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Annual Review 2012-2013

Annual Review 2012-2013



Welcome from the Vice-Chancellor Top 10 Achievements of the Year Feature: Creative Edge Student Experience Research and Impact International Partnerships Feature: A Year of Culture External Engagement People Feature: 80 Years in Ormskirk Sustainability Future Plans Honorary Graduates Financial Summary Principal Officers of the University Donors

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Annual Review 2012-2013

Welcome from the Vice-Chancellor The start of the academic year in 2012 saw the withdrawal of most Government support for undergraduate teaching and the introduction of the ÂŁ9,000 tuition fee. Applications to English universities fell by 9% and entrants by 14%. As one of only four English universities to see an increase in applications for 2012 entry (+7%), Edge Hill University was unaffected by this seismic change. It was also gratifying, as the year progressed, to see applicant numbers for 2013 increase still further.

Thanks to our strong partnerships with external employers, the University came top in the region in the First Destination Survey, which details destinations six months after graduating, with 93.4% of Edge Hill graduates in work or further study and just one in 20 seeking employment. Having moved up 40 places in the Times/ Sunday Times league tables in the past seven years (and 30 places in the past four), we are also sowing the seeds of our future progress. We now know that we will be submitting more than two-and-a-half times as many staff into the forthcoming Research Evaluation Framework, ensuring that our teaching is underpinned by nationally and internationally recognised publications.

Why is Edge Hill bucking the trend? I believe it’s because we have clear, achievable objectives which everyone at Edge Hill, regardless of their role, is committed to supporting. These goals are reflected in our recently-launched Strategic Plan which sets out our priorities around Student Experience, Research and Impact, International Partnerships, External Engagement, People and Sustainability.

Our financial strength, reported in the figures at the end of this Review, ensure that we will continue to invest in both staffing and facilities to continue this upward trend. Further student residences (making 1,400 in five years) and a new Sports Centre are among the priorities planned for the current year. And finally, none of this can be achieved without the professionalism and commitment of my colleagues and the student body. More than nine-tenths of staff and students think this is an excellent or good place to work and study, as is recognised by a series of national awards, and we are determined to sustain this reputation in the future.

The University has invested more than ÂŁ41 million this year in state-of-the-art sports facilities, the new Creative Edge building, additional capacity for both Biosciences and Geosciences, and a further 273 student rooms of the highest quality. But more important than this physical infrastructure is the commitment to the student experience, and I am delighted to report that, taking an average across all 23 questions in the 2013 National Student Survey, Edge Hill was the top-performing university in the North West of England.

Dr John Cater Vice-Chancellor


Top 10 Achievements of the Year




in the North West

Students’ Union (National Student Survey 2013)

Achievements of the Year

Ranked in the

Top Five Best Universities in the North West

(Times/Sunday Times Good University Guide 2014)

A rise of 40 places in the Times/Sunday Times Good University Guide over the last seven years, making us one of the


Top Three

in the North West for overall student satisfaction (National Student Survey 2013)

universities in the UK for continuous improvement


Annual Review 2012-2013

93.4% 19,296 of our students are in study or full-time employment within six months of graduating, putting us in the top 10% nationally for graduate employment

applications for 2013 entry – up 2.3% on last year




We welcomed

Safest Campus


(DLHE survey by the Higher Education Statistics Agency)

UCAS points is now the minimum required for our courses, highlighting the increasingly high calibre of our students

spent on capital projects this year, including our flagship £17 million Creative Edge building

of the top achieving ABB students in 2013, showing that Edge Hill University is attracting the VERY BEST to the North West

in the North West and fourth most crime-free university in the country (Complete University Guide 2014)


Creative Edge

Opened in 2013, the latest addition to Edge Hill’s ‘creative campus’ features industry standard equipment for film and TV production, animation and computing to rival any in UK higher education. It also brings Media, Film, PR, Animation, Advertising and Computing students and staff together for the first time, encouraging teaching and research collaborations and reflecting the way the creative industries work in the real world.

Creative Edge Employability, creativity, collaboration – Creative Edge raises the bar for teaching and research

The building features TV and radio studios, digital editing suites, high-spec computer labs and innovative teaching spaces, all designed to replicate the kind of working environments students will be entering when they graduate. There is also a 250-seater lecture theatre, complete with cinema-style surround sound, to show students how their film projects will look and sound on the big screen.

