Category / Fusion
Congratulations to Professor Steve Tee, Executive Dean in the Faculty of Health & Social Sciences, who has been invited to give a keynote speech at 2nd International Conference on Prospects and Challenges of Higher Education: Vision 2030.
Prof. Tee will be speaking about the concept of FUSION, Bournemouth University’s unique blend of education, research and practice. This international conference will be held in Kathmandu (Nepal) on 16-18 April.
Christmas came early for Jane Healy as her publication “Thinking outside the box: Intersectionality as a hate crime research framework” was published on 19 December in the conference journal for the British Society of Criminology. Jane’s article was based on her paper presentation at last summer’s BSC annual international conference which was held at the University of Lincoln.
The conference theme was ‘Public Criminologies’ and the article draws upon Jane’s previous PhD research, her ongoing work on hate crime in the Dorset community and her undergraduate teaching for sociology and criminology students on intersectional criminology; demonstrating Fusion in action!
The article challenges the current single-strand approach to hate crime in the UK and uses case study examples to illustrate how applying intersectional analysis to hate crimes contributes to a greater understanding of the nature of victims’ experiences. This comes at a time when the Law Commission is reviewing current hate crime legislation which she argues is hierarchical and fails to provide equal protection across hate crime strands.
The full article is available Open Access at: https://www.britsoccrim.org/pbcc2019/
Further findings from Jane’s PhD are discussed in an article published by Disability & Society in June last year, entitled “‘It spreads like a creeping disease’: experiences of victims of disability hate crime in austerity Britain” which is available here:
Dr Jane Healy is Deputy Head of the Department of Social Sciences and Social Work, in the Faculty of Health and Social Sciences.
The understanding of human anatomy is vital to the delivery of healthcare. In medical education, this has historically been done through direct dissection of human cadavers by medical students or close observation of such dissection by an anatomist. This helps with the development of a comprehensive understanding of the three-dimensional relationships of the structures human body in health and disease. The intricate complexity of the human nervous system, combined with the vast range of neurological diseases make this area one of the most challenging for medical education.
The computer animation and visualisation skills already at BU offer a unique opportunity to develop a suite of tools ready for the influx of medical students using immersive virtual reality and mixed reality techniques. The primary aim of the project is to develop a medical teaching platform that provides an anatomically correct three-dimensional teaching tool using virtual reality and mixed reality such as Microsoft’s HoloLens 2. This will facilitate a deeper understanding of the human body in real individuals. The platform will be developed to allow immersion in a range of clinical scenarios and provide virtual training for students to supplement live clinical experience. This approach will be supported with modular teaching tools and case scenarios derived from real cases and outcomes. Future developments of the platform will include decision support tools, case recording and data analytics tools to support machine learning and personalised actionable analytics.
The project will blend cutting-edge animation/visualisation techniques with digital health approaches with human-centred design principles to provide a platform to train the next generation of healthcare professionals. The project aim is to build on work already undertaken between BU and NHS organisations in Dorset to develop a blended reality platform for undergraduate medical teaching and postgraduate training. Large clinical datasets from existing data repositories in Dorset will be used to train machine learning driven education and decision support tools using supervised learning. Prospective clinical data collection using the de-identification/re-identification pipeline being developed as part of the Dorset informatics strategy will be subjected to unsupervised learning approaches to evaluate and improve accuracy.
The project is funded through HEIF6 running from November 2019 until July 2022. Please contact Dr Xiaosong Yang (email@example.com) or Dr. Rupert Page (Rupert.Page@poole.nhs.uk) if you have any questions about the project.
Background call for evidence:
Life span has increased over recent decades, but health span, the period of time people live in good health, has generally not kept pace, and so older people are living longer with ill health. This increased duration of ill health, both physical and psychological, and often compounded by loneliness, can be challenging for individuals; and the increasing number of people affected is placing pressure on health services and social care, threatening to overwhelm the funding mechanisms, and failing those in need.
Increasing health span has been adopted as a policy objective by the UK Government in the Industrial Strategy’s “Ageing Society” Grand Challenge, which aims to ensure that people can enjoy at least five extra healthy, independent years of life by 2035. This House of Lords inquiry will seek to determine whether the Government’s ambition to increase health span is achievable in principle, and which approaches may be most successful in practice.
Interdisciplinary research is at the heart of our BU2025 strategic plan, and moving into a new role can offer opportunities to work with others. The call for from the House of Lords Science and Technology Healthy Ageing Committee enabled me to partner with a new colleague, and for us to both think about our disciplines in different ways. Taking the ideas we discussed for submitting written evidence, we are now in the process of applying to a charity for a funded PhD student to take the work forward.
BU policy team
Interdisciplinary written submissions to the Committee kept our BU policy advisors, Jane Forster and Sarah Carter busy! BU researchers Katherine Appleton, Samuel Nyman, Debbie Holley and Vanessa Heaslip all submitted evidence.
Dr Samuel Nyman, Department of Medical Sciences and Public Health,
A multidisciplinary approach to promote physical activity and exercise among older people
Dr Samuel Nyman is a leading researcher on preventing falls and promoting physical activity among older people. With a background in health psychology, his interests include the use of behaviour change techniques to promote exercise among older people and people with dementia. Dr Nyman was consulted for his expertise by Haringey Council in October 2016, for his input into the council’s Physical Activity for Older People Scrutiny Review. This directly led to recommendations that were agreed by the council.
This evidence is submitted in response to the government’s call, so that policy makers are aware of the need for a multidisciplinary perspective for promoting physical activity and preventing falls. This will include the use of psychological knowledge on behaviour change but also the expertise of others including urban planners to make environments more conducive for physical activity among older people.
His evidence can be read here:
Professor Katherine Appleton
Professor Katherine Appleton is a Chartered Psychologist and Registered Nutritionist. She has researched human eating behaviour since 1998, with a special interest in the older population since 2006. Much of her research focuses on the optimisation of human health and well-bring in the normal population considering nutrition, physical activity and their impact on behaviour.
