Institute for Academic Development
Institute for Academic Development

Edinburgh Network: Growing Approaches to Genuine Engagement (ENGAGE)

A network for students and staff interested in student engagement.

engage logo

Who is the network for?

The Edinburgh Network: Growing Approaches to Genuine Engagement (ENGAGE) aims to bring together students and staff interested in creating genuine and meaningful interactions between students and staff focused on learning, teaching and assessment. Meetings focus on sharing ideas, research and practice, and offer space for discussion and collegial support. Whether you are interested in enhancing student engagement in learning and teaching from the student or staff perspective, you are welcome to come along.

How often does it meet?

Approximately monthly.


Students talking about their experiences of student engagement in lockdown and semester 1

Speakers:          Jessica O’Loughlin, undergraduate student, Biochemistry, Ana Diaz Vidal, undergraduate student sustainable development…and other student speakers to be confirmed.

Date:                   Thurs 21st January 2021

Time:                   09:30-10:30

Delivery:            Online (via Collaborate Ultra) (Off Campus) – Link to be sent prior to event

Booking Link:

High Impact Practices: why we should pay attention to practices that offer disproportionate benefits to underserved students.

Speakers:         Dr Catherine Bovill, Senior Lecturer in Student Engagement, Institute for Academic Development

Date:                   Wed 24th February 2021

Time:                   12:00-13:00

Delivery:            Online (via Collaborate Ultra) (Off Campus) – Link to be sent prior to event

Booking Link:

Engaging students through innovative assessment choice in the Currents: understanding and addressing global changes course

Speakers:         Dr Andy Cross, Post-doctoral Research Associate / Teaching Development Fellow, School of Geosciences

Date:                   Tues 30th March 2021

Time:                   14:30-15:30

Delivery:            Online (via Collaborate Ultra) (Off Campus) – Link to be sent prior to event

Booking Link:

How do I join?

If you would like to be added to the mailing list to receive more information about events please contact:

Learning and teaching support

Contact details

Privacy statement for IAD mailing lists: you can read our IAD privacy statement for mailing lists here

Previous engage events and resources

Academic year 20/21

Tues 1st December 2020, Engaging students through blogging

Speakers: Dr Hazel Christie, Senior Lecturer (University Learning and Teaching), Institute for Academic Development, Josephine Foucher, Teaching Matters Deputy Editor and Student Engagement Officer, Institute for Academic Development and PhD student in Sociology

Video of the session (Media Hopper)

Introductory slides (PPT)

Slides - Using Assessed Blogs to Enhance Student Engagement - Hazel Christie and Nina Morris (PPT)

Slides - Engaging Students Through Blogging - Josephine Foucher (PPT)

Thurs 26th November 2020, Co-creating a diverse and inclusive curriculum - when, where, and how?

Presenters: Dr Job Thijssen, School of Physics and Astronomy, Dr Hannah Chalmers, School of Engineering, Jennifer Struthers School of Physics and Astronomy, Magnus Riley, School of Physics and Astronomy, Katie McGill, School of Engineering, Sarah Lappin, EUWiSTEM, Dr Srinjoy Mitra, School of Engineering

Video of the session (Media Hopper)

Introductory slides (PDF)

Slides from Job Thijsen’s presentation (PPT)

Slides from Jennifer Struther and Magnus Riley - Decolonising a Physics Curriculum (PPT)

Slides from Sarah Lappin - Co-creating a diverse and inclusive curriculum (PDF)

Thurs 12th November 2020, Strategies for building relationships: creating community and belonging among students and staff

Presenters: Prof Tina Harrison, Assistant Principal, Academic Standards and Quality Assurance and Personal Chair of Financial Services Marketing and Consumption, Dr Catherine Bovill, Senior Lecturer in Student Engagement, Institute for Academic Development

Introductory slides (PDF)

Video of the session (Media Hopper)

Fri 23rd October 2020, Student engagement through hybrid teaching: sharing ideas and practice

Presenters: Dr Dan Swanton, Senior Lecturer in Human Geography, School of Geosciences, Fizzy Abou-Jawad, Vice President for Education, Edinburgh University Students’ Association, Dr Jessie Paterson, Lecturer in Student Learning, The Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies.

Introductory slides (PDF)

Video of the session (Media Hopper)

Slides from Dan Swanton’s presentation (PDF)

Dan Swanton's webpages - Pandemic Urbanism in Eight Objects

Dan Swanton's webpages - Pandemic Urbanism - A Drift

Notes taken in the breakout rooms (MS Word)

Academic year 19/20

Thursday 04th June 2020, Supporting autistic students and colleagues

Presenters: Sue Fletcher-Watson and Natalie Jenkins

Slides from the session (PDF)

Video of the session (Media Hopper)

Tuesday 05th May 2020, A Field course in the time of Covid

Presenter: Nick Colegrave - Institute of Evolutionary Biology

Field Zoology is a core third year course for our 35 or so organismal biology students. It is built around a 1 week residential field course on the Island of Cumbrae in the west of Scotland, and is where we provide training in field study design, analysis and presentation (important foundations for their honours year research projects). Equally importantly is the role it plays in cohort/community building, fostering confident interactions between both staff and students, and among students.

This year, we had to cancel the residential component and move all teaching online at short notice. We have tried to recreate the experience of carrying out a self-designed field study in a virtual environment, and to foster community through activities such as virtual pub quizzes.

