Summits and Horizons
UCL Teaching and Learning Exchange

UCL Arena presents…

All events are in UCL Arena Room, 1-19 Torrington Place unless otherwise stated.

Follow @uclarena on Twitter for the most up-to-date information.

UCL Arena Exchange Seminars

ReThese seminars are run by UCL staff. They outline examples of good teaching practice and discuss their work with colleagues. All are welcome.

UCL Arena Fellowship applicants can add attendance at these events to their record of professional development activities in Part 2 of their applications.

Date & Time

Session

Wednesday 14 January
10.00-11.00

Using blogs as a tool to develop students’ writing and critical thinking skills

With Kerstin Sailer

Critical thinking and being able to express this in written form is a crucial skill for students in evaluating ideas, applying concepts to real-life situations and solving problems. As a deep approach to learning it is inherently difficult to teach.

 This seminar will present an approach that enables students to develop their writing and critical thinking skills using blogs as a tool. This is based on experiences from the module ‘Buildings Organisations Networks’(BON) in the MSc Spatial Design: Architecture and Cities at the Bartlett Faculty of the Built Environment at UCL, where blogs formed an integral part of the teaching and learning experience as well as the assessment.

The seminar will give a brief overview of the approach and then focus on a round table discussion to share questions, views, perspectives and ideas to apply this approach to different teaching practices and settings.

UKPSF Areas:

  • A1 Design and plan learning activities and/or programmes of study
  • A3 Assess and give feedback to learners
  • K3 How students learn, both generally and within their subject/disciplinary area(s)
  • K4 The use and value of appropriate learning technologies

To register, please visit the Single Training Booking System

Monday 26 January
13.00-14.00

Developing Students' Research, Writing and Collaborative Skills Using Wikis

With Parama Chaudhury, UCL Economics

We will discuss introducing wikis as a part of required coursework in two undergraduate economics modules. The wiki project had three main objectives: it gave students an opportunity to do a literature survey or other research, it required them to write analytical prose and it facilitated group work. Since our modules tend to be large in number and our student body quite diverse, students don’t often get a chance to write extensively, research or collaborate. The wiki project was a way of getting around this. We will describe the way we set up the wiki activity and present data on student engagement, and evaluation of the project.

To register, please visit the Single Training Booking System.

Monday 26 January

16.00-17.00

Undergraduate Students Interview Researchers in Brain Sciences

With Julie Evans

Please register via the Single Training Booking System.

Wednesday 28 January

13.00-14.00

Team Based Learning (TBL) — an evidence based method of interactive large group teaching.

With Jonathan Cartledge, Consultant Physician & Senior Lecturer in Medical Education

In this session Jonathan will demonstrate Team Based Learning (TBL) as a mechanism of generating interactive teaching to a large group. Developed by Larry Michaelson and used widely in US Higher Education as a method of maximising student-student interaction in large groups, Jonathan has been using this technique for several years with undergraduate and postgraduate audiences with very positive results. Student feedback suggests they really enjoy being taught in this way, and it is a method that can be easily adopted to liven up large group teaching.

Please register via the Single Training Booking System.

Monday 2 March
16.00-17.00

Introduction and assessment of a new robust peer-assessment in Engineering

With Pilar Garcia Souto, Medical Physics and Biomedical Engineering

Peer assessment has been gradually introduced at university level as it enhances students’ learning and development of critical skills. In this seminar a new peer assessment method, investigated in collaboration with Gwyneth Hughes (Institute of Education), which addresses the weaknesses of the traditional peer assessment and ensures that students engage and see it as a learning tool and an accurate and reliable way of assessing their work will be introduced. It promotes students’ discussion/support and engages them in the assessment of feedback which increases their learning and critical thinking. Following the student’s preferences, an online system is used and anonymity is ensured.

UKPSF Areas:

  • A1 Design and plan learning activities and/or programmes of study
  • A3 Assess and give feedback to learners
  • A4 Develop effective learning environments and approaches to student support and guidance
  • K2 Appropriate methods for teaching and learning in the subject area and at the level of the academic programme
  • K3 How students learn, both generally and within their subject/disciplinary area(s)
  • K4 The use and value of appropriate learning technologies
  • K6 The implications of quality assurance and quality enhancement for academic and professional practice with a particular focus on teaching

To register, please visit the Single Training Booking System.

Wednesday 4 March 2015
16.00-17.00

Interdisciplinary Learning: Student Voices

With Carl Gombrich

The seminar proposes to look at an analysis of interviews with 12 successful Art and Sciences BASc students after the completion of their 2nd year of the degree.

