To date, ten UCL staff have received International Teaching Excellence Bursaries to visit overseas institutions and four academics from overseas institutions have been awarded bursaries to visit UCL. Find out more about some of the bursary recipients' experiences below.
Dr Simon Banks, UCL Senior Teaching Fellow (Chemistry)
Simon visited Ecole Normale Supérieure (ENS) de Lyon, France, to study interdisciplinarity and research-led teaching methods at the ENS with a view to establish and share best practice in these areas
“My visit was very successful and productive. As well as being given many useful insights into the true implementation of interdisciplinarity and research-led teaching at the ENS, I was also able to build strong foundations for future teaching exchanges between the ENS and UCL.
“The motivation for my fact-finding trip to Lyon was the strong emphasis placed on both interdisciplinarity and research-led teaching in the promotional material provided by the ENS, both on its website and in hard-copy.
“My colleagues at the ENS were excellent hosts. They provided me with a very good environment in which to work and facilitated the numerous interviews and informal discussion sessions that enabled me to make the most of my visit. UCL and the ENS are quite different in terms of their student populations but I believe each has a lot to offer and closer ties between the two would be beneficial for both parties.”
Shubhada Maitra, Professor at the Centre for Health and Mental Health, Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), Mumbai, India
Shubhada spent two weeks at the UCL Mental Health Sciences Unit developing the existing UCL-TISS academic relationship through the development of a curriculum and innovative teaching-learning practices that address the multicultural complexity of a university like TISS
“TISS and UCL have a collaboration to work on developing teaching programmes at Master’s and PhD level. Dr Sushrut Jadhav, Senior Lecturer in Cross-cultural Psychiatry at UCL, had visited TISS in November 2012. While at TISS, he gave seminars and we worked together on creating a draft curriculum on medical anthropology, mental health and social work. I was strongly encouraged by UCL partners to apply for the International Teaching Excellence Bursary as it would give us a chance to take our joint work even further.
“While at UCL, the experience of the Grand Round, an event on ‘Negotiating Gender and Caste in Higher Education’, was interesting and enriching. It was a platform to share concerns around two key issues, caste and gender in higher education, with a diverse audience and interactions with international students from UCL, faculty and practitioners. I also got an opportunity to observe teaching-learning pedagogy in a different cultural context.
“The visit to UCL was an amazing experience for me. As in the past, working with UCL’s Dr Jadhav and Dr Selai is enriching and has added to my insights about service delivery in a multicultural context.”
Tracey Tokuhama-Espinosa, Director of the Teaching and Learning Institute at the Universidad San Francisco de Quito in Ecuador
Tracey spent two weeks at UCL with a number of departments, including E-Learning Environments and BASc, promoting the benefits of using her ‘flipped classroom’ concept. Tracey delivered a number of mini workshops on classroom flipping as well as a broader two-day workshop for UCL teaching staff
“This has been a wonderful, collaborative experience and I feel I am leaving UCL with not only new colleagues but also new friends.
“In addition to the initial groups I had hoped to work with, there are several other additional exchanges, which were born of individuals’ and departments’ interests in both technology as well as studies about how the brain learns best. These exchanges led to discussions of broader areas of cooperation between institutions. For example, the library sciences group and engineering department are starting new programmes that are of great interest to my university in Ecuador, which I will share with officials there.
“Hopefully this will lead to future exchanges with students and teachers at our institutions. I have learned a lot about the challenges faced by CALT and E-Learning within the UCL structure, which were very similar to those in my country. It was gratifying to be able to share ideas and potential solutions to common problems.”
Find out more about Tracey’s workshop - http://www.ucl.ac.uk/teaching-learning/news/flipped-classroom-workshop
Gonzalo Andrés Ramírez Cleves, Professor of Philosophy of Law and Constitutional Law, Co-director Master in Theory of Law, Universidad Externado de Colombia
Gonzalo spent two weeks in the UCL Faculty of Laws exploring the use of the internet in the teaching of the influence of Bentham’s legal thought in Colombia during the nineteenth century
“In the two weeks I spent at UCL, I made two speeches to students, professors and visitors from all over the world. The first speech discussed ‘the influence of Bentham on Colombia during the XIX century and the second on ‘teaching the Influence of Bentham on Colombia through new technologies and Internet resources’.
“It was a very good experience both academically and personally. UCL is a very good university and its professors and teachers are friendly and open people. I was able to see the facilities, give a series of lectures and share research with people on pedagogy and substantive matters about Bentham.
“Philip Schofield, UCL Professor of the History of Legal and Political Thought and Director of the Bentham Project, and his team made me feel at home and it was great to have the opportunity to exchange ideas and projects. It was a unique experience.”
Carlos Mario Zapata Jaramillo, Associate Professor at the Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Medellin, Colombia
Carlos spent two weeks in the UCL Faculty of Engineering and Department of Computer Sciences sharing his expertise in creating experience-based games in the classroom for use in active learning strategies
“I met many interesting people at UCL in the department and in the faculty. I had the opportunity to interact with several colleagues in my field of knowledge (software engineering) and also people linked to teaching.
“The experience provided me with the opportunity to plant a seed for future cooperation. Currently, I am working in a joint project with the Iowa State University in the USA as a suggestion made by UCL Lecturer Dr Earl Barr. Also, my colleagues at UCL discovered the way in which I design, test, and use games for teaching in my classroom, and we can promote some future application of such games again at UCL.
“The experience was very productive for me. I started some interesting relationships with my UCL colleagues and I hope these relationships will promote many possibilities of sending students to UCL.”