Her evidence can be read here:
Professor Debbie Holley and Associate Professor Vanessa Heaslip
In our submission, we reflected on the role of technology in healthy ageing, and suggested some ‘tech’ futures areas for consideration.
Technologies to provide a solution for loneliness (e.g. the virtual tea party) and virtual health care can provide efficiencies for the NHS as well as improved access for marginalised communities. However, key barriers are the spread and access to technology (especially rural communities) the skill set (and costs) necessary for the ageing population to engage with this technology, alongside the upskilling of the current NHS workforce to work virtually need careful consideration. Some barriers can be directly addressed by Government 5G and NHS workforce priorities; there is a clear role for charities; other barriers will need universities and industry to work together to engage with agile and rapid prototyping and testing. The methods of procurement need to be revisited, currently excellent SMEs are filtered out – working across with the Department of Business could provide ways of supporting innovation. Further work with experts is needed to invest in effective scaling solutions across the sector, and learning from examples/solutions/suggestions are contained in the text below. More of the same is not going enable the huge changes that demographic pressures are bringing to bear on an already stretched NHS; and work of effective data capture is needed to identify and bring the policy makers lens onto those belonging to marginalised groups.
The link to our full evidence submission here:
but no worries I’m out and back in the UK!!
I had the privilege of being invited to represent the British Geriatric Society (BGS) Nurses and AHP Council to talk about Dementia and the nurse’s role at the Scientific and Practical Conference Long Term Care Focus on Dementia in St Petersburg last week. What struck me most as I listened to the presentation interpreted from Russian or Hebrew into English is that when it comes to talking about dementia we have more in common than divides us. Nurses, academics, physicians, psychiatrists, and nutritionists all talked about wanting to provide a person centred approach to care, seeing the person not their diagnosis and in essence wanting to offer a humanised approach to care. They discussed the importance of preparing nurses to work with older people and people with dementia and the challenges this poses for the curriculum. They emphasised the need for more research into what is ‘living well with dementia’ and how we can provide it. The presenters spoke with a passion that was inspiring.
I was able to offer the UK perspective and highlight examples from the Ageing and Dementia Research Centre (ADRC) at BU about our innovative approaches to education, research and practical examples of enabling people with dementia to live richer lives. My talk was being translated from English to Russian so as I started my talk I invited everyone to stand up to relieve their pressure areas (we had been sitting still for 2 hours and I am a nurse after all), I do not know what was translated but everyone did stand up, looking a bit bemused. Fortunately when I said to sit down again they all did – hand gestures helped! I felt like I was at the UN with my earpiece carefully in place, but was in awe of the eagerness to learn from others. I was the only person from the UK, but there were speakers from Norway, Israel and of course Russia all presenting. We have so much in common that I hope our conversations will continue.
I was able to stay the weekend and did a mini tour, that included the Hermitage Museum, the ballet (wow!), an overnight sleeper train to Moscow (I felt like I was in a Agatha Christi film), and of course go in to the Kremlin. It was a fascinating conference and trip.
Dr Mili Shrivastava based on her research in Women Entrepreneurs in UK and India published an article on Indian women Entrepreneurs in The Conversation. The article outlined how women entrepreneurs are creating businesses based on environmental problems while creating opportunities for sections of society.
The article has reached far and wide across continents and was widely shared on social media.
World Economic forum reprinted the article.
The article can be found here:https://theconversation.com/how-women-entrepreneurs-are-changing-indian-society-122352
Dr Jaeyeon Choe (Faculty of Management) has been invited to join the editorial board for The International Journal of Religious Tourism & Pilgrimage. As the journal community represents a strong interdisciplinary practice and an exceptionally inclusive & diverse community of scholars and practitioners, Dr Choe was delighted to accept the invitation.
The International Journal of Religious Tourism and Pilgrimage is a high-quality, international, open access, online, double blind reviewed publication which deals with all aspects of Religious Tourism and Pilgrimage. The International Journal of Religious Tourism and Pilgrimage (IJRTP) was founded in 2013 by an international group of researchers (the Religious Tourism and Pilgrimage Expert Group). The journal is published by the Dublin Institute of Technology, Dublin, Ireland. All articles in this journal are full text and open access. See the link below for more information about the journal: https://arrow.dit.ie/ijrtp/about.html
We welcome papers in the religious tourism and pilgrimage area submitted from BU academics. Thank you!
BU is celebrating Global Entrepreneurship Week, for the first time, on the 19th of November with not ONE but TWO Mega Events! Supporting student experience; supporting BU commitment to the UN Sustainable Development Goals; and providing a platform to bring together wonderful examples of the power of enterprise in changing society.
Women in Entrepreneurship: An extraordinary panel of Women from various sectors and UK and Beyond, we have a number of Famous faces on the panel as well as women who are quietly making a huge impact on society and the economy; helping break down gender barriers to entrepreneurial activities. I am immensely proud to introduce the panel and the 3 wonderful ladies from Brazil who are also going to join us (see attached pic).The Women in Entrepreneurship Panel has been possible due to the support of funding from the Women’s Academic Network (WAN); ACORN award(Public dissemination of research); and Faculty of Management (Executive Dean Dr Lois Farquharson)
Venue- KG01 Time- 1245-1630
Also, on the 19th we are bringing SOUP to BU..what’s that you ask? BH SOUP (modelled on the Detroit SOUP movement) has been running successfully in the conurbation for the last few years and this year, to celebrate GEW and to harness the energy of the newly launched BU Social Entrepreneurs Forum, BH SOUP is coming to BU with BH SOUP Loves Social Enterprises. This event too is possible due to the Faculty of Management (Dr Lois Farquharson).
Venue- Fusion Building Ground Floor space- Time 1845-2100
Please see the eventbrite links below to register (for FREE) at the event(s)
What do dinosaurs and the fossil footprints of our ancient human ancestors have to do with catching criminals?
