Sam Smith () - Centre for Medical Education, University of Edinburgh

Sam Smith (
           Centre for Medical Education, University of Edinburgh

                 Learning to prescribe: can workplace-based experience
                  enhance medical student preparedness for practice?

From their first day of work as a doctor, medical graduates are expected to prescribe, often
unsupervised, during busy and stressful shifts. As medical students are not legally permitted to
prescribe, none of the graduates will ever have prescribed a drug before their first day of work
as a doctor.

In order to tackle this problem, a team from NHS Fife and the University of Edinburgh have
devised a process by which medical students can safely practise prescribing under supervision
in the workplace. Final year medical students write prescriptions when needed for patients on
a particular ward. The prescriptions are then checked and countersigned by a fully qualified

This project aimed to expand ‘pre-prescribing’ to other areas of South East Scotland, and to
evaluate the impact on the student experience.
Helen Henderson (
     School of Health, Nursing and Midwifery, University of the West of Scotland

 Developing Interprofessional learning (IPL) opportunities using simulated scenarios
       and evaluating the impact and transferability this has to the workplace

This study involved final year nursing students from both the University of the West
of Scotland and final year medical students from the University of Glasgow to work
together through a variety of simulated scenarios which focussed on clinical
prioritisation and handovers. 51 student nurses consented to participate in the study.

Results showed that the student nurses found the IPL experience to be beneficial in
clarifying individual roles and promoting positive attitudes. The student nurses
identified that their perceptions of their confidence and ability to make decisions, to
prioritise and particularly in communicating with junior medical staff have improved
as a result of this experience. Both the students and their mentors have reported
changes in the students’ practices in terms of communicating with medical staff and
handing over patient information using a recommended tool.
Ginny Saich (
    Centre for Academic Practice and Learning, University of Stirling

                 Developmental pathways through mentoring

The project sought to enhance an existing student peer mentoring scheme (STEER), run as a
university-wide scheme at Stirling.

We presented a developmental pathway and mentoring structure that appeared to be unique
within the UK and which may usefully inform other such developments elsewhere within the

The new STEER website incorporates online resources and training opportunities to assist
participants with their respective role(s), encouraging them to make full use of their
engagement with STEER, further developing personal and professional skills and enhancing
their university experience. All mentors and interns receive a University Certificate, and from
next year STEER roles (and associated skills) will be recognised through the HEAR.
Judy Hardy (
         School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Edinburgh

       A comparative study of the expectations and attainment in assessment of
           international students in science, engineering and mathematics

This project aims to investigate international students’ experiences and achievements across a
range of assessment tasks in science, engineering and mathematics (STEM) disciplines. The
project has a specific focus on the first year of study, which is a critical period of transition for
all students but especially so for international students, who are faced with a range of
additional challenges and pressures.

There is some evidence that international students perform significantly less well than home
students in essay-based examinations, but there is little research to date on the comparative
performance of home and international students in STEM disciplines. Although assessments in
these subject areas are perhaps less critically dependent on language skills, many other factors
may affect international students’ performance, for example prior educational and assessment
experiences and a different ‘base’ of subject knowledge.
Sue Rigby (
        Grant Institute of Earth Sciences, University of Edinburgh

            Improving employability of students in a field-based discipline
                through the introduction of a personal tutor system

In the deepest recession since the 1930s, students face an extremely demanding
search for employment on graduation. Our University strategy is to develop the
sphere of employability activity and to embed it within the curriculum of each

All students in Earth Science have now been allocated a personal tutor who has been
trained to facilitate the students in their reflection on the graduate attributes and
employability skills of their course, as well as mentoring the students through their
academic studies and engaging with their understanding of their own performance.

The HEA project has developed and enhanced the richness of this interaction and
will evaluate the impact of these changes in our engagement with our students.
Nicola Innes (
       Dundee Dental Hospital and School, University of Dundee

           Motivational Interviewing Techniques for Dental Students:
  development and assessment of the effectiveness of an educational intervention

The aim of this project is to develop and assess the effectiveness of teaching
Motivational Interviewing techniques to dental and other healthcare students.
The objectives are to develop a transferrable blended-learning package in
communication skills based on the principles of Motivational Interviewing techniques;
to use student participation in the development process; and to evaluate the
effectiveness of the package.

