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University Collaborative Awards for T&L

Celebrating Collaboration in Teaching & Learning

If you are considering applying for a University Collaborative Award for Teaching & Learning, or are thinking about getting involved in a collaborative T&L project, you might wish to access the recording of our Celebrating Collaboration in Teaching & Learning (Webinar) which took place on Thursday 8 February 2024. In this showcase, we heard from a number of colleagues about recent collaborative work they have led including, how they worked with other colleagues, students and external partners, the challenges they faced and the benefits of working collaboratively.

The aim of the University's collaborative awards is to recognise and reward groups of staff and students who have made exceptional, significant and ongoing contributions to the student learning experience.

This could either be through collaborating as a team to achieve goals beyond what could be achieved individually, or creating and working as a team in order to generate new solutions that demonstrably impact upon colleagues and/or students.

Examples of collaborative work might include:

  • A team who have worked together to substantially re-develop an existing module in an innovative way (i.e. not business as usual)
  • A team who have identified and designed new ways of working that support student learning
  • A team who have developed innovative extra/co-curricular opportunities that enhance student learning and development

Team composition and eligibility

The award scheme is open to all staff who are actively involved in teaching and/or supporting teaching and learning initiatives.

It is expected that the composition, size, and activities of teams will vary across the University, but the ‘core team’ listed on the application form should normally comprise between 3 and 15 members.

Applications from multidisciplinary teams that demonstrate collaboration beyond expected functional and discipline 'boundaries' are particularly welcome.

Teams are encouraged to adopt a student-centred approach and to provide evidence of active student engagement in the development/evaluation of projects. Students can be included as full members of a project team within an application, and collaboration should be underpinned by the Principles of Partnership . More information for staff on working in partnership with students is available in the Partnership at the University of Reading guide.

Applications should demonstrate how the approach adopted by the team differs from 'business as usual'. 

Applicants are not normally permitted to put the same initiative forward for two University Teaching & Learning funding and award schemes. For example, a project funded through the PLanT scheme, TLEP scheme or Teaching & Learning Initiatives Fund would not normally be eligible for a University Collaborative Award.

Scheme criteria

All applicants must:

  1. Articulate the aims, objectives and rationale for the team's approach;
  2. Outline how the team works collaboratively, including how students have been directly involved with the team, and the advantages of this (i.e. what has been achieved beyond that which could have been done by a group of individuals);
  3. Provide evidence of the impact of the collaborative work, specifically how it has enhanced teaching practice and/or the student learning experience, and how this impact has been evaluated;
  4. Identify how the outcomes and impact of the work have been/will be disseminated;
  5. Be supported by the School Director of Teaching and Learning / Head of Service of the Team Leader.*

* The School Director of Teaching and Learning / Head of Service should sign the application form prior to submission

The Collaborative Awards Selection Panel would particularly welcome applications which demonstrate alignment with the University Strategic Plan 2020-2026 and, in particular, with one or more of the four strategic principles of Community (including equality, diversity and inclusion), Excellence, Sustainability (including environmental sustainability) and an Engaged University.

Application process

The University is committed to promoting equality, diversity and inclusion through its Teaching & Learning funding and award schemes, and to ensuring that these schemes are accessible to all colleagues. We welcome applications from individuals from underrepresented backgrounds, including ethnic minority, LGBT+, disabled and neurodivergent applicants. We also welcome applications from the wide range of disciplines and areas across the University, including colleagues in professional services roles and those on part-time contracts.

Teams are invited to submit a single application to the Collaborative Awards Selection Panel for consideration. The Panel will select up to three teams to be awarded a total of £3,000 (per group). Applications will be selected according to the extent to which they meet the scheme criteria.

Applicants should bear in mind that this is a competitive process as a limited number of awards are made each year.

The Collaborative Awards Selection Panel comprises:

  • Two Teaching and Learning Deans, one of who will act as Chair
  • A University Teaching Fellow
  • A CQSD representative
  • Reading Students' Union Education Officer

Application guidance

Applications should refer to the Collaborative Awards for TL Guidance for applicants when completing their application.

The application involves making a case for an award. Applications must include the following:

Nominator:

The person putting the team forward for an award. This may be a member of the team that is applying for the award, or someone external to the group who wishes to see the team's work recognised.

Team Leader:

The key member or one of the key members of the team applying for the award. (This may be the same person as the Nominator.)

School Director of Teaching and Learning/Head of Service:

The team leader is expected to discuss their application with their School Director of Teaching and Learning/Head of Service, who should be asked to sign the form prior to submission.

Core team members:

Please list the 'core" teams members, including any student team members and indicate the percentage of the award that each team member should receive. This should total 100%.Please note that monetary awards cannot be paid to external members who are not University staff, although they may be included in the application.

Previous funding:

Applicants are asked to confirm whether any team members have previously been awarded a Collaborative Award or any other award(s) at the University and to provide details as appropriate.

Case for award (1000 words maximum):

In this section, applicants should address each of the scheme criteria as stated above. Please refer also to the University Awards for Teaching and Learning: Further Guidance for Applications - below:

Collaborative Awards for TL Guidance for applicants

Applicants are strongly advised to adhere to the maximum word limit. The Selection Panel will not take into account any words exceeding this limit. Hyperlinks and video clips will not be taken into consideration by the Panel and should therefore be avoided. The judicious use of images, diagrams and tables is permitted (any text should be included in the word count).

Application dates

  • Scheme opens: 09:00am - Monday 15 January 2024
  • Closing date for applications: 17:00pm - Monday 11 March 2024

Applicants will normally receive the Selection Panel's decision and feedback (usually via email) within four working weeks of the closing date.

Application form

If you experience any difficulties completing the application form please contact Martin Wise m.wise@reading.ac.uk.

Collaborative application form 2024 

Applicants must convert the completed application into a single PDF file and submit this electronically to Martin Wise (m.wise@reading.ac.uk) by 17:00 on the day of the submission deadline.

Sample applications

Applicants may wish to refer to successful applications from previous years.

Terms & conditions

  • Awards will be paid into staff salaries (subject to tax deductions).
  • We are not able to make payments into staff SDA accounts.
  • Nominees must be employees of the University at the time payments are processed.
  • Awards cannot be paid to members of groups who are not University staff and paid through payroll (although they may be included in the application).
  • In the case of student team members, awards will be paid following completion of a Fees Form (which will be issued by Martin Wise m.wise@reading.ac.uk).