Our annual Medway Learning and Teaching conference is jointly organised by the Universities of Kent, Canterbury Christ Church and Greenwich, who share the Medway campus. The conference aims to share, celebrate, and promote best practice across the Medway campus.
This year the conference will be held on Thursday 22nd June 2023 on the Medway campus. It is free and welcomes all staff and students to attend either in-person or online. Free refreshments and a light lunch will be provided on the day.
‘Measuring the efficacy of interventions for Decolonizing and pluralising HE curricula: Moving from race inclusion discourse to making our curricula more and measurably racially inclusive’. Dr Paul Campbell
There is a general consensus among EDI professionals and race scholars of a direct causal relationship between a White and Eurocentric curriculum and the ‘gap’ in degree outcomes between domicile students of colour and their White peers in UK HE. This has prompted some Higher Education Providers (HEPs) to employ a host of interventions and strategies aimed at racially pluralising and/or ‘decolonizing’ their taught curricula. Despite this hive of activity, there currently exists little evaluative empirical data on the efficacy of this work.
This keynote reflects on our ground-breaking evaluation of the University of Leicester’s ‘Racially Inclusive Curricula Toolkit’. This project is, to our knowledge, one of the first published, holistic, large scale and mixed-methods empirical-evaluations of an intervention for improving the degree outcomes and educative experiences of undergraduate students of colour in a UK HEP.
In this talk I discuss the efficacy of the toolkit against its capacity to: (1) foster a stronger sense of relevance between module content and the lives of students from minority ethnic backgrounds; (2) improve the confidence and racial literacy of staff; (3) reduce differences in assessment/award outcomes; and (4) improve levels of satisfaction about their courses among students from minority ethnic backgrounds. The talk concludes by reflecting on the usefulness’ and limitations of using race and ethnicity award gaps as our primary lens for evaluating the value of interventions for making HE curricula more racially equitable for all of our students.
Dr Paul Ian Campbell is the Inaugural Director of the Leicester Institute for Inclusivity in Higher Education. He is also an award winning academic and Associate Professor in the Sociology of race and inclusion at the University of Leicester. His first monograph won the British Sociological Association’s Philip Abrams Prize in 2017 and he has published widely in the areas of race, inclusion and Higher Education and on inclusion in sport. He has also led a number of cross-university Race Equity and Education projects and supports a number of UK universities in addressing racial inequalities in their curricular and in their assessment processes. Paul is also Chair of the University of Leicester Race Equality Action Group and a University Distinguished Teaching Fellow. Paul work is sector leading in developing and evaluating interventions for making HE curricula and assessment racially inclusive and he has published several ground-breaking reports on how to empirically move from race inclusion theory to practice.
Rethinking the right to Higher Education in challenging times
Current socio-political and economic changes together with global challenges continue to question the concept of Right to Higher Education. Issues around who Higher Education is for, diversity and democratization of HE, implications of forced and voluntary migration on students’ rights, funding HE, how to reduce the award and gender gap, how to offer an inclusive education, are only a few of the perennial questions around the RTHE. Under this labile global context, there is a need to re-think about how institutional policies, strategies and pedagogical interventions can be intertwined with processes of access, acceptance, adaptability, accountability and success, and initiate further discussions on the RTHE.
This year’s Universities at Medway Teaching and Learning Conference will seek to explore how to build a strong evidence and research-base from which effective strategies and interventions can be developed for enhancing accessibility, acceptability and adaptability in HE, and generally how to assure students’ rights in a global changing context. All these will be examined under a social justice lens, which examines the very structure of higher education itself and what the systems and institutions of higher education need to modify to accommodate students’ diverse backgrounds and needs. Thus, this conference aims at sharing and promoting exemplary practices, approaches, strategies, interventions, both at a macro-institutional and a micro-pedagogical level that can aid in rethinking issues on the Right to HE in the current challenging context more holistically.
The call for proposals for the Universities at Medway Teaching and Learning Conference is open to internal colleagues interested in exploring teaching and learning in HE through the lens of inclusivity and social justice. We welcome submissions that align with the conference theme, and particularly submissions that consider one or more of the following dimensions, as adopted from the 5 As framework by UNESCO (2020):
Contributions and proposals from individuals, groups, interdisciplinary collaborations are welcome, and particularly those that involve collaboration with students. Sessions should involve reflection, exploration, scholarship and evaluation of activities undertaken. Proposals may focus on innovative strategies, teaching practices, initiatives, interventions, evaluations, and research for enhancing accessibility, acceptability and adaptability in HE, in the following formats:
Paper Presentation/Discussion Paper (20 minutes – includes 5 minutes for questions)
A traditional conference presentation for sharing ideas with the audience. This can be about a research project (whether complete or in progress) or an example of a teaching practice you wish to share. We encourage staff presenting about their practice to consider co-presentation with students or with other disciplines. Discussion papers are best suited for complex presentations that involve multiple innovations. The emphasis should be on drawing out implications for and with others and involving participants in engaging with your findings and ideas.
Workshops (1 hour)
Interactive sessions based on engaging the audience with a key idea, practice, tool or research outcome. Workshop facilitators may utilise their own practice, research or scholarship as a basis for the workshop. Your proposal must outline how you intend to encourage interactive participation in your session (e.g., through specific activities).
Showcase (30 minutes – includes 5 minutes for questions)
Discussion sessions featuring a group of colleagues (around 2-5) from the same or different programme or school. These informal sessions will share a variety of practices with an emphasis on how they connect. We encourage staff presenting about their practice to consider co-presentation with students.
Lightning talks (10 minutes – includes 3 minutes for questions)
A very short presentation on a topic of your choice. This can be about some research (particularly in progress), new ideas or sharing expertise in a quick, insightful and easily digestible format.
Proposals will be assessed according to the following criteria:
The call for proposals will close on Friday 5th May.
All submissions will be blind peer-reviewed, and the authors will be notified about the result of their submission via e-mail.