Researchers at Bournemouth University have travelled the world over the last few years documenting fossil footprints both of humans and extinct animals. We read the story in the traces left in the rock record, to tell the story of how different animals interacted, how they walked and behaved. We have developed freeware to help capture these traces in 3D and analyse them using some cool mathematical techniques including machine learning. Recently we have shown how our American ancestors hunted giant ground sloth, and how patterns of human locomotion have changed as our ancestors in Africa evolved. Take this know-how, the mathematical tools and computer software we have developed to translate our research into forensic practice, and you have modern tools for the police to track criminals via their footprints.
Want to find out more? Come and see us at New Scientist Live 10-13 Oct 2019 ExCeL, London. Stand 524.
A quieter week for HE policy, however, there’s news on the KEF and lots of other relevant content.
STEM for Britain
As a member of the Parliamentary and Scientific Committee BU’s early career researchers and PhD and post-doc researchers all have the opportunity for exposure of their work through the annual poster competition. Posters are being accepted for the following areas:
- Biological and Biomedical Sciences
- Mathematical Sciences
Prizes will be awarded for the posters presented in each discipline which best communicate high level science, engineering or mathematics to a lay audience.
Please share this information with ECR, PhD and PDR colleagues and those who work directly with them. This is a rare opportunity to showcase work within parliament at this level. All the shortlisted posters will be shared during a parliamentary reception in March 2020 and there will be the opportunity to talk about the research directly with policy makers.
The poster competition is open now please contact Lisa Andrews, RDS Research Facilitator, for more details and to enter.
The House of Commons library has a briefing paper setting out data on the prevalence of mental health conditions in higher education students in England and outlines the action higher education providers, the government and the Office for Students are taking to help students with mental health issues. It also flags up how students can get support.
From the briefing:
- Student mental health has been the subject of a number of reports as students are increasingly declaring mental conditions and reporting issues with stress and poor mental wellbeing. It has been suggested that student mental health is in ‘crisis’.
- The proportion of students who disclosed a mental health condition to their university has increased rapidly in recent years.
- Surveys of students have found much higher rates of mental ill health than those disclosed to universities. A recent survey found that 21.5% had a current mental health diagnosis and 33.9% had experienced a serious psychological issue for which they felt they needed professional help. Survey responses are confidential and are likely to give a better idea of the full extent of mental ill health.
- Many factors have been suggested as contributing to the rise in cases of mental ill health among higher education students – work pressures, moving away from home, financial worries, or more generally higher education institutions are said to be feeling the impact of the rise in metal health conditions among the 16-25 age population.
- The effect of mental health issues on students can be serious and can lead to consequences such as: academic failure, dropping out of education, poorer career prospects and in the worst cases suicide.
- Concern has been expressed about the availability of support for students with mental health conditions and the response of universities and higher education institutions.
- In 2017 Universities UK, published Stepchange Mental health in higher education. Stepchange provides a framework to help higher education providers embed good mental health across all university activities.
A Chartered Management Institute commissioned survey finds 3 in 4 parents believe that qualifications that combine with work experience and study are the best way to prepare young people for the workplace.
With record numbers of young people going through university clearing, the survey also shows that:
- Parents rate degree programmes that combine work and study over traditional university degrees.
- Nearly two thirds of parents (64%) favoured a degree apprenticeship with a major company like Rolls-Royce over a degree at Oxford or Cambridge (36%).
- Nearly three quarters (73%) rated a degree that combines full-time work with study over a traditional 3 year university degree based on lectures and seminars alone (27%).
- 71% of parents also wanted all graduates to have the opportunity to develop management, enterprise and leadership skills.
Rob Wall, Head of Policy at CMI said: “Innovations like degree apprenticeships – which bring together work and study, and allow apprentices to apply their learning in the workplace – are hugely attractive to employers. Our survey shows that they are now increasingly popular with parents, with the vast majority rating a degree apprenticeship with a FTSE 100 corporate over a traditional 3 year degree at a top university. Our message to all those young people receiving their GCSE results this week is that, whatever your results and whatever path you take next, developing those employability skills like self-management and leadership will always give you an edge in a competitive jobs market.”
FE Funding Push
The Association of Colleges are capitalising on the recent announcement that there will be an accelerated spending round by the end of September. They have issued a paper to the Treasury and the DfE making recommendations for tertiary education. In headline their proposals cover the full remit of college work and request a one-off cash injection of £1,114m in revenue and £240m in capital. The paper capitalises on the Augar Review which discussed the lower funding rates and investment in FE education. It covers the items you would expect such as a higher funding rate for all FE provision, better pay and status for FE teachers. It also suggests a ten year funding plan for education. A larger adult education budget to support retraining, improve skills and develop lifelong learning (at a one-year cost of £250 million).
Of relevance to HE are the apprenticeship funding reforms they suggest (at a one year cost of £200m).
- Increase funding for non-levy employers and for young people. The non-levy budget should increase by £200 million and all 16-to18 year olds should be funded through the education budget to guarantee their training opportunities.
- The increase in degree apprenticeship numbers is a concern because these involve high costs and because it appears that obligations previously covered by tuition fees have been shifted onto the apprenticeship budget. It would seem more appropriate for apprenticeships at level 6 and above to be funded from the higher education teaching budget, regulated by the Office for Students and operated with the same rules on equivalent and lower qualifications as loan-supported programmes.
They also suggest a development fund for higher technical education (one year cost of £40m).
- For students, it would be simple to offer the same tuition fee cap, student finance rules and teaching grant funding as offered for degree-level study. For colleges there needs to be a modest fund to support set-up costs which precede the relevant income because enrolments take time to build.
On regulating to protect students and employers while maximising impact:
- Colleges spend a growing and disproportionate share of their budgets on administration and compliance and account for themselves to two different parts of the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA), to the Office for Student (OfS), to Ofsted, to local enterprise partnerships and combined authorities, to the Home Office, to lenders, pension funds and any other funding organisation. Some complexity is unavoidable but there is a case for the DfE group to consider whether there are ways to focus regulation more clearly on activities that benefit students and employers, to cut compliance costs and to place simpler duties on college governing bodies to account for the public investment they receive.
