Equality and Diversity in the Life Sciences

Paterson, V., Szaboova, A.-M., Veitch, N. and White, S. (2021) Equality and Diversity in the Life Sciences. 14th Annual University of Glasgow Learning and Teaching Conference, 18 Jun 2021. (Submitted)

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Abstract

The School of Life Sciences Equality and Diversity (E+D) project at the University of Glasgow was created to embed the values of E+D into the Level 1 and Level 2 Biology courses and to raise awareness about E+D issues in academic environments and beyond. The resource was co-created by six student interns and three staff members and integrated to make the curriculum more inclusive and empowering for the 950 participating students. The educational materials were built around the nine protected characteristics embedded in the Equality Act, 2010. The main aim was to equip the students with the tools to break down barriers they may encounter throughout their career in the life sciences and beyond. The educational material consists of case studies, role model interviews, quizzes, and interactive problem-based learning sessions facilitated by graduate teaching assistants and staff and delivered by a virtual learning environment. Additionally, a mobile app was developed in collaboration with an external app developer to enhance in-class learning and to be accessible to the external higher education community and beyond. The project team aimed to determine whether the educational resource enhanced student understanding of E+D and related issues. Second-year life science students acted as a baseline group for this project. They were asked to participate in online anonymous pre- and post-questionnaires to determine the resource's effectiveness and how it influenced the cohort. The results were obtained by semantic analysis showed that the teaching resource enhanced student understanding about E+D. The main aims of this study material were to encourage the development of critical consciousness and thinking in students by sharing good practice and encouraging a mindset change about E+D. Furthermore, the resource highlights the importance of collaboration and partnership in higher education, and it perceives learning and teaching as a practice that contributes to personal, collective, and societal growth.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item
Keywords:Equality and diversity, problem based learning.
Status:Submitted
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Paterson, Dr Victoria and Szaboova, Miss Anna-Maria and Veitch, Dr Nicola and White, Dr Stewart
Authors: Paterson, V., Szaboova, A.-M., Veitch, N., and White, S.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Life Sciences

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