Dr Theo Gilbert (University of Hertfordshire), winner of the Times Higher Education Award for the 'Most Innovative Teacher of the Year 2018’, visited LJMU last week to talk to staff about how compassion can be taught in HE.
According to Dr Gilbert, compassion is a skill that can developed through teaching and learning activities as part of the higher education curriculum. Dr Gilbert’s workshop, organised for academic staff in the School of Education and interested others across the faculty and university, was well received and has opened up new dialogue internally about how staff might embed compassion skills work in taught programmes.
One attendee, Senior lecturer and a School Teaching and Learning coordinator for the School of Education, Dr Elizabeth Malone, said, ‘It was an engaging and fascinating session, with real practical applications for augmenting teaching and learning in HE to be more inclusive of all learners. Theo not only clearly explained 'what is compassion' but went on to make a compelling case for the micro teaching of compassion skills, for both lecturers and students alike”.
LJMU Student’s Union Academic Representation Co-ordinator, Nasreen Hasan, was also present and said, “I found the session to be most engaging as it focused on the hidden curriculum and raised awareness of the barriers facing BAME in the context of group work. The session also brought to light some of the anxiety and stress that students can face when they are entrusted with managing a group. This is something that the SU are aware of, but I personally feel that the university could further prepare students for group work using Theo’s research”.
If you are interested in learning more about compassion in higher education, you can read the article that Dr Gilbert wrote for the TES called ‘Should universities award credit for compassion?’ which is available at: https://www.timeshighereducation.com/news/career-advice-should-universities-award-credit-for-compassion#survey-answer
Or you can watch Dr Gilbert introduce the idea of compassion in higher education here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3jFVTCuSCOg
Alternatively, please contact Dr Diahann Gallard (School of Education) for more information about the visit.