With facilities to make full length feature films, render CGI animations and work on live television, Edge Hill University’s new £17 million Media and Computing hub, Creative Edge, is set to make our students even more employable.


Annual Review 2012-2013

Students, staff and external organisations now have access to resources and equipment on a par with those used by the BBC at MediaCityUK, including: - TV studios with broadcast capacity and full production capabilities for news, drama, documentary and experimental work - Recording studios - Lighting studio - Sound-editing suites - Radio studio - Animation studios - Photographic studio - Multimedia laboratory - Practice rooms - Networking and forensics laboratories - Computer laboratories

The investment in Creative Edge has enabled the development of several exciting new courses to add to Edge Hill’s growing creative portfolio.

The development of Creative Edge has also paved the way for a new Institute for Creative Enterprise (ICE), which brings together related research from across the University and will act as the interface between academic research and the creative industries.

New, state-of-the-art facilities mean that the University can now offer a range of additional programmes in Animation and Computing including Games Programming, Security and Forensics, Mobile and Embedded Systems and Motion Graphics. These new programmes are designed to help Edge Hill students stay ahead of developments in these fast-moving industries.

As well as enhancing teaching and research, Creative Edge also offers greater opportunities for external engagement through improved media and IT consultancy, hire of facilities, enterprise projects and a business incubator for fledgling companies. One of the first collaborations is with Liverpoolbased internet broadcaster Bay TV. The joint venture will see Bay TV broadcasting from Creative Edge, beaming images of Edge Hill’s award-winning campus into homes across the region and creating exciting opportunities for Edge Hill students to work on live TV programmes and secure work placements without leaving the campus.


Student Experience


Student Experience

A growing campus that mirrors the personal transformation of our students Outstanding student support, passionate and nationally recognised teaching staff, innovative learning and teaching spaces, industry-focused courses, and excellent graduate outcomes – plus a welcoming community atmosphere that remains the same no matter how much we grow – make the student experience at Edge Hill University officially the best in the region.

Student Experience




Annual Review 2012-2013

Creative Showcase

Investment in Biosciences

Edge Hill hosted its most spectacular end-of-year show to date when students from departments across the Faculty of Arts and Sciences came together at The Lowry in Manchester to showcase their talents to friends, family and potential employers.

Edge Hill University has invested more than £4 million in new accommodation and state-ofthe-art facilities for Biology students and researchers. The new Biosciences building features high-spec teaching spaces and dedicated laboratories, with brand new resources including DNA analysis equipment, a scanning electron microscope plus several insectaries for breeding and studying disease-transmitting insects.

Exclaim! brought students from Media, Performing Arts, Creative Writing, Computing, Film, Television and Advertising together under one roof for the first time to exhibit work from across Edge Hill’s creative degree programmes. As well as film screenings, animation, dance, drama and readings, there was also a showcase for computing and web development activities, showing the breadth of Edge Hill’s ‘creative campus’.

“Practical experience of molecular biology is vital for a range of careers, and essential for further study,” says Paul Ashton, Head of the Biology Department. “Our new facilities will give students the opportunity to work with the latest equipment, broaden their knowledge and develop skills that are highly prized by employers.”

The event drew praise from some of the biggest names in the region’s creative sector, including Helen Bullough, Head of CBBC Children’s Programming, Carol Crane, casting director and documentary maker, David Pichilingi, Director of Liverpool Sound City, and TV producer Colin McKeown.

Investment in Biology also supports two new degree programmes for September 2013 – BSc (Hons) Human Biology and BSc (Hons) Ecology – to complement Edge Hill’s successful BSc (Hons) Biology course.

Carol Poole, event organiser and Edge Hill’s Ambassador to MediaCityUK, said: “In previous years we have had an end of year show within individual departments but we wanted to extend this to embrace the sheer diversity of our talented students within arts and culture. It was a great chance for students to demonstrate the quality of their work to the industry.”

Three new members of staff have also been recruited to strengthen the Biology team: mosquito expert Clare Strode, Anne Oxborough, who specialises in spider diversity, and microbiologist Dr Angela Ryan-Kewley. “Our new staff bring significant expertise into the department,” says Paul. “They will have a major impact on the breadth and depth of our teaching as well as opening up exciting new areas of research within the University.”




