Inside Knowledge Fellowships and Scholarships (2016/17)

Inside Knowledge was a scheme designed to engage student expertise in the project of improving our University, which focused on the Department and Degree Programme Level.

Developing digital literacies: Enhancing the expectations, experiences, and capabilities of Sociological Studies students

Tom Clark, Sociological Studies

This project aims to map current levels of digital literacy within Sociological Studies programmes, and using a student-staff partnership, provide recommendations about where digital capacity might be enhanced. It will explore how current digital curricula correspond with students’ expectations, experience, and capabilities.

In consultation with key stakeholders - including students and professional and academic staff - the project will seek to identify potential areas of enhancement within programmes and provide a plan for implementation detailing how such skills and competencies might be realised.

Interdisciplinary design of interdisciplinary professional education

Helen Cameron, Human Communication Sciences

The aim of this project is to collaborate with students in redesigning an existing single-discipline module in the department of Human Communication Sciences into an interdisciplinary module that will also meet the learning needs of students from the Academic Unit of Ophthalmology and Orthoptics and enhance interprofessional education for both Speech and Language Therapy and Orthoptic pre-registration students.

This project will result in a newly-designed interdisciplinary module which will be studied by three undergraduate programmes annually.

Radical Pedagogy and the Logic of Assessment

Fabienne Collignon, English, and Josh Berlyne, Philosophy and Politics

We propose to conduct research into how to build a progressive relationship between lecturers and students, co-exisiting as researchers in a pedagogical space of possibility. We look to develop a pedagogical practice that is driven by active collaboration between members of staff and students, where the latter no longer function as consumers, but, as Mike Neary writes, producers of knowledge.

We will investigate what barriers there are to building these relationships, particularly in terms of assessment: we aim to examine and re-imagine assessment as a practice in which students become active participants and, as a result, transform the assessment practice of a core module at Level 2: Critical and Literary Theory (LIT204).

Student Engagement projects (2015/16)

These projects focused on two areas of development: student involvement in enhancing learning and teaching and developing the academic community of students and staff. Students and staff were able to bid for funding for projects.

We were able to fund more projects in the faculties of Arts and Humanities and Social Sciences thanks to additional funding contributions from those faculties. Details of the projects are listed below.

Student-led clinical learning in speech and language therapy

Helen Cameron and Judy Clegg, Human Communication Sciences

Students will lead on the development and implementation of a new clinical placement engaging with the Sheffield community of people with communication impairments in the Philippa Cottam Communication Clinic (PCCC) in the department of Human Communication Sciences (HCS). The PCCC is a centre offering long term speech and language therapy provision no longer routinely available through the NHS. Examples include communication difficulties due to dementia, stroke and autism.

Putting Ethnomusicology on the Map

Tim Knowles, Music

An online platform hosting the work of the University's ethnomusicology students will be produced. Employing the HRI’s easy to use mapping software, the worldwide locations of ethnomusicological fieldwork carried out by students of the Music Department will be identified with markers, doubling as hyperlinks to the students' written work. Students will be taught how to operate and upload to this platform, facilitating and encouraging greater internal and public engagement with their research.

Learning from Peer Review

Mark Quinn, Susan Cartwright, Matthew Mears, Chloe McDaid and Jim Weston, Physics & Astronomy

Peer review is a vital activity in many disciplines particularly in scientific research. We propose development of a peer review scheme as a learning tool for students and teachers. The pedagogical motivation here is to promote development of crucial professional skills ranging from general writing to problem solving. Our strategy for this proposed project involves recruiting an appropriate student group to collaborate with teaching staff on the development and testing of this concept prior to implementation within the department of Physics and Astronomy.

Engaging medical postgraduate students in identifying DDP support requirements

Emily Fisk, Billy Bryan and Peter Grabowski, Medicine

Continued module development for doctoral study programmes is vital in keeping with the increasingly multidisciplinary nature of doctoral degrees and graduate employability. The student led Medical School Postgraduate Society (MPGS) and the School Graduate Research Committee (SGRC) aim to work collaboratively to innovate their literature review module by engaging students, staff and other key facilitators. This project has the long term goal of creating a more cohesive and progressive educational alliance between staff and students.

Active student engagement in flexible group design projects

George Panoutsos, Roderich Gross and Anna Charlton, Automatic Control and Systems Engineering

We will organise a series of student-led (academic staff-supported) workshops, to develop a ‘flexible group design project’ scheme. The focus of this project is to create an ‘active student engagement’ framework, where students are actively contributing to the design of the learning activities of the group work. The purpose of this student/staff consultation is to create an exciting and engaging student experience in group projects, while also addressing issues of a) peer engagement in group work and peer marking as well as b) flexible student-led learning activities.

