Key Research Interests and Expertise

My main interest is the process of transition into Higher Education and how to make the move from school-based learning to higher education learning as smooth as possible. I research effective assessment and feedback in undergraduates, specialising in first years in the transition into HE. I am particularly interested in how expectations of students can affect their performance. 

Current Research Projects 

  • Exploring students’ initial reactions to the feedback they receive on coursework, HEA Biosciences Award. A collaborative project with University of Aberdeen and University of Cardiff. This work continued collaborations with Cardiff and Aberdeen Universities and showed students were motivated by feedback irrespective of whether they were happy with it or felt it to be fair.
  • Investigating students’ reactions to the feedback they receive on their coursework, UEA Teaching Fellowship. This questioned students from the School of Biological Sciences, School of Social work and Psychology, School of Economics and School of Literature and Creative Writing.This work demonstrated that, although there were a few areas of concern, on the whole the four Schools studied at UEA were providing their students with effective and timely feedback which motivated them to work harder.
  • Handouts or no handouts, that is the question - assessing the impact of a teaching practice change. UEA Teaching Fellowship awarded to Helen James, Kay Yeoman and myself. Results from this study are suggesting that students who make notes in lectures and write them up afterwards find this helps them when it come to their exams. Other universities have shown a lot of interest in these findings.
  • Dissemination of innovative teaching methods through a swap shop and teaching newsletter. UEA Teaching Fellowship awarded to Kay Yeoman and myself. This award has lead to the production of Learning Highlight, a magazine which helps circulate teaching news across UEA.

ID: 15033