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Spotlight on Success: January 2020

Spotlight on success

Each month we publish a selection of key Teaching & Learning and Research achievements and developments. See January's news below.

Awards & Prizes

  • The seven winners of this year's Partnerships in Learning & Teaching Projects Scheme (PLanT) have been announced by CQSD. Read more about the winning projects and colleagues involved in our related article.
  • The achievements of 2019's highest performing students were recognised at our Chancellor's Awards, held in the Great Hall on 23 January. 72 students who achieved top results in their subject at the end of either part 0, 1 or 2 attended a reception hosted by the Chancellor and Vice-Chancellor. See a full list of the winners here.
  • Professor Emma Borg (Philosophy) has been awarded a Leverhulme Major Research Fellowship on the theme Who's in control? Re-examining agency in a world of bias.
  • Dr John Creighton (Archaeology) has been awarded a Leverhulme Major Research Fellowship on the theme of ‘Money and the rise of inequality and the market in Northern Europe' in the later Iron Age and Roman era.
  • Dr Yasmine Shamma (English Literature) has been awarded funding from the British Academy to develop an exhibition for their Summer Showcase. This will be an interactive, Syrian refugee's tent, accompanied by visuals and texts, as well as smells and sounds, enabling visitors to enter and imagine what it would be like to live in such a space.
  • Professor Chris Scott (Space and Atmospheric Physics) is one of the winners of a Royal Astronomical Society Award. The group achievement award recognises Professor Scott and colleagues' work on the STEREO Heliospheric Imager, which helps give a new perspective on the heliosphere (the region of space around the sun) and space weather. Find further information here.

 Strategic Project Updates

  • The EMA programme closes today, 31 January, having delivered against its three main objectives: to enable a consistently good student assessment experience; provide an improved and supported assessment experience for staff; and reduce the administrative burden of assessment for the University.


  • The NUIST Reading Academy has successfully passed a recent Chinese Ministry of Education (MOE) evaluation. The Academy was rated highly by a panel of experts and was the only one among those evaluated in this round to be exempt from another evaluation for seven years. Find further details here.
  • Our proposal to exhibit at the Royal Society's Summer Exhibition 2020 has been approved following a competitive selection process. This exhibition is the UK's highest profile scientific public engagement event, and will showcase work led by Professor Hannah Cloke (Geography and Environmental Science) on flood forecasting.
  • Our annual Teaching & Learning conference held on 22 January was a great success. 140 colleagues heard our keynote speaker, Chris Rust, EmeritusProfessor of Higher Education at Oxford Brookes University, present on ‘Assessment and Feedback, Wellbeing and Resilience', as part of the conference theme ‘Engage, Enhance, Empower: Supporting Student Achievement'. Find further programme details here.
  • Our student-facing ‘Together We Have' campaign launched on 13 January, aiming to highlight how we've worked in partnership to make positive changes to enhance the student experience.
  • Professor Roberta Gilchrist (Archaeology) has been named both an Honorary Fellow of the British Museum and a Fellow of the British Academy - read a blog post relating to her British Academy Fellowship here.
  • Professor Dominik Zaum (Politics and International Relations) has been appointed to the Department for International Development's Science Advisory Group. Professor Zaum's expertise and experience will help ensure that the group continues to provide the Department for International Development (DFID) with the best independent scientific advice.
  • Professor Tom Oliver (Ecology and Evolutionary Biology) has published a new book, The Self Delusion. The book examines how people, animals, plants and planet are interconnected, and Professor Oliver will give a public lecture on themes from the book on 26 February.
  • Professor Roberta Gilchrist (Archaeology) has published a new Open Access Monograph, Sacred Heritage: Monastic Archaeology, Identities and Beliefs. Read a blog post on the themes from the book here.
  • Professor Flora Samuel (Architecture) was appointed to the Quality of Life Foundation, an initiative set up to improve people's quality of life and wellbeing through the built environment. Full details available here.

Click here to see all recent University of Reading research publications

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