Wednesday 29th April 2020, Research focus: conversations, community and collegiality

Presenters: Jenny Scoles (IAD), Hazel Christie (IAD), Nina Morris (Geosciences), Karen Howie (IS)

This event was a focus group gathering information for a research project exploring the impact of blogging on teaching and learning practice.

More information about this work

Tuesday 21st April 2020, Engaging students online and building community

Presenters: Gill Aitken, Tim Fawns, Derek Jones, Debbie Spence

Video from session (Media Hopper)

 The following Teaching Matters blog and journal commentary relate to this team’s work:

Top ten tips for teaching online

Online learning as embodied, socially meaningful experience

Tuesday 28th January 2020, Using cognitive load theory to help students learn more effectively

Professor Michael Seery, School of Chemistry

Slides from the session - Professor Michael Seery

Video of event on Media Hopper

Academic year 18/19

Thurs 6th June 2019, Student-staff co-creation of assessment

Dr Catherine Bovill, IAD   

Slides from the session - Dr Cathy Bovill (PDF)

Handout - A Practitioner's Guide to Choice of Assessment Within a Module: Case Studies from University College Dublin (PDF)

Thurs 16th May 2019, Student engagement article, group discussion

Tanya Lubicz-Nawrocka, PhD student Moray House School of Education and Sam Dvorakova, PhD student, School of Physics

'Enhancing outcomes and reducing inhibitors to engagement of students and staff in learning and teaching partnerships: implications for academic development'.

The paper is available here:

Slides from the session - Tanya Lubicz-Nawrock & Sam Dvorakova (PDF)

Mon 25th March 2019, Embedding democratic learning principles in neoliberal times: the story of the MSc Transformative Learning and Teaching

Dr Aileen Kennedy, Kat Brack, Kirstie Fairnie

Slides to follow

Wed 13th Feb 2019, Student engagement in lecture capture

Anne-Marie Scott, Information Services

Slides from session - Anne-Marie Scott (PPT)

Mon 14th January 2019, Building community and relationships between staff and students in Schools

Dr Esther Mijers and students from History Classics and Archaeology and Dr Chris Mowat and students from Chemistry

Slides from session - Chris Mowat (PPT)

Slides from session - Ester Mijers (PPT)

Wed 12th December 2018, Complicating inclusivity and diversity in student engagement and partnership: Whose voice gets heard?

Dr Lucy Mercer-Mapstone, IAD

Slides from session - Lucy Mercer-Mapstone (PPT)

Tues 4th December 2018, Analysing NSS results and implications for student engagement

Dr Alex Buckley Strathclyde University; & Dr Jill MacKay Vet School, Dr Kirsty Hughes Vet School, Dr Neil Lent IAD

Slides from session - Alex Buckley (PPT)

Slides from session - Jill MacKay and colleagues (PPT)

Wed 14th November 2018 - Online Learning Network and engage: Engaging Online Students 

A joint Online Learning Network and Engage Network event.

Slides from session - Intro (PPT)

Slides from session - Eli Appleby-Donald, student perspectives (PPT)

Slides from session - Elizabeth Mortimer, Edinburgh Award (PPT)

Slides from session - Tim Fawns et al, community building online MSc (PDF)

Collated post it notes (MS Word)

Academic year 17/18

Tues 29th May 2018 - In conversation about internationalising and diversifying the curriculum in partnership with students  Dr Wendy Green, University of Tasmania; Ms Sarah Moffat, Edinburgh University Students' Association; Dr Catriona Cunningham, University of Stirling

Slides from session - Wendy Green (PDF)

Slides from session - Sarah Moffat (PDF)

Slides from session - Catriona Cunningham (PDF)

16th May 2018 - Discussion of two student engagement articles    

Slides from session (PDF)

Articles under discussion:

Anonymous academic (2015) My students have paid £9000 and now they think they own me. The Guardian Friday 18 December.  Chickering, A.W. and Gamson, Z.F. (1987) Seven principles for good practice in undergraduate education. AAHE Bulletin March, pp3-7.

9th April 2018 - Student-staff co-creation of a course: Understanding Gender in the Contemporary World

Slides from session (MS PowerPoint)

15th February 2018  - Making curricula inclusive and engaging  

Slides from session (MS PowerPoint)

19th January 2018  - Learner engagement: In Conversation with Peter Felten and Meredith Piatt

Tanya Lubicz-Nawrocka's blog - event overview (external website)

Notes - Peter Felten & Meredith Piatt, in conversation (MS Word)

Cathy Bovill - Language & Behaviour of Engagement (MS PPT)

Kate Wall - Catalytic Tools for Encouraging Metacognitive Engagement With Pedagogy (MS PPT)

Mark Huxham - Engagement at Scale (PDF)

Susan Deeley - Co-design of Assessment (PDF)

12th Dec 2017 - Introducing Piazza - a tool for students to ask, answer and discuss questions with staff input where needed

Slides from Alan Murray (MS PPT)

Slides from School of Mathematics (MS PPT)

Piazza - find out more (external website)

17 Oct 2017 - The Launch: 10 Ways to enhance student engagement in learning and teaching

Video of the Engage launch

Launch event slides - 10 ways to enhance student engagement (MS PPT)

More student engagement suggestions, adaptations and ideas co-created by the event participants (MS Word)