Managing undergraduate education research groups

At MICER21, I spoke on the process of managing an undergrad education research programme at Edinburgh with a former student, Lee Ferguson. Each year I had 10 undergrad students taking projects and so a system of management evolved.

After giving some context and details about recruitment approaches and timelines, Lee then shared his experiences and reflections as a student on the programme. I then looked at four project categories that have emerged over the years (themes and project choice usually student driven):

  • Projects on teaching and learning of chemistry
  • Projects under a more general SoTL banner
  • Projects associated with more general social justice themes
  • Projects relating to sustainability in the curriculum

In order to manage this, I shared some thoughts on managing diverse groups with some common core approaches; having similar literature bases in each projects, grouping together students in different themes so they could share ideas and support, etc. The last year took a different turn and MS Teams emerged as a useful way to manage these groups. After breakout discussions on helping students narrow down research questions and on appropriate data collection, the talk finishes up with some shared resources.

Katherine Haxton organised MICER this year and she has made all of the talks available on the CERG YouTube channel. Ours is linked below.