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Kay Sambell's full profile's full profile

I joined the Department of Learning and Teaching Enhancement in January 2017. I bring a long track record of conducting pedagogic research and extensive experience of leading innovation as a Professor of Learning and Teaching at Northumbria University. I combined my interests in HE pedagogy with over twenty-five years’ experience as a practising lecturer in the interdisciplinary area of Childhood and Youth Studies, where I specialised in Children’s Literature. I am a UK National Teaching Fellow (2002) and a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.


Nationally and internationally I am probably best known for my contributions to the Assessment for Learning movement in Higher Education, which seeks, as far as possible, to emphasise the ways in which assessment can support and develop students’ learning, as well as measure it. My interest in this aspect of academic practice began as long ago as the mid-nineties, when I was lucky enough to join a research team investigating the impact of innovative assessment on students’ experiences of learning. Since then I have been actively involved in a range of research projects and initiatives focused on improving student learning via assessment. For instance, I was Director of Assessment for Learning (AfL) Enhancement in the Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL). The holistic model we developed to guide AfL practice development is outlined in our book, Assessment for Learning in Higher Education, which has recently been translated into Italian by colleagues working at the University of Padua. I also helped to establish and support a series of international conferences aimed at rethinking assessment practice, including the popular Assessment in Higher Education (AHE) conference. My interests range broadly, however, and, amongst other things, I have focused on academic literacy, the first year experience and student engagement.


I have a sustained record of publications, including journal articles, student text books, research-based texts and practitioner guides. I particularly enjoy working and writing collaboratively- my latest book, Professionalism in Practice: New Directions in Learning, Teaching and Assessment in HE, is co-authored with Sally Brown and Linda Graham.


I am keen to meet and work with colleagues who are interested in developing pedagogic research and would welcome applications from prospective doctoral candidates in this area.


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