Love them or Hate them – Ice Breakers: the Marmite of Higher Education

Jar of Marmite

I facilitate the learning of students on the PG Cert teaching in HE programme for new/inexperienced staff and their assignment is to reflect on their identity, their practice and to identify future professional development needs and avenues to address them. 

Recently, the issue of engaging with students and supporting their connections through appropriate ice breaker activities seemed to be a common need among several new lecturers.    

I raised this as a need we could help to facilitate amongst SALT – and I received quite a ‘marmite’ response.  People tend to be in one of two camps – love them or hate them and this is evident from Twitter discussions going back many years (using the terms “ice breakers college education” reinforces this!). For example:  

“When will higher education institutes realize that grown adults don’t wanna do ice breakers” – Jan 14th 2021.  

However, for lecturers, such as suggested by Virna Rossi, the ice breaker topic can be structured around the actual subject material and was particularly helpful when teaching online synchronously.  They can help start discussions both at social and knowledge level and as a form of creative “play” can help reinforce learning:  The Creativity Post | Play Matters: Six Play-Full Practices For… 

And so, we’ve started a PADLET of some suggested effective ice breakers in different contexts and with a range of ideas from elsewhere – we hope they are helpful.  Do add others that have been helpful for you – as well as ones you’ve found less successful and why! 

Follow the link to the PADLET to explore and/or add your own suggestions: 

SALT can help! 

If you need help with any of the above, please get in touch with us in SALT: or via our website: Swansea Academy of Learning and Teaching (SALT) – Swansea University 


Louise Rees 

Senior Academic Developer (HEA)

Preparing to teach (again) – Top Tips to get you back in the swing

We hope that you were able to recharge your batteries over the summer and so may be starting to think about your teaching for this coming semester.

Here’s some easy, concise tips and suggestions of how you might review what and how you teach or provide support to your learners.

Some Fundamentals

  • Review your syllabus – check out the learning outcomes, content and assessment. In particular make sure that Week 1 is planned really well and that materials are engaging, inclusive and accessible.
  • You might record the assignment task and criteria in a video – click this link to self-enrol on a course to explore using Studio in Canvas. You’ll probably cover the assignment expectations in class, but this will be an easy ‘go to’ resource to signpost to students.

The TEL Team within SALT is offering a range of sessions to help get your content ready on Canvas.  Visit: Get Ready for 2022/23 – Swansea University

  • Find out about your students – how many might be enrolled, their backgrounds (e.g. mature/international/visual or learning impairments). This information will help to inform you of any adaptations necessary to have relevant examples/case studies and suitable approaches and materials.
  • What learning spaces have you been allocated and/or what are possible other spaces you can use? We’d recommend you visit and familiarise yourself with the teaching spaces, and the equipment, if possible before you teach. Check out the centrally bookable room images on Flickr: Learning Environments’s albums | Flickr
  • Refamiliarise yourself with your teaching methods (SALT can help with e.g. using podcasts or Flipped Learning approaches – see our webpage: Pedagogy – Swansea University).
  • Look (again) at past module evaluations for practices to improve – but take a long perspective and don’t respond necessarily to possible ‘fads’.
  • Try not to leave things to the last minute! Your tone of voice and presentation for audio/video resources can be negatively impacted when you are under time pressures. (For other tips, review this excellent resource: Top 10 Tips for accessible, engaging video microlectures (

Delving a bit deeper:

  • Get peer feedback – as a one-off or as an ongoing activity.
  • Investigate what professional development courses are available that would help hone your skills? SALT’s programme can be booked via our Forthcoming events: but there may be other sessions available organised through the University’s Department for Training Services, at School/Faculty level or via your subject or professional body.
  • Review resources you have previously highlighted. Remember all those ‘likes’, bookmarked web pages or articles you emailed to yourself to look at? Time to read priority ones.
  • Keep reflecting on your teaching – as you teach, make notes on your slides/handouts/ keep a ‘teacher’s diary’. This activity will be particularly helpful for HEA fellowship claims/remaining in good standing and for PDR/promotion.

Engaging with your learners

  • Think about how you can engage your students and harness enthusiasm for your course. If you’re still teaching online, we have various Tips or you can use a range of active learning approaches or engagement activities in person or online.
  • Share your teaching philosophy – explain why the course is designed as it is and why certain aspects reflect professional requirements.
  • Ask students about what their goals are and find out their prior knowledge on your subject – you can then tailor activities and build connections.
  • Set clear expectations of both self and students and you might want to consider jointly developed rules or assignment tasks (co-created activities)
  • Think about how you might build community among your learners, introduce ice breakers and make it fun e.g. a PADLET to collect photos/favourite music

Connecting with your team

  • Get to know colleagues who teach or support learning on your course – including those in professional services such as student experience advisers, subject librarians, technology enhanced learning staff to support one another and provide a great programme level experience for your students.

SALT can help!

If you need help with any of the above, please get in touch with us in SALT: or via our website: Swansea Academy of Learning and Teaching (SALT) – Swansea University


The above suggestions reflect a combination of ‘crowd sourced’ suggestions via Twitter in August 2022 combined with the 2021 blogpost by Alexandra Mihai: Time to reboot and start the new semester ( – her blogpost has some suggestions specific to teaching again in the pandemic and includes more links to further resources.

Word version of the above post: Preparing to teach blogpost Sep 2022

A Pinch of SALT Podcast – #Breaking the Bias for IWD 2022

IWD 2022

For women all over the world, just being a woman can be hard. Having an International Women’s Day means that some of their stories can be told. Those more fortunate can learn from them and begin to understand how privileged they are.

In an episode of Swansea University’s own learning and teaching themed podcast published on International Women’s Day, March 8th, 2022, we celebrate being women in higher education. We discuss our fortunate position of living in a country where higher education is no longer just a male opportunity. We draw on our varied backgrounds, sharing our experiences, to offer a range of perspectives on university life. We also discuss the meaning and value of International Women’s Day.

