Making sense of biophilia in enterprise: A real life story of sustainability.

29th November 2017: a joint CELT SEEG event

Sharon Jackson shared stories of her journey from senior executive in the global electronics industry to researcher, teacher and motivational speaker on sustainability issues.

Dismayed at the detrimental environmental impacts of her own and other industries, Sharon established the European Sustainability Academy in Crete. Here, in an off-grid, environmentally low impact building, ESA offers opportunities for academics, business leaders and others to engage constructively with the challenges of sustainability.

 Sharon admitted that addressing sustainability agendas has been thoroughly depressing at times. The environment we work in is frequently not conducive to wellness, and it helps explain the disconnect between the intention to do good in the world and our ability to actually achieve it.  The answer to that challenge includes two important elements: first, the need to identify ‘anchors’ – ideas for change that persist outside and beyond the discussion about change, and which allow us to make sense of the change process in the long run; and second, a community which shares the same understanding and commitment to achieving sustainability.




Join the debate – #TESS_HE

Join the debate – #TESS_HE

The Higher Education Academy is creating a global platform to provide an opportunity to learn and share from each other; to better understand the challenges and opportunities so that excellent teaching at all levels continues to evolve and thrive everywhere.

  • What are the future challenges facing teaching in HE?
  • How is teaching excellence best achieved?
  • ‘What works’ in enhancing student success?

We want to hear from you in this debate – #TESS_HE

This is your chance to have your say. You can leave a comment or join in social media discussion using the hashtag #TESS_HE, or submit a blog or thought piece that we could publish on your behalf.

A little light relief!

AcademiaObscura on Twitter is probably the world’s greatest source of (mostly) intelligent academic jokes, snide footnotes and entertaining abstracts.

”Teaching is not to be regarded as a static accomplishment like riding a bicycle or keeping a ledger; it is, like all arts of high ambition, a strategy in the face of an impossible task.” (Lawrence Stenhouse)

Creativity in practice project starts soon #creativeHE

An open conversation on the #creativeHE platform December 4th-8th To join in simply click on the link
Being creative and producing a creative artefact or performance means different things in different practice settings as people interact with their environment and everything in it to achieve something of value. In some practice contexts the purpose of practice is to harness individuals’ creativity

By ‘practice’ we mean ‘action rather than [just] thought or ideas’1, ‘the application or use of an idea, belief, or method, as opposed to theories relating to it for example, the practice of teaching.’2 The term ‘practice’ does not have to be restricted to professional activity it can also be used to describe the actions and activities relating to a person’s hobbies and interests, being a parent and many other contexts.
But to perform and practice involves developing certain knowledge, skills, behaviours, self-awareness and ways of thinking and interpreting the world that are relevant to that particular area of practice. In order to practice well we have to practise ‘by performing (an activity) or exercise (a skill) repeatedly or regularly in order to acquire, improve or maintain proficiency in it.’2 We are also interested in exploring how people develop themselves through practical experience, education and training and informal interactions with peers, to be able to practice in creative ways.
Invitation to #creativeHE community
This is an open conversation about the relationship of a person’s creativity to their everyday practices and we hope participants will share their stories and perspectives in ways that will help develop better understandings.
The conversation will be curated through Creative Academic Magazine and it will launch Creative Academic’s ‘Creativity in Practice’ project
Norman Jackson and Chrissi Nerantzi

New Publication: An analysis of the factors that affect engagement of Higher Education Teachers with an Institutional Professional Development Scheme


Kathryn Botham, who is the CELT PSF Lead, recently had an article published in the ‘Innovations in Education and Teaching International Journal’ re. captioned subject.  Please see a short brief below:


An evaluation project was carried out to consider the factors that influence university teachers engagement with an institutional professional development scheme. Data was collected via an online questionnaire followed up by semi-structured interviews. This paper will consider those factors that encourage and act as barriers to engagement. The influence of six cross-thematic factors: Time; Institution; Culture; Management; Individual and Mentorship, on engagement will form the focus of the discussion. The report concludes that the key factor influencing engagement was the presence of intrinsic motivation. Extrinsic motivation was a less effective motivator for HE teachers lacking intrinsic motivation.

