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Curriculum design


‘Boot-camp’ for Success: Developing core academic skills in first-year business and management students

Dr Zohreh Moghimi (CeDAS), Leanne Workman (Library), Dr Derrick Chong (School of Business and Management)

A tripartite collaboration between CeDAS, the Library, and the School of Business of Management that targets first-year students with instructed guidance to meet the assessment criteria and submission date, thus developing skills critical for academic success. Read more here


Management and Music: harnessing the creative arts and student-led research to create an inclusive co-curated online course

Dr Amal El-Sawad, Department of Human Resource Management and Organisation Studies 

My teaching innovation harnesses the creative arts - in particular music and creative writing - to help students critically evaluate core management concepts and theories and share findings from their own original research in engaging ways. Read more here


AR StoryDecks

Dr David Young & Mary Matheson, Media Arts, Nuno Barreiro, Electronic Engineering and Dr Will Shuler, Drama, Theatre, and Dance

AR StoryDecks provides an intuitive web-based application and deck of cards for creating immersive stories, opening new possibilities for lecturers and students to use augmented reality (AR) in their teaching and learning without requiring any expertise in coding. Read more here


Diversifying Philosophy

Suki Finn, Department of Politics, International Relations, and Philosophy

My innovations to diversify philosophy are distinctive by introducing the first module on race, gender, and queerness into the teaching offerings, by building support networks in turbulent times, and by leading the way in the department on equality in organising training and providing guidance documents to help others sign up to good practice. Read more here


SPIKE: Small Parcels of Integrated Knowledge. A teaching format to improve engagement and active learning

Walter Lucchesi, Biological Sciences

SPIKE is a sequence of 10 sections designed to implement engagement, active learning and self-empowerment, with the aim of reducing exam related anxiety, which is known to hinder learning . Read more here


Co-Designing and Co-Delivering English Academic Support: A You Said; We Listened Project

Jenny Neville, Ruth Livesey, Finn Fordham, Lucy Thomas, Tim Moore, Judith Hawley, Mohamed El-Ashkar

We have piloted a model of co-design and co-delivery of our Academic Support programme with our UG Student Reps and recent graduates. Read more here


Tying the classroom together: How to create the ‘best online teaching experience’ through an integrated hybrid classroom

Petar Stankov, Department of Economics

The integrated hybrid classroom lowers the participation threshold for both on-campus and online audiences, thereby encouraging students from diverse backgrounds and individual circumstances to engage with the material. Read more here


Developing cutting edge employability skills in the technology sector for Psychology and Computer Science students through interdisciplinary teaching

Szonya Durant, Department of Psychology, Nuno Barreiro, Department of Electronic Engineering, Carlos Matos, Department of Computer Science

We present an interdisciplinary approach to teaching that provides real-world skills in the context of the rapidly growing area of Virtual Reality for Psychology and Computer Science students, enabling them to develop their interdisciplinary team working, whilst applying their own specialist knowledge. Read more here



Dr Serena Wright, Department of Law and Criminology

Inclusivity is at the heart of the broader Learning Together ethos, as it seeks to facilitate social inclusion across students and staff at partnership HEIs and criminal justice institutions; however, LearningTogether@RHUL goes further than this: firstly, by specifically targeting Royal Holloway students from widening participation backgrounds; and secondly, in seeking to create inclusive HE-level educational initiatives specifically for women and young people in prison. Read more here


Equalising Opportunity and Skills through Year 1 module design: Encountering Medieval Literature

Dr Jennifer Neville, Dr Alastair Bennett, Dr Catherine Nall, Dr Stephen Gordon, Dr Helen McKee, Eleanor Baker, and Rebecca Menmuir, Department of English

Encountering Medieval Literature makes innovative use of stepped activities, including independent study, collaborative work, group discussion, and large lectures, to support and engage first-year students from a wide range of different backgrounds in their challenging first encounter with Old and Middle English literature. Read more here


