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Learning from crisis

Project Context:

  • Within the higher education sector, there were calls to consider the shape of the ‘post-pandemic university’ and what we could learn about teaching and learning from this time (see for example, the recent UUK education summit, and the work done by the Post-pandemic University project).

  • This project supported the work of a new Learning Circle, which has been approved by WIHEA, to consider what we want to take forward and leave behind from the time of Covid within Warwick, as well as what we want to restart, or deliberately not restart that stopped in response to the crisis.
  • Focusing specifically on learning and teaching, the project drew on the Bridges to the Future work developed by the RSA in response to pandemic to frame a process of gathering insights from the Warwick teaching and learning community, both staff and students. It fed into the agenda outlined within Warwick’s recently released Education Strategy Priorities in 2020/21, and contributed to Warwick embedding learning for the long-term.

Project Team

Project Lead

Naomi de la TourLink opens in a new window (IATL)

Tiana Holgate (Sociology UG) Nana Adwoa Obeng (Philosophy UG)
Bob Thomson (WBS) Gervaise Savvias (Law UG)
Project Team:

Tiana Holgate (Sociology UG); Prof. Bob Thomson (WBS); Gervaise Savvias (Law UG); Nana Adwoa Obeng (Philosophy UG).

If you would like more information on this project, please contact project lead:

Naomi de la Tour (

Project Aims

  • Enhanced learning outcomes within the university going forward. This was particularly relevant in areas identified within the University’s recently released education priorities, namely ‘ensuring that the barriers faced by different groups are widely understood and tackled […] consciously learn from [blended learning] and set a direction for the digital education at Warwick in the long-term’, understanding the impact of assessment moving online.
  • Embedded learning from across the university by engaging with people working within roles strategically relevant to the university. This supported Warwick in responding more rapidly and robustly to future crises, and considered which aspects of the student experience have been enhanced or harmed during the pandemic.
  • Engaged with students from all faculties and years across the university. Within that, the project sought to engage with students who have diverse learning needs, such as students with disabilities, international students, students with learning differences and accessibility needs.

Project Timeline

  • January 2021: First meeting of the Learning Circle; Recruitment of student researchers
  • February 2021: Project design finalized, including participant selection and ethical approval application
  • March/April/May 2021: Data collection and analysis; Initial development of dissemination strategy
  • May 2021: Consultation with Ian Burbage, RSA (creator of the Future Changes Framework)
  • June 2021: Final report; Development of detailed dissemination strategy
  • July 2021: Evaluation of project; Creation of dissemination materials

Project Impact

  • Impacted the learning experiences of the whole student body, as the project sought to identify and engage with students and colleagues from across the institution, and to make recommendations at an institutional level through WIHEA
  • A focus on building positively on the legacy of the changes brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic, as outlined above. Moreover, it functioned as a template for the future when dealing with change within the University, acting as a means of creating a more robust culture of change which is better able to respond to crisis.
  • Identified emerging best practice across the University, and where appropriate participants were supported to tap into the support offered within the University to share their emerging practice.