David Hughes, Chief Executive, Association of Colleges, said: After making great efficiencies over the last decade, there is a strong consensus now that colleges need major investment to put them in a position to be able to thrive and from that position to be able to maximise the impact they can have. The UK’s industrial strategy identifies skills as an issue across a range of priority sectors and the need for action to avoid shortages. Without thriving colleges, this priority will not be met.
- Total expenditure on 16-19 education fell by 17.5% in real terms between 2010-11 and 2016-17, while the funding allocated to 16-19 education fell by 13% in real terms between 2013-14 and 2017-18.
- The funding rate for students aged 16 and 17 in education in 2018-19 has been frozen at £4,000 since 2013-14, while the funding rate for students who are already aged 18 has been frozen at £3,300 since it was cut by 17.5 % in 2014.
- The government is currently consulting on ambitions to build a “new generation” of higher technical qualifications at levels 4 and 5 for T-level students to progress onto. The introduction date of 2022 has been set to fit with the first cohort of T-level students, who will start their two-year level 3 qualification in 2020.
Labour’s Education Policies
Recent news has detailed Jeremy Corbyn’s efforts to amalgamate enough support that should the autumn vote of no confidence succeed he may be able to form a temporary caretaker Government. Labour are hoping for an early General Election and Wonkhe have covered all their recent Education related announcements into one blog.
Research England have published the outcomes of the Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF) consultation and pilot exercise. Final decisions on the KEF will follow later in 2019.
- 72% of responses agreed the KEF should be an annual, institutional-level, metrics driven exercise.
- The respondents commented on the balance between running a low burden exercise at the expense of losing valuable detail.
- Significant themes within the report were noted as:
- The (mostly) output metrics do not necessarily capture the quality of knowledge exchange activity
- Varied responses on how often the KEF should take place, although the report notes the majority favoured an annual exercise.
Below follow the main points picked out of the KEF report narrative
Clusters The KEF clusters institutions together, BU is in cluster E.
- “The conceptual framework underpinning the analysis and the variables and methods employed were broadly well received, with the majority of respondents somewhat agreeing or agreeing with these aspects, and the resulting composition of the clusters. There was less consensus on whether the clusters would help fulfil the stated aims of the KEF (Q6.4), and the purpose of allowing fair comparison. Although a majority agreed to some extent, there was a higher level of ‘disagree’ responses than for Q6.1-6.3.”
- “In regard to the overall approach to clustering (Q6.4) it is worth noting that the majority of negative responses were ‘somewhat disagree’. This is borne out by the associated commentary, with the most common response (105 respondents) welcoming the clustering approach, with only 10 respondents making critical comments on the overall concept. Respondents indicating an overall ‘slightly disagree’ or ‘disagree’ tended to be for very specific reasons. For example, while broadly welcoming the concept of clustering they disagreed with the range of variables used. Other more negative responses were driven by consideration of whether clustering helped the KEF meet its aims (and how businesses and other users might use or interpret them), with more agreement on their positive role in enabling fair comparison between HEIs.”
“There were a substantial number of points in the commentary focussing on the descriptions and presentation of the clusters:
- There were a significant number of comments relating to the cluster descriptions – e.g. describing a cluster as having HEIs with ‘limited world leading research’ could be seen as negative in itself, and that it may be better to frame cluster descriptions on what the institution does do, rather than what it doesn’t.
- Multiple requests to provide a brief introduction into what the clustering is for, how the descriptors work and how the cluster names (which are random letters) were assigned. It was noted that this was particularly important for external audiences.
- Approximately 15% of responses suggested clusters may be confusing for businesses and other users or they suggested that there should be flexibility for users to be able to group institutions in different ways that were more relevant to them.
- There was some concern that whatever the intent, the clusters will be seen as a hierarchy in their own right (10%).
- That there is still too much variation within clusters (although we would argue that the KEF proposals include further steps to normalise for size, and the scaling of metrics mitigates this).
- That specialist institutions are difficult to place in clusters, but most respondents making this point stated that this approach was still preferable to not using clustering or a comparable method to aid fair comparison.”
“There were also multiple comments and suggestions on the variables used to create the clusters, including on the role of professional services staff not being represented, concerns that variables were too heavily skewed towards research activities, and that 3* (as well as 4*) REF outputs should be used.
“Overall, there was no clear consensus from the responses received on a course of action that would satisfy all and no appropriate alternative models were proposed that would meet the requirements of providing a means of fair comparison. Given that the concept of clustering was well received for those in the main clusters, it is unlikely the fundamental approach to this aspect of the KEF proposals will change….”
Perspectives and metrics
“For the proposed perspectives and associated metrics, we asked for feedback on both the overall range and balance, and also views on the metrics proposed under each perspective.
- A majority agreed that a sufficiently broad range of KE activity was captured (72%), although a sizeable minority of 26% disagreed to some extent”
- The range of perspectives were welcome with around 40% of responses agreeing that they broadly captured a sufficient variety of KE activity. However, around 15% of responses felt that the individual metrics within the perspectives were too narrow to adequately capture the full range of KE activities undertaken by HEIs.”
“The majority of recommendations for KE activities that could be considered for inclusion in the KEF fell into four key areas:
- Contribution to public policy
- International partnerships
- Partnerships with SMEs
- HEI-HEI collaboration
Other common themes expressed in the commentary related to:
- The timing of the HE-BCI review and the subsequent impact on the KEF. …
- How the quality and sustainability of partnerships with business can be captured e.g. regular student placements, repeat business, voice of the customer.”
On working with business:
“A significant number of responses considered there was a disconnect between the broad nature of the perspective title ‘Working with business’ and the proposed income metrics. The metrics were considered by over a quarter of respondees to be very narrow, and not reflective of the full breadth of knowledge exchange activities undertaken in HEIs. In particular 15% of respondees felt that income from use of specialist facilities and equipment should be included as a useful indicator of interactions with business.”
