitment to the enhancement of educational practice from both students and tutors. The knowledge and skills gained will, we are sure, continue to enhance the educational experience of students across the University. Well done all!”