Particular attention will be paid to 3 topical yet contentious questions:

1. Is teaching creativity possible? 
2. What is interdisciplinarity from an undergraduate's perspective?
3. Can we differentiate between the value of knowledge vs skills from an undergraduate's perspective?

UK PSF Areas:

  • A4 Develop effective learning environments and approaches to student support and guidance
  • K3 How students learn, both generally and within their subject/disciplinary areas
  • V1 Respect individual learners and diverse learning communities
  • V3 Use evidence-informed approaches and the outcomes from research, scholarship and continuing professional development

To register, please visit the Single Training Booking System

Monday 9 March
11.00-12.00

Introducing e-learning environments to the Biomedical Engineering Programme: Complex quizzes and problems with real time feedback and personalised training

With Pilar Garcia Souto, Medical Physics and Biomedical Engineering

We aim to offer a 24 hour learning environment where students can test their understanding of a subject and obtain real time feedback and personalised training addressing their particular needs. For example, a student solving a mathematical problem will be shown if each of their steps is correct, and be offered assistance and examples when needed. This seminar will look at the implimentation of a system at UCL and more specifically in the Integrated Engineering Programme that can be used for formative self-assessment or summative coursework. This system improves the teaching and learning as: (1) increases the revision and application activities which promote and reinforce learning; (2) students can identify and address their weak points at an early stage and allow lecturers to adapt their teaching to the class; (3) addresses the current limitations of out-of-class contact time that result in the learning process being stopped/delayed. The benefits of using the new system will be quantified initially by students’ perceptions of the system. Modules have also been selected carefully to allow for direct comparisons of students’ academic performance.

UKPSF Areas:

  • A1 Design and plan learning activities and/or programmes of study
  • A3 Assess and give feedback to learners
  • A4 Develop effective learning environments and approaches to student support and guidance
  • K2 Appropriate methods for teaching and learning in the subject area and at the level of the academic programme
  • K3 How students learn, both generally and within their subject/disciplinary area(s)
  • K4 The use and value of appropriate learning technologies
  • K5 Methods for evaluating the effectiveness of teaching
  • K6 The implications of quality assurance and quality enhancement for academic and professional practice with a particular focus on teaching

To register, please visit the Single Training Booking System.

Tuesday 10 March
13.00-14.00

Improving NSS Assessment and Feedback Scores

*Repeat session due to demand*

In this seminar  Dr Klaus Abels and Dr Alastair McClelland will talk about how they have changed assessment on their programmes. Drawing on recent examples, they will show how changes have affected students’ perception of assessment and feedback leading to improved NSS scores. There will be time for discussion and sharing ideas for improving assessment and feedback.

To register, please visit the Single Training Booking System.

Wednesday 18 March

13.00-14.00

Using web-based audience response systems to engage students.

With Parama Chaudhury, UCL Economics

Using clickers to engage students in large classes is fairly common. Parama extends this to the use of web-based audience response systems (ARS) which allow free response, make it easier to track individual students and can be used on students’ own devices. In this  session she will discuss how she has used two different ARS in several different types of classes, and how the special features of this kind of ARS have affected both the content and the methods of her teaching.

Please register via the Single Training Booking System.

Monday 23 March 13.00-14.00

Students as Researchers: Investigating PhD Supervision and Feedback

With Steven Bloch, UCL Brain Sciences

Whilst all UCL PhD students are encouraged to complete an annual survey, there have been no attempts to establish what issues matter to these students particularly in the areas of academic supervision and feedback. In the past year focus groups have been organised in the Faculty of Brain Sciences to explore student experiences and views. Uniquely, students were invited to facilitate these groups themselves. In this seminar the preliminary results will be presented together with reflections on the process. Participants will be invited to explore the potential for working with students as researchers in their own areas of teaching, learning and supervision.

Please register via the Single Training Booking System.

Thursday 23 April 13.00-14.00

Competence Measurement in Leadership Skills in Health and Social Care Disciplines

With Neil Ralph and Jarrod Cabourne, Department of Clinical, Health and Educational Psychology

The NHS Clinical Leadership Competency Framework (2011) states that as well as being competent in their chosen clinical discipline, health and social care professionals must demonstrate skills in leadership and management. To ensure professionals are equipped with the relevant skills, there is the need to identify and develop robust assessment methodology. In this session a review of the literature identifying existing methods of assessment in the development of leadership competences relevant to vocational training within the School of Life and Medical Science will be presented. The review will identify and evaluate how health and social care disciplines have approached the issue of competency assessment.

Please register via the Single Training Booking System.

