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  4. 10th call for project proposals now open

10th call for project proposals now open

2nd December 2016

As in previous rounds we are interested in supporting OU staff and we would like to receive both:

  • fully worked up proposals by individuals or groups, and
  • expressions of interest from individuals who would like to join others working on particular themes but do not yet have a defined project.  We will then match people according to interest and help you set up a new project group.

We have identified a number of priority areas that are of strategic value and interest in this round. This does not preclude you from suggesting other projects that you feel would fit within the eSTEeM portfolio. 

1. Supporting students

  • The transitions of students/journeys of learning – Projects under this theme will investigate the learning journeys of our students and how we can better support these transitions by developing appropriate interactions. These include: from conventional university to distance learning; the journey from informal to formal learning; the journey from undergraduate to postgraduate study, and transition into employment (employability and careers).
  • Reflection on tuition strategies – This theme will look at the range of tuition strategies currently being used on different modules, and produce a map of these across qualifications. What works well in which situations and for which students? Projects may look at overall strategies or at individual qualifications and pathways.
  • Accreditation of degree programmes – The University continues to work closely with employers to ensure that our curriculum provides graduates with suitable employability skills. This area will explore the importance of accreditation by professional bodies and what effect this has on student motivation.

2. Innovations in STEM

  • The use of multimedia assets in modules – Many of our modules now use multimedia assets within their presentations i.e. videos/labcasts.  Early feedback from students is extremely positive about their experience of using these; however, anecdotal evidence suggests that student satisfaction with assets does not relate to the perceived quality of these products.  This theme will investigate the costs vs impact of multimedia assets produced using a range of techniques.
  • Evaluation of innovative tools for online learning – A range of tools and techniques for online study have been made available to students (e.g. some modules are embedding note taking tools to facilitate active learning in an onscreen environment)  We are seeking an evaluative investigation of the use of note taking and other tools to support learning.
  • Innovation in teaching methods – This theme has been included to encourage new and experimental approaches to teaching and assessment. One example is problem based group working. The idea would be to run a small pilot using an innovation that can be tested prior to roll out across a module.

3. Equality and diversity issues in recruitment and attainment

  • Over the past year several of our STEM schools have undertaken detailed gender analysis of student data as part of their submissions for Athena SWAN awards. This has revealed previously hidden gender differences in enrolments and progression on several programmes. We welcome specific proposals to investigate these gender issues as specified in departmental action plans.
  • We would also like to encourage investigations of other diversity issues such as the attainment of Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) and disabled students as identified by the eSTEeM Attainment Gap Special Interest Group.

If you would like to register your interest in joining a project group please email indicating which area you are interested in and why. Alternatively, if you already have a worked up proposal in mind then please email to request a project plan submission form.

The deadline for submissions is 17.00 Tuesday 31 January 2017.

Related Resources: 
File eSTEeM-Project-Proposal-Form-Jul-22-FINAL.docx114.52 KB

eSTEeM Project Proposal Form.

PDF icon 2022-01-eSTEeM-Project-Plan-Supp-Info-FINAL.pdf229.11 KB

eSTEeM Project Plan Supplementary Information