Supporting staff to meet increasing challenges in Higher and Further Education

15 November 2018 - 16 November 2018
Location: Macdonald Burlington Hotel, Birmingham

SEDA ANNUAL CONFERENCE 2018 HANDBOOK SEDA ANNUAL CONFERENCE 2018 SURVEYThe last few years have been particularly eventful for both Higher Education (HE) and Further Education (FE). Typical accounts include comments from Phil Baty, Editor of THE, at their Awards in 2017: “This year has been a tough one for universities, which have been buffeted not only by the rapidly changing political environment but also by an unprecedented succession of headlines questioning what they do and how they do it.” (1) In one of many useful analyses from WONKHE, Jonathan Grant suggests we are in a ”’positive moment of uncertainty’ for universities (which) is a chance to re-think their public purpose, creating parity of esteem between education, research and service.” (2)HE and FE confront increasing challenges in terms of accountability to different stakeholders and audiences. As well as issues which have received significant media commentary (such as VC’s pay and the teaching of Brexit), recent and ongoing examples include: 

  • Waves of ‘edusceptics’ (3) including Government pronouncements questioning the value of education whereby students “take on a huge amount of debt … and … some don’t know what they get in return” (Teresa May, October 2017) and leading to the recently announced “independent review of fees and student finance”. (4)
  • Concerns about the powers and responsibilities of the new Office for Students during and following the formal consultation. (5)
  • The recent survey of FE leaders which concluded that pressures had increased significantly over the last year, especially re the two key factors – “better use of data and technology”.(6) 

Given this increased scrutiny and public debate, how can/should staff be best supported to manage their increasingly pressurised workload? How can we ensure that the curriculum satisfies all the established criteria of academic value and integrity, as well as meeting the increasing demands and expectations of students, employers and other influential agencies such as professional bodies etc.?Within this general theme, we welcome proposals from HE and FE which analyse/demonstrate/explain how we can best support staff to meet current and likely future challenges. Proposals should focus on innovation/initiatives and/or evaluation/research in improving and supporting the staff experience in one or more of the following areas:

  • Programme design.
  • Module and learning design.
  • Course/programme assessment and feedback strategies.
  • Professional development for staff.
  • Learning and mobile technologies.
  • Digital capability and institutional support.
  • Curriculum leadership and staff roles.
  • Staff ‘wellbeing’.
  • Apprenticeships.
  • Review and evaluation.
  • Professional identity.
  • Ethical issues/frameworks.


  1. Quoted in THE, 7/12/17, p.13.   
  3. Cowan, 2017, at 
  4. As announced on the BBC website (19/2/18) – 
  5. There was significant debate both during and following the formal consultation ( )


CALL FOR PROPOSALS IS NOW CLOSEDProposals for workshops, discussion papers and panel presentations are invited which address the conference topic and themes. Sessions should involve reflection, exploration, scholarship and evaluation rather than just describing activities undertaken. Proposals should also be grounded in relevant literature and research wherever possible.All SEDA conference sessions involve active participation, discussion and development. Activities should go well beyond simply talking about topics or discussing ideas presented. Activities should involve critique, analysis, development and action planning by and with participants.Session formatsWorkshops: 45 or 90 minutes, which explore research- and practice-informed topics and include high levels of creativity, innovative thinking, critique, practical participation and action planning.Discussion papers: 45 minutes, including no more than 20 minutes presentation with at least 25 minutes of questions and discussion / exploration, describing and exploring research, evaluation, policy and/or practice. The emphasis should be on drawing out lessons for and with others, and involving participants in engaging with your findings and ideas. Sessions that integrate presentation and discussion, rather than presentation followed by Q&A, will generally be preferred.Panel presentations: We are also inviting presentations for chaired panel sessions. In these, sets of three 10-minute presentations on related themes will be followed by 15 minutes of panel / Q&A discussion. You may offer a single panel presentation, or you may, with colleagues, propose a suite of two or three distinct but related panel presentations.Criteria for acceptance of proposalsEach proposal will be reviewed for acceptance at the conference against the following criteria:● Contribution to the conference topic and themes;● Clarity and coherence of the proposal, including title;● Contribution to practice, scholarship and evaluation of educational development in further and higher education, reflecting on and informing the future of educational development;● Likely value of session aims and outcomes to participants;● Consistency with the SEDA Values;● Appropriateness of session structure and specified timings in relation to session type and outcomes; and● Active and productive engagement of participants.Proposal FormProposals should be submitted electronically using this form to the SEDA office by Tuesday, 22nd May 2018 at 5pm.