Student Experience

Gothic Pioneer

Top Role for Caring Students

Leading gothic scholar Dr Ben Brabon, Reader in English Literature and Digital Education, is helping to keep Edge Hill at the forefront of curriculum design and delivery with the launch of two unique teaching resources.

Three compassionate Nursing students have been selected to act as ambassadors for the Government’s new national vision for nursing, which aims to put the ‘6Cs’ – Care, Compassion, Courage, Competence, Communication and Commitment – back into the profession.

E-Gothicist is an educational web resource developed following a prestigious grant from the Higher Education Academy’s Teaching Development Grant Scheme, which is given to projects that demonstrate innovative evidenceinformed practice in learning and teaching. The first resource of its kind for gothic studies, it combines a variety of e-learning methods including an educational app with practical teaching materials, academic blogs, reviews and critical analysis of major gothic novels.

Gill Neary, Natasha Carroll and Charlene Knox are among 50 volunteer ‘care-makers’, selected from more than 250 applicants, tasked with communicating the 6Cs to their peers. The trio was handpicked by Chief Nursing Officer, and Edge Hill Honorary Graduate, Jane Cummings as they embody the professional values set out in the new strategy, Compassion in Nursing.

Dr Brabon was also instrumental in launching Edge Hill’s first Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on Vampire Fiction, which is recognised as the UK’s first undergraduate MOOC to offer credit and the first MOOC in the world to provide a discrete 20 credit validated undergraduate course.

As part of their role Gill, Natasha and Charlene have spoken at a number of national conferences as well as giving presentations to their fellow nursing, midwifery and other health care students. They were also instrumental in organising a student-led conference in the Faculty of Health and Social Care which highlighted the importance of care and dedication in looking after service users.

As a result of his pioneering work, Ben is now working with the Quality Assurance Agency on a national MOOC code of practice and contributing to a report on MOOCs for the Swedish Ministry of Education.

“Being involved in the project is great for our personal and professional development,” said Gill Neary. “As well as enhancing our CVs, the care-maker role offers opportunities to network at the highest level, improve our leadership skills and see how nursing policy is developed.”

He said: “There is no denying that MOOCs are going to play an important role in the delivery of degree programmes over the coming years, and Edge Hill University is, again, ahead of the curve in teaching developments.”

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Annual Review 2012-2013




Student Experience

Supporting Role Struggling students now have even more support thanks to the launch of a new advice centre run for and by students. Edge Hill Students’ Union opened its one-stopshop for support and advice in 2012, offering help on a range of subjects close to students’ hearts including finance, welfare, debt, benefits, accommodation and academic issues.

Geosciences on the Map

Since its launch, the Student Advice Centre’s team of highly qualified full-time advisors has dealt with more than 530 cases, and helped cash-strapped students gain around £416,000 through applications for grants, funding and benefits they were previously unaware of.

Investment in Geosciences has seen the expanding Department of Geography move into dedicated accommodation with specialist facilities that reflect the contemporary workplace.

Mental Wealth

The new accommodation features a large lecture theatre, a seminar room, a geology laboratory and geoinformation laboratories.

Getting students and staff to ‘feel good’ was the idea behind the University’s successful Mental Health and Wellbeing Day, designed to raise both smiles and awareness of mental health issues and support.

“The move will really enhance both staff and student research,” said Head of Department, Dr Nigel Richardson. “It will also allow the Department to expand its range of specialist equipment even further, ensuring students become competent using the technologies that will be found in their future workplaces, helping to secure their long-term employability.”

The event, hosted by the Students’ Union, aimed to move away from the term ‘mental health’, and instead asked the simple question, ‘Do you feel good?’ Activities were grouped into six categories – Keep Fit, Stay Safe, Just Relax, Keep Laughing, Eat Well and Be Positive – all designed to highlight potential problem areas. The event included a ‘Feel Good’ food stall, free laughter yoga classes and free screenings of comedy films.


Annual Review 2012-2013

Jayne Rowlands was awarded an impressive 96% for her ground-breaking work on the effects of alcohol on young people, despite being diagnosed with breast cancer half way through her studies. She went on to receive first class honours in Integrated Children and Young People’s Practice.

Success Against the Odds


Student Experience

The only university with beachfront apartments! Thanks to inventive landscaping around the new Creative Edge building, Edge Hill students can now go from bedroom to beach in seconds.