TUOS Folk Workshop Development

Naomi Rowland and Ford Collier, Music

TUOS folk meet weekly to learn and rehearse traditional tunes and songs, primarily music from the British Isles. Established by lecturer and professional musician Fay Hield, it is currently collaboratively run by two undergraduate music students. We comprise students and staff from departments across the University, including Music, Animal and Plant Sciences, and Maths and Statistics, who come together to share a love of traditional music. We aim to play a variety of traditional music styles and repertoire, and the ensemble consists of a broad range of instruments. Throughout the spring semester we propose to invite several leading musicians to hold workshops for our group during our regular rehearsal time each week.

SUMS (Sheffield University Management School) Integration and Student Support Project

Nicki Newman, Crystal Tan, Ellie Wood, Xinyan Zhang, Han Rong, Imogen Green and Hakeem Yusuf, Management

The SUMS Integration and Student Support project is a student-led project which will pilot a new peer-to-peer support system during next semester. The project will bring together SUMS students from different years and programmes into small communities to provide both academic support and to increase the social interaction of the students. This project has been researched, designed and will be implemented and reviewed by the student project team.

Knowing Inclusion; Being Inclusive

Rachel van Duyvenbode, English

This project invites students in the School of English to shape departmental understanding about how to foster inclusive learning environments. Two student leaders will explore a key research question – What does inclusivity mean? – and bring their findings into conversation with students’ own knowledge of inclusivity rooted in personal experience. The student leaders will facilitate a series of focus groups and collaborate with elected student representatives (Student-Staff Committee) to help define recommendations for departmental good practice.

Translation Agency at The School of Languages and Cultures

Agnieszka Jędrzejko-Pires, Katarzyna Chamberlain, Jane Woodin and Nuria Massot, School of Languages and Cultures

The Translation Agency is a new project proposal bringing together students from different MA programs with lecturers at the School of Languages and Cultures. The Agency will provide students with the opportunity to gain experience in real-life projects with staff providing guidance and proofreading of the translations. Furthermore, it will promote collaboration between educational institutions and industry professionals by organising events and talks. The Agency will provide services to the general public, local businesses, charities etc. on a not-for-profit basis.

Alternative Economics: Enriching Economics

Olivia Wills and Simon Tebbutt, Economics

Alternative Economics: Enriching Economics will provide seminars that discuss taught theories critically, teach alternative theories which are not covered by the curriculum, and discuss economics as it is experienced in the real world by applying taught theories to current affairs. These seminars will be used by the department to inform the economics curriculum review. A large panel event will bring together disciplines from across the social sciences to discuss an economic issue from multiple perspectives.

Digital Toolbox for Developing Future Leaders and Entrepreneurs

Andreana Drencheva and Anna Topakas, Management

This project aims to produce a digital toolbox as an innovative personal resource bank that helps individuals to develop themselves and their new enterprises. Self-development will be facilitated by a range of evidence-based resources designed to boost self-awareness, self-regulation, and self-monitoring, while enterprise development will focus on analytical, strategic, and action planning skills. This holistic approach will be a one-stop-shop for future leaders and entrepreneurs.

Trainee Educational Psychologists’ Engagement in Learning and Teaching

Martin Hughes, Education

This project will focus on student engagement to enhance learning and teaching in the doctoral programme (DEdCPsy) that trains educational psychologists (EPs). Students will explore a range of approaches in order for the staff/student learning community to build a more informed understanding of how to enhance student engagement in teaching/learning. Data already collected from students over a number of years will be used to develop more effective teaching/learning opportunities.

Improving student satisfaction with Learning & Teaching within the Department of Politics

Gregory Stiles and Evelyn Andrada Mantoiu, Politics

Based on the observation that feedback is scoring significantly lower compared to other categories assessed in the National Student Survey, this project will enhance significantly our understanding of student dissatisfaction with feedback within the Department of Politics. The project seeks to discover the underlying causes of this assessment of feedback by students and make recommendations to address this problem, and thereby increase the Department of Politics’ NSS feedback score.

Student Seminar Series - Fostering Research Communities of Students and Staff

Lauren White, Sean Wallace and Justine Fernandes, Sociological Studies

A weekly seminar series which integrates undergraduate and postgraduate students with existing research and research cultures within the department, at which all students and staff are welcome. This actively breaks down hierarchies of knowledge production, providing students with the opportunity to inform thinking, and enables the fostering of an inclusive academic community, enhancing learning and the development of confident social researchers at all levels.

Critical Intersectionality Matters

Beth Kamunge, Rebecca Wright, Azeezat Johnson and Sharon Curtis on behalf of the Critical Race & Ethnicities Network (CREN)

This project will create a safe space for UG, PGT and PGR students/ researchers, as well as academics and community organisers to consider the Black-feminist concept of Intersectionality more broadly, and with specific application to interrogating Higher Education curriculums. This will be through a half-day workshop in March 2016 and a series of 2 minute videos by students in Sheffield in response to the question “why is my curriculum …(Eurocentric/able-ist/transphobic etc.)?” hosted on CREN’s website.

