Learning and Teaching Matters

Author Archive

I was pleasantly surprised to find that the University’s Academic Skills website, which is maintained by LATEU, comes up as the #1 entry when you search Google for ‘academic skills’. I don’t keep an eye on our ranking – but was just creating a sample screenshot about how students search for resources on the web.

If I had to say why we have achieved this ranking, it is because the materials provided are good quality and openly available for all to use. We regularly get emails from around the world asking if it is OK to use them – and we always say “yes, provided you attribute the University”.

(but if you search for ‘study skills’ we are only number 22 – so we won’t let it go to our head!)


The Guardian newspaper published an article today by our VC, Professor Don Nutbeam, which argues in favour of greater flexibility and adaptability in university curriculum structures to  prepare students for a future work environment which is far more complex and changeable than their parents’ .


A new date, Monday 14 December, 1-30 – 4.40, has been confirmed for this workshop, which was originally scheduled for 6 October but cancelled due to illness. Further details and an application form are available on the LATEU website.

The workshop will introduce approaches to pastoral care and dealing with difficult situations and provide information on the services offered by the University that you can tap into to support students.

We have added three new dates for this workshop: 11 December 2009, 11 March 2010 and 9 June 2010.

This course is designed to provide an insight to the history and application of relevant regulations and good practice guidance within clinical research. Delegates will be introduced to the principles of Research Governance and Good Clinical Practice and will be equipped with skills to ensure good conduct of clinical research. Further details here.

The awaited response of the Government to August’s Select Committee Report into Students and Universities was published on the 20th October.  A copy can be found on the parliament website at  http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200809/cmselect/cmsctech/991/991.pdf


LATEU is running a lunchtime session about TeamPoll, an online peer feedback system, on Tuesday 13 October from 12.45 to 2.00 in the LATEU training room (25/3077). A buffet lunch will be provided for all people who book a place – please email lateu@soton.ac.uk and note that we are limited to 20 places.

TeamPoll is an online peer-review system that enables students to provide the other members of their group with feedback on their teamwork. It uses a simple traffic-light analogy to indicate overall performance and also requires the selection of two comments that provide more specific feedback, such as “good attitude” or “better contributions needed”. It should be noted that each student has to rate their own performance as well as that of their team members. The feedback generated can be used in a formative way to encourage improved performance, and/or summatively to modify the final grade achieved by each student.

The session will start at 12.45 with lunch, a short presentation and discussion about the peer review process. From 1.15 until 2.00 there will be a hands-on session that shows the process by which a tutor creates a poll, students vote and all view the feedback that results.

TeamPoll was developed by Dr Kenji Takeda (Engineering Sciences) using a grant from the University’s ‘Learning and Teaching Enhancement Fund’. If you cannot make the session, more information is available at http://www.elearning.soton.ac.uk/guide/peer_review.htm including three short videos that show how the system is used. It also includes details on how you can request an account and use TeamPoll in your teaching.

RIS have just published their seminar programme for the coming year, which aims to help researchers get the most from their research and industry collaborations. Full details on their website.