A learning technologist has been engaged as part of the team. Their main roles are
assisting us to explore the possibilities of digitally based material and developing the
e-learning package. A website domain has been secured to allow a forum for
communicating with the students and allow them to test and give opinions on the
project content as it is being developed.
Pearse McCusker (
  School of Health and Life Sciences, Glasgow Caledonian University

        Mental distress: is social work education up to the mark?

This project represents an essential foundational step in transforming current
pedagogic practice across social work degrees at Glasgow Caledonian University in
the subject of mental distress, thereby addressing the gap in vital knowledge, skills
and understanding of this area for post-qualifying social work employment. Entailing a
collaborative, knowledge-generating enterprise with final year social work students
at GCU, and qualified social workers across local authority settings, we will use their
experiences to develop a learning and teaching resource that will expand and enrich
the teaching of mental health to social work students, with the potential for
subsequent use across the sector.
Dawn Beddard (
  School of Engineering and Physical Sciences, Heriot Watt University

                    Industrial-Based Problem Solving

The Industrial-Based Problem Solving project aims to address the requirement for
students to have the skills and experience essential for employability, and to provide
an opportunity for engagement with the global student community.

We propose to exploit our industry colleagues to offer real problem-based group
activities for our fourth-year (penultimate year) MPhys students. The problems will
be relevant to current research and technology centred on project life-cycle
methodology. An important aspect of this will be providing the students the
opportunity to present their work at the International Conference of Physics
Alan Miller (
         School of Computer Science, University of St Andrews

       Supporting experiential learning for computer networking
                     through open virtual worlds

This project will design, develop, evaluate and disseminate a suite of world class
learning resources, which support engaging collaborative experiential learning in 3D
open virtual world environments.

Students will be empowered to explore and experiment with computer networking;
protocols, algorithms, and traffic in a collaborative environment. Students will be
engaged in all phases of the project from initial design, through to implementation,
deployment and evaluation.

The resources will be made available to HEIs, as a service and as software that can
be down loaded and installed locally. An infrastructure will be created which
supports dissemination and sharing.
Debbi Marais (
       Division of Applied Health Sciences, University of Aberdeen

                Online self-assessment to enhance employability
                        of postgraduate taught students

The practice of embedding employability into the student experience has been the
subject of much debate in the HE sector. This is likely to continue as increased
financial pressures, and a competitive employment market, raise the profile of
employability with all stakeholders.

Employability is not solely an undergraduate issue and this project focuses on
extending employability provision for taught postgraduates. The project aims to
devise an online self-awareness employability questionnaire with detailed feedback
and links to supportive employability resources. The work aims to create a series of
exercises and experiences, tailored to each student’s needs, to enhance their
Zachary Hickman (
           School of Biological Sciences, University of Aberdeen

                The ‘Digital Employability Student Package’ (DESP) –
          using social media to enhance taught postgraduate employability

Taught postgraduate students engage with social media on a personal basis, but do
not always utilise it fully for job searching or personal marketing. Careers Services
can provide opportunities to help students make the most of social media platforms,
and thus plug this employability gap.

To address the change in job searching methods, this project aims to develop and
evaluate a series of social media workshops, and publishable material to create a
‘package’ that can be widely disseminated. Workshops will include methods of
effective job searching using social media, setting up personal profiles, online
marketing techniques, and tracking use and outcomes.
Charles Juwah (
 Department of Enhancement of Learning and Teaching, Robert Gordon University

   Global Employability Learning Portal: developing intercultural competencies for
            enhanced employability in the global construction industry

The project comprises the development of a suite of learning activities designed to
enhance graduate employability in the global construction industry through enhanced
intercultural skills and sensibilities. It involves the participation of postgraduate
students in developing a portal through which students communicate with alumni
and employers located internationally.

