Edinburgh University Students’ Association’s Student-Led Teaching Awards are back to recognise outstanding members of learning and support staff. After a challenging year for everyone, we’re celebrating our worthy nominees by shouting about their successes across our digital platforms.
What is your full name?
What is your job title?
Tutor for Research Methods in Applied Psychology
What school or service do you work in?
School of Health in Social Science
Please tell us a little bit about yourself and your role.
I have completed my Masters in Psychology of Mental Health at the University of Edinburgh and I’m currently in my third year of the Professional Doctorate of Counselling and Psychotherapy course. I have been teaching for 2 years at the university. In 2019/20 I was a tutor on the Psychological Research Methods: Data Management and Analysis course. My role involved helping students learn how to use and work with SPSS within psychological research.
This year I was a tutor on the Research Methods in Applied Psychology course. My tutorials took place online. As a tutor I facilitated class discussions and introduced the students to a range of basic research methods in clinical psychology. The course covered the full range of basic psychological research methods: research questions and designs, sampling, measurement, survey approaches, experimental approaches, evaluation approaches, systematic review, qualitative approached and ethics and reporting. The course explored both the theoretical underpinnings of research design and the practical considerations and constraints of real-life research.
This semester I am not teaching as I wanted to focus on my therapeutic client work and opening my own private practice. I work with both adults and children and in counselling practice I integrate both person-centered and psychodynamic perspectives.
What does it mean to you to have been nominated for a Teaching Award this year?
It is a tremendous honour to be nominated. It has been very unexpected. I have a passion for teaching and I have enjoyed working with my students and watching them grow and learn with each tutorial. Knowing that my passion and my care for my students has been noticed is a rewarding feeling and I want to continue to inspire others to keep learning especially in these difficult times.
What’s your favourite part of your role and working with students?
My favourite part of my role is being able to help students understand a concept which they are struggling with. Seeing them make sense of what we are learning and putting it together is a great feeling. I am constantly in awe of my students and humbled by their knowledge and their learning. They continue to teach me new things every day as well and inspire me to do better.
How have you adapted your approach to teaching and supporting students under the Hybrid Model this year?
As a student myself I had an awareness of what I liked and did not like in my online learning environments. Therefore I tried to provide the students with an environment which I thought could be as facilitative and collaborative as possible. Something which worked well for me was making sure to check-in and creating a space with my students and make sure that there was a space for them to talk about their frustrations and their struggles. Having this space and making sure to check-in after each activity or after I had explained a concept was helpful not only for the students but also for me to see where the class was at and also for me to understand what they did or did not like.
What’s been the biggest challenge in your role this year?
My biggest challenge in my role was being asked the unexpected questions. I would think that I understood the concepts and the readings and sometimes a student would ask a question which I did not have the answer too. I made sure to find the answer and report back to the students but being put on the spot and being asked those unexpected questions was challenging for me.
What would you say to the student(s) who nominated you, or students who are considering submitting a nomination for a staff member who has had an impact on them?
Thank you so much. It means so much to me to be nominated. I have really cared about all my students and I have been in your position. As a tutor my goal is to make the learning as enjoyable and helpful as possible and I hope I can continue to achieve these goals.
If you have a tutor who you feel inspires you or has impacted you in a positive way, nominate them. Sometimes it can be hard for us to know if we are doing the right thing and receiving this kind of nomination lets us know that we are doing a good job.
To find out more about the Teaching Awards and browse nomination categories, please visit the Students’ Association’s website.