In this insightful conversation, Mandy Jack and Rhian Ellis, from Swansea Academy of Learning and Teaching, talk to:

  • Sophie Leslie, Student Partnership and Feedback Development Officer
  • Liza Leibowitz, a former Swansea University student and the Welfare Officer for Swansea University Students’ Union
  • Saabina Abubaker, second year student studying psychology and sociology
  • Dr Helen Williams, Lecturer in People and Organization, based in the school of management
  • Professor Yamni Nigam, faculty of medicine, health, and life sciences
  • Joanne Parfitt, Head of English Language Training Services.

Listen to the podcast by clicking on the link below:

A Pinch of SALT: What International Women’s day 2022 means at Swansea University

Together we show how far we have come from the London 9 back in 1869. But also, how there is still much more to do to achieve gender equality. By everyone, for everyone.



Celebrating 600 Fellows at Swansea University – Adapting To Online Learning

What I actually found was taking what I’ve been doing and seeing how it matched up to the Dimensions (of practice of the UKPSF) and then also by doing that you find the holes in that as well…and so that led, helped, especially with moving everything to to live Zoom lectures, it helped me organise.

Sue Croft, one of our 600 HEA Fellows shares her experience of gaining HEA Fellowship in July 2020, how being able to apply through the presentation route was a useful choice for her and discusses how her experience of adapting to online teaching during the Covid-19 pandemic was used in her application.

Watch her full interview with Darren Minister from SALT’s Recognition Team.

Sue is one of over 150,000 Fellows globally reported by Advance HE (14th October 2021)

Celebrating HEA Fellowship at Swansea University – applying UKPSF standards while teaching online

Anthony Charles, SFHEA

Some Introductions…

I am Dr Anthony Charles, a Senior Lecturer in Criminology and Criminal Justice. I am programme director for the MA in Applied Criminal Justice and Criminology and I am a Senior Fellow of the HEA and a UKAT Senior Recognised Advisor. I teach in Criminology, with a focus on my specialist subjects which are youth justice and children’s rights. I have been employed at Swansea University for more than 18 years (although my initial role was in research).

and Anthony’s Top Tips

1. Be honest and undertake an audit

2. Work with your mentor

3. Discuss your application with colleagues

4. Don’t leave the application until the last minute.

Why did gaining Senior Fellowship recognition matter to you? Why apply?

I believe that teaching is one of the most critical activities that we undertake at Swansea University. Through teaching, we help to form the minds of future leaders, share and progress our discipline, create channels through which our research can inform and inspire and ourselves develop. I gained my HEA Fellowship in 2017 and found the reflective process underpinning it very helpful. As I have grown into a programme management role, in which I lead a teaching team and a growing PGT programme, I wanted to take that personal reflective process a stage further. I therefore undertook the Senior Fellow application to challenge my practice, my leadership role and to reflect upon what I have done and could improve upon. It is really important that we do not ‘stand still’ in our teaching journeys: HEA recognition helps us to remember to evidence what we do, reflect and, where appropriate, make changes.

How have you continued to apply the standards of the UKPSF in your work since gaining that recognition during the Covid-19 pandemic?

Without doubt, the pandemic has created a number of challenges for teaching practitioners. However, it has also created opportunities. As I reflect on what I and the team have done, we have: optimised digital learning approaches; thought hard about what students will need in the new working environment; challenged syllabi; modified teaching practice; diversified teaching sessions; and revised approaches to assessment. In doing so, arguably all of the 5 core areas of activity have been realised, new ways of sharing knowledge have been designed and a greater emphasis than ever been placed on our professional values. Both as a teacher and someone who leads a team, I saw incredible dedication across the University towards continuing to provide quality teaching and an excellent student experience and the real passion for teaching which characterises Swansea University became so visible.

For me personally, the pandemic also led me to think acutely about related teaching and student support practice and thus, in addition to a Senior Fellowship application, I made an application to UKAT for recognition as a Senior Recognised Advisor and fortunately, this was successful also. This allowed me an opportunity to focus specifically on my mentoring and advice roles (and my leadership of these), elements of practice which are now more critical than ever. Although a separate recognition, the Senior Recognised Advisor accreditation complemented my Senior Fellowship and allowed me further engagement in reflection on my professional activities.


What top tips would you offer to someone delivering blended teaching in HE?

The three top tips that I would offer are based on my personal experiences:

Firstly, invest in more initial preparation than you are used to. This is not a bad nor negative thing. Blended teaching requires forward thinking around delivery, which is more intense than if we were in the classroom. Such things as IT can create challenges and ensuring that students are advance briefed and prepared become incredibly important. However, done right, blended learning can be a positive experience for teachers and students.

Secondly, be prepared to move away from the status quo and embrace change. Certainly, when I have taught on-line and diversified my approach, my existing PowerPoints and Prezi’s were reshaped, the familiar structure of lectures, seminars and workshops were amended and new ways of promoting interaction had to be constructed. Were these a little daunting to begin with? Of course. At the end of term, had I learned new skills and become more confident in my ability to teach in a blended manner? Yes. At the conclusion of the module, did students say that they had enjoyed blended learning? They did. To make the most of blended learning, we have to be agile and willing to change. Actually, this is an exciting aspect of teaching practice and something that we should not forget.

Finally, listen to the students. Blended learning presents its own, unique challenges, notably a shift in participation away from that which we are used to. There is less human interaction in the sense of not always being together in a classroom and being able to ‘read the room’. Yet, students are, in blended learning, as in face-to-face approaches, our partners. So, what I have found useful is to do something that I would do in a face-to-face context – build in honest evaluation and feedback opportunities, discuss changes with students, assess jointly ‘what works’ and manage expectations appropriately (both staff and students). Throughout the changes effected by the pandemic, I have found simply talking with students (which is what we do anyway) is the best way to move forward and they have been understanding and generous in terms of their understanding and support of staff.


For someone not sure about applying for HEA Senior Fellowship recognition what words of encouragement could you offer?