The portal is central to the design of learning activities that address the cultural
diversity embodied in the global industry, and which aim to increase employment
opportunities for graduates. Informed by research involving the international
construction industry, the two collaborating institutions will develop outputs
appropriate to both campus-based and distance learning communities.
Susan Rhind (
       Veterinary Medical Education Unit, University of Edinburgh

                   Building an assessment community of practice:
                    students as co-creators and standard-setters

In this project, students in two different years will create assessment questions for
themselves and other students at defined points within the curriculum. The project
will utilise the freely available ‘PeerWise’ system which allows students to easily
create, rate and comment on each other’s questions. Questions will be refined and
discussed with staff and standard setting included in the process. Questionnaires and
focus groups will be carried out to explore the student experience of involvement in
this process. Questions will ultimately be shared across the UK veterinary schools to
contribute to the development of a national assessment database.
Antje Kohnle (
       School of Physics and Astronomy, University of St Andrews

        Developing and evaluating quantum mechanics animations
                        for chemistry students

Research has shown that interactive animations help students build mental
representations of concepts and determine relationships between quantities. In this
project, we will develop animations for university chemistry students studying
introductory quantum mechanics, focusing on topics common to first and second
year physical chemistry courses. Animations will include instructor resources,
consisting of problems using the animations with full solutions. The animations and
instructor resources developed in this project will be made freely available for use
online and download.
Rola Ajjawi (
           Centre for Medical Education, University of Dundee

     Designed by and for students: developing a sustainable student-led learning
    community for medical education research on an online Masters programme

The quality of medical education research is strongly critiqued in the literature for
being non-theoretical, local and lacking in rigour. Our Masters programme aims to
develop future worldwide leaders in medical education research. Challenges from
our flexible learning programme include student isolation and reliance on the
research supervisor at a distance as the only source of guidance and support. This
project aims to develop, embed and sustain virtual learning communities for medical
education research on an online Masters programme. Students will form part of the
research team and help to build the community from the ground up.
Anne Campbell (
                       The Open University in Scotland

               The impact of e-Readers on student learning:
                      an exploratory investigation

One aspect of technological and social change of growing importance to the HE
sector is a tendency to shift from printed to electronic core texts, a shift which in
the distance learning sector seems inexorable. There will be a significant but as yet
unknown impact on teaching and learning as a result. This project proposes an
exploratory cross-discipline (Science and Social Science) study within an open and
distance university, the Open University, which investigates the pedagogic and
practical implications of electronic reading using the Kindle e-Reader.
Joseph Gray (
               School of Life Sciences, University of Glasgow

       Flexible learning, feedback and support for large undergraduate classes
                          using an asynchronous online forum

How can a traditional, lecture-driven and large undergraduate course actively engage
and provide effective feedback for a wide range of learners that differ in their
academic interest, academic ability, learning style and cultural background?
Successfully addressing this question is important for the HE sector not least
because it will improve performance, satisfaction and retention of the increasingly
diverse student body.

I propose to build on a pilot study to perform a cost-benefit analysis of the use of an
asynchronous online forum in providing feedback to and supporting a large (~400
student) and diverse L2 Genetics class at Glasgow University.
Fiona Roberts (
           School of Health Sciences, Robert Gordon University

          The experience, perceptions and attitudes of healthcare students
                 undertaking an inter-professional ward simulation

An extensive literature search presented no evidence regarding the use of simulation
in developing team working and inter-professional skills, fundamentals in pre-
registration education. For any HEI to invest in this labour intensive activity, evidence
of benefit is therefore required.

We propose to pilot an inter-disciplinary ward simulation across a range of
environments used in practice within a hospital environment. We aim to investigate
the experiences, attitudes and perceptions of pre-registration health professions
students undertaking an inter-professional ward simulation and to explore if there is
any impact from undertaking the activity on the student’s future practice on clinical
Anna McGregor (
                School of Life Sciences, University of Glasgow

 Feedback on filter-feeders: enhancing student engagement in identification activities
             with immediate feedback through a tablet PC application

This project will develop a dichotomous invertebrate key that runs as a tablet PC
application for use in Animal Biology courses. This application, which will act as a self-
directed stepwise guide for students, will be implemented in the identification of field
specimens and will enable students to create and send stepwise flow charts, final
identifications and images to instructors, who can then return rapid feedback on
their accuracy and understanding of the process, for students to revise on their own.
A self-guided practice exercise, a glossary of specialised terms and annotated body
plan diagrams will also be included.
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