“The nature of the metrics as income measures brought feedback across a number of points:
- Some argued that income is not an appropriate proxy for impact and does not well reflect the quality of the interactions. A number of alternative metric areas were suggested such as repeat business, length of relationships or nature or number of strategic partnerships.
- The opportunities for undertaking consultancy and contract research and the income value of that activity will be impacted by the local economic context, particularly for some types of interactions e.g. with SMEs.
- Across all disciplines, but especially in the public and third sectors, it was considered that a significant proportion of knowledge exchange activity is not monetised and so not well reflected in the metrics.
- The role of students is seen as significant by about 10% of respondents, either through the close relationships developed with businesses through degree apprenticeships or placement work, or directly by supervised services delivered as part of their course or extra curricula activity.
About a fifth of respondees provided feedback on the use of ‘academic FTE’ as the denominator for two of the metrics. While 4% expressed support for the use of academic FTE to account for the size of the institution, 10% considered it to be misleading to restrict it to academic staff when a signification proportion of knowledge exchange activity is undertaken by professional services staff or students. Some 5% requested a clearer definition of who is included in ‘academic FTE’ and 2% felt that it would be more relevant to restrict it to research active academic staff.”
On local growth and regeneration:
“We recognise that this metric on its own does not sufficiently capture the breadth of activity in this area and therefore have proposed the use of additional narrative. The feedback from respondents verified this view, with over a quarter expressing support for the use of narrative. The primary areas of concern expressed for the proposed metric were:
- The metric was considered by over 20% of respondees as unhelpfully focused on income, it was felt that this is a less effective proxy for impact within local growth and regeneration.
- Around 14% of respondees noted that the metric was very narrow as a standalone metric and needed to be part of a wider basket of metrics. A further 5% of respondees felt that the metric was too poor to be used at all and suggested that the perspective should be ‘greyed out’ until additional metrics could be identified. It was considered that the forthcoming HESA review of the HE-BCI survey may be an opportunity to find additional metrics. …
- Inconsistency of returns to the HE-BCI survey were believed to impact this metric in particular, ….
- A small number of respondees felt the use of academic FTE as a denominator was inappropriate, with a wide variety of reasons cited.
A number of alternative or additional metric areas were suggested by respondees:
- The investment that individual institutions make to their local areas, either through the local supply chain, direct regeneration investment in cash or in kind was viewed by over 10% of respondees as a helpful addition.
- While 9% suggested that activity and income related to local industrial strategies and related government funding such as city deals, regional growth funds or local growth funds should be included.
A small proportion of respondees (4%) also looked to create links to the strategies and action plans being developed by institutions who have signed up to the Civic University Commission’s Civic University Agreements.”
On IP and commercialisation:
“A wide range of comments concerned timeframes around these metrics including:
- The concentrated nature of income-generating commercialisation activity within relatively few institutions and its ‘lumpy’ nature (i.e. that volumes vary significantly year-to-year) means the metrics in this perspective may not be relevant to some institutions, and that it would be hard for external audiences to draw conclusions from them (18% of respondees).
- Whether the proposed three year time series and normalisation by research income was appropriate for measuring spin-out performance, given the long time-lags involved. Would a longer time series of 10+ years be more appropriate?
- The time lags between research being undertaken and spin-out creation was seen as particularly problematic for the metric of ‘research resource per spin-out’. Several respondees also expressed concern that given the relative ease of creating a spinout that this metric may create a perverse incentive to incorporate spin-out companies too early, or where a more appropriate exploitation route existed.
This question also elicited specific suggestions for new metrics based on other areas of the HE-BCI collection:
- In addition to licensing income, nearly 10% of respondees argued that the numbers of licenses granted (whether or not they generate income) may also give a useful indication of performance. Numbers of free licenses could (subject to a rigorous treatment that differentiated end-user licenses from other forms) indicate active exploitation of IP (the licensee having gone to the effort to enter a formal agreement) where impact rather than income generation was the primary driver.
- Other common suggestions focused on proportions of patents or licenses generating income (indicating active exploitation), rates of disclosures, or ratios of disclosures to patents and IP income (indicating effective translation of disclosures).
- There was also a group of suggestions for metrics which focused less on income and more on capturing results from enterprise structures and IP exploitation strategies that do not focus on income generation, such as social enterprises, open innovation strategies or open source products and software.”
On public and community engagement
‘Public and community engagement’ received the lowest average score when participants were asked to rate their percentage agreement…while the inclusion of the perspective in the KEF was broadly welcomed, there was also a clear message that the metric did not adequately capture the range of activities undertaken by HEIs in this area.
- Around 17% of respondees suggested that the current metric of time per FTE was not adequate to capture performance or quality of the events recorded, with an additional 12% of respondees suggesting that this risked the role of professional services staff being overlooked.
- The consistency of reporting in Table 5 of the HE-BCI return (Social, community and cultural engagement: designated public events) was a concern for 15% of respondees, highlighting the need for clearer guidance on how this information should be recorded across the sector.
- The inclusion of narrative was welcome, but 10% of respondees raised the concern that it was not assessed and would therefore not be viewed as of equal value to metric element of the perspective.
Additional metrics that were suggested included:
- The number of times that university assets are opened up to the community in some way
- HEI investment in brokerage
- Public involvement in research
- Metrics collected by public relations and marketing departments e.g. the number of academics/professional staff blogging on external sites, social media interactions, media appearances by academics, or coverage of research
- Number of performances or events and the associated number of attendees.”
Use of Narratives:
The NCCPE concluded that there is strong rationale for adopting and adapting the approach to narrative within the KEF. Whilst the proposed template delivers some effective prompts that elicited useful information, there was considerable variety in the level of specificity and supporting evidence provided in the pilot drafts.
The NCCPE have provided specific recommendations to Research England on how the templates and use of narrative could be improved to draw out more relevant and consistent information. Alongside the consultation responses these recommendations are informing the development of the KEF.