Online teaching in the Library

 Greg Leurs and Eva Dann, Library Academic Liaison Team

At Royal Holloway Library, our online teaching combines face-to-face lectures, workshops, webinars, our subject guides and Moodle space to give students 24‑hour access to learning resources. The aim is to deliver synchronous and asynchronous learning and teaching opportunities for students at point of need. Read more here


Artful Experiments in Atmosphere: Practice-based workshops and Alternative Assessment in GeoHumanities Pedagogy

Dr Sasha Engelmann, Department of Geography

Through practice-based, inclusive workshops foregrounding the sensual, aesthetic and affective dimensions of atmosphere, and an accompanying alternative assessment (“Practice Portfolio”) that challenges students to connect practice with key concepts, this teaching initiative activates situated learning experiences, diversifies learning opportunities, and innovates in the teaching of the geohumanities. Read more here


Rethinking Fast and Slow: Creative Curriculum Design in Response to a Crisis in Psychological Science

Dr Ryan McKay, Department of Psychology

I have turned a global crisis of confidence in the integrity of published psychological research to pedagogic advantage by using it as a springboard for teaching students about the problematic incentive structures that underpin the conduct and dissemination of psychological science – and of science more broadly. Read more here


Stating the Evidence: reviewing evidence for government policy to support student learning and development

Dr Alice Milner, Department of Geography

This initiative is a policy placement scheme for PGR students to produce high-quality evidence reviews to support real-world policy decisions in partnership with the UK Government, and benefit student learning through the development of important career skills. Read more here


Opening the door to the Financial Industry

Dr Pierre-Olivier Fortin, Department of Economics 

Pierre describes how he has developed a whole range of activities and offers to “open the doors of the financial industry” for Economics students at Royal Holloway. Read more here


Learning Together: The School of Law at HMP Feltham

Dr Serena Wright, Morwenna Bennallick, Prof. Rosie Meek & Team, School of Law

‘Thinking Criminologically’ brought thirteen of our first-year criminology students into the prison environment on Wednesday afternoons to learn together with eight young people (aged 18-20) at HMP Feltham … Read more here


Simulation-based learning for better feedback and immersive student participation

Dr Endrit Kromidha, School of Management

On my course ‘New Venture Creation’ a range of mobile, computer-based and face-to-face simulations were used to enable students to make decisions and receive feedback in real time…Read more here


Encouraging Self-Reflective Practices in Mathematics 

Dr Alastair Kay, Department of Mathematics 

In this case study, Alastair describes how he redesigned the course ‘Introduction to Applied Mathematics’ in order to increase student engagement and inclusivity, and encourage self-reflection when writing homework and exam solutions...Read more here

Arts-based Interventions on the MBA

Justin O’Brien, School of Management 

The MBA at Royal Holloway benefits from cross-disciplinary projects and team teaching in an innovative format that sees students stretch and grow from a broad range of learning experiences..

Read more here

Digital Marketing Course Design

Dr Sarah Glozer, School of Management

Launched in Spring 2015 to 142 students, Digital Marketing is an elective for second year undergraduate students within the School of Management. In order to encourage students to actively co-construct course content, I regularly asked students for feedback and their own ‘crowd-sourced’ examples…Read more here


Demystifying biological chemistry: a competency-based approach

Dr James McEvoy, School of Biological Sciences

The 1st year undergraduate course “Chemistry for Life Scientists” uses a competency-based approach which  identifies the chemical skill-set that is necessary for a student pursuing a molecular bioscience degree into the 2nd and 3rd years...

Read more here

Security and Social Media: the RHULGeopolitics Blog & Securing the Campus

Team from Department of Geography with affiliations to Politics & International Relations and International Security Group 

For the MSc in Geopolitics and Security (taught between Geography and Politics and International Relations), we designed a blog as a space in which to publish some of the students' work. We also convened a joint security mapping workshop of the campus using a fictional G8 summit...