Sun, Sand and Studies


Annual Review 2012-2013

Help for Teachers

Designed for Industry

A new initiative in the Faculty of Education is helping first-time teachers make the transition from lecture theatre to classroom.

Edge Hill is complementing its new learning and teaching resources with a range of innovative new courses, designed to give students the most up-to-date industry skills and knowledge.

The Newly Qualified Teachers (NQT) Programme aims to support teachers through their first year of work by providing mentoring, practical advice and networking opportunities, including a series of conferences where aspiring and new teachers can share information and best practice.

To enhance employability in the fast-moving world of computing, the University has launched new programmes in Games Programming, Security and Forensics, Mobile and Embedded Systems and Motion Graphics, while in the expanded Biology Department, students can now take courses in Ecology and Human Biology.

Paul Spencer, Senior Lecturer and leader of the NQT Programme team, said: “The NQT programme is a clear expression of Edge Hill’s commitment to supporting new teachers with outstanding professional development through what can be a difficult transitional period.”

There are also new programmes in the growing area of Psychology, including Counselling and Psychotherapy, Psychosocial Analysis of Offending Behaviour, plus an MA in Dance Movement Psychotherapy – the first in the North West – designed to meet demands within the NHS for more holistic therapies.

Postgrad Collaboration Postgraduate students have been instrumental in a collaborative project to support undergraduate enquiry and research skills. Working with academics from Edge Hill and Roehampton University, the team of five postgraduates is developing e-learning tools for students on History degree programmes at both institutions, with the aim of influencing teaching practice across the UK higher education sector. “The online toolkits will improve the student experience by providing a rich resource to complement the learning support already being given,” says project leader, Dr Alyson Brown. “It also gives our postgraduates a taste of working on a collaborative research project.”


Student Experience

Home from Home

Pioneering Training for ODPs

More students than ever can enjoy a home from home on campus with the opening of Edge Hill’s latest phase of student accommodation. The extension to Founders Court brings the total bed spaces to more than 1,700, meaning that Edge Hill can, for the first time, offer oncampus accommodation to all first years.

Edge Hill is one of the first universities in the country to introduce essential new training into its Operating Department Practitioner programme. The new ‘enhanced scrub’ module, developed in response to changing national guidelines, ensures Edge Hill students are jobready on graduation.

Triple Award

Learning Services has been recognised for its dedication to supporting students throughout their studies. The team not only met all the criteria for the Government’s coveted Customer Services Excellence Award for the eighth year running, but also received three compliance pluses, given only to services that go that extra mile.

Living is Easy

Edge Hill is helping new students settle into university life with the introduction of Residential Life Advisors. This small team of dedicated on-site staff is trained to help students make the transition to independent living, particularly those leaving home for the first time. Through a programme of dedicated social events and activities they help new students feel part of Edge Hill as a living, learning community.

Preparing for the Future

Student Services continue to encourage new students to ‘drop in, not drop out’ with a Higher Education Drop-In residential programme for Media students. The three-day retentionboosting programme, run in conjunction with the Department of Media just before the start of term, aims to prepare applicants for university life, establish any support requirements, and give them opportunities to make new friends before starting their studies.

Same Difference

Edge Hill University showed its support for the UN’s International Day of Persons with Disabilities with a packed schedule of events, designed in consultation with disabled students, and aimed at making all students aware of the differences – and, more importantly, the similarities – between the university experience of disabled and non-disabled students.

Industry Insights

Leading musicologists shared behind the scenes insights into the music industry during a series of talks aimed at enhancing the employability of Media students. Guest speakers included Professor of Musicology at Goldsmiths, University of London, Keith Negus, and Nicola Dibben, Professor of Musicology at the University of Sheffield.


Annual Review 2012-2013

Accountancy graduate Tope Sadiku claims that “determination and resilience” won her a place on Asda’s prestigious Graduate Training Scheme. She recently returned to talk to students about her role as a Graduate Trading Assistant and to share her tips on applying for graduate jobs.

Top Role for Tope


Research and Impact


Research and Impact

Exciting, unique and respected research that makes a real difference to people’s lives Increasing diversity, capacity and leadership in research remains at the top of Edge Hill’s strategic agenda. Continued investment, despite a tough economic climate, has seen the University go from strength to strength, building on existing areas of research excellence and encouraging ambitious new academics to bring their ideas and enthusiasm to Edge Hill.

