New Academic Skills Centre opens

Mon Oct 20 08:00:00 BST 2014

On Wednesday 15 October, Professor Bernie Morley, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Learning & Teaching) officially opened the University's new Academic Skills Centre (ASC). Welcoming a wide range of staff from across the University and the Students' Union to the ASC's Opening Reception, Professor Morley said:

'Our new Academic Skills Centre provides us with an excellent opportunity to continue improving the experience of our current students and also developing our offer to prospective students. I welcome this step forward and look forward to seeing more of the ASC's work in partnership with the academic community and other Professional Services over the coming year.'

The ASC has been set up with an extended remit to provide coherent, comprehensive and easily accessible academic skills development and English language teaching for all students, and is part of the Learning & Teaching Enhancement Office. Led by Maggie Ward Goodbody, Director, supported by a team of three Heads overseeing three key strands of activity, namely the Pre-sessional programme, Academic Skills programme and Academic Skills Resources, the ASC will focus on a wide range of activities in its first year of operation.

Gwen van der Velden, Director of LTEO explained that the Academic Skills Centre aims to provide opportunities for all students to develop strong academic skills to get the best out of their studies, including writing, critical reading and presentation skills. They also support the enhancement of international students' English language skills and abilities, both before the start of their academic programmes and during their studies. The most recent innovation is the establishment this semester of the Writing Centre, situated in 3 West 2.1 (on the Parade), providing drop-in sessions and one-to-one tutorials for all students, as well as a doctoral writing group for postgraduate research students particularly.

The ASC is working with Faculty/School, departmental and Professional Services' colleagues to ensure the University communicates a clear, coherent and comprehensive academic skills offer to current and prospective students.

ASC Opening Reception MWG October 2014Maggie Ward Goodbody, Director, said:

'The new ASC team is excited about the opportunities we now have to make an important contribution to the enhancement of the student experience as well as supporting the delivery of the University's Education Strategy. We are already working in partnership with many departments and are keen to identify new ways in which we can continue to develop our academic skills offer. We see the new Writing Centre as providing an important focus for students and staff and would welcome discussions with anyone interested in progressing ideas in the coming months, particularly the development of online materials. Please do get in touch with us.'

Find out more about the ASC and view Maggie Ward Goodbody's presentation from the ASC Opening Reception outlining current, work-in-progress and future ASC activities. The ASC is located on the 7th floor of Wessex House. The Writing Centre is on the Parade in 3 West 2.1.

Further information: Maggie Ward Goodbody, Director, ASC, ext 6191