Respondees showed an exceptionally strong preference for the provision of an overarching institutional statement being provided by the HEI with 89% agreeing to some extent (and almost half strongly agreeing). 101. This was echoed through the written responses which expressed the broad view that an overarching narrative would be beneficial and that it should be provided by the institutions themselves. There was also a strong articulation that the local economic context needs to be considered to place knowledge exchange activities in context, and that it may be appropriate for Research England to provide this data in a standardised format
A number of respondees felt that an overarching statement could also be a useful tool to demonstrate an institution’s overall strategic goals in relation the perspectives. This may help mitigate any perceptions of relative ‘poor’ performance in areas that were not of strategic importance to a particular HEI. However, it was recognised that this would be difficult to achieve through the visualisation. Other voices expressed concern that the statements could become marketing tools with little added value.
And finally: We note the concerns expressed in both the consultation and pilot regarding timing of implementation and potential overlaps with the REF and TEF. We will pay regard to this when agreeing implementation timescales.
You can read the report in detail here.
Widening Participation and Access
- National Care Leavers Week will be held on 24-31 October 2019.
- Estranged Students Solidarity Week is 25-29 November 2019
- Former Prime Minister Theresa May recently announced plans for a new body, the Office for Tackling Injustices (OfTI), to monitor government efforts to tackle “deep-seated societal injustice”.
Inquiries and Consultations
New consultations and inquiries this week: Lords inquiry in Ageing: Science, Technology and Healthy Living
Arts rise: The DfE published information on GCSE entries on results day. It highlights that entries to arts subjects have risen by 3.2% to 320,000. The DfE see this as positive new because previously the EBacc was criticised as squeezing these subjects out of the curriculum because of the opportunity to select them was less than other curriculum models. The news sits alongside a 3.7% rise in entries to EBacc subjects and an increase in foreign language entries (particularly Spanish and French). For more detail, including the key stats for other subjects click here.
T levels: The House of Commons Library have one of their helpful briefing papers on T Levels: Reforms to Technical Education which provides an overview of the proposals to reform the technical education system.
Student Debt Sanctions: the CMA have taken action causing the University of Liverpool to change their student debt penalty policy. They will no longer issue academic sanctions – such as the as the removal of library or email access – for students who have debts which are unrelated to their fees. Susan Lapworth, Director for Competition and Registration, at the Office for Students, said: “We welcome today’s announcement that, following CMA action, the University of Liverpool has formally committed to drop academic sanctions for students with debts, for example for accommodation costs, that are not related to their tuition fees. The fair treatment of students is important to us as a regulator. All universities and other higher education providers should be mindful of today’s CMA announcement and ensure that their debt collection policies comply with consumer law. Our own regulatory framework sets out the need for universities to demonstrate they are complying with consumer protection law, and we will continue to support the important work of the CMA on these issues.”
AI job displacement scheme: On Tuesday new Education Minister, Kemi Badenoch, announced an extension in the roll out of a pilot programme aiming to help adults whose jobs may change due to new technologies – such as automation and AI – to retrain and get on the path to a new career. The Get Help to Retrain digital service will now be rolled out to the West Midlands and the North East following success in Liverpool City during the summer.
Student Grants: The Student Loan Company are raising awareness of their practitioners’ page. They are also sharing information on their grants – Childcare Grant; the Adult Dependants’ Grant; and the Parents’ Learning Allowance – to ensure those eligible apply for the funds.
Market Signalling: HEPI have a new blog exploring the marketisation of HE alongside the Augar Review and institutional autonomy.
Unconditional Admissions: The most effective and fairest admissions system continues to be debated this week. A provocative Wonkhe article makes the barest nod to grades asking what if all university offers were unconditional? The comments at the end are well worth a read too as sector colleagues suggest other alternatives and admissions tweaks, primarily moving away from the overreliance on A level grades. And The Guardian have an article which suggests social class is a barrier to good A level/exam performance.
PQA: Post qualification admissions. Mary Curnock Cook, ex-CEO of UCAS, explains the factors that made her turn from determined to implement post qualification admissions to remaining with the current system.
OfS Student Tool: The OfS have a new online tool for prospective students which launches in September: Discovering Uni: planning your HE journey.
NEETS: Office for National Statistics published the quarterly stats on 16-24 year olds who are classified as NEET (not in education, employment or training).
- There were 792,000 young people in the UK who were NEET; this number increased by 28,000 from January to March 2019 and was up 14,000 when compared with April to June 2018.
- The percentage of all young people in the UK who were NEET was 11.5%; the proportion was up 0.4 percentage points from January to March 2019 and up 0.3 percentage points from April to June 2018.
- Of all young people in the UK who were NEET, 41.6% were looking for, and available for, work and therefore classified as unemployed; the remainder were either not looking for work and/or not available for work and therefore classified as economically inactive.
The report details examples of specialist projects (Medway, Southwark, Blackpool) which have effectively decreased the NEET population.
Schools Funding: One of Boris’ campaigning objectives was his pledge to increase the minimum per pupil funding level for English schools – this House of Commons Insight Guide has an interactive mechanism which checks which schools within a constituency area will see an increase against the £4k (primary) and £5k (secondary) proposed thresholds.
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Flourishing with Fusion is the theme for this year’s research showcase for Mid-Career Academics.
This event will explore how fusion works in practice, and how engaging with research at BU can enhance your career. It will showcase the exciting work of a number of BU academics, and there will be a panel for Q & A.
POSTPONED from Wednesday 4th September – a new date will be announced shortly. Contact RKEDF for more information.
Denyse King from the Centre of Midwifery, Maternal & Perinatal (CMMPH) recently presented her CILVRS Project at a Parliamentary event. The CILVRS Project is a Virtual Reality Learning Environment (VRLE) to improve healthcare education. Denyse presented this at the Further Education for Leadership symposium on Ed-Tech at Parliament on July 17th 2019. She introduced a VRLE on ‘safeguarding’ to share with delegates there who then experienced the VRLE through immersion with Oculus Quest headsets. The response from symposium delegates to the VRLE was overwhelmingly positive and with excellent discussions regarding the possible content of future VRLEs. Denyse has written this VRLE content as part of her role as a lecturer in midwifery. This was subsequently built to her specifications by a company called Daden Ltd. The VRLE are designed to be profession generic and topic specific, which ensures that the majority of healthcare students can use each VRLE. Denyse King is sitting on the far right of the table of experts for the Further Education Trust for Leadership (photo).