Read more here


Teaching Early Music Notation

Dr Helen Deeming and Samantha Blickhan, Department of Music

The course The Notation of Medieval Song was planned around new technologies that required student engagement with multiple learning modes, self-reflection, and peer and tutor feedback. Read more here


Using new models of collaboration to develop creative skills

Dan Rebellato, Department of Drama, Theatre and Dance; Tom Parkinson, Department of Music

Making Musical Theatre utilises a series of bootcamp challenges to encourage students to support each other to generate new interdisciplinary creative work. Read more here


Enhancing food and recycling awareness and engagement in second year management students via creativity and systems thinking

José-Rodrigo Córdoba-Pachón, School of Business and Management

The innovation brings information, systems thinking and  creativity techniques to help students identify and tackle complex issues related to food recycling and waste management. Read more here


Incremental Inclusive Innovation: Promoting Equitable Learning and Degree and Employability Outcomes in an Existing Module (First-Year Liberal Arts Core)

Ruth Cruickshank, Languages, Literatures and Cultures

My incremental innovations to the first term of teaching of the existing first-year core Liberal Arts module (LA1000) promote equity of experience and longitudinal outcomes for an increasingly diverse student body by incorporating into the curriculum intersectional questions of race, class, gender and sustainability; embedding employability skills; introducing reflective practice; and incorporating equitable and authentic assessments. Read more here


De-exoticizing the Postcolonial

Dr Terri Ochiagha, Department of English

My innovation consists in the reconfiguration of the module ‘EN3226: The Postcolonial Novel: The Art of Resistance’ in the following areas: purview, text selection and student demographics and its pedagogical implications. Read more here


The development of podcasts and quizzes to improve student engagement and inclusivity

Tom Dyson, Department of Politics, International Relations, and Philosophy

The innovations on my modules in 2020/21 allowed me to account for educational diversity by ensuring that Joint Honours and PGT students from different disciplinary backgrounds were better able to develop their knowledge and understanding of the key empirical, conceptual and theoretical content of the modules. Read more here


Using UDL & Digital Technologies to Support Inclusive Practices: Meeting the Diverse Needs of an Undergraduate Marketing Class

Dr. Lucy Gill-Simmen and Dr. Chloe Preece, Department of Marketing

By using universal design for learning (UDL) and a variety of digital technologies to support pedagogies in our instructional design, we were able to provide an inclusive learning environment for a diverse group of learners in 2020/21. Read more here


Embedding Industry Experience for All from the Outset: First-Year Translation Studies Teaching and Learning

Dr Karina Berger, Dr Ruth Cruickshank, Katie Docwra, Dr Miguel Garcia, Dr Lidia Meras, Prof Hannah Thompson, Department of Languages, Literatures & Cultures

Drawing on pedagogical research, cultural and linguistic expertise and extensive professional experience in the Language Service Provider Industry (LSPI), the team designed and delivered core and language-specific first-year Translation Studies modules which give students understanding of different LSPI career paths whilst developing transferable professional skills from the outset. Read more here


Narrowing the BAME award gap within the School of Business and Management

Tom Wainwright, Sunnie Yu Zheng, Thanda Mhlanga, Chris Howorth, Justin O’Brien, School of Business and Management

This BAME award gap narrowing portfolio of inclusivity teaching innovations was developed and deployed by a diverse team of academics, with a clear commitment to move other voices to the centre of curriculum development and delivery.  Read more here


Inclusivity in Greek and Latin language and literature: teaching and course design

Peter Olive, Department of Classics

A focus on inclusivity for one group of students (such as those with dyslexia) invariably benefits the whole class. A strategy for minimising cognitive load I took in 2018-19, for instance, led me to seek teaching methods that involve multiple means of expression. Read more here


How to Write Brilliant Essays

Dr Ursula Hackett, Department of Politics, International Relations and Philosophy

How to Write Brilliant Essays is a large collection of free original online resources to help ambitious students reach beyond formulaic, middling-grade essays to approach a first-class standard. Read more here