Equality and Diversity Learning in Legal Education

Tamara Hervey, Law

How and what future lawyers learn about equality and diversity is important – not least because the legal profession is the mechanism through which citizens access justice. The Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) benchmark statement for Law asserts that law graduates have an “awareness of principles and values of law and justice, and of ethics”. Such values include equality and diversity. The project enhances the ways in which Sheffield Law School supports equality and diversity learning among its overlapping communities.

Social Work Book Group

Jadwiga Leigh and Stephanie Adams, Sociological Studies

We’ve recently started a Social Work Book Group which involves reading a fictitious or autobiographical non- academic text which relates to social work in some way. We wish to invite two speakers to the next three book groups to enhance our understanding of service users’ and social workers’ perspectives. We believe that their additional viewpoints will develop our critical reflection of the different situations students will encounter when they qualify as social workers.

Curriculum development – Student participation in module planning and design

Edward Mitchell and Sarah Blandy, Law

The development of an undergraduate module in the School of Law to begin in the 2016 academic year through collaboration between students and staff. This will take place in student-led focus groups that will enable students to participate in the planning and development of the module.

Criminal Justice Initiative

Amelia Bowring, Tommie Hassall, Harriet Askham, Lauren Unsworth, Rachel Ronald, Cameron Spittal, Yuan Shen Ng, Fay O’Halloran, Katie Doherty and Syazwani Jumat, Law

The Criminal Justice Initiative works with the Centre for Criminal Appeals and partner universities aiming to train potential lawyers. Students work as part of a team reviewing a case selected by the Centre for Criminal Appeals to see if it is worthy of reference to the CCRC. Students will undergo training covering a range of topics such as the appeals process, defence investigation methods, forensic document analysis and case file management, confidentiality, data protection and self-care.

Sheffield Contemporary Pavilion

The Sheffield School of Architecture (SSoA) Competition Collection: Muyiwa Oki, Wanqing Wong, Benjamin Thomas Hooper, Kasia Oskroba, Natalia Gracheva, Matthew Allen, Yee Hua Chee and Stephen Fisher

Sheffield Contemporary Pavilion is a temporary pavilion construction project that empowers cross-departmental collaboration to explore and experiment with new building and construction techniques. With an engagement of students and staff as well as the Sheffield community, there is intention of a cross-pollination of skills and knowledge to utilise and generate a meanwhile-use for a contemporary artspace. It’s been set up by SSoA graduates and students called ‘the Sheffield Contemporary for the Arts and Music'.

2nd Postgraduate Migration Research Workshop: ‘Looking beyond the Migration Crises’

Michaela Bruckmayer, David Holland, Rebecca Murray, Johanna Schenner and Marcia Vera Espinoza

Following the success of the 1st Postgraduate Research Workshop we decided to organize a consolidating event to raise the profile of Sheffield University’s interdisciplinary migration network. The 2nd Postgraduate Migration Research Workshop (PMRW) entitled ‘Looking beyond the Migration Crises’ will bring together PGR and early career researchers from various universities. We aim to make the 2nd PRW even more interdisciplinary and to invite not only single papers but also panel submissions.

Lunchtime specials

Simeon Shtebunaev, Paul Bailey and Leo Care, Architecture

This bid is applying for funding to revive our once treasured Lunchtime Special series; something which we are already currently trying to do ourselves! This weekly series of talks are student led, covering a range of creative practical lessons. They provide a flexible format that allows for an innovative way of disseminating skills, advice and knowledge across all levels of people involved in SSoA, from students to staff. Taking place at lunchtime they provide a much needed forum for discussing ideas crucial to the field of architecture and succeeding as a student.

Queer Methodologies and the Politics of Creative Practice

Alice Honor Gavin and Melanie Richter-Montpetit

For theorist Lee Edelman, queer theory ‘teaches us nothing’, and this is precisely its pedagogical significance. Bringing together literature and politics staff and students, this series of workshops takes the current (re)turn within queer studies to questions of pedagogy as an opportunity to explore queer methodologies across disciplines. The workshops will be a space for pedagogical experimentation, applying teaching methods more prevalent in creative writing to politics, and inquiring into the politics of creative practice.

Evaluating student engagement strategies / activities in large classroom teaching

Sonal Choudhary and Andreea Ionescu, Management

Large group teaching is a widely practiced technique within UK universities. Identifying and practising innovative student engagement strategies and activities in large lecture theatres will help departments to develop excellence in teaching while delivering a high quality learning experience to students. The project also aims to analyse the gaps between students’ expectations about learning and staff perceptions about students’ learning within the Management School. A web-based library for developing engagement activities in large-classrooms will be created.

Practice makes Practitioners

Landscape Department Student Society (Landmark) and Thom White

We want to give a deeper insight into the professional design approach by inviting a key landscape architecture practitioner/practice (involved in current projects) to the department. The fundamental aim of this will be to engage and inspire us students to broaden our knowledge, skills and research, and allow working with tutors in a different learning environment on all levels of the student body.

For more information about student engagement, please contact Bob McKay ( or Jessica Baily (