VRLEs offer healthcare students access learning materials in ways which enhance their student experience. Use of VRLE mean Bournemouth University can offer students clinical experiences which cannot otherwise be guaranteed as routine part of their healthcare education. In addition to this, Continuous Practice Development (CPD) is a requirement of the Nursing and Midwifery Council [1-2] and the World Health Organization (WHO)  have highlighted that learners globally have limited access to Higher Education. The WHO also state that educators internationally lack skills and necessary equipment as well as a lack of access to practical skills teaching. Therefore, VRLE also have a place in offering realistic clinical experiences for CPD nationally and internationally. One example of the latter would be through Bournemouth University a close working relationships in Nepal: (1) where midwifery students can also benefit; or (2) in the development of CPD in nursing and midwifery in Nepal as recently presented on the BU Research Blog (click here).The CILVRS Project is another excellent example of the BU FUSION with Research resulting in improvements in Education, which in turn are leading to better Practice.
The response from symposium delegates to the VRLE was overwhelmingly positive and with excellent discussions regarding the possible content of future VRLEs. Denyse is very active in this field. She has created a VRLE for urinalysis training as well as three VRLE related to safeguarding (which are nearly complete) as part of the CILVRS Project. She is developing further VRLEs I: two for perinatal mental health which I am creating in collaboration with University of Newcastle (Australia), Solent NHS Trust and Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust. Some of this is being trialled within the BU midwifery programme in the forth coming year 2019/2020, and this exciting work is part of her doctorate research: Towards more holistic clinical practice: exploring the impact of virtual reality learning environments on healthcare education.
Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen
- NMC 2018a. Standards for competence for registered midwives. London: NMC
- NMC 2018b. Future Nurse: Standards of proficiency for registered nurses. London: NMC
- World Health Organization (WHO), United Nations Population Fund (UNPF), UNICEF, and International Confederation of Midwives (ICM). 2019. Framework for Action: Strengthening Quality Midwifery Education for Universal Health Coverage 2030. Geneva: WHO.
Bournemouth University facilitated a Strategic planning meeting to develop a Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Framework for Nepal last week in Kathmandu. The planning meeting was held on 30th July 2019 at the Institute of Medicine IOM Maharajgunj Nursing Campus. Midwifery is not formally recognised in Nepal, i.e. as a profession separate from nursing, therefore when refer to nursing CPD in this blog we mean both ‘nurses’ and ‘nurse-midwives’.
Bournemouth University is collaborating in this project with Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU) in the UK, the IOM Nursing Campus, the Nursing Association of Nepal (NAN), MIDSON, the Nepal Nursing Council (NNC) and several other key stakeholders in Nepal to support nursing regulatory bodies to establish mandatory CPD and/or post-registration training programmes relevant to their current practice in nursing.
The Bournemouth team (led by Dr. Bibha Simkhada with Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen and Dr.Pramod Regmi) argued that CPD offers nurses the opportunity to maintain, improve and broaden knowledge, expertise and develop their personal and professional qualities to enhance practice and career development. Nepal has had limited process and progress in ensuring CPD for nurses and the uptake of post-registration education and training programmes or CPD tends to be ad hoc. Generally, CPD in Nepal remains under-developed as showing evidence of having received CPD is not currently a requirement of nurses when they re-register every five year.This project is a good example of a BU FUSION project as our earlier Research in the form of a needs assessment will to the introduction of CPD which is of course, post-registration Education in nursing, helping to improve Practice in a low-income country. We think we have had at least some impact on nursing in Nepal as the general feeling of our strategic planning meeting positive towards introducing CPD in the near future in Nepal.
Following the government’s industrial strategy grand challenge on Ageing Society, this year’s conference will be exploring the theme of frailty. The key areas will be:
- Current health needs – the demographic and societal challenge
- Predicting transition to frailty
- The role of digital technology in maintaining independence
Professor Martin Vernon, National Director for Older People, NHS England
Professor Mark Hawley, Professor of Health Services Research (ScHARR), Director Centre for Assistive Technology and Connected Care (CATCH), University of Sheffield
Sixteenth Annual Symposium, Frailty: Enhancing Lives, Wednesday 9 October, Bournemouth University, Executive Business Centre (EBC), Lansdowne, Bournemouth.
Register now for your free place
I’ve been to Pride before, but I’ve never been part of the parade. This all changed this weekend when as a member of the burgeoning LGBT+ Network at BU (with support of James Palfreman-Kay (Equality & Diversity Adviser) and Ian Jones (Head of Regional Community Partnerships)) we joined forces with Bournemouth football club to host a float, forming part of this year’s BorneFree parade, and (if I may say) vividly demonstrated the university’s Fusion policy, and ethic.
Emotions were high as most of the float revellers (that’s us) were newbies! How would it all go? What would it be like to be the subject of so much attention? Would there be counter Pride protests? How would we be perceived as representing BU and Bournemouth AFC?
Would the experience be a disappointment, or would it be anything like the life affirming end of the film Pride, when at gay pride in London in 1985 the parade convoy is led by chapters of Welsh miners who supported gay rights, in response to LGSM’s support of the miners’ strike, leading to a union block vote at the Labour party conference, and eventual changes in the law working towards gay and lesbian equality?
It’s wonderful to report that the event surpassed my most extravagant expectations. While I did see some protests (of an event this size, its inevitable that there would be some), the overwhelming feeling was one of harmony, a sense of uplifting, and senses of immensity: the saturation of the town for one incredible day, where everyone seems to be your friend.