Julie Hall, Professor of Higher Education and Deputy Vice Chancellor, Solent University Southampton

Julie Hall is a Professor of Higher Education and Deputy Vice Chancellor at Solent University Southampton, having been Director of Learning and Teaching and then Deputy Provost at the University of Roehampton. When Julie arrived at Kingston Polytechnic from the midlands in 1981 to study English and Sociology she was the first in her family to attend university. She went on to teach Sociology in further and higher education and study at Kings College London, attending her first SEDA conference in 1989. Julie is a former co-chair of SEDA. She is a National Teaching Fellow and Principal Fellow of the HEA writing extensively about issues of equity in higher education and students’ experiences of learning, often working in partnership with students themselves. Publications include: Co-creating a Social Justice and Education Curriculum with Undergraduate Students as part of the HEA Innovative Pedagogies series.

Dr Maren Deepwell, Chief Executive, Association for Learning Technology

Maren has been CEO of ALT for 6 years, shaping the direction of education technology and driving the field forward internationally. She is a seasoned keynote speaker, conference convener, experienced chairperson and writes regularly for publications in Higher and Further Education as well as policy development. With a background in Anthropology, Maren’s particular focus is on a critical perspective on the development and future of technology in education, professionalisation and skills in Learning Technology including development of the CMALT accreditation framework and leveraging technology to create greater equity in education. She currently collaborates with colleagues on projects including open policy development, edtech start ups and organisational transformation which puts her commitment to open leadership into practice. Her work is bridging Learning Technology discourse across sectors in the UK and internationally.

twitter @marendeepwell blog

Professor Pauline Kneale, Pro Vice-Chancellor, Teaching and Learning, PedRIO & Educational Development, Plymouth University

Pauline Kneale studied at University College London and University of Bristol, and has held academic posts at Bristol University, Trinity College Dublin, Kingston Polytechnic and the University of Leeds, before moving to Plymouth in 2009. Her early research focused on water quality, chemistry and catchment management.  Her hydrology and teaching and learning expertise was recognized through her Chair appointment as Professor of Applied Hydrology with Learning and Teaching in Geography. She was awarded a National Teaching Fellowship in 2002.  Pauline established the Pedagogic Research Institute and Observatory (PedRIO) at the University of Plymouth, one of the six cross Faculty University Institutes. Now in its ninth year, it has an excellent track record in developing staff as pedagogic researchers, and has developed a conference series which attracts staff from many Universities.  

Pauline’s current research focuses on student skills, Masters level teaching, inclusive assessment and student’s experience of University. Recent research publications in collaboration with the PedRIO team and external partners have addressed: transition issues to university; the retention of non-traditional students; evaluating the role and impact of undergraduate research conferences; evaluating the impact of academic development interventions; and the position of pedagogic research in REF2014.

Macdonald Burlington Hotel in the centre of Birmingham is found amid the stunning architecture of the city’s beautiful New Street. Offering guests an oasis of luxury in the vibrant and culture-rich city of Birmingham, this historic hotel is a short walk from all that’s on offer in the area, with world-class shopping and entertainment on your doorstep.The Scottish Steak Club restaurant is the place to come and taste the finest organic locally sourced food cooked to perfection and served in stylish, relaxing surroundings. For a relaxing drink, meet friends or colleagues in the Burlington Bar, or for indulgent afternoon tea visit our Burlington Lounge.Each one of the rooms has its own individual features and allows you to completely relax. Comfortable rooms are equipped with air conditioning and flat screen digital television – and of course wonderful beds with crisp linen and soft duvets.  They also provide the little extras that count – such as luxury Elemis toiletries and complimentary bottled spring water.Burlington Arcade, 126 New Street Birmingham B2 4JQTel 0344 879 9019 International +44 121 643 9191Road near A38M off M6 J6Rail 2 minute walk from Birmingham New Street StationAir 9 miles from Birmingham International Airport

Conference Package

Early bird price (prior to 5pm Thurs 18 October 2019)

Standard price(after 5pm Thurs 18 October 2019)

Full residential conference delegate (includes one nights accommodation and all meals, including the conference dinner)



Student Concessionary Full residential conference delegate (includes one nights accommodation and all meals, including the conference dinner) Available to Full Time Students Only £405 £465

Non-residential day delegate Thursday 15th November and Friday 16th November (includes lunch and refreshments)



Non-residential day delegate Thursday 15th November (includes lunch and refreshments)



Student Concessionary Non-residential day delegate Thursday 15th November (includes lunch and refreshments) Available to Full Time Students Only £160 £185

Non-residential day delegate Friday 16th November (includes lunch and refreshments)



Student Concessionary Non-residential day delegate Friday 16th November (includes lunch and refreshments) Available to Full Time Students Only £160 £185

