Sue Bloxham is Visiting Professor at the University of Cumbria and an educational consultant. She has taught in higher education for many years, developing a particular interest in assessment and innovative approaches to learning and teaching. Sue is a regular speaker, contributing keynotes, seminars and workshops to over 30 UK and international universities. She has published widely in the field including the best selling Developing Effective Assessment in Higher Education (Open University Press) with her Cumbria Colleague, Pete Boyd. She was awarded a National Teaching Fellowship in 2007. Sue’s interests focus particularly on how we manage our higher education teaching and assignments to support the achievement of students from under-represented groups, for example contributing a chapter to Reconceptualising Feedback in Higher Education. She has also researched and published on matters such as student skills development, group assessment, feedback, course design and marking. In recent years, her interest in what students need to do to succeed in university assessment has inspired research into how tutors recognise quality in their marking. She has also contributed to the Higher Education Academy’s (HEA) A Marked Improvement guide to developing assessment in the University sector. Current projects include the HEA’s Transforming Assessment Pilot project and an HEA/QAA funded project on the use of academic standards by External Examiners with Prof. Margaret Price from Oxford Brookes University.
Shifting the balance between teaching and learning: creating an active curriculum for a 21st century higher education
Teaching methods in the modern university need to reflect the challenge of educating students with diverse backgrounds, experiences and expectations. The learning outcomes of a 21st century education also create pressure to help students develop a wider set of graduate attributes than in previous generations with an emphasis on skills, self-efficacy and employability. This keynote lecture will consider the contribution of active teaching and participation in learning as a response to these demands. It will draw on both research-based literature and delegates’ personal experiences as teachers to identify and evaluate potential strategies for shifting the balance from teaching to learning in our curriculum. The lecture will debate the challenges of active teaching and model some concrete methods for student engagement in large classes in order to demonstrate the active development of knowledge. It will also consider the integration of teaching and assessment as a key means to generate higher level learning in students.