Being part of the parade, and having the luxury of being conveyed on a flat bed lorry, with pulsating music and lots of ‘tasteful’ revelry exhibited by the BU and the Bournemouth AFC team, there was plenty of time to look out into the crowds lining the route from East Cliff to the Triangle, a journey of over an hour. Key moments I will remember are. The two older guys with their beloved dog, all dressed in rainbow flag costumes, to the hilt (and then some). The guy with rainbow make up and the beard who seemed to be moving up and down the parade filming everything. The wonderful families who clearly had thought about the pride theme, with parents and children sporting rainbow flags, and rainbow make up. So many people with rainbow flags draped over their shoulders, as if forming a super hero cloak, which can protect you from everything, and gives you your uniqueness. The distant onlookers from far away windows, who we spotted: “look over there!” and we cheered on waving directly at them, in a moment of passing union. Old, young, many diverse people waving catching your eyes. The vicar at the back door of the church, who was waving so enthusiastically, that you thought: “He’s going to strain a muscle”. Diverse audiences, many who you might not think would support LGBT equality, overturning cultural expectations, avidly participating, looking back over to you to share that single moment of equality, exchange, and often humour.
We waved back to so many wonderful people. Never before have the immortal words of AIDS youth activist Nkosi Johnson been so resonant. “We are [all] human beings. … Just like everybody else, we are all the same.” That’s something that you don’t always realise, in todays troubling times. Pride isn’t a bubble, it’s a moment to reset, and realign our thoughts on each other and everyone. We can’t make it all year, although I suspect the planning of Pride takes that long, but what we can do is reach out, form alliances and build bridges, not only in an academic and cultural sense, but also in a human and empathetic sense.
This year’s Bournemouth Pride may not have been exactly like the euphoric ending of the film Pride set in London 1985 (and probably I was the only one on our float old enough to have (theoretically) been there at that time), but more importantly this sense of euphoria was nurtured as much by the onlookers made up of very diverse audiences, as much as those that formed part of the parade or the event. This interchange and dialogue, is an important factor of what makes Pride so unique. See you there next year.
BU is going through a process of re-commissioning its research centres this month. Existing centres, like ours CMMPH (the Centre for Midwifery, Maternal & Perinatal Health) were required to submit evidence of their contribution to BU’s research capacity to deliver our strategic plan BU2025.
This process was an interesting stock-take exercise and offered an opportunity to reflect on our successes. Our friends and associates will be aware of some of our work through our collaborations, joint publications, posts on BU’s award-winning Research Blog as well as our newsletter three times a year. The phrase commonly heard on the television programme Love Island, “You’re my type on paper”, reflects the notion here that a description on paper never quite reflects reality. The same goes for the research centre description of CMMPH, on a structured application form some of the subtle success can be overlooked. First of all, being a research centre is the main function of CMMPH, but certainly not the only one.
CMMPH is much more a university centre in the sense of FUSION, bringing together and creating a synergetic effect between research, Education and Practice. This FUSION enables research to be meaningful and has the ability to impact on the student experience through education as well as ‘real life’ issues and challenges in midwifery practice. This notion of being more than a research centre is reflected in our newsletters which always have sections on Research, Education and Practice.
To highlight this synergetic effect of being a properly fused centre, CMMPH has built a reputation for developing innovative student-led clinics: i) Student Midwife integrated Learning Environment (SMiLE) postnatal clinic in collaboration with Portsmouth NHS Trust; and ii) Newborn infant feeding clinic, in collaboration with the AECC University College. These clinics are underpinned by a growing body of evidence (=Research) from studies undertaken within CMMPH, which identifies their effectiveness in terms of a unique learning environment (=Education) to offer women better maternity care (=Practice). Both student-led clinics are being evaluated by PhD students at BU, one being match-funded with Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust and the other a self-funded chiropractic student.
On a different note, in the past four years our academics have been involved in organising five international conferences. CMMPH held two, high profile, international conferences focusing on research in midwifery education (2015, 2018); it organised the BNAC (British-Nepal Academic Council) conference at Bournemouth University in April 2017 (https://blogs.bournemouth.ac.uk/research/2017/03/24/nepal-conference-at-bu/ and CMMPH staff co-organised a conference in India on Mixed-Methods Research at the Mahatma Gandhi University (2019), and an education conference in Nepal (2018). Prof. Steve Tee, FHSS Executive Dean and National Teaching Fellow, gave a key note speech at the 2018 International Conference on ‘Challenges and Prospects of Quality Education in Nepal in Federalism Era in Nepal’.
CMMPH was on the BU Research Blog this week celebrating its latest media and midwifery publication (to see click here!). This paper is paper of a growing body of interdisciplinary research at BU across faculties and across the UK (see photo left). In addition last month Dr. Chris Chapleo from the Faculty of Management submitted a grant application to the ESRC under the title ‘Rebranding childbirth: understanding the role of marketing in influencing uptake of health services’, a joint application with CMMPH staff (Hundley & van Teijlingen) and Dr. Ann Luce in the Faculty of Media & Communication.
CMMPH is internationally recognised for its midwifery and maternity care research, education and publications. It has strong international links which includes active partnership agreements (MoA) with the University of Ljubljana in Slovenia, Manmohan Memorial Institute of Health Sciences (MMIHS) in Nepal and University of Texas Health Science Centre, School of Nursing in the USA.
Did I mention that CMMPH academics sit on the editorial boards of (or are editors of) all top four world-leading midwifery research journals: Birth, Midwifery, Women and Birth and BMC Pregnancy & Childbirth. Not only is this unique in the UK, as no other midwifery research group can claim this, it is also unique at BU as no other research centre can claim this kind of global coverage! And, last but not least CMMPH staff can claim to have written the eighth most quoted article in the international journal Midwifery (out if 2,626 published papers over the past 35 years).
All in all, on paper, 100% a centre to be proud of.
Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen
Samreen Ashraf has presented her research paper titled’ Between a Banker and a Barbie: The illusions of social media’ at the ‘Academy of Marketing Science Conference’ which took place in Vancouver in May 2019. Samreen has won the best research paper (PhD) at the conference and is awarded with the prestigious Jane K. Fenyo Award. Samreen’s paper explores the gap between students’ digital identities and their potential professional identities.