History at Newman Recognised for Commitment to Teaching Excellence

29/11/2018 by Sinead Staunton

History Lecture

The History Subject Area has become one of the only History teams at any university in the UK to have all of its staff recognised for their commitment to teaching by the Higher Education Academy (HEA). Noelle Plack, Reader in French History, was awarded her Fellowship to the Higher Education Academy – an accolade that reflects her interest and passion for teaching – on Wednesday meaning that one hundred per cent of History staff have now been recognised by the HEA.

The History Subject Area is home to one Senior Fellow and now six Fellows of the HEA. The HEA Fellowship scheme requires applicants to show an awareness of and engagement with the UK Professional Standards Framework for teaching and supporting learning in Higher Education. This involves staff showing how they engage with relevant professional values, how they embed their research into their teaching and the ways in which they engage with continuing professional development. The scheme is supported by the work of the University’s Academic Practice Unit that encourages reflection on teaching practices and pedagogy.

This recognition comes hot on the heels of other accolades and activities that reflect the History Subject Area’s commitment to student learning. History at Newman is frequently one of the top performing History departments in the UK for student satisfaction in the National Student Survey (NSS), scoring over 90% for overall satisfaction for the last three years. Emma Folwell, Senior Lecturer in American History, was awarded a prestigious Fulbright award earlier this year to work with colleagues at Elon University in the USA to share innovative teaching practices. The Subject Area has also led events on the importance of fieldwork in History teaching in HE (with the Higher Education Academy), run collaborative projects with students reaching out to local schools to raise aspirations, while members of the team are currently researching student dynamics in small groups.