I would simply say, ‘go for it!’. I have seen such great teaching practice across the University and am shocked sometimes when people become anxious applying for Fellowship and Senior Fellowship recognition. Teaching staff spend so much time thinking about, planning for and delivering teaching – I cannot think of a single lecturer who does not want to be an excellent teacher. So, with that in mind, it is important that teachers get the recognition that they have earned.

The Senior Fellowship though is not just about recognition (as important as that is). It is, as I suggested above, another way to develop – for me, that was very important. I have never seen my HEA journey as a tick box and I would encourage others not to either. Rather, think of it this way: teaching matters, it is a critical aspect of our core business and we all want to get it right. More than that, for many of us, teaching is our vocation, and it is something that we want to excel in. Using the UKPSF, central elements of teaching practice get discerned (as also the areas in which we can improve). Through case studies, leadership and innovation is revealed (as well as challenges for the future). Through recognition, both individual staff members and the University gain pride and status and as a learning community we grow together. All of these things matter and really underscore why everyone who teaches should take that first (or second or third) step on the HEA journey.

I did want to add one further point. Thanks to the way that Swansea University has approached its HEA route, no-one is left unsupported. We have dedicated professional staff who provide incredible support, and each applicant gains a mentor. Also, our Schools are supportive. The HEA journey is therefore one that is shared. I personally think that this is an innovative and positive thing. To any aspiring or potential applicant, I would recommend you to download Senior Fellowship information and attend the next Swansea route briefing. I have found my HEA journey to be incredibly positive and I hope that you do too.

What top tips would you offer to someone preparing a HEA Senior Fellowship application?

My tips would be:

Firstly, be honest and undertake an audit. Spend a bit of time working through the UKPSF and write down the ways (and there will be many) that you meet the areas of activity and demonstrate key knowledge and professional values. I guarantee that applicants will be surprised by the good practice that they already do – this can be a great start to the HEA journey. This will also help you think around the evidence that you need to provide.

Secondly, work with your mentor. Swansea has set up a system of HEA mentors. Please, make the time to contact your mentor. Discuss any concerns with them, discuss too your successes. Do not think of mentoring as an add-on to the process: it can be critical.

Thirdly, discuss your HEA application with colleagues. I find that many colleagues are a bit shy about the good work that they do. If individuals discuss their developing applications with others, they can get reassurance about their teaching, be reminded of positive things that they do and simply excite support from their team. All of these things are important.

Finally, do not leave your HEA application until the last minute. We should all invest in our development and, when it concerns such an important role as teaching, arguably the investment should be strong. So, I would recommend, in addition to the above, that applicants try to get their applications done in advance, reviewed and give themselves a little time to reflect. Through the HEA recognition process, the successes and achievements of teachers can sing – let us all seek to make Swansea University resound with the chorus generated by those recognised by the HEA!

Celebrating 500 Fellows at Swansea University – Fellowship – reflecting can be refreshing!| Dathlu 500 Cymrawd ym Mhrifysgol Abertawe – Cymrodoriaeth – gall myfyrio fod yn braf!

Tell us about yourself – Marcus Doel:

I joined Swansea University as a Professor of Human Geography in 2000, having spent the previous decade as an early to mid-career academic learning my craft in Liverpool and Loughborough, and now I also get to enjoy being part of the University’s senior leadership team, as a Deputy Pro-Vice-Chancellor, focusing on Research and Innovation, especially our preparation for REF 2021, whilst all the while continuing to teach undergraduate and postgraduate students.

It is not just about getting a new title, a fancy certificate, and yet another forgettable number, it’s about demonstrating a public commitment to teaching excellence and professionalism

Why did gaining Fellowship recognition matter to you? Why apply?

As a Professor and a Deputy Pro-Vice-Chancellor, I felt that it was important to lead by example and secure Fellowship recognition from the Academy. I expect everyone who teaches students to do so to the best of their ability, and one way to demonstrate a commitment to excellent teaching is to make the effort to seek Fellowship. It is certainly not the only way to demonstrate one’s professional commitment – far from it – but it is definitely a powerful statement – to our students, our colleagues, and, perhaps most importantly, to ourselves. I am proud to have been deemed a Fellow, and always happy to hear when other colleagues have been similarly acclaimed – whether that be as an Associate Fellow or even as a Principal Fellow.

What did you “glean” from the process of preparing an application with reference to the UK PSF?

it made me reflect on my teaching career and my teaching practice in unexpected and refreshing ways. I surprised myself on many occasions

I was really pleased to be able to seek Fellowship through our in-house route, because that seemed to be well structured and well supported, nimbly navigating through the weird and often bizarre jargon of the UK PSF. It took me a couple of days to get into the groove of the counter-intuitive lingo, another couple of days to draft my case on PebblePad, and a final couple of days to gather the evidence and get the whole application ready for submission. Each of those three stages turned out to be quite enlightening, since it made me reflect on my teaching career and my teaching practice in unexpected and refreshing ways. I surprised myself on many occasions. When I started out on my application I had grand visions of applying for a Senior Fellowship, but quickly realised that achieving that was easier said than done. Full respect to those with impressive case studies! So, I opted for a vanilla Fellowship instead. Still not easy to accomplish by any stretch of the imagination, but a joy to hold nonetheless.

How it has impacted the way in which you think about educating learners in the Higher Education environment?

I am now much more conscious of the value of pedagogic research rather than simply assuming that ‘best practice’ will someone infuse into me from the scholarly ether.

What is the most important element of the UKPSF in your opinion – the Areas of Activity, Core Knowledge or Professional Values – or any particular one and why?

For me, the most important element by far was the ‘Professional Values’ dimension of the Framework, and what was referred to in ‘V2’ (equality) and ‘V4’ (context) – not because of the dry, neoliberal language that the Framework used, but because it allowed me to articulate what I have always considered to be the key thing at stake in so-called ‘Higher Education’ – class struggle.

For someone not sure about applying, what words of encouragement could you offer?

It is not just about getting a new title, a fancy certificate, and yet another forgettable number, it’s about demonstrating a public commitment to teaching excellence and professionalism, and systematically reflecting on your own teaching philosophy and practice. What you learn from that can be extraordinary.

