UCW manager joins elite international group

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University Centre Weston’s (UCW) Learning and Teaching Manager has joined an elite international group of higher education practitioners.

By earning Principal Fellow status, James Hazzard has achieved the highest level of recognition awarded by the Higher Education Academy (HEA).

He is now one of just over 1000 to have received the honour internationally, and among just seven in college higher education with the accolade.

The award process involved an 8,000-word submission demonstrating sustained and effective strategic leadership in academic practice, professional development and a high-quality contribution to UCW’s student experience.

James’ application was underpinned by addressing the culture of higher education in a college setting, and the variation of academic practice in this sector. He was also required to show the strategic initiatives he has implemented that have enhanced learning and teaching at UCW. These include peer collaboration models, staff mentoring and training, the use of digital technologies and how scholarship can inform educational practice.

James is currently undertaking his doctorate and was able to demonstrate how his research is supporting the implementation of Lecture Capture – a new digital enhancement in college higher education.

Jenny Hann, UCW’s Assistant Director Higher Education: Curriculum and Quality, said “This is an exceptional achievement by James.

His recognition as a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy breaks new ground, and opens the door for others in the college HE sector to follow his example. It also demonstrates that University Centre Weston is committed to enabling academic and support staff to achieve HEA Fellowship recognition at all levels.”

Dr Paul Phillips CBE, Principal and Chief Executive of the Weston College Group, said: “James’ recognition as a Principal Fellow demonstrates the commitment of Weston College to develop staff who can go forward to be recognised for teaching excellence at a national level.”