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Student engagement

Student Champions project spotlight

8 December 2021

Written by Student Champions Saffron Corbyn and Aleks Tanaka

The project we are working on is ‘Connectedness in Bioscience’ with Dr Isaac Myers, head of Year 1 in the School of Bioscience. On the back of the pandemic, making friends in the first year of university has become a major challenge and our aim of this project is to conquer loneliness in Year 1 Bioscience students by creating different opportunities for the students to engage in. This will allow them to have more interactions with their peers and become more familiar with the students they will be spending their university years with.

Currently we have continued the work that was achieved last year by managing peer sessions. Peer sessions are teams created through Microsoft Teams where students share a group with a number of others. They have one session a week timetabled where they can organise a meet involving any activity they wish, academic or social. We have worked by taking control of these peer sessions and making any group changes where students are struggling to engage with other members of their team. We have also sent out surveys to gain students’ opinions on how they feel about the peer sessions and whether they feel like they’ve connected with other students in their year group. We then hope to compare the results from this survey to the results from last year to observe whether peer sessions have improved their experience.

Our future plans include holding a student vs lecturer quiz night in Bioscience before Christmas. This is to allow any online interactions students have made through peer sessions, a chance to interact face to face. This will also dismiss any nervous thoughts students may hold off interacting with lecturers. We are incredibly excited for the advancement of this project and to see the positive impact we can make.