ADEE special interest Group

ADEE special interest group
Dr James Field, School of Dental Sciences,JamesField has been appointed chair of a new ADEE pan-European special interest group in clinical skills teaching that will run over 3 years. The aims for the first meeting are:

  • Create an international forum for developing innovative clinical skills teaching methods
  • Give consideration to supportive materials for clinical skills teaching
  • Compare and share good clinical skills teaching practice across Europe

ULTSEC innovation fund 2015: How to facilitate reading for undergraduate psychology students

Helen St Clair-ThompsonDr Helen St Clair-Thompson as project lead with Patrick Rosenkranz, Effy Tzemou, Tascha Clapperton, Amy Fielden, Sue Thorpe, and Gavin Oxburgh, from the School of Psychology have been awarded a 2014/15 ULTSEC Innovation Fund (£1520) to investigate “How to facilitate reading for undergraduate psychology students”.

The project aims to design and implement a method for facilitating reading using a series of structured reading groups. These are likely to use a flipped classroom approach, requiring preparation before the sessions, with the sessions themselves involving activities such as debates and presentations. The project will also involve an initial literature review and an evaluation of the reading groups.

Important Educational Conferences 2016

steve (2)As there are lots of education conferences likely to be of interest to staff in FMS, it is hard to provide comprehensive listings of them all but here are some of the most important ones.

In medicine and dentistry there are long-established associations (AMEE, ASME and ADEE to name but a few) that organise annual or more regular conferences. Many staff attend these events already but we advertise them here to encourage anybody, but especially new staff, who may not be familiar with the work of these associations, to encourage them to attend if they are relevant to their work.

Association for Medical Education in Europe

Annual conference: Barcelona, 27th-31st August, 2016

Association for the Study of Medical Education

Annual conference: Belfast, 5th-8th July 2016 

Association for Dental Education in Europe
Annual conference: Barcelona, 30th August -2nd September 2016 (provisional)

Many professional bodies have active education committees and also organise educational symposia as part of their scientific meetings. The Physiological, Anatomical Society, British Pharmacological and Biochemical Societies are all active in this regard. These education events are usually well-attended but informal events and provide good opportunities, within a supportive environment, for dissemination of T&L projects. Again I would encourage staff to attend meetings relevant to their area of interest as they can be a good source of ideas and to become involved, as a number of you already are, with the educational activities of your own professional bodies.

The Physiological Society

Annual conference: Venue and Date to be announced but likely to be early July 2016.

The British Psychological Society

Annual Conference: Nottingham, 26th to 28th April 2016

Then there are the large national and international educational conferences. Two of these stand out as being especially significant, ECER (the conference of the European Educational Research Association) and BERA Conference (British Educational Research Association). One of the things that I hope might arise as an output from EQUATE is an FMS contribution to one or other of these meetings.

British Educational Research Association

Annual conference: Venue and Date to be announced but likely to be mid September 2016.

European Educational Research Association

Annual Conference: Dublin, 28th August 2016

Look out for reminders from ERDP for future conference submission deadlines. Also, if you know of a conference that you think might be of interest to others please let us know and we will advertise it through the newsletter.

Professor Steve McHanwell, Director, ERDP.


ULTSEC innovation fund 2015: Digital capabilities and expectations or prospective students

laura delgaty2Dr Laura Delgaty (SME) as project lead with Dr Joanna Matthan , Dr Sally Mumford, Dr Clare Guilding and  Lynne Rawles (Graduate School) have been awarded a 2014/15 strategic ULTSEC Innovation Fund (£9500) to investigate “Digital Capabilities and Expectations of Prospective Students: Preparing Newcastle University for Learning and Teaching of the Future”.

It is hoped this project will influence Newcastle University’s Technology Enhanced learning strategy as it is developed for the next five years.  The project will elicit views of young people from schools across the region around their use of technology within learning.  In particular data concerning widening participation and gender differences will be collected to gain insight about the heterogeneity of the student population.  This research should help shape thinking relating to technology in both the teaching and learning of future students.

Enterprise for Learning – A Resource for the Faculty


Alecia Dunn My role is to work with students and staff within the Faculty of Medical Sciences to support new and existing curricular and co-curricular interventions that enhance students’ enterprise skills and entrepreneurial learning.

The words ‘enterprise’ and ‘entrepreneurship’ have a plethora of connotations. Without a contextual basis this can be very off-putting. I am keen to establish what we mean by ‘enterprise’, and in particular, why it is important to medical sciences.

Our support works along an enterprise spectrum; enterprise skills (e.g. soft skills), leading to entrepreneurial learning (commercial and business awareness within the context of the curriculum) and entrepreneurship (starting an actual business) – all of which can be applied to learning contexts. Enterprise skills development activities include the prospective Enterprise Skills for Psychologist session under development for 2016 stage 1 psychology students. Examples of interventions related to entrepreneurial learning include the Dental Enterprise Workshops for 4th year dentistry students, looking at the underpinnings of running a practice, and supporting the Business for the Bioscientist module within biomedical sciences. Entrepreneurship takes the form of working with students and graduates interested in starting a business, such as Stuart Maitland, co-founder of the medical education platform, Mediwikis, and recent winner of the prestigious Santander Universities Enterprise Awards and £20,000 cash prize.

For the life sciences, innovation and problem-solving are imperative. Students, researchers and practitioners come across unique everyday problems – and are in fact the best placed to solve them. However, they often don’t perceive themselves as ‘problem-solvers’ or ‘enterprising’, and our interest lies in developing opportunities for students to re-think their role as solvers and innovators within the context of their learning. The QAA report (2012) on enterprise and entrepreneurship education within HE highlights the capacity for enterprise to simultaneously enhance contextual learning and provide transdisciplinary knowledge and skills, applicable for a jobs market that is increasingly demanding ‘portfolio careers’ and wider knowledge of business demands. This is especially apparent in the health services, where more often, successful delivery is based on a premise of innovative practices, adaptability and cost-effectiveness. My role is to ultimately create and increase opportunities where students can develop the preparedness they require to navigate meaningful careers in a changing world.

I am organising a lunch for academics who are interested in developing areas of the curriculum where enterprise/entrepreneurial learning would enhance students’ educational experience, and would welcome opportunity to discuss this further.

Alecia Dunn, Entrepreneurial Development Officer, Entrepreneurial Development Unit (EDU), Careers Service

ASME Researching Medical Education Conference 18th November 2015

This ASME one-day conference is for all those interested in medical or clinical education research as an academic discipline. The RME programme includes a Master Class where the audience will discuss the challenges of conducting research using the examples provided by successful applicants. The focus of the discussion will be to identify and share potential solutions to common challenges.  If you want to submit an example the deadline is 22nd September.

Strategic support for education training

The Faculty recognise the need to invest in the development of key skills relating to education delivery and assessment for staff.  If you didn’t already know, you can apply for funding to attend and/or present at appropriate education meetings such as ADEE, AMEE, ASME etc in the following ways:

The School of Dental Sciences: submit an application form to the Board of Studies Strategy Group. Form can be requested from

The School of Medical Education: submit an application form to the School Executive Group. Form can be requested from