Just do it. And enjoy the ride.

Amdanoch chi – Marcus Doel:

Ymunais â Phrifysgol Abertawe fel Athro Daearyddiaeth Ddynol yn 2000, ac roeddwn i wedi treulio’r degawd blaenorol yn academydd gyrfa gynnar a chanolog yn mireinio fy nghrefft yn Lerpwl ac yn Loughborough. Bellach, mae gennyf y pleser o fod yn aelod o uwch-dîm rheoli’r Brifysgol, fel Dirprwy Is-ganghellor yn canolbwyntio ar Ymchwil ac Arloesi, yn enwedig wrth i ni baratoi ar gyfer REF 2021, wrth barhau i addysgu myfyrwyr israddedig ac ôl-raddedig.

Nid teitl newydd disglair, tystysgrif grand, rhif digon anghofiadwy arall sy’n bwysig. Yr hyn sy’n bwysig yw dangos ymrwymiad cyhoeddus i ragoriaeth addysgu a phroffesiynoldeb

Pam oedd cael cydnabyddiaeth Cymrodoriaeth yn bwysig i chi? Pam gwneud cais?

Fel Athro a Dirprwy Is-ganghellor, teimlais ei bod hi’n bwysig arwain drwy esiampl a sicrhau cydnabyddiaeth Cymrodoriaeth gan yr Academi. Rwyf yn disgwyl i bawb sy’n addysgu myfyrwyr wneud hynny hyd eithaf eu gallu, ac un ffordd o ddangos ymrwymiad i addysgu o’r radd flaenaf yw gwneud yr ymdrech i geisio cael Cymrodoriaeth. Wrth reswm, nid hon yw’r unig ffordd o ddangos ymrwymiad proffesiynol, o bell ffordd, ond mae’n bendant yn ddatganiad pwerus – i’n myfyrwyr, ein cydweithwyr ac, o bosib, i ni ein hunain. Rwy’n falch iawn fy mod wedi cael statws Cymrodoriaeth, ac rwyf bob amser yn hapus i glywed gan gydweithwyr sydd hefyd wedi derbyn y clod, boed yn Gymrawd Cysylltiol neu’n Brif Gymrawd.

Beth gwnaethoch chi ei “gasglu” o’r broses o baratoi cais i Fframwaith Safonau Proffesiynol y DU?

gan y bu’n rhaid i mi adfyfyrio ar fy ngyrfa addysgu a’m hymarfer addysgu mewn ffyrdd annisgwyl a newydd. Ces i’m synnu sawl tro.

Roeddwn yn hapus iawn i allu gwneud cais am Gymrodoriaeth drwy ein llwybr mewnol, gan yr oedd i’w weld yn drefnus iawn ac yn cynnig llawer o gefnogaeth, gan symud yn hwylus rhwng jargon od a rhyfedd Fframwaith Safonau Proffesiynol y DU. Cymerodd ychydig ddiwrnodau i mi gael crap ar yr iaith wrth-reddfol, ychydig ddiwrnodau pellach i lunio fy achos ar Pebblepad, ac ychydig ddiwrnodau eto i gasglu’r dystiolaeth ynghyd a pharatoi’r cais cyflawn i’w gyflwyno. Yn y diwedd, roedd pob un o’r camau hynny’n ddefnyddiol, gan y bu’n rhaid i mi adfyfyrio ar fy ngyrfa addysgu a’m hymarfer addysgu mewn ffyrdd annisgwyl a newydd. Ces i’m synnu sawl tro. Pan ddechreuais ar fy nghais, roedd gennyf syniadau crand o wneud cais am Gymrodoriaeth Uwch, ond sylweddolais yn gyflym bod cyflawni hyn yn haws dweud na gwneud. Parch mawr i’r sawl ag astudiaethau achos trawiadol! Felly, dewisais i wneud cais am Gymrodoriaeth syml yn lle hynny. Nid yw’n hawdd i’w gyflawni o bell ffordd, ond mae’n fraint er hynny.

Sut mae hyn wedi cael effaith ar y ffordd rydych yn ystyried addysgu dysgwyr yn yr amgylchedd addysg uwch?

Erbyn hyn, rwyf yn llawer mwy ymwybodol o werth ymchwil addysgol yn hytrach na chymryd yn ganiataol y byddaf yn amsugno ‘arfer gorau’ yn naturiol o ether ysgolheigaidd

Beth yw’r elfen bwysicaf o Fframwaith Safonau Proffesiynol y DU yn eich barn chi – y meysydd gweithgarwch, gwybodaeth graidd neu werthoedd proffesiynol – neu unrhyw un yn benodol a pham?

I mi, yr elfen bwysicaf oll oedd elfen ‘Gwerthoedd Proffesiynol’ y Fframwaith, a’r hyn y cyfeiriwyd ato yn ‘V2’ (cydraddoldeb) a ‘V4’ (cyd-destun) – nid yn unig oherwydd yr iaith neo-ryddfrydol, sych a ddefnyddir yn y Fframwaith, ond gan ei bod hi wedi fy ngalluogi i fynegi mewn geiriau’r hyn rwyf o hyd wedi’i ystyried yn faes brwydr allweddol yn y maes a elwir yn ‘Addysg Uwch’, sef brwydr y dosbarthiadau cymdeithasol.

Eich gair i gall a’ch awgrymiadau euraidd?

Nid teitl newydd disglair, tystysgrif grand, rhif digon anghofiadwy arall sy’n bwysig. Yr hyn sy’n bwysig yw dangos ymrwymiad cyhoeddus i ragoriaeth addysgu a phroffesiynoldeb, gan adfyfyrio’n systemig ar eich athroniaeth a’ch ymarfer addysgu chi. Gall yr hyn y gallwch ei ddysgu o hynny fod yn arbennig.

Ewch amdani. A mwynhewch y broses.


