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Case study: Showcasing Warwick’s Student Research

This case study summarises the work of the Student Research Working Group which formed in April 2015. The group recognized that the University provides many opportunities for students to engage in its research activity and culture but that these opportunities are not presented in a cohesive way. Evidence also suggested that in department and extra curricula research opportunities are only for those who are considering PG study or a career in academia. With support from WIHEA, funding was achieved in April 2017 to gather more detail about all of the opportunities available within academic departments and professional services; consider and build presentation of these in a cohesive way; and make recommendations for building an institutional approach.

Department(s) / colleagues involved:

IATL, University Marketing, Student Careers & Skills, School of Law

Our aim was to …

  • Present an institutional picture of Student Research opportunities
  • Create an inclusive narrative around Student Research that would highlight the benefits of engaging with this process applicable to all students
  • Develop a cross institutional network that would seek to connect and build the institutional approach

What we did …

Project 1 – WIHEA funding - £5k, to recruit a graduate to undertake a review of Student Research Opportunities across all academic departments. This included reflections from the ITLR 2017 process, what they offer (degree structure), additional programmes, and links to other institutional programmes (e.g. URSS)

Project 2 – WIHEA funding - £5k, to recruit a current Warwick PhD student and an external film maker, to work in partnership with University Marketing to create a Student Research Digital Hub within MyWarwick

Project 3 – WIHEA funding – £5k, to continue the work of the current Warwick PhD student and University Marketing to create a linked, bespoke web page on each academic department’s website that showcases departmental and institutional opportunities (outcomes from project 1) organised in an automated Digital Hub & Spoke arrangement (building on the outcome of project 2)

The outcome has been …

The benefit/impact has been …

  • Increased student awareness
  • Exchanging of teaching & learning practices that incorporate student research
  • Showcasing an institutional approach

This supports the Education Strategy by …

Directly contributing to:

1.2.2 Research-Led Teaching

2.4.2 Undergraduate Research Support Scheme (URSS)

The resource and networks created provide a strong foundation for maintaining a cross institutional dialogue about Student Research; exchanging teaching & learning practices that directly support the distinctiveness of a Warwick education; and informing strategy and growth of extra curricula student research opportunities (inc. URSS).

The response of students / staff has been …

Really positive

Our next steps will be …

Teams that have formed to consider the Internationalisation and Interdisciplinarity strands of the Education strategy have now adopted similar methodologies to create an institutional picture. As all three projects are at slightly different points in their project lifecycles, a proposal has been submitted to the University to sustain the outputs of all three strands and contribute to the implementation of the Education Strategy in a way that directly contributes to student engagement, transformational pedagogies and working in partnership.

To find out more, you can contact …

Rachel Davis, Head of Student Development, SCS,

Caroline Gibson, Academic Manager, IATL,