Wednesday 17 June 13.00-14.00

Using ipsative assessment to motivate all learners

With Gwyneth Hughes, UCL Institute of Education

Learners can be motivated through competitive marks and grades but learners who do not perform highly may become demotivated and even high performers may experience pressure and anxiety. In an ipsative assessment learners compete only with themselves. The aim is to improve on a previous performance at the learner’s own pace. The session will explore how both ipsative feedback and ipsative marking can be used in higher education. Participants will be encouraged to think about how elements of ipsative assessment could be introduced into their practice and what the benefits and challenges might be.

Please register via the Single Training Booking System.

Summits and Horizons

Summits and Horizons

The event, a joint venture between CALT and ELE, is a series of lunchtime events looking at new e-learning in UCL in which two or three speakers discuss how they've used new technologies in their teaching.

These sessions are on Mondays, 13.00-14.00, open to all UCL staff and take place in the UCL Arena Room, 1-19 Torrington Place.

Next session: Monday 19 January 2015

Everyone is welcome, tea and coffee is provided.

Future dates:

  • 9th February 2015 - E-Learning Development Grants
  • 16th March 2015 - E-learning and modern languages. With Esther Tarsoly, SSEES
  • 11th May 2015 - Peermark. With Lawrence Bellamy, Biosciences
  • 8th June 2015 - E-learning for formative assessment. With Alex Murray​, Bartlett

There is no need to book. Please just come along.

UCL Arena Essentials

Topical lunchtime sessions for anyone who teaches and/or supports students' learning at UCL.

All sessions are 13.00-14.00.

To book, please click on the title of the session to be taken through to the Single Training Booking System.

Session Title Dates

Effective Lecturing

This session is based on experiential learning. We'll try out different ways of making lectures effective. Participants will consider if/how they would like to use these approaches in their lectures.

Thursday 13 November

Monday 2 February

Evaluating Your Teaching

This session will introduce approaches to gathering and analysing feedback from your students with the aim of improving your teaching.

Monday 17 November

Wednesday 11 March

Wednesday 3 June

Helping students understand assessment

Students need help to understand tutor expectations, tutor feedback and to act on feedback to improve their work. This session explores ways of helping students understand assessment.

Wednesday 19 November

Wednesday 11 February

Wednesday 13 May

Peer Observation of Teaching

This session outlines engaging approaches to collaborative work to develop teaching.

Thursday 20 November

Wednesday 21 January

Tuesday 17 March

Thursday 21 May

Designing Sessions and Courses

This session will get you started on designing teaching, whether degrees, courses or sessions.

Wednesday 26 November

Wednesday 4 March

Tuesday 19 May

Giving Quicker Feedback

We look at ten ways to give quicker feedback to students and think about why quicker feedback is important.

Monday 1 December

Monday 2 March

Wednesday 10 June

Students Learning through Groupwork

This session includes managing student group work, peer review and feedback.

Wednesday 3 December

Thursday 12 February

Thursday 14 May

Personal Tutoring

This session will review the main purposes of personal tutoring and discuss ways of achieving them.

Thursday 4 December

Thursday 26 February

Wednesday 20 May

Equality and Diversity in Teaching

An interactive seminar-style session looking at the Equality Act 2010 and its implications for inclusive teaching practices

Thursday 11 December

Tuesday 3 February

Tuesday 5 May


If there is another topic not listed here that you'd like to be included or would like to contribute to, please email arena@ucl.ac.uk with your suggestion.

Object-based research - With UCL Museums and Collections

Museum objects can be employed in a variety of ways, to enhance and disseminate subject specific knowledge and to facilitate the acquisition of research, communication, practical and observational skills. Students can research objects, inspiring discussion, group work and lateral thinking – all essential key, transferable, skills. In this session you will have the chance to participate in an object based learning (OBL) session, review existing OBL resources and discuss the development of new OBL resources tailored to your student’s needs.

Session dates and times:

16.00-17.00, 13th January 2015, Grant Museum

16.00-17.00, 17th March 2015, Grant Museum

16.00-17.00, 19th May 2015, Grant Museum

Please Register via the Single Training Booking System

Research Supervision


If you would like to lead an Exchange Seminar, please complete the proposal form.


Centre for Higher Education Studies (CHES) Seminar Programme, Institute of Education

The CHES seminars provide a forum for debate and analysis of issues affecting policy, practice and research in higher education, supporting the exchange of views and experiences across higher education.  Seminars are normally held at 17.30 hrs, on the first Tuesday of the month at the Institute of Education, 20 Bedford Way. For more information, please visit their website.

All UCL staff are invited to attend these free events. Please email Alison Peacock to register.


Other series interested individuals can attended at UCL:

  • EconomicsEducation, informal discussions about teaching methods and materials in the UCL Department of Economics.

Page last modified on 06 oct 14 11:27