Celebrating 500 Fellows at Swansea University – Leading on curriculum re-design | Dathlu 500 Cymrawd ym Mhrifysgol Abertawe – Arwain wrth ail-ddylunio’r cwricwlwm

Debbie Jones, Director of Undergraduate Criminology shares here experience of gaining first Fellow, then Senior Fellowship recognition. She gained a student-nominated ELTA in 2018 and has been researching the regulation of the sex industry with Professor Tracey Sagar since 2008. (More details about Debbie:


I saw seeking Senior Fellowship recognition as an opportunity to reflect on the curriculum development and design and leadership in assessment that I’d undertaken

“I started work at Swansea University in 2008. Before that I worked in the police force and so it was a big stepping stone coming to teach in Higher Education.

Initially, I had little training for teaching. I was mainly supporting seminars and engaged with the small group teaching course available at the university at the time which was very helpful. But I wasn’t prepared for the wider teaching role and so I embarked independently on the PGCert in Higher Education. I felt it was important to ensure I added value to the student’s learning through the course and doing some Action Research as part of that course in particular enabled me to develop the portfolio work on embedding employability within our curriculum. This certificated course was accredited with the HEA and so I gained Fellowship recognition upon my completion.

I have been programme director for several years and over that time redesigned the criminology curriculum, taking into account student and staff feedback, what’s going on in the sector and it’s been really successful, with very positive NSS scores. I saw seeking Senior Fellowship recognition as an opportunity to reflect on the curriculum development and design and leadership in assessment that I’d undertaken. It also aligned with my participation in the Aurora Leadership course and so it was useful to reflect back on leadership and teaching.

The UKPSF dimensions of practice can be confusing and off putting – written in sometimes jargonistic language and I did find it difficult to align with what I’ve done. What was particularly gratifying though was to see that the professional values I upheld personally were also represented in the UKPSF professional values and so it gave positive affirmation that my practice was in line with those. The process of putting in a claim for Senior Fellowship gave my confidence in my abilities and confirmed that my ideas for curriculum development were sound and aligned with standards in HE.

I found the application writing challenging. While the examples on Blackboard are useful, it can be distracting to refer to them since each one is personal to the individual and there is no right or wrong answer! It took a while for me to come up with an application format that worked for me. I also found it challenging to isolate what was my leadership role in what is ultimately team success.

But more positively – the training was very helpful, the examples as I’ve said before were helpful and I must be in a minority as I like Pebblepad! I’m not a particularly tech savvy person and so in a very practical way, getting to know the software enhanced my IT skills.

Moving forward, I’m continuing to lead the programme and I believe passionately about providing staff with the support needed to develop their skills and provide an environment which encourages creativity and innovation in assessment and technology. As a teaching mentor and Senior Academic Mentor I can support new lecturers with their practice and support to students and encourage them as they develop new modules.

So, just do it and apply! Not just for the recognition it granted, but take the opportunity to reflect on your practice and look for areas to improve upon.

Note: for help interpreting the UKPSF Dimensions of Practice, see these resources available on the HEA’s website:


Dyma Debbie Jones, Cyfarwyddwr Israddedig Troseddeg yn rhannu ei phrofiad o gael cydnabyddiaeth Cymrodoriaeth ac yna Gymrodoriaeth Uwch. Cafodd ELTA a enwebwyd gan fyfyrwyr yn 2018 ac mae wedi bod yn ymchwilio i reoleiddio’r diwydiant rhyw gyda’r Athro Tracey Sagar ers 2008. (Rhagor o fanylion ynglŷn â Debbie:


Roeddwn yn ystyried cydnabyddiaeth statws Cymrodoriaeth Uwch fel cyfle i adfyfyrio ar y gwaith datblygu a llunio cwricwlwm hwnnw ac arweinyddiaeth mewn asesu yr oeddwn wedi’u cwblhau

“Dechreuais i weithio ym Mhrifysgol Abertawe yn 2008. Cyn hynny, roeddwn i’n gweithio yn yr heddlu felly roedd yn gam mawr dod i addysgu ym maes Addysg Uwch.

Cyn hynny, prin iawn o hyfforddiant ar gyfer addysgu a gefais i. Yn bennaf, cefnogi seminarau a chymryd rhan yn y cwrs addysgu grwpiau bach a oedd ar gael gan yn y Brifysgol ar y pryd oeddwn i, ac roedd hynny’n ddefnyddiol iawn. Ond doeddwn i ddim wedi fy mharatoi ar gyfer rôl addysgu fwy eang ac felly es ati’n annibynnol i gwblhau’r PGCert mewn Addysg Uwch. Roeddwn i’n teimlo ei bod hi’n bwysig i sicrhau y gallem ychwanegu gwerth at ddysgu myfyrwyr drwy’r cwrs ac roedd cyflawni peth Ymchwil Weithredu fel rhan o’r cwrs hwnnw’n benodol wedi fy ngalluogi i ddatblygu’r portffolio o waith ar gyfer gwreiddio cyflogadwyedd yn ein cwricwlwm. Cafodd y cwrs achrededig hwn achrediad gan yr Academi Addysg Uwch ac felly wrth ei gwblhau, cefais gydnabyddiaeth drwy Gymrodoriaeth.

Rwyf wedi bod yn gyfarwyddwr rhaglen ers sawl blwyddyn ac yn ystod y cyfnod hwnnw, rwyf wedi ail-lunio’r cwricwlwm troseddeg, gan ystyried adborth gan fyfyrwyr a staff, yr hyn sydd ar y gweill yn y sector ac mae hyn wedi bod yn llwyddiannus iawn, gyda sgoriau uchel iawn yn Arolwg Cenedlaethol y Myfyrwyr. Roeddwn yn ystyried cydnabyddiaeth statws Cymrodoriaeth Uwch fel cyfle i adfyfyrio ar y gwaith datblygu a llunio cwricwlwm hwnnw ac arweinyddiaeth mewn asesu yr oeddwn wedi’u cwblhau. Roedd hefyd yn cyd-fynd â’m cyfraniad at y cwrs Arweinyddiaeth Aurora ac felly roedd yn ddefnyddiol gallu adfyfyrio ar arweinyddiaeth ac addysgu.

Gall elfennau ymarfer Fframwaith Safonau Proffesiynol y DU beri dryswch a bod yn annymunol, wedi’u hysgrifennu mewn iaith jargonllyd, ac roedd yn anodd i mi alinio’r hyn yr oeddwn i wedi’i wneud â’r Fframwaith. Yr hyn a oedd yn rhoi cryn dipyn o foddhad oedd gweld bod y gwerthoedd proffesiynol a oedd gennyf fi’n bersonol yn cael eu cynrychioli mewn gwerthoedd proffesiynol Fframwaith Safonau Proffesiynol y DU ac felly roedd yn gadarnhad dal bod fy null i o ymarfer yn cyd-fynd â nhw. Roedd y broses o lunio cais am Gymrodoriaeth Uwch yn hwb i’m hyder yn fy ngalluoedd, gan gadarnhau yr oedd fy syniadau ar gyfer datblygu cwricwlwm yn gadarn ac yn cyd-fynd â safonau ym maes AU.

Roedd y broses o lunio cais yn heriol. Er bod yr enghreifftiau ar Blackboard yn ddefnyddiol, gall dynnu sylw i gyfeirio atynt gan fod pob un ohonynt yn unigryw i’r unigolyn ac nid oes ateb cywir neu anghywir! Cymerodd beth amser i mi lunio ffurf ar gais a oedd yn gweithio i mi. Roedd hefyd yn heriol i mi wahaniaethu rhwng fy rôl arwain i a’r hyn sy’n llwyddiant ar y cyd.

Ond i fod yn gadarnhaol, roedd yr hyfforddiant yn ddefnyddiol iawn, ac fel y dywedais i o’r blaen, roedd yr enghreifftiau’n ddefnyddiol ac mae’n rhaid fy mod i’n aelod o grŵp prin gan fy mod i’n hoff o Pebblepad! Dw i ddim yn rhywun sy’n graff iawn gyda thechnoleg ac felly mewn ffordd ymarferol iawn, roedd ymgyfarwyddo â’r feddalwedd wedi gwella fy sgiliau TG.

Wrth edrych at y dyfodol, byddaf yn parhau i arwain y rhaglen, ac rwy’n credu’n gryf mewn darparu’r cymorth angenrheidiol i staff er mwyn iddynt ddatblygu eu sgiliau a chynnig amgylchedd sy’n annog natur greadigol ac arloesol wrth asesu a defnyddio technoleg. Fel mentor addysgu a Mentor Academaidd Uwch, bellach gallaf gefnogi darlithwyr newydd gyda’u hymarfer a chefnogi myfyrwyr a’u hannog wrth iddynt ddatblygu modiwlau newydd.

Felly ewch ati i wneud cais! Ac nid yn unig at ddiben cael cydnabyddiaeth ond, hefyd, i achub ar y cyfle i adfyfyrio ar eich ymarfer a chwilio am feysydd i’w gwella.

Sylwer: Er mwyn cael cymorth i ddehongli Elfennau Ymarfer yr UKSPF, gweler yr adnoddau ar-lein isod ar wefan yr Academi Addysg Uwch:

Celebrating 500 Fellows – Leading Teachers by Example | Dathlu 500 Cymrawd ym Mhrifysgol Abertawe – Arwain Athrawon trwy Enghraifft



Joanne Parfitt has considerable experience in educating learners, with a B.Ed in primary education and a CELTA (Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of other Languages) and a Masters degree in TEFL.  For almost 25 years she’s been involved in teaching students English as a second language in various countries around the World – Japan, Barbados, Prague, Istanbul and Hungary, before returning to Swansea University full-time 19 years ago to teach students in the department of English Language training services.  Joanne’s been leading ELTS since 2014 and shares her story of why she applied for HEA Senior Fellowship.



Continue reading “Celebrating 500 Fellows – Leading Teachers by Example | Dathlu 500 Cymrawd ym Mhrifysgol Abertawe – Arwain Athrawon trwy Enghraifft”

Celebrating 500 Fellows at Swansea University – Listen to her story | Dathlu 500 Cymrawd ym Mhrifysgol Abertawe – gwrandewch ar ei stori

Michele Raithby from the College of Human and Health Science gained her HEA Senior Fellow recognition in March 2019.

Speaking with Louise Rees in the SALT Recognition Team, she shares her story of gaining Senior Fellowship, tips for making an application and the value that being an assessor gives to her and her practice.

Click the SoundCloud link to listen – no account needed (approx 16 minutes): Michele Raithby – Why I applied for Senior Fellowship recognition

Transcript of interview: 500 Fellows Celebration Michele Raithby transcript[:cy]

Enillodd Michele Raithby o Goleg y Gwyddorau Dynol ac Iechyd gydnabyddiaeth fel Uwch Gymrawd HEA ym mis Mawrth 2019. Wrth siarad â Louise Rees yn Nhîm Cydnabyddiaeth SALT, mae’n rhannu’i hanes am ddod yn Uwch Gymrawd, yn ogystal ag awgrymiadau ar gyfer gwneud cais ac mae’n sôn am y gwerth y mae bod yn aseswr yn ei roi iddi hi a’i hymarfer.

Cliciwch ar y ddolen SoundCloud i wrando – nid oes angen cyfrif arnoch (oddeutu 16 munud): Michele Raithby – Why I applied for Senior Fellowship recognition

Trawsgrifiad o’r cyfweliad: 500 Fellows Celebration Michele Raithby transcript – CYMRAEG

Celebrating 500 Fellows at Swansea University – our newest Principal Fellow | Dathlu 500 Cymrawd ym Mhrifysgol Abertawe – ein Prif Gymrawd diweddaraf

Angharad Davies

For me, the key to Principal Fellowship is educational leadership firmly embedded in the context of my profession and underpinned by subject experience.

