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Faculty of Health and Life Sciences

6 March 2024

4 minutes to read

Co-designing marking criteria with students for non-standard assessments

If we want students to know what is expected of them in an assessment it is critical to have a set of marking criteria that make transparent how they will be assessed. This is even more important in the case of non-standard assessments. This post describes how I get students to co-design…

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14 February 2024

3 minutes to read

Empowering students with innovative assessments: Decolonising medicine

As educators, we must continue to explore new approaches to assessment that not only assess student learning but also cultivate a deeper understanding of the complex issues at the heart of decolonisation. In this blog post, I will focus on the three innovative assessments that have helped to transform the learning experience…

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14 February 2024

3 minutes to read

How we designed an authentic assessment for online learners in Educational Psychology

Authentic assessment refers to a wide variety of educational and instructional techniques focused on connecting what students are taught to real-world issues, problems, and applications, mirroring the complexities and ambiguities of real life. In this blog post we will share how Rebecca Georgis (Module Leader), Darren Moore (Co-Programme Director) and Mike Clapp (Senior…

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14 February 2024

3 minutes to read

Assessment as learning in Medical Sciences

Students on the second year, 30-credit module ‘Disease, diagnostics and therapeutics’ (CSC2012), engage with a range of formative and summative assessment tasks that help them develop their assessment literacy and evaluative judgement. By introducing structured, peer-assessed group and individual tasks that culminate in the creation of learning resources, module convenors Dr Alex…

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31 January 2024

3 minutes to read

Authentic assessment – video creation as an assessment

Written essays play a significant role in the university assessment ecosystem, but are challenging to mark at scale and when overused don’t generally offer much added value to the student. When we developed a new module for our 2nd year cohort (ESS2222 Motor Control), we took the opportunity to try something new…

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10 January 2024

4 minutes to read

‘Melanin Matters’ – A student-led skin diversity project

A group of Exeter medical students established ‘Melanin Matters’ to expand the dialogue surrounding ethnic diversity in medicine, with a view to facilitate curriculum change which better reflects the global patient population. Project Lead, Natasha, shares how it all started and the next steps below. Why was ‘Melanin Matters’ initiated? For too…

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13 December 2023

4 minutes to read

Gamifying review sessions: helping students integrate their learning in a supportive, enjoyable environment

Student engagement is a hot topic in education at the moment, and gamification is one way we can create effective and engaging learning environments for our students. Gamification can also be an excellent way to consolidate learning and enable multiple topics to be tested in a synoptic way. We’ve done this by…

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22 November 2023

3 minutes to read

Taking account of student experiences of eco-grief and eco-anxiety when incorporating sustainable development goals into teaching

The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated many changes in higher education, including a greater focus on online learning. However, another key trend has been growing efforts to incorporate the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into university curricula. This reflects a wider recognition that higher education institutions have a crucial role to play in…

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17 October 2023

2 minutes to read

Embedding wellbeing from the get-go: exploring best practices in teaching that promote student wellbeing

The pandemic has put student mental health under the spotlight. With all the changes in higher education, how do we make sure wellbeing stays front and centre? This post reflects on research and practice around whole university approaches to wellbeing and shares some practical strategies for embedding wellbeing into teaching. Why Focus…

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11 October 2023

3 minutes to read

Using unique data sets for online assessments

Online assessments provide flexibility but also opportunities for misconduct. Some reports estimate that 1 in 6 students have cheated (Wonkhe, 2022), others suggest the figure is 1 in 14, with 3 in 5 engaging in poor academic conduct (THE, 2022). This cheating often involves prohibited collaboration in non-invigilated settings. It is a…

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23 August 2023

2 minutes to read

Developing assessment skills awareness

Colleagues from across the Medical Sciences programme, led by Dr David MacDonald, Dr Dominic Wiredu Boakye, Dr Shalinee Dhayal and Dr Hannah Welters, support students within Academic Tutor Group sessions and activities to develop their academic and professional skills, including their awareness of assessment skills. As part of core modules in Year 1…

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23 August 2022

3 minutes to read

Delivering world-leading primary care knowledge in Rwanda

Following the successful development of its first global online course in primary care, the College of Medicine and Health have gone one step further: delivering the course on site in Rwanda. Professor Alex Harding, Dr Rob Daniels, and Tina Teague travelled to Rwanda in June to deliver the five-day course.

