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Teaching and Learning Support Office

Learning through Research

The University of Manchester has a strong reputation for its research and its teaching and our students benefit from the interaction between them. The University’s teaching is informed by its research at all levels but, more importantly, Manchester students learn in an environment where they are encouraged to develop and use research skills. 

Research involves a spectrum of skills, some of which are discipline-specific, but many of which are generic and applicable not just within the academic sphere.  Generic research skills enhance employability and more generally to equip students to respond well to opportunities and challenges beyond the working environment. 

Teaching and research are most obviously integrated in dissertations and specific research projects, most frequently in the final year. However the aim of the ‘Learning through Research’ initiative is to recognise, reward and develop the integration of teaching and research throughout the curriculum, right from the first year of study.

In 2013-14 we funded seven projects to develop, evaluate or disseminate existing activities that aligned with the Learning through Research initiative, some of which are shown below:

 Information about the funding programme for 2014/15 can be found below.

2014/15 funding for Learning through Research

Grants for collaborative research with undergraduate students

In 2014-15 we are offering a series of small grants (£500 or less) to facilitate staff and student collaborative research projects. The awards are intended to pay for students to be actively involved in research projects jointly with a member of staff. The students must benefit from the project beyond the financial reward by developing their research skills. The awards may be used to support travel for instance in order to present research which has involved students, or for students to visit some research resource as part of the project. We particularly welcome projects that involve students in Years 1and 2 of their degree programme. These awards should not be used for equipment purchases.

Awards for Integrating ‘Learning through Research’ activities in Years 1 and 2.

We are also making awards of £500 in recognition of existing Learning through Research activities that have helped students develop their research skills. Colleagues can either be nominated or self-nominate with support from students and/or staff.

The funding will be managed by the Teaching and Learning Support Office. Award winners and grant holders will be subject to the University’s financial regulations.

All funding must be used within the financial year in which it is allocated (before 31st July 2015).

Criteria

Submissions will be considered by a small panel chaired by Professor Kersti Börjars, Associate Vice-President (Teaching, Learning and Students). The members will consider questions such as the following when assessing bids:

Grants
1.    Does the project directly benefit students in developing their research skills?
2.    Does the project involve true collaboration between the student(s) and the staff member(s)?
3.    Is the project realistic given the timescale and funding available?

Awards:
1.    Does the activity align with the Learning through Research definition?
2.    Did the activity develop the students’ research skills?
3.    Were the students made aware of the skills and their value beyond research?
4.    Is the activity ongoing and sustainable?
5.    Is the activity innovative?

Submission Format:
Submissions for grants and awards should be submitted by email to teaching.excellence@manchester.ac.uk no later than 9th December 2014. 

Grants:
Submissions should contain a completed cover sheet (see attached) and a project proposal addressing the criteria.

Submissions should be no longer than 2 sides of A4 in a minimum font size of pt11 with standard margins. This does not include the cover sheet.

Awards:
Submissions can consist of nomination of colleague(s) or self nomination with support from colleagues and/or students. Nominations should be no more than 500 words and should be submitted on the attached form.

Timescales:
 
Deadline for submissions    9th December 2014      
Panel meeting    w/c 15th December      
Decision communicated to submitters    Before Christmas       
Project start date    January 2015      
Project end date    TBC with individual project holders but all funding must be used during the financial year in which it is awarded.
Award funding must also be used in the year in which it is awarded     

Enquiries relating to this call for submissions should be addressed to: teaching.excellence@manchester.ac.uk

Full details and the cover sheet can be found at: