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The Open CETL

The Open University's Centres for Excellence in Teaching and Learning

*** This site is an archive; content may be out-of-date ***

Funded projects and investigations

Throughout its life, PBPL funded a series of projects and investigations. These were usually carried out by Open University colleagues but some were carried out collaboratively with other Universities and institutions:

A day in the life of a bilingual teaching practitioner: ways of mediating knowledge

Carrie Cable, Rose Drury

Exploring the roles and professional practice of two bilingual teaching practitioners working with children in a school setting

A day in the life of an early years practitioner in England

Linda Miller

Exploring ways of knowing within professional practice

A longitudinal investigation of Health and Social Care students' development of written reflection on practice

Jim Donohue

Investigating the writing development of Health and Social Care (HSC) students on a Level 1 HSC course as they produce assignments reflecting on practice

A study of the assessment of 'wicked' competences

Peter Knight and Anna Page

'Wicked' competencies are those which are hard to define and cause assessors problems. They are the competences (often skills and other complex achievements) that graduate employers say they value

A study of the efficient assessment of portfolios

The tradition, in some professions, of judging performance partly on the basis or portfolios, has spread. The possbility of creating e-portfolios is adding zest to this interest. However, the educational appeal of portfolios, as well as consideration of different platforms for e-portfolios, have eclipsed consideration of assessment costs. Portfolios are known to be hard to assess with any degree of reliability and expensive to assess

Active learning: Using participatory theatre in the professional development of youth and community practitioners

Rajni Kumrai

Aggregating constellations of learning and development of work-based professional qualifiying practitioners

Age discrimination in nursing education and practice

Caroline Holland

RoAD (Research on Age Discrimination)

An exploration of the affordances of the VLE to support the boundary crossing of practitioners engaged in a professional doctorate

Linda Haggarty, Lesley Anderson, Chris Jones

Developing asynchronous seminars for the EdD Programme

An exploratory study of on-line collaborative practice-based learning

Marion Cartwright, Jenny Lewis, Terry O'Sullivan and Maggie Preedy

Key issues in this project included consideration of: on-line team dynamics; transference of learning in practice contexts and concepts of communities of practice on-line

Co-creating learning: Tutor reflections on practice-based pedagogy and assessment

Krisen Reid

Tutor reflections on practice-based pedagogy and assessment

Collaborative learning using social tools for enquiry, reflection and sharing (CLUSTERS)

Gill Needham, Non Scantlebury

Investigating the potential of social networking tools

Configuring life histories

Jonathan Hughes and Mike Lucas

Engaging students in reflective activity

Cross faculty and other projects and investigations funded by PBPL

Links to cross faculty projects and other investigations undertaken in departments or units

Crossing the threshold: Students' experiences of the transition from student to staff nurse

Jan Draper

Transition from student to staff nurse

Developing a multimedia resource of associate lecturers as boundary creatures 

Sue Martin, Anne Adams, Lin Smith

How to 'get' practice-based professional learning

Developing a scholarship for negotiated, work based learning

Caroline Ramsey

Developing a scholarship for negotiated, work based learning

Developing an understanding of the professional formation of practitioners working with young people

Cathy Benjamin, Roger Harrison and Wendy Newton

An analysis of different accounts of practice within an open learning environment

Developing and testing a practice centred inquiry

Caroline Ramsey

Exploring with managers, and other professionals, the potential of a 'non-disciplinary knowledge' practice of learning

Development of a DVD based teaching resource for analytical science practitioners

Rob Janes

The project aims to further develop this resource to produce a website with resource materials accessible to practice-based learners across the sector

Effective practice learning within the context of a student's own workplace

Gill Walker

 A qualitative study that focuses on the role of the employer within the context of the social work programme.  It explores the setting in whcih the practice learning opportunity is organised within a student's own workplace.  More specifically, it explores the meaning of effective practice learning within this context.

Effects of B882 'Creative management' and B822 'Creativity, innovation and change' course design on learning and development outcomes with particular reference to lasting impact on working practice

Jane Henry

An exploration of the short, medium and long-term impact on practice by investigating outcomes for different cohorts of students

Eliciting past knowing through autobiograhpy

Terry DiPaolo

The evaluation of an approach to induct practice-based students to the portfolio process in an accreditation of prior learning (APEL) claim at level 1

Engaging critically: Improving students' critical engagement with the relationship between theory and practice

Sheila Cameron

From its inception the Open University Business School (OUBS) designed its courses to exploit the current management experience of its (part-time) students, and to improve managers' professional practice. The OUBS MBA has always sought to imporve students' ability to make sense of the situations they face, respond appropriately, and continually develop their practice. Recently we began to suspect that we were no longer achieving these aims for the majority of our Masters students

Enhancing the relationship between practice learning and social work theory

Janet Seden

Exploring 'what works' when enhancing the students ability to relate theories to practice

Evaluation of award tutor pilot project

Cathy Benjamin

Introduction of a new award tutor role

Exploring ideas of 'practice' in the Open University Pre-Registration Nursing course production process

Ann Gallagher and Ali Wyllie

A pilot project to explore the significance of ideas of 'practice' in the course production process at the Open University

Exploring understanding: An E115 case study

Anna Colgan, Deborah Marinetto, Gill Goodliff

Evidence of effective pratice

Getting it write/right: Professional writing in social work

Lucy Rai, Theresa Lillis

Writing represents a significant aspect of professional social work practice, most obviously through written assessment, inter-agency communication and case recording

Heritage, Critical Practice and Audiographics

John Pettit, Susie West

Exploring the potential of audiographics for learning and teaching in the area of heritage studies

How the tutor is used to come to a shared understanding of the student's progress and support the mentor-tutor partnership.

Elaine Hemmings

A small scale research project in memory of Ros Shackleton, MFL tutor on the Flexible PGCE course

How to support students in building their e-portfolios (H808)

Gill Kirkup

How to support students with limited technical skills to develop e-learning portfolios that demonstrate their competency as e-learning professionals

Investigating science teachers use of mobile devices in workplace settings

Eileen Scanlon

Contributing to debates about the use of mobile devices in workplace settings by investigating how science teachers studying the Masters-level course SEH806 (Contemporary Issues in Science Learning) use mobile technologies in school science classrooms

Investigating the benefits of using PDAs in clinical practice

Canan Blake

Investigating the ways in which clinical learning within two comparative institutions can be supported by using small handheld computers (PDAs)

Investigating the impact of K311 (Promoting public health) on public health practice

Linda Jones

A comparison of two contrasting types of student group

Knowing long-term conditions

Shirley Reveley, Verina Waights, Caroline Holland and Shelagh Sparrow

Understanding the role and practice of the Community Matron

Knowing practice: A critical best practice investigation into how practitioners understand, use, and learn from, research, inquiry, and other forms of knowledge, as 'evidence' in social work practice in Scotland

Jean Gordon

A study of how social work practitioners use evidence in practice

Learning from research into the professional formation of practitioners - lessons from the working with young people sector

Fiona Reeve

Lessons from the working with young people sector

Learning to lead in practice

Lindsay Brigham

A case study of how Band 5 Ward Leads share and develop good practice in relation to professional directives

MBA practice-based learning: is it making a difference? If so, how?

Julian Batsleer

Investigating the B830 learning path

Mental health secondment

Jill Reynolds

This secondment project linked key Open University staff associated with this project to the University of Birmingham Centre for Excellence in Interdisciplinary Mental Health. The aim was to investigate different approaches to the teaching of practitioners with specific regard to mental health teaching

Mentor's understanding of practice assessment in the nursing profession

Pam Shakespeare

Examining mentors' accounts of professional judgement

Multimedia teaching methods and materials: the impact and relevance to the understanding and promotion of critical best practice for students undertaking the Open University third-level social work degree practice course

Alun Morgan

Evaluation of multimedia applications used in on-line courses

OU and UNISON Learning Partnership Route to social work degree qualification

Barry Cooper

OU and UNISON Learning Partnership Route to social work degree qualification: Initital investigation of practice-based assessment issues.

PDAs for staff development

Agnes Kukukska-Hulme, John Pettit, Will Woods

Using PDAs for staff development

PIVOT: Professional Identity and Values Organisation Tools

Barry Cooper

Enhanced Reflection : A set of reflexive techniques for self-directed enquiry and self-managed learning

Portfolio: friend or foe?

Lesley Holland and Jill Buckledee

An investigation into the perceptions of student nurses on the Open University supported open learning pre-registration nursing programme of their practice portfolios

Practice and Professional Learning Environment (PePLE)

Mary Thorpe

PePLE is a resource for the training and continuing professional development of social workers that can be used with flexibility to fit in with the operational demands of workplaces. The resources can be used to support independent study or existing employer led provision

Practice writing and assessment

John Pettit and Pam Shakespeare

Examing the difficulties students appear to find in relating their practice and professional context to concepts taught in their course

Practice-based courses in Education - What works?

Steve Hutchinson, Sanchia Pearse

An audit of successful strategies in practice-based courses and awards in the Faculty for Education and Languages (FELS)

Practice-based learning in mathematics education at a distance

John Mason and Barbara Allen

The results of this project have given empirical evidence of the effectiveness of The Open University mathematics education courses in supporting teachers in practice-based professional development

Prepared for practice?: Exploring and evaluating the first six months of postqualified practice in social work

Ingrid Nix, Roger Davis, Barry Cooper

The effectiveness of social work qualification programmes is an enduring debate. The last large-scale enquiry to address this was in the 1990's (Marsh & Tresiliotis, 1996) and this pilot study sought to build upon the approach taken and develop a foundation for a larger-scale enquiry in the future

Projects and investigations funded in the Faculty of Education and Language Studies

Links to projects and investigations funded in the Faculty of Education and Language Studies

Projects and investigations funded in the Faculty of Health and Social Care

Links to projects and investigations funded in the Faculty of Health and Social Care

Projects and investigations funded in the Institute of Educational Technology (IET)

Links to projects and investigations funded in the Institute of Educational Technology

Projects and investigations funded in the Open University Business School

Links to projects and investigations funded in the Open University Business School

Reconceptualising the Gap: Exploring student constructions of the dialectic between academic theory and practice

Sarah Robinson, Gabriel Reedy

Exploring student constructions of the dialectic between academic theory and practice

Reflection on action

Niall Sclater and Shailey Minocha

Developing reflective practice in postgraduate professional courses

Reusable learning objects: Developing a general-purpose tool for assembling multi-media professional skills reusable learning objects

John Oates

A collaborative project between the Open University and the Peninsula Allied Health Centre, Department of Health Care Education, the University College Plymouth St Mark and St John (Marjon)

Riding the waves

Linday Brigham

An exploration of how students undertaking professional programmes develop emotional resilience

Social networking for practice learning

Mary Thorpe

Exploring the use of social networking tools for teaching and staff development

Supporting mentors on the Open University PGCE course

Angela Murphy, Christine Pretty, Michele Deane

An investigation into mentoring support on the PGCE

Supporting reflective practice amongst early years practitioners

Sue White, Alice Paige-Smith

An investigation around supporting reflective practice on courses E123 (Working with children in the early years) and E124 (Supporting children's learning in the early years)

Supporting students in building their eportfolios on course H808

Lesley Sheild, Val Edgar-Nevill, Alan Clarke, Gill Kirkup

An investigation into supporting students in building their portfolios on course H808

Supporting students in developing a questioning approach

Carrie Cable, Gill Goodliff and Linda Millerp

An investigation into supporting students developing a questioning approach

Supporting students through the transition to work-based learning - what works for the student.

Christine Wise

This project set out to investigate ways in which student confidence could be increased as they progressed from work-related to work-based courses on the Foundation Degree in Working with Young People,

Supporting writing for assessment in practice-based courses

Mary Lea

Examining ways of supporting writing for assessment in practice-based courses

Sustainable professional practice

Mick McCormick

Examining the ways in which two social work programmes operate; looking at pedagogies and in particular how learning and teaching works in the practicum

The impact of studying practice-based professional learning courses on practice

Carrie Cable

Student and tutor perceptions

The last resort? A critical best practice inquiry into the contribution of social work practitioners in preserving the key principles and values in compulsory mental health assessments in England

Sarah Matthews

This investigation described a critical, in depth study of best practices and provided primary data around best social work practice in compulsory mental health assessments

The role of service user and carer involvement in a student forum

Janet Seden and Ian Buchanan

Learning through participation in an on line discussion

The value of the Evaluating Lifelong Learning Inventory, ELLI to Open University students, and to the University

Michael Hush and Chris Edwards

A scoping study

Towards an understanding of the potential of participant negotiated work-based activities as a learning tool in corporate continuing professional development programmes

Jan Brunwin and Sue Parr

Informing continuing professional development practice

Turning with the tide

Lindsay Brigham

An exploration of how recently qualified professionals in health and social care develop emotional resilience as they adjust to and manage increasing professional responsibilities and challenges to their professional identities

Understanding paraprofessional learning

Chris Kubiak

Investigation in to how paraprofessionals in health and social care learn through practice

Understanding student learning in practice-based settings (STARS)

Chris Kubiak and Liz Bird

Exploring the ways in which workplace conditions influence learning in the practice development courses offered by the Open University

Using K100 in practice

Fiona Barnes

'Using K100 in practice' was a small-scale study looking at how far students and tutors felt the students' K100 study influenced their practice

Using PDAs for teaching pilots and gathering research data

Barbara Heins and Mirjam Hauck

Harnessing technology to enhance teaching and learning experiences at Residential School

Ways of imparting knowledge

Ian Eyres, Carrie Cable and Roger Hancock

What do Higher Level Teaching Assistants know about teaching?

Ways of learning, ways of knowing, ways of being: does the route in to teaching make a difference?

Gwyneth Owen-Jackson

Exploring different routes into teaching design and technology

Work-based learning: student support

The programme tutor role

Working at the coal face

Professor Jan Draper

The contribution of Programme Tutors in supporting practice-based learning in nursing

Workplace based assessment in medicine

Janet Grant

Significance within the practice and learning environment and generalisability to other professional practice-based learning contexts

Writing as professional practice in the workplace

Mary Lea

A collaborative project with the University of Westminster Centre for Excellence in Professional Learning from the Workplace