About you

I’m Angharad Davies, a clinical associate professor and honorary consultant medical microbiologist at the medical school. I have been teaching in various healthcare-related settings for over twenty years, first during my time in specialist clinical training and as an MRC Clinical Research Training Fellow, and then here in Swansea. In particular I am interested in teaching on antimicrobial use and resistance, which has become a major threat to healthcare systems globally. In addition to my teaching roles for medical students and others in the medical school I also teach a wide range of healthcare professionals from across Wales and have a UK national role as the Royal College of Pathologists’ joint lead for Undergraduate and Foundation Education. I am Health and Care Research Wales’ Specialty Lead for Infection and a member of Council of the Academy of Medical Educators.

Why did gaining Fellowship recognition matter to you? Why apply?

In clinical practice, historically teaching has tended to be taken for granted as something that everyone ‘just does’ as part of their wider clinical role, and has not always been valued as a specific skill. This is changing gradually, for example with the creation of the Academy of Medical Educators. After I had been in my Royal College role for a while, and been asked to undertake a number of other external roles, I realised that I no longer ‘just did’ teaching but actually had extensive experience of education within my discipline, at hospital, university and national level. Educational experience should be recognised just as we value clinical experience, to ensure students receive teaching which is informed by best practice both clinically and educationally. My decision to apply for Principal Fellowship was a reflection of this.

What did you “glean” from the process of preparing an application with reference to the UK PSF?

I found the application process very constructive. Having to consider evidence for each of the UK PSF descriptors for Principal Fellowship really made me think about my educational practice holistically. It helped me to see clearly how it fits into the context of my academic and clinical practice as a whole, in a way I hadn’t really considered before. All the activities I am involved with – such as clinical practice, clinical research, my involvement in a range of equalities work – support and contribute to my educational role and are interlinked, not disparate unrelated activities. My Principal Fellowship application drew all these threads together.

How it has impacted the way in which you think about educating learners in the Higher Education environment?

For me it has crystallised the value and impact of practice-driven teaching.

What is the most important element of the UKPSF in your opinion – the Areas of Activity, Core Knowledge or Professional Values – or any particular one and why?

They are all important, but for me ultimately it has to be core knowledge. This is what defines one’s discipline; without it, one would not have much of value to share with students and it is enthusiasm for the subject material that makes a successful educator. The other elements are developed around that.

What were good parts of the application process? What things were more challenging?

The process was challenging, but in a positive way. At first I thought I would struggle to write 7000 words but by the end of the process I had to cut ruthlessly! As described above, it helped me to see my academic practice as whole and put all its elements into an overall context. The SALT team provides excellent support to those applying for Fellowship at all levels.

In particular I am grateful to Prof Jane Thomas who helped me understand the requirements and gave me the confidence to proceed.

How you have continued to apply the standards of the UK PSF in your work since gaining that recognition? i.e. maintaining good standing.

I was only awarded Principal Fellowship recently but since then have run a week-long CPD course for healthcare staff. I had attended a British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy study day just the week before which outlined new state-of-the-art therapeutic developments. I was able to incorporate that information into my own teaching material so that it was completely up-to-the-minute. This field is changing very rapidly so my own CPD is really crucial.

For someone not sure about applying, what words of encouragement could you offer?

If you are active in teaching in HE, Fellowship at the appropriate level is not only good to have in your portfolio but is a very useful process in itself for analysing what you are doing and why. The requirement for reflective writing encourages you to think about aspects of your practice which you may be unconscious of or take for granted – it certainly really impacted on my outlook. The SALT team members are extremely helpful and approachable and you will be well supported.

What top tips would you offer to someone preparing a Fellowship application – any category?

Set yourself a firm deadline – it’s easy for more ‘urgent’ work constantly to take priority. Taking advantage of the SALT writing retreats can help with this.

What’s the key criterion for you about being a Principal Fellow?

For me, the key to Principal Fellowship is educational leadership firmly embedded in the context of my profession and underpinned by subject experience.[:cy]Angharad Davies

I mi, y peth allweddol i Brif Gymrodoriaeth yw arweinyddiaeth addysgol wedi mewnblannu’n gadarn i mewn i gynnwys fy mhroffesiwn ac wedi tanategu gan brofiad y pwnc.

Amdanoch chi

Angharad Davies ydw i – rydw i’n Athro cysylltiedig clinigol ac yn ficrobiolegydd meddygol ymgynghorol anrhydeddus yn yr ysgol feddygaeth. Rydw i wedi bod yn dysgu mewn amrywiaeth o osodiadau gofal iechyd am dros ugain mlynedd, yn gyntaf yn ystod fy amser yn ymarfer fel arbenigwr clinigol ac fel Cymrawd Ymarfer Ymchwil Clinigol yr MRC (MRC Clinical Research Training Fellow) ac yna yma yn Abertawe. Mae gen i ddiddordeb penodol ar ddysgu am ddefnydd wrthmicrobaidd a gwrthsafiad, sydd wedi dod yn fygythiad enfawr i systemau gofal iechyd ledled y byd. Yn ychwanegol i fy rolau dysgu i fyfyrwyr meddygol ac i eraill yn yr ysgol feddygol, rydw i hefyd yn dysgu amrywiaeth eang o weithwyr proffesiynol gofal iechyd ar draws Cymru ac mae gen i rôl genedlaethol y DU fel cyd-arweinydd Addysg Israddedig a Sylfaenol y ‘Royal College of Pathologists’. Rydw i’n Arweinydd Arbenigol Heintiau ar gyfer Ymchwil Iechyd a Gofal Cymru ac yn aelod o Gyngor yr ‘Academy of Medical Educators’.


Pam oedd cael cydnabyddiaeth Cymrodoriaeth yn bwysig i chi? Pam gwneud cais?