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12 April 2022

4 minutes to read

Empowering health protection practitioners to deliver excellence in public health

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of health emergency preparation, forward planning and robust outbreak management systems. By expanding its continuing professional development programme, the University is continuing to support public health teams in meeting these challenges.

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16 March 2022

3 minutes to read

Exploring the benefits of compassion – in education and in life

Over 500 people from around the world attended the University’s first Festival of Compassion in November. Held over 10 days, the festival hosted a wide range of free online and on-campus activities to explore how we can foster compassion to build stronger communities. The diverse events included:

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girls in science classroom

24 November 2021

3 minutes to read

Inspiring the next generation of female STEM students

Research shows that females are more likely than males to form negative emotions about their abilities to perform mathematics or sciences, and that these perceptions take root at a young age. These views are often influenced by stereotypes about gender disparities, and false assumptions that mathematics or science subjects are not for…

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14 October 2021

4 minutes to read

Playful purpose: using games to connect and inspire

Except amongst the youngest of students, playfulness is not usually a characteristic promoted by the curriculum or encouraged by teachers. In fact, play is often seen as a distraction from rigorous learning activities, or a sign that students are lacking in focus.

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22 September 2021

2 minutes to read

Transforming our education during the pandemic

At the start of a new academic year, now is a good time to pause and reflect for a moment on how the University responded to the unprecedented challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic, and what we can learn from that response.

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19 August 2021

3 minutes to read

Using virtual reality in medical imaging

Diagnostic Radiography students in Medical Imaging at the University of Exeter College of Medicine and Health have been using virtual reality (VR) x-ray rooms, allowing them to enhance their clinical skills training by practising techniques learned in their x-ray room sessions.

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12 August 2021

4 minutes to read

Exploring social media as a form of assessment

From in-class tests to essays to presentations, there are many ways in which module leads can assess their students’ understanding. We know the way in which we assess students’ performance can influence the way in which they engage with learning. Varying how you assess your students can also help students who don’t…

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1 July 2021

4 minutes to read

Concurrent teaching: lessons from dissertation preparation sessions

Teaching students who join a session together, either from campus or online, has become an increasing feature of the last 12 months. Here Dr Matt Finn and Dr Laura Smith (Geography) describe their week-long series of concurrent workshops for second year BA Geography students, to prepare for their final year dissertations.

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24 June 2021

4 minutes to read

Bringing learning back to campus through The Festival of Discovery

Over 400 events took place on campus in the University’s inaugural Festival of Discovery. Held over a 2-week period from late May, the event aimed to bring our whole university community closer together to enjoy a range of on-campus and online activities.               “I loved the…

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Teaching in an AV enhanced space

9 June 2021

3 minutes to read

How enhancing the AV in teaching spaces can create a more seamless student experience

One of the many challenges faced by educators over the last year is delivering teaching concurrently to both students present in the room and also joining online through Teams or Zoom. Teaching rooms are rarely equipped to enable this concurrent teaching effectively, with limited camera and audio coverage

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19 May 2021

4 minutes to read

Building social connections between students during the pandemic

University life is about more than just studying. It’s about building social connections – friendships and relationships that can shape you forever. These social connections with peers are crucial to students’ success and overall wellbeing. But establishing these connections

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6 May 2021

3 minutes to read

How Exeter is helping to strengthen primary care expertise globally

The COVID-19 pandemic has placed the importance of public health and primary care into sharp focus – not only in treating people with Covid, but to facilitate vaccine distribution. Managing the impact of the virus is carried out in community settings, and the World Health Organisation has

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25 March 2021

4 minutes to read

The unexpected upsides of digital learning – and overcoming the downsides

For many students, the accelerated move to digital learning in 2020/21 has posed a number of challenges. But it’s also had its advantages. Here, Millie Britton, a final year Economics with Geography student and Digital Learning Assistant, reflects on a year of digital learning. From my own experiences as a third year, and the experiences of other students,…

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1 March 2021

3 minutes to read

Partnering with current and recent students to create compelling blended learning programmes

In April 2020, the University of Exeter faced the same dilemma as most other universities: how to move most or all of its teaching online in just a few months?

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