Bed and breakfast accommodation for the night of Wednesday 14th November



Conference dinner Thursday 15th November



Wednesday 14th November 2018We will be holding our SEDA Fellowship Annual CPD Event the evening prior to the Conference.Day One09.15 – 09.45 Registration and tea & coffee – HORTON FOYER/BAR09.45 – 09.50 Welcome and Introductions – HORTON A09.50 – 10.10 View from SEDA – HORTON A10.10 – 11.00 Keynote – Developers in a time of challenge and uncertainty  – HORTON A Julie Hall, Professor of Higher Education and Deputy Vice Chancellor, Solent University Southampton 11.00 – 11.25 Coffee Break – HORTON BAR

11.00 – 11.25 New to SEDA? Come and find out more  Clara Davies and Jo Peat (SEDA Co-Chairs) – DINING ROOM

11.25 – 12.10 Parallel Session 1

  1. Learning from Academic Conferences  Celia Popovic and Sue Beckingham – SAPPHIRE SUITE
  2. Taking back ‘space’: writing the manifesto Judith Broadbent, Clare Gormley, Jo Peat – DINING ROOM
  3. Supporting staff to meet current and future challenges around inclusive curriculum design and leadership  Sarah Wilson-Medhurst – OPAL SUITE
  4. What triggers students’ interest during first year university lectures? Sarah Fong, Kathleen M. Quinlan – DRUMMOND SUITE
  5. Meeting the challenge of teaching online  Lindsey Watkin, Esther Jubb – DIAMOND SUITE
  6. Challenges, ‘fit’ and impact: online/blended CPD provision for staff international partner staff Sally Alsford, Martin Compton, Hannelie du Plessis-Walker, Alice Lau  EMERALD SUITE
  7. Implementing a principled, strategic and enhancement-led institutional approach to programme curriculum development John Dermo, Amina Helal, Calum Thomson, Sean Walton – HORTON A

12.15 – 13.00 Parallel Session 2

  1. Let’s have a CHAT about curriculum design: using cultural historical activity theory to analyse the process  Tony Burke – SAPPHIRE SUITE
  2. Exploring the value of taught programmes for teaching in higher education John Bostock, Rachel Forsyth, Peter Gossman, Claire Moscrop, Steven Powell, Jayne Tidd – DINING ROOM
  3. Observation of teaching and learning (OTL) and peer review for professional learning: double down or deviance? Martin Compton – HORTON A
  4. Learning from ‘Student Evaluation of Teaching’ Mike Cook  OPAL SUITE
  5. It’s Alive: Operationalising the Academic Professional Standard Sandy Cope – EMERALD SUITE
  6. Motivations, outcomes and implications of structured professional development for academic developers – a collaborative approach Mary Fitzpatrick, Fiona O’Riordan, Claire McAvinia, Íde O’Sullivan, Angelica Risquez, Margaret Keane – DIAMOND SUITE
  7. Take one step – a regional approach to raising digital literacy across Higher Education  Angelica Risquez – DRUMMOND SUITE

13.00 – 13.50 Lunch – HORTON B&C13.50 – 15.20 Parallel Session 3

  1. Supporting effective programme leadership in Higher Education: a National perspective  Rowena Senior, Will Bowen-Jones, Juliet Eve, Rachel Forsyth, Susan Moron-Garcia, Stephen Powell – HORTON A
  2. Navigating perspectives on staff development – or ‘Who are we (as educational developers) and what are we doing?’  Sarah Edwards, Sarah King – DINING ROOM
  3. ATLAS: A Model for Mapping to a Professional Development Framework in Ireland  Nuala Harding, Mary Fenton, Moira Maguire, Deirdre McClay, Gina Noonan, Catherine O’Donoghue – EMERALD SUITE
  4. Curriculum as counter-narrative: co-constructing a framework for ‘personal knowing’ Tansy Jessop, Claire Saunders – OPAL SUITE
  5. Making the ‘right’ choices of digital tools to support our educational practices: issues and strategies  Sarah Chesney, Peter Hartley – DRUMMOND SUITE
  6. 2 x 45 minute sessions: #ProjectFeedback:Strategies for encouraging greater engagement with feedback  Isobel Gowers AND Making Assessment work John Bostock, Dawne Bell, Claire Moscrop – DIAMOND SUITE
  7. 2 x 45 minutes sessions: “You can’t learn to swim by watching YouTube.” Developing staff digital capability through immersive online learning  Jonathan Rhodes, Elora Marston, Gemma Witton AND Challenges in supporting staff to make the best use of technology enhanced learning  Julie Voce – SAPPHIRE SUITE

15.20 – 15.40 Break – HORTON BAR15.45 – 16.45 Keynote – SEDA at 25 – a time to party and plan for the next twenty-five  – HORTON A Pauline Kneale, Pro Vice-Chancellor, Teaching and Learning, PedRIO & Educational Development, Plymouth University 16.45 – 17.30 NetworkingGetting Published with SEDA James Wisdom (Chair, SEDA Educational Developments Magazine Editorial Committee) – EMERALD SUITEEducational Development Initiative of the Year: poster session for shortlisted applicants  HORTON FOYER/BARMindfulness@SEDA Ruth Pilkington – DIAMOND SUITE19.00 Drinks Reception – HORTON BAR19.30 Dinner – HORTON B&CDay Two09.00 – 09.20 Registration, tea and coffee – HORTON BAR09.20 – 09.25 Welcome to day 2 – HORTON A09.25 – 10.20 Educational Development Initiative of the Year Presentations from shortlisted institutions – HORTON A

