Teaching & Learning


Teaching difficult and/or sensitive topics: Three starting points, 25 Jan 2024 (online)

25 January 2024, 12:30 pm–1:00 pm

Staff in a meeting, woman talking and gesticulating

In this short online ‘taster’ session, we will explore some of the challenges and opportunities for educators when planning to teach difficult and/or sensitive topics in higher education.

This event is free.

Event Information

Open to

UCL staff | UCL students


Sold out




Eugenics Legacy Education Project, UCL Arena Centre


This event will take place online.
Details and registration will be sent to you.
United Kingdom

Thursday 25 January 2025, 12:30 - 13:00 (online)

About this session

Come along to this lunchtime session and think about the key issues for your own practice and what is ‘difficult’ or ‘sensitive’ about curriculum areas.

We will explore three tools as starting points for developing your teaching approaches, curriculum content or assessment activities. 

Using UCL’s historic links to eugenics as a starting point, we will explore some foundational concepts will help you develop your confidence, prepare for challenges, and develop creative educational activities that will engage students and develop your own inclusive practice. 

Learning objectives

In the session we will:

  • Define what makes a teaching focus or area ‘difficult’ and link this to your own teaching context
  • Discuss the importance of teaching 'difficult' topics
  • Embrace the opportunities for creative and inclusive approaches to teaching ‘difficult’ topics by offering three tools to experiment with in your own module/programme.


By the end of the session, we encourage you to reflect upon:

  • Your increased awareness of challenges and opportunities when teaching difficult and/or sensitive topics
  • Your preparedness for teaching difficult and/or sensitive topics and to identify areas that you want to develop in your own module/programme
  • How you explain and justify your choice of teaching approaches and strategies to colleagues and students.

No preparation needed

You might already be teaching difficult and/or sensitive topics, or you may be planning to do so in the coming academic year. You might be teaching issues related to eugenics or want to incorporate more references to UCL’s legacy of eugenics as it relates to your area of disciplinary expertise.