EN1106 Shakespeare: Study and Writing skills for transition to University

Dr Deana Rankin & team from Department of English

By embedding a range of skill-based learning tasks in the compulsory first year Shakespeare course to underpin the transition to independent and peer-led university study, we aim to enable students of all abilities, origins and cultural backgrounds to identify their individual intellectual interest in the works of a key canonical author and have the means confidently to articulate them. Read more here

A scalable approach to personalised learning

Mr Jasper Lyons, Mr Nuno Barreiro & Dr Carlos Matos, Department of Computer Science

We present an inclusive approach to teaching that provides real-time progress monitoring, enabling students from large and diverse cohorts to progress at their own pace, and allowing the adaption of taught material to each one’s needs and expectations. Read more here


Critical curricula: Diversifying sites and sources

Dr Anna Jackman, Department of Geography

Building upon established campaigns to decolonise the curriculum both within and beyond the discipline of geography, the ‘Diversifying sites and sources’ initiative provides a collaborative space for students to both contribute to, and extract from, a database of materials both authored by non-Western scholars and focusing on non-Western sites. Read more here


Hitting the Mark: Joint Media Arts/Drama, Theatre and Dance Courses

Will Shüler and team, Departments of Drama, Theatre and Dance and Media Arts

Since 2016/17, the departments of Media Arts and Drama and Theatre Studies have developed innovative collaborations where students work on film projects which function as both formative and summative assessments. Read more here


Embedding UDL principles in French degree course design

Professor Hannah Thompson, SMLLC

Hannah gives a detailed overview of how she has embedded universal design for learning (UDL) principles into her courses. Watch the video here


Teaching in the 21st Century: Embedding student learning in technology

Dr Eilidh Cage, Department of Psychology

I have embedded the course 'Developmental Psychology' in technology in order to make it engaging and accessible for all learners: an audience voting system using “Mentimeter”; post-lecture short answer questions on Moodle; and “Flipboards” to encourage widening of knowledge. Read more here


Student-led Concept Adaptation

Dr Paul Haynes, School of Management

On the Consumption, Markets and Culture course, students collectively build and operationalise a new marketing and consumption theory…Read more here


Gamification in Intermediate Latin

Dr Liz Gloyn, Department of Classics

Gamification was embedded throughout the course through a series of insignia challenges. Students wininsignia by completing each task, thus rewarding effort rather than mastery, and creating a low-stakes environment in which students can assess their own learning…

Read more here 


Combining theory with practice in Responsible Entrepreneurship

Dr Anica Zeyen, School of Management

The aim of the course ‘Responsible Entrepreneurship’ is to inspire students to be part of the changes we need to protect our environment and society with the help of their management and business skills…

Read more here


Using WordPress Digital Assignments and a Twitter Course Account

Dr JP Kelly, Department of Media Arts

This case study outlines the various ways in which I have embedded digital resources such as Twitter and WordPress into a number of courses that I teach as well as outlining some of their key pedagogical benefits…

Read more here 


Studying Classical Antiquity

Dr. Richard Hawley (module leader), Dr. Nick Lowe, Dr. Efi Spentzou, Dr. Liz Gloyn, Dr. Zena Kamash: all Dept. of Classics

In 2011-12 the Classics Dept. reviewed its overall curriculum and decided for the first time to integrate skills training explicitly into first year UG study...

Read more here 


Flipping the Bioscience classroom: online lectures and in-class problem solving

Dr James McEvoy, School of Biological Sciences

Here, James describes a new approach to teaching the Principles of Molecular Bioscience course, an approach that has emphasized problem-solving and understanding, and one that seems to have better prepared the weakest students for the exam...

Read more here 


Teaching 1 + 3 with instant essay feedback tutorials using grademark

Dr Ruth Livesey and Dr Jessica Hindes, Department of English 

Teaching 1 + 3 offered every student the opportunity to double the standard two hours a week of contact time if they chose and provided a variety of teaching practices suited to different learning preferences.

Read more here