N8 University teachers named National Teaching Fellows


Nine N8 university teachers have been recognised for their academic impact and outstanding contributions to higher education.

Hailing from five of the eight universities within the N8 Research Partnership, the nine are among 54 educators awarded an Advanced HE National Teaching Fellowship, which distinguishes exceptional work within higher education.

Newcastle University has three of its academic staff awarded. Dr Lee Fawcett, Senior Lecturer in the School of Mathematics, Statistics and Physics has been recognised for his excellence in teaching undergraduates in mathematics and statistics and for school and college level outreach talks.

Dr Helen Webster, Head of Newcastle University Library’s Writing Development Centre,  is recognised for providing advice and guidance on writing for assessments and other study skills, from undergraduates to PhD students.

Also awarded is Dr Lindsey Ferrie, Senior Lecturer in the School of Biomedical Science, who leads modules in pharmacology and clinical pharmacology and drug development. She also contributes to teaching in a number of areas, including infectious disease and chemotherapy and MBBS clinical and investigative medicine. Her outreach teaching activities include 6th form workshops, biomedical sciences masterclasses and year 12 healthcare taster days.

At the University of Sheffield’s teaching faculty, three have also received the award. Dr Julie Hyde, from the University’s Department of Chemistry, has been recognised for her pioneering programmes of laboratory teaching at Nanjing Tech University in China, helping students prepare for their final year and developing positive educational partnerships.

Professor Katherine Linehan, from the Department of Biomedical Science, implemented key and unparalleled reforms in the anatomy curriculum 15 years ago. She is also the Faculty Director for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (Science) and Chair of the University’s Gender Equality Committee.

Dr Gary Wood, from the Department of Mechanical Engineering, is known for his outstanding contribution to teaching linguistics and embedding enterprise education into the curriculum. He is also Head of the Sheffield Engineering Leadership Academy, an innovative scheme bringing together students, academics and colleagues from industry in order to develop future leaders in engineering.

At Lancaster University Medical School, the award went to Professor Adam Taylor, Director of the Clinical Anatomy Learning Centre and Senior Lecturer in Anatomy, who is known for his research into a rare form of osteoarthritis, alkaptonuria.

Dr Gita Sedghi, Senior Lecturer at the University of Liverpool’s Department of Chemistry, is recognised for her outstanding contribution to the enhancement of student experience and employability. Her bespoke Peer Assisted Learning scheme and internationalisation projects have not just impacted students within the Faculty of Science and Engineering, but also across other departments and have been adopted by other HE institutions.

Professor Gabrielle Finn, Director of the Health Professions Education Unit and Professor of Medical Education at the partnership institution, Hull York Medical School, is praised for her work teaching anatomy and clinical skills to undergraduate Medicine and Pharmacy students, and for her current work teaching on the MSc, Postgraduate Diploma and Certificate in Health Professions Education.

Advance HE’s National Teaching Fellowship scheme has been running since 2000, with more than 860 National Teaching Fellows being awarded since. On gaining the award, Fellows play an on-going role in enhancing teaching and learning within their institution, the HE sector and further afield.

Alison Johns, Advance HE’s chief executive, said: “Becoming a National Teaching Fellow is a huge achievement. Creating ambassadors for innovative and impactful teaching who are valued by institutions and colleagues, and who can set in motion change and enhancements to make a really positive impact on student experience and outcomes across their institution and beyond.”

Winners will receive their awards at a ceremony in Manchester on 16 October 2019.