Category / Student Engagement

Festival of Social Science: widening participation and photography


“I want to take a break… stop autopiloting … everything that you do makes you feel”

Student, 10/10/2016

In My Voice, My Story, we explore what it means to be a non-traditional student at university through the participatory photographic and story technique, photovoice. This technique sees students become the researchers of their own lives through taking photos and telling their stories.

The photovoice method is a participatory approach used to inform policymakers, so that meaningful policy changes can be shaped the lived experiences of the communities the policies are intended to serve.


We focus on students from non-traditional backgrounds because we know how the lived experiences of these students are often marginalised by institutions and that this impacts upon their attainment and degree outcomes. Learning together in this way is a central tenet to our programme of Fair Access Research.

This research contributes to new, more participatory, ways of doing and thinking about widening participation which is a core tenet to BU’s Fair Access Research project.


Students Who Bounce Back, led by Dr Jacqueline Priego

We invite you all to a workshop where we will listen to the students’ voices, learn from the students’ stories, gain insights into different research methods and work together to develop practical responses to what we see and hear.  

Monday 7th November 2016 10:00 -13:00 in the Fusion Building, F105

Book a place here!

You will gain insights into the power of arts-based social participatory research methods for eliciting deep stories and re-represented for social action. Having engaged with storytelling, participants will discuss ways in which the students’ lived experiences could shape policy changes and interventions to better enable students to belong.

 Feel free to share this invitation  with your colleagues or networks.


For more information about this project or BU’s innovative Fair Access Research, email the Principal Investigators, Dr Vanessa Heaslip ( and Dr Clive Hunt (






14:Live with Dinusha Mendis

14:Live is back on Thursday 20 October, at 14:00-15:00! Join Dr Dinusha Mendis on the 5th Floor of the Student Centre, for an exciting talk around her research.

What’s it about you ask? Going for Gold! 3D Scanning and 3D Printing of Jewellery and Implications for Intellectual Property Law.

Have you ever seen 3D printing and 3D scanning happen in reality? By allowing physical objects to be replicated, 3D printing is increasing in popularity. However, this can raise questions about intellectual property (IP) laws.

Unfortunately, there can be implications to modifying and replicating someone else’s existing design or Computer Aided Design (CAD) file. Does it infringe the IP rights of the creator? How much ‘modification’ is needed to create a new and non-infringing product? Are we about to see a new wave of file sharing in 3D designs? While the technology has significant potential to expand into various sectors, including jewellery, it raises many issues in relation to ownership and authorship. Can IP law deal with this growing technology or will we see a new wave of piracy and counterfeiting which will be hard to control?

All staff and students are welcome to attend so come down and join us for what is going to be an exciting and engaging session, over lots of free snacks and drinks! So pop it in your calendars and we can’t wait to see you.

If you have any questions about 14:Live or other student engagements events, then send over an email to Hannah Jones.


Student Engagement Toolkit

If you’re looking to engage more students with your research, then the Student Engagement Toolkit is the easiest way to demonstrate how to do this. This presents the different methods available to you to communicate your research across the student community, including how to take part in the assortment of events taking place across BU, such as 14: Live. As well as this, it provides information on how to engage students in a online context by pushing through news and press releases through our various external and internal comms. Have a go at encouraging students to take part in our Undergraduate orientated events taking place, such as SURE or BCUR which BU is hosting in April 2017.  Why is student engagement with research so important? Well, it’s a great opportunity to broaden your research audience and even inspire undergraduate students to partake in their own research route.  Many academics have successfully taken part in student engagement activities, including Dr Sean Beer, Dr Anna Feigenbaum and Dr James Gavin, in the past. Take a look at their thoughts surrounding events/activities they’ve taken part in.

Take a closer look at the Student Engagement Toolkit here.

Want to get involved or have some ideas of your own? Send in your idea for a 14: Live session or any other ideas you may have to the Student Engagement Coordinator

Prestigious undergraduate research conference comes to Bournemouth

Next spring, Bournemouth University (BU) will be welcoming undergraduates from all over the country to present their research as part of the British Conference of Undergraduate Research (BCUR).  The prestigious annual conference is a chance to celebrate the valuable contribution of research from undergraduate students across a vast array of disciplines and subject areas.

Undergraduates from all disciplines will be invited to submit papers, posters, workshops and performances as part of the conference.  Abstracts will be peer-reviewed and those accepted will be invited to attend the conference, which is taking place in Bournemouth 25 – 26 April 2017.

Professor Gail Thomas, Head of BU’s Centre for Excellence of Learning says, “BCUR is an excellent opportunity to highlight the research successes of undergraduates from all over the country.  It gives undergraduates their first taste of an academic conference, as well as giving them the opportunity to develop their communication and presentation skills.  It’s also a great place to network with other researchers.”

“Undergraduates will be invited to present research from any aspect of their course,” continues Professor Thomas, “Many will have had the chance to carry out independent research, whether for a dissertation, an assessment, working with an external company or working with a researcher on a particular topic.  If you’re unsure about whether your work fits, it’s best to talk to your tutor first to find out how you can get involved in BCUR.”

Professor John Fletcher, Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation at BU comments, “We are delighted to be hosting the next British Conference of Undergraduate Research and look forward to welcoming undergraduates from all over the country to showcase their research.”

“Research is a key driver of economic growth and makes a difference to all aspects of society, so we are keen to celebrate the successes of our next generation of researchers.  Here at BU we really encourage our undergraduates to get involved in research throughout their studies.  Our unique fusion of education, research and professional practice is at the heart of the BU experience, so we hope to see plenty of our students representing BU at BCUR next year.”

The deadline for submitting abstracts is 10 December.  Abstract submission will open in early October.

For more information about the conference, visit

Student Engagement Opportunity

Call for academics! Do you want to engage more students with your research? Then 14:Live is an excellent opportunity to interact with more students, in a relaxed setting and get them involved with what you do. Previous talks including Dr Dan Jackson and Dr Lauren Kita have proved successful and beneficial for both academics and students alike. The talks occur once a month, taking place on the 5th floor of the student centre and we’re looking for academics to lead a session after Christmas. This a great way to get students engaged in your research!

Interested? Get in touch if you’d like to take part and contact Hannah Jones/61214