Research and Impact

Rapid Rise in Research

The Silent Killer

Increased investment in research at Edge Hill University has more than doubled the number of submissions to the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), the Government’s system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions.

Malaria kills more than a million people every year, and half of the world’s population – about 3.3 billion – are at risk of contracting the deadly disease. Finding out how mosquitos become resistant to insecticides could have a major impact on the spread of malaria, and research by Dr Clare Strode in the Department of Biology is contributing to the global fight against insectborne diseases. Her work focuses on identifying which of the mosquito’s genes are mutating to resist chemical insecticides, as well as the effectiveness of current vector control tools, such as bed nets, on mosquito populations.

Research is being submitted from across all three Faculties, covering subjects as diverse as student retention, specialist palliative care services and black civil rights in America. “Our strategy has been to build on our current strengths, recruit new talent to boost research in those areas, and also help us branch out into different areas of research,” said Dr Nikki Craske, Director of Edge Hill’s Research and Enterprise Support Office.

“Once we’ve identified the genes, the aim is to create a genetic profile which can then be used to inform new products, develop tools to track and combat resistance and, hopefully, contribute to global public health programmes,” said Clare.

“While the forthcoming Research Excellence Framework has acted as a catalyst for recent investment in research, the aim is for high quality, internationally significant research to become the norm at Edge Hill. We are putting additional emphasis on research leadership, with the appointment of a number of new professors as well as some exciting early career researchers.”

As well as the female Anopheles gambiae mosquito, which passes the parasite responsible for malaria through saliva when it bites, Clare is also researching the Aedes aegypi mosquito, which spreads dengue fever, another potentially fatal disease prevalent in developing countries. She now intends to expand her research to include other insects, such as the triatomid bug which transmits Chagas disease, also known as South American Sleeping Sickness.




Annual Review 2012-2013




Research and Impact




Annual Review 2012-2013

‘Home Grown’ Rule Questioned

A Better Way to Care

The controversial ‘home grown player’ rule has only made limited improvements to the competitive balance in Champions League and Europa League football matches, according to Professor Richard Parrish, Director of the Centre for Sports Law Research.

A unique project in the Faculty of Health and Social Care is giving new hope to parents wishing to care for terminally ill and severely disabled children at home. Designed as a small flat, the Better at Home simulation suite gives parents the chance to build the skills and confidence demanded by their child’s condition in a realistic home environment. The facility has been designed to replicate the average home, with standard ceiling, door and plug heights, to aid the transition from hospital to home. It is also fitted with cameras to enable staff to give parents detailed feedback during sessions.

Richard was one of a team of academics appointed by The European Commission to investigate the effect of UEFA’s rule, which was introduced in 2006 to prevent football clubs buying in ‘ready-made’ players at the expense of developing local talent, and stopping richer clubs from effectively buying success.

The suite – the only one of its kind in the country – is supported by the WellChild charity, which also provides specialist training for parents on all aspects of home care from using a hoist to coping with emergency situations.

The research looked at whether the rule has had any impact on perceived problems in European football and whether it restricted the employment prospects of professional footballers. “While the study found a significant increase in the number of both home-grown and under-21 players, there was no data to prove this occurred as a direct result of the rule,” said Richard. “It also potentially conflicts with EU law on workers’ freedom of movement.”

David Cobb, Head of Professional Standards, who oversees the project, said: “As well as being vital for parents, the Better at Home suite will also be a useful resource for Nursing, Midwifery, Social Work and Paramedic students. It has a lot of potential for real-world learning, which is essential for increasing employability.”

The home grown player study adds to a long list of high profile studies produced by the Centre for Sports Law Research, ensuring Edge Hill continues to be at the forefront of influencing decision-making within the European sports movement and the institutions of the European Union.




Research and Impact

Coping with Doping

Short but Sweet

Now in its seventh year, the Edge Hill Prize for the Short Story is proving increasingly popular among both new and established authors.

Doping scandals are becoming increasingly common in the sporting world, with Lance Armstrong the latest high profile athlete to admit taking banned substances.

There were a record number of entrants for the 2013 awards but it was acclaimed Irish writer Kevin Barry who scooped the main prize for his collection, Dark Lies The Island.

To help tackle the problem, psychologist Dr Andrew Levy has received funding from the World Anti-Doping Agency to investigate whether personality traits can be used to predict the likelihood of doping among competitive athletes.

