University of Hertfordshire

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HEA National Teaching Fellowship project is looking at a) student & staff expectations for Final Year Research Projects and b) the outcomes and impact on student career choices/employability. The project will survey students (level 5; Level 6 just before & just after doing project; 1 yr post graduation) and staff from 15 Biological sciences/Life sciences schools/Faculties from across the UK, which collectively represent the complete cross section of UK HEI’s.

Key findings

Findings so far demonstrate that final year projects should be more than just an opportunity for students to participate in a programme of research. They should be an opportunity for them to apply previous knowledge, skills and understanding, to develop personally and professionally, and enhance their employability. There is a need for the sector to reflect on, and re-think, its provision of undergraduate projects, to update learning outcomes, and the range of projects offered, in order to address student needs and career aspirations.

Key findings will be presented at the BPS December conference (2017) and provide evidence for the Royal Society of Biology’s review of its degree accreditation FY project learning outcome.

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