Yn ymarfer clinigol, yn hanesyddol mae dysgu wedi tueddu cymryd yn ganiatadol fel rhywbeth mae pawb ‘ond yn gwneud’ fel rhan o’u rôl clinigol ehangach, nid yw wastad wedi cael y gwerth o sgil penodol. Mae hyn yn newid yn araf, er enghraifft gyda’r creadigaeth o’r “Academy of Medical Educators”. Ar ôl i mi fod yn fy rôl yn y “Royal College” am gyfnod, a gofynnwyd imi ymgymryd â  nifer o rolau allanol eraill, sylweddolais nad oeddwn bellach ‘ond yn’ dysgu, roedd gen i profiad helaeth o addysg o fewn fy nisgyblaeth, yn yr ysbyty, prifysgol ac ar lefel cenedlaethol. Dylid profiad addysgol cael ei gydnabod yr un fath â phrofiad clinigol, i sicrhau bod myfyrwyr yn derbyn dysgeidiaeth sydd wedi seilio ar ymarfer gorau yn clinigol ac yn addysgol. Roedd fy mhenderfyniad i geisio am Brif Gymrodoriaeth yn adlewyrchiad o hyn.

Beth gwnaethoch chi ei “gasglu” o’r broses o baratoi cais i Fframwaith Safonau Proffesiynol y DU?

Fe wnes i ffeindio’r broses cais yn adeiladol iawn. Wrth orfod ystyried tystiolaeth i bob un o ddisgfrifwyr yr UK PSF ar gyfer Brif Gymrawd, fe wnaeth i mi feddwl am fy ymarfer addysgol yn gyfannol. Fe wnaeth helpu i mi weld yn glir sut mae’n ffitio i mewn i gynnwys fy ymarfer academaidd a chlinigol yn gyfan mewn ffordd nad ydw wedi ystyried o’r blaen. Mae’r holl weithgareddau rydw i ynghlwm â – megis ymarfer clinigol, ymchwil clinigol, fy ymglymiad mewn amrywiaeth o waith cydraddoldeb – yn cefnogi a chyfrannu i fy rôl addysgol ac maent yn gydgysylltiol, nad ydynt yn weithgareddau gwahanol. Fe wnaeth fy nghais Brif Gymrawd tynnu’r rhain i gyd at ei gilydd.

Sut mae hyn wedi cael effaith ar y ffordd rydych yn ystyried addysgu dysgwyr yn yr amgylchedd Addysg Uwch?

I mi, mae wedi atgyfnerthu gwerth ag effaith o ddysgu gyrrir gan ymarfer.

Beth yw’r elfen bwysicaf o Fframwaith Safonau Proffesiynol y DU yn eich barn chi?

Maent i gyd yn bwysig, ond i mi mae’n rhaid taw Gwybodaeth Graidd yw’r ateb. Dyma beth sy’n diffinio disgyblaeth rhywun; hebddo, ni fyddai lawer o werth i rhannu gyda’r myfyrwyr. Y brwdfrydedd ar gyfer y pwnc sy’n gwneud addysgwr llwyddiannus. Mae’r elfennau eraill yn cael ei ddatblygu o amgylch hynny.

Beth oedd rhannau da’r broses ymgeisio? Pa bethau oedd yn fwy heriol?

Roedd y broses yn heriol, ond mewn ffordd bositif. Yn gyntaf roeddwn yn meddwl buasem wedi ffeindio hi’n anodd ysgrifennu 7000 o eiriau ond erbyn diwedd y broses, bu rhaid i mi dorri geiriau allan yn ddidostur! Fel dywedir uchod, fe wnaeth helpu mi i weld fy ymarfer academaidd yn gyflawn ac i roi bob elfen i mewn i gynnwys holliach. Mae tîm SALT yn darparu cefnogaeth arbennig ar bob lefel.

Rydw i’n ddiolchgar iawn i’r Athro Jane Thomas a wnaeth helpu i mi ddeall y gofynion a rhoi’r hyder i mi fynd yn ei flaen.


Sut rydych chi wedi parhau i gymhwyso safonau Fframwaith Safonau Proffesiynol y DU yn eich gwaith ers cael y gydnabyddiaeth honno? Hynny yw, cynnal safon dda.

Ond yn ddiweddar enillais Brif Gymrodoriaeth ond ers hynny rydw i wedi cynnal cwrs DPP (CPD), wythnos o hyd ar gyfer staff gofal iechyd. Fe wnes fynychu diwrnod astudio gan “British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy” ond wythnos yn gynt a wnaeth amlinellu datblygiadau therapiwtig diweddaraf. Roeddwn i’n gallu cynnwys y wybodaeth yna i mewn i adnoddau dysgu fy hun, felly roedd yn gyfoes i’r munud. Mae’r maes yma yn newid yn gyflym iawn ac felly mae DPP fy hun yn hanfodol.

Ar gyfer rhywun sydd ddim yn siŵr am ymgeisio, pa eiriau o anogaeth allwch gynnig?

Os rydych yn dysgu mewn AU, nid yw ond cael Cymrodoriaeth ar y lefel briodol yn dda i gael yn eich portffolio ond mae’n broses ddefnyddiol iawn i ddadansoddi beth rydych yn gwneud a pham. Mae’r gofyniad o ysgrifennu adlewyrchol yn annog i chi feddwl am ardaloedd o’ch dysgu rydych efallai yn anymwybodol o neu yn cymryd yn ganiataol – fe wnaeth wir effeithio ar fy rhagolwg i. Mae tim SALT yn gynorthwyol iawn, hawdd mynd ato a fyddwch â chymorth da iawn.

Pa argymhellion y byddech yn eu cynnig i rywun sy’n paratoi cais am Gymrodoriaeth – unrhyw gategori?

Rhowch dyddiad cadarn i’ch hun – mae’n hawdd i waith fwy “pwysig” gymryd blaenoriaeth. Cymrwch mantais o enciliadau ysgrifennu SALT sydd yn gallu helpu â hyn.


Beth yw’r criterion allweddol i chi ar gyfer bod yn Brif Gymrawd?

I mi, y peth allweddol i Brif Gymrodoriaeth yw arweinyddiaeth addysgol wedi mewnblannu’n gadarn i mewn i gynnwys fy mhroffesiwn ac wedi tanategu gan brofiad y pwnc.