  • Kingston University – Embedding critical thinking in curricula using a collaborative learning, teaching and assessment approach Hilary Wason
  • Leicester College – The Scholarship Project: Enhancing Scholarship in College Higher Education Gail Hall
  • Manchester Metropolitan University – Creativity for Learning in Higher Education (#creativeHE) Stephen Powell
  • University of Surrey – The Feedback Engagement and Tracking System (FEATS) Naomi Winston and Emma Medland

10.20 – 10.45 Coffee Break – HORTON BAR10.45 – 12.15 Parallel Session 4

  1. Re-examining ways of assessing reflectiveness. Lessons learnt from a collaborative Erasmus+ project  Gabriela Pleschová, Agnes Simon – OPAL SUITE
  2. Values, emotions and professionalism: an educational humanities approach to supporting staff in challenging times  Kathleen M. Quinlan – HORTON A
  3. Advancing Inclusivity and Citizenship through Change Laboratories – putting theory into practice Alison Robinson Canham – EMERALD SUITE
  4. Who are you and who do you want to be? Sally Brown – DRUMMOND SUITE
  5. Reducing the Attainment Gap: The Impact of Active and Collaborative Learning Strategies  Simon Tweddell, Rebecca McCarter – DINING ROOM
  6. 2 x 45 minutes sessions: The competing pressures of curriculum design in Higher Education: Institutional frameworks, disciplinary contexts, and the student experience Robert Lawson AND Recognising Excellence in Teaching (RET): an evaluation of a pilot mentoring project Janis McIntyre Davidson – DIAMOND SUITE
  7. Walking as a tool for reflective practice  Susannah Quinsee, Anise Bullimore – SAPPHIRE SUITE

12.25 – 13.05 Lunch – HORTON B&C13.05 – 13.50 Keynote – Learning Technology in Higher Education – challenges and opportunities  – HORTON AMaren Deepwell, Chief Executive, Association for Learning Technology 13.55 – 14.40 Parallel Session 5

  1. Towards a professional development framework for leaders of degree programmes  Susan Morón-García, Petia Petrova, Elizabeth Staddon  – DINING ROOM
  2. Educational Development: is this a career for me? Pam Parker, Celia Popovic, Carole Davis, Carolyn Hoessler, Jeanette McDonald, Mandy Frake Mistak, Ellen Sims, Fiona Smart, Denise Stockley – OPAL SUITE
  3. Spreading our wings: supporting research staff and professional services colleagues as they make the transition to HE teaching  Clare Power – SAPPHIRE SUITE
  4. Creating a framework to measure the impact of educational development  Carole Davis, Fiona Denney, Graham Holden, Susannah Quinsee, Sara Reimers – HORTON A
  5. Redesigning staff development programmes to address future challenges of HE  Julia Horn, Alex Standen, Jayne Pearson – DRUMMOND SUITE
  6. Beyond the Tyranny of learning outcomes Phil Race – DIAMOND SUITE
  7. SEDA-PDF: Supporting CPD in HE and beyond What, Why, and How? Jenny Eland – EMERALD SUITE

14.45 – 15.30 Parallel Session 6

  1. Scholarship of Teaching and Learning-led professional development, the student experience, and HE teacher wellbeing and empowerment Jenny Lawrence – HORTON A
  2. Spotlight on inclusive practice – raising the achievement of all Higher Education learners  Sarah Rhodes – DINING ROOM
  3. The North Wind and the Sun: achieving strategic institutional change  Fiona Shelton, Tamsin Bowers-Brown, John Hill – OPAL SUITE
  4. Recognise and Articulate Leadership in Learning and Teaching  Julia Hope, Silvia Colaiacomo – DRUMMOND SUITE
  5. Ideas for learning and teaching: Follow up of graduates from Higher Education teacher education programmes  Jayne Tidd, Peter Gossman, Steven Powell, Rachel Forsyth, John Bostock, Claire Moscrop – DIAMOND SUITE
  6. Creating modules for the digital visual age: Inclusivity, imagery and dyslexic student experiences*  David Roberts – SAPPHIRE SUITE * Please note the title has been updated from ‘Creating modules for the digital visual age: inclusive Multimedia Learning teaching and CPD
  7. The precariat makes its voice heard: a module blog as a tool of academic development  Lee-Ann Sequeira – EMERALD SUITE

15.30 – 16.00 Plenary – Interactive Section – HORTON A16.00 – Depart