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Celebrating teaching excellence

Q & A with Dr Michael Willett (Senior Fellow)

23 April 2020
Michael Willett, Senior Fellow

Name: Michael Willett, Senior Fellow

Job title/Role: AHSS Learning to Teach programme leader

School/College: AHSS

When did you become a Senior Fellow? February 2020

Why did you decide to apply for an Advance HE Fellowship?
Attaining Senior Fellowship was a key goal in my professional development. I recognised that the process would deepen my knowledge and understanding of pedagogy, and that it would help me to evaluate and enhance my learning and teaching.

How has being a Fellow had an impact on what you do?
The process has developed my understanding of good practice, which has had a positive impact on the learning experience of the students and colleagues I teach and mentor. It has also prompted me to reflect more deeply on my approach to leadership, and has encouraged me to drive positive change in learning and teaching practices across the University and beyond.

How do you envisage being a Senior Fellow/National Teaching Fellow impacting on your future and any upcoming projects/work?
Attaining Senior Fellowship has given me the confidence to undertake and disseminate pedagogic research on a wider scale. I co-delivered a workshop on ‘Quescussion’ in small-group teaching at the Advance HE National Conference 2019 (with Emmajane Milton, SOCSI), and am currently working on a paper studying ‘language play’ in the HE classroom, which I aim to submit to a peer-reviewed journal of learning and teaching in the near future.  

What advice would you give to colleagues thinking of applying for Senior Fellowship or National Teaching Fellowship?
I would highly recommend attending one of the Senior Fellowship half day events run by HR. Even if you already have a working knowledge of Advance HE and the UKPSF, these workshops introduce a range of helpful tips and strategies, and I found the experience very motivating. While the word count and format of the application might seem daunting at first, they become much less so once you start writing. The application itself is very different to writing an academic paper, but I can guarantee it will change your teaching practice and leadership for the better.

Find out more about Senior and Principal Fellowship and how to apply 

Find out more about our National Teaching Fellows and how to apply  

You can also visit the Advance HE website or email us 

Keen an eye on the blog for more profiles on our current Senior and Principal Fellows and National Teaching Fellows.