Success for All Case Studies
Colleagues across NTU have been working to understand course-specific disparities in progression, attainment and engagement, and to test and adopt relevant strategies to address these disparities.
The Success for All initiative at NTU is informed by sector research on interventions to address disparities in student engagement and outcomes. Inclusive learning at NTU invests in the following principles:
- Learning is enriched by the varied experiences of students;
- Accessible learning is relevant and approachable by all students;
- The curriculum and the means of delivery are both part of this accessibility;
- Students with full access to learning and teaching are more likely to engage with learning, and to reach their full potential. (Hockings 2010)
For three years, a Project in CADQ linked Educational Developers with academic Schools to embed inclusive pedagogies across NTU’s courses. Examples of innovative practices and interventions are provided below for colleagues to explore and adapt for their own course contexts.
Colleagues looking to introduce interventions to address disparities may also find this overview of intervention types helpful.
Course-contextualised interventions into curricula, pedagogies and assessment:
Engaging BME students to support curriculum diversification
The course team for English recognised the importance of having an honest conversation about their duty to listen and respond to their BME students’ needs
School and institution-wide contextualised interventions into curricula, pedagogies and assessment:
Supporting Academic Staff to Enhance Assessment Practices Across a Whole School
Staff training on assessment practice, and development of task-specific grading criteria, have led to a notable improvement in students’ assessment literacy
Further examples of course-contextualised interventions into curricula, pedagogies and assessment:
Colleagues in BA Costume Design & Making redesigned a core course assessment to ensure that it is accessible for students from lower-income households; resulting in an increase in student satisfaction levels.
BA Costume Design & Making
assessment, widening participation (WP), sustainability
The new BA Filmmaking course was designed with ‘Success for All’ strategies embedded in learning outcomes, assessment, and activities.
assessment, learning outcomes
The MA Museum and Heritage course team used strategic group formation for project work and incorporated anglo-Chinese content to make the course more inclusive and representative of the student cohort.
MA Museum and Heritage Development
internationalisation, whole course, diversity.
Encouraging BME student engagement on the BA English Literature course has resulted in a more diverse curriculum and simple changes to the degree ensuring it is more inclusive.
BA English Literature
BME, curriculum, assessment, inclusive
BSc Civil Engineering has adopted an active learning approach for their ‘Introduction to Structural Engineering’ module resulting in a positive impact on students’ understanding of, and engagement with, difficult content.
BSc Civil Engineering
active learning, engagement, assessment, pedagogy
The Equestrian Psychology teaching team has incorporated developmental exam skills support to help all students prepare effectively for a summative exam.
Equestrian Psychology courses
assessment, formative, BTEC.
Colleagues teaching on Film and TV production courses have implemented changes to make learning around sustainability more inclusive, with a particular focus on the needs of students from BTEC backgrounds.
BSc and FDSc Film Production Technology
Active learning, pedagogy, BTEC, WP, assessment
International Business courses have empowered student course representatives and CERT (Collaborative Engagement and Retention Team) mentors to create a student-led culture of inclusion, leading to a number of bespoke interventions.
International Business courses
student-led, BME, community.
Study sessions on exam technique are embedded into the level 4 course curriculum: they are targeted at BTEC students in particular but all students can benefit.
BTEC, BME, diagnostic, assessment
A core module across Biosciences courses has adopted an approach inspired by SCALE-UP to help students grapple with difficult concepts, demistify subject jargon, and build collaborative working skills
BSc Biomedical and Biological Science courses
SCALE-UP, pedagogy, widening participation (WP), collaborative
Academic skills support traditionally offered to international students is “mainstreamed” in the curriculum of two subject areas in Science and Technology.
Courses in: Computing and Technology; Biosciences; Bio-engineering; Engineering
curriculum, international, study skills
BA Social Work has introduced peer feedback sessions to help students develop their professional and academic skills in giving feedback; the sessions also build student understanding of and trust in marking and moderation practices.
BA Social Work
assessment, peer-feedback, pedagogy
The Politics and International Relations department have been working to move the course content away from “Western-centric” perspectives and support students to critique discourses of privilege and power.
Politics and International Relations
decolonising, curriculum, diversity
Using the Respect Toolkit to enhance integration between home and international students The course team used the Respect Toolkit in a course context to enhance integration between home and international students by promoting the benefits of working in diverse groups instead of homogenous groups. The aim is to improve student experience, empathy, bonding, retention and attainment. BA Fashion Marketing Nicola Francis and Anita Love, course team members integration, international, retention, attainment
Further examples of School and institution-wide interventions to address disparities in progression, attainment and engagement:
The toolkit was developed to support academic colleagues in helping students to see the benefits of working with others different to themselves, and, in particular, to encourage group work between home and international students. Professional Services Claire Bell, Head of EDI, Health, Safety and Wellbeing
Robina Din, Faith Officer
group-work, behaviour, bias
Responding to the student voice around clarity of assessments, the School of Architecture Design and Built Environment developed compulsory training for permanent staff to ensure parity of practice.
School of Architecture, Design and the Built Environment
assessment, feedback, staff-development.
The School of Animal, Rural and Environmental Sciences has implemented many school-wide initiatives to ensure that the transition from FE to HE is as smooth and inclusive as possible for incoming students, for example through the introduction of a staff HE-FE mentoring scheme.
School of Animal, Rural and Environmental Sciences
transition, inclusive, FE, BTEC.
Students take a credit-bearing module to support their personal and academic development in every year of their course: sessions take a personalised approach which supports Success for All.
Nottingham Business School
personalisation, curriculum, assessment.
Nottingham Law School has developed a training package covering elements of academic irregularities to support all students—in particular BTEC-entry students and international students.
Nottingham Law School
academic irregularity, assessment, BTEC, international
Students have worked closely with staff in Nottingham Law School to set up a student-led society for all students called ‘New Black Society’ aimed at challenging perceptions around ‘race’ and ethnicity, as well as creating a community of students who can relate to one another.
Nottingham Law School
BME, student-led, belonging, community
Colleagues in the School of Social Sciences are collaborating with colleagues across the university to form a TILT group/thinktank for sharing resources, practice, and expertise on processes for decolonising a curriculum.
School of Social Sciences
curriculum, international, decolonise, practice-exchange.
Colleagues in Social Sciences are developing video interviews with final year students, with the aim of troubling stories of (ex)inclusion and (un)support. The videos will be used as a staff-facing resource to support inclusive teaching strategies and understanding barriers to learning; and as a student-facing resource to build belonging.
School of Social Sciences
Transition, mentoring, belonging, community, staff development