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What is Learned at University? The Social and Organisational Mediation of University Learning (SOMUL)

SOMUL teamThis four year project was funded by the UK Economic and Social Research Council as part of its Teaching and Learning Research Programme.  It aimed to increase our understanding of the range of learning outcomes of an increasingly diverse higher education system and to investigate how these are socially and organisationally mediated. 

The study concentrated initially on students and graduates in three contrasting subjects – biosciences, business studies and sociology. For each subject, five study programmes were selected to represent the different social and organisational features in which the project was interested. Students from these programmes were investigated at various stages during and following their undergraduate careers with a focus on their conceptions of learning and personal and professional identity. The wider applicability of findings from the initial three subjects were assessed in relation to a further group of subjects, again taking a range of programmes with different social and organisational characteristics.

CHERI led this project in collaboration with researchers from the Centre for Research into Lifelong Learning at Stirling University and the Institute of Educational Technology at the Open University.  The project commenced in January 2004.

The project directors were Professor John Brennan, Professor of Higher Education Research, The Open University; Professor David Jary, Visiting Professor, The Open University; Professor Mike Osborne, University of Glasgow; Professor John Richardson, Institute of Educational Technology, The Open University.ESR TLRP logo

Aims of the project

Summary of the project

Project outputs

NEW BOOK NOW AVAILABLE (December 2009) book based on the project entitled ‘Improving What is Learned at University: An exploration of the social and organisational diversity of university education’ by John Brennan, Robert Edmunds, Muir Houston, David Jary, Yann Lebeau, Michael Osborne and John Richardson, London: Routledge.

About the book

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