If you would like to read this article further please click here:




Student Engagement in Higher Education Journal

Did you know that the Student Engagement in Higher Education Journal is edited in CELT? The current issue brings together a series of articles which show the value of student engagement in the curriculum and daily life of universities. Alison Cook-Sather and Peter Felten provide an inspiring introduction to the issue, with their opinion piece which relates pedagogical partnership to feelings of belonging for both students and members of staff. This theme is illustrated starkly in an open and honest piece by Jasmin Brooke, who is a current undergraduate student in the UK. She talks about how she overcame feelings of loneliness and difficulty in integration by engaging with student partnership activities and I applaud her generosity in sharing her experiences; I am sure that many staff and students will identify with her feelings and that it will prompt discussion and planning about ways to provide similar opportunities.

There are three articles which examine the different conceptions of student engagement and the way it surfaces in university activities. Tom Lunt analyses student discourse in an online environment for clues to the ways digital literacy and social capital may relate to student engagement. Sandeep Gakhal et al analyse student satisfaction data to assess differences in experiences of students who attend a UK university depending on whether they are from the UK or other countries and found that student engagement in large classes may have been more of a factor in the data they examined. This has implications for course development and planning. Inger Mewburn considers whether student engagement can be rewarded using digital badges; as well as explaining their use, she shares the results of a pilot study which reveals the complexity of such an initiative.

Our five case studies provide glimpses into a wide range of considerations of student engagement. Within the curriculum, Helen Page et al describe a project to engage Biosciences students in research-informed teaching and its effects on their skills and confidence.  Michael Nelson and Simon Tweddell consider academic staff reactions to the introduction of team-based learning and make some general recommendations for others who may want to implement the approach.

Looking at extra-curricular activity, Katie Strudwick et al have provided a piece written in partnership with student participants, which considers active student engagement in extra-curricular activities and suggest some ways to make this more effective. In another student-staff jointly-authored piece, Licia Calagno et al describe a review of a new personal tutoring system and its impact on student engagement. Katie Carpenter and Claire Kennan share their experience of a cross-disciplinary project in which theatre skills were employed to support students in developing their public-speaking skills.

If you would like to get involved with the journal as an author or reviewers, please do get in touch. We are always happy to discuss ideas at an early stage, and we have a mentoring system in place for novice authors and reviewers, so don’t let lack of confidence dissuade you from considering the journal.

Full Contents list

Cook-Sather, A. and Felten, P. (2017). “Where Student Engagement Meets Faculty Development: How Student-Faculty Pedagogical Partnership Fosters a Sense of Belonging.” Student Engagement in Higher Education Journal 1(2): 3-11.

Brooke, J. (2017). “Mental Health and Student Engagement – A Personal Account.” Student Engagement in Higher Education Journal 1(2): 12-15.

Lunt, T. (2017). “Police, politics and democratic learning communities in Higher Education.” Student Engagement in Higher Education Journal 1(2): 16 – 39.

Mewburn, I. (2017). “A PhD should not look like it’s fun: an actor network theory analysis of digital badges.” Student Engagement in Higher Education Journal 1(2): 40 – 53.

Gakhal, S., et al. (2017). “Evaluating student satisfaction at a top-performing UK university.” Student Engagement in Higher Education Journal 1(2): 54 – 70.

Page, H., et al. (2017). “Engaging students in bioscience research to improve their learning experience.” Student Engagement in Higher Education Journal 1(2): 71 – 80.

Strudwick, K., et al. (2017). “Understanding the gap – to participate or not? Evaluating student engagement and active participation.” Student Engagement in Higher Education Journal 1(2): 81-87.

Calcagno, L., et al. (2017). “Building Relationships : A Personal Tutoring Framework to Enhance Student Transition and Attainment.” Student Engagement in Higher Education Journal 1(2): 88-99.

Carpenter, K. R. and Kennan, C. (2017). “Developing Public Speaking Skills in Undergraduates: A Two-Day Event.” Student Engagement in Higher Education Journal 1(2): 117-124.

Nelson., M. and Tweddell, S. (2017). “Leading Academic Change: Experiences of Academic Staff Implementing Team-Based Learning.” Student Engagement in Higher Education Journal 1(2): 100 – 116.

reblogged: next #LTHEchat > lecture capture and in-class engagement >>> 22 Nov > Join us at 8pm UK time!

The next LTHEChat Wednesday 22nd November 8-9PM (GMT) will be based on questions from John Couperthwaite and Stephen Powell on lecture capture and in-class engagement. Bio John is an experienced educational professional who has worked within the higher education sector for over 20 years. His activities in technology enhanced learning have embraced leadership of large infrastructure […]

via LTHEchat #97 “I can spend more time paying attention: lecture capture and in-class engagement” with John Couperthwaite @johncoup and Stephen Powell @stephenp. — #LTHEchat