Edge Hill film studies lecturer Jenny Barrett was awarded the MA Creative Writing award, receiving £500 for her story The Last Day at Woolworths which was praised by judges for being very believable, moving and for its strong characterisation.

“If we can identify personality profiles for athletes who are at risk from doping,” says Andrew, “there is the potential to target athletes who may be susceptible. This could help maximise the effectiveness of interventions and potentially reduce the likelihood of doping in competitive sport.”

Jenny, who is currently combining her academic career with an MA in Creative Writing at Edge Hill University, was unfamiliar with writing short stories before starting her studies.


Annual Review 2012-2013

Former soldier, Jon Tomkinson, who left school with no qualifications showed that it’s never too late to learn after graduating with a first class honours in Biology. He has now joined Edge Hill’s Graduate Training Assistant programme to continue his research into genetics.

Military Honours


Research and Impact

Improving Outcomes Educational equality charity, the Education Endowment Foundation (EEF), has awarded £1.5 million to the Faculty of Education for two national projects aimed at improving outcomes for children entitled to free school meals. One of the projects was awarded £1 million – the largest award ever granted by EEF to one organisation.

Tweeting First

PhD student James Burrows is carrying out experimental research into digital story-telling using Twitter and Facebook. The project aims to create interactive, digital narratives that can be re-mediated in a curated performance space. It is the first time that social media and memetics have been used together in the world of performing arts.

The first of the two projects being trialled at target schools over two years, Lesson Study, helps teachers develop reflection skills to improve their teaching. The other focuses on training teachers in the use of hi-tech learner response systems and evaluating their impact in the classroom. If successful, both projects could be rolled out to schools nationally.

Patient Partnership Edge Hill University has developed a new tool to help cancer patients get the most from their appointments with consultants.

The Patient Concerns Inventory (PCI) allows patients to log their concerns on a touch screen tablet prior to their consultation using common prompts. It identifies 55 issues patients might wish to discuss, plus 15 professionals they may wish to talk to. The answers are then networked to the consultation room where the consultant can see – and act on – the information provided.

Romanian Research

The predicted mass arrival of Romanian labour migrants when the UK restrictions are lifted in January 2014 is unlikely, according to Dr Ruxandra Trandafoiu, Reader in Communication. Her book, DIASPORA ONLINE: Identity Politics and Romanian Migrants, funded by the British Academy, chronicles the online cultural and political expressions of the Romanian diaspora.

A team led by Professor Simon Rogers, consultant surgeon at Aintree University Hospital and professor in Edge Hill’s Evidencebased Practice Research Centre, developed the PCI in consultation with patients, regional care networks and other academics.


Annual Review 2012-2013

Influential film expert Professor Roger Shannon has contributed to a new book in the renowned World Film Locations series, which focuses on Liverpool’s unique place in silver screen history.

City in Film


Alumni Profile

Performing Arts graduate and star of BBC3’s Him and Her, Kerry Howard is making her mark on the world of comedy with a pilot of her own sketch show, Kerry, and a role in British film, I Give It A Year.

Comedy Connection


Annual Review 2012-2013

Exposing Hidden Abuse

Counting on Success

Dr Helen Baker’s research into parent abuse is helping to raise awareness of this hidden form of domestic violence. Her study, which advocates treating young people who abuse a parent with care, as they are usually victims of abuse themselves, forms part of a new national research network aimed at influencing law and policy reform.

Building on the success of its Numbers Count maths intervention programme for 6-8 year olds, Edge Hill has secured £1.14 million to continue the project. New developments include Numbers Count 2, for older primary schoolchildren, and 1stClass@Number, a programme for small groups. Since its launch in 2010, Numbers Count has helped almost 30,000 children who struggle with numeracy.

Springtail Discovery

Picturing the Mind

Research by PhD student Thom Dallimore into British Springtails – tiny soil-dwelling creatures that can prevent crop damage – has been published by the Field Studies Council to help scientists identify these prevalent yet elusive animals. Thom’s ongoing research looks at the vital role Springtails play in our ecosystem and whether they are vulnerable to climate change or habitat destruction.

Psychology lecturer Dr Joanne Powell has identified a link between social cognition and brain structure using Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). Working with colleagues from Oxford and Liverpool, Joanne found that intentionality competence, the ability to infer the mental state of ourselves and others, is associated with greater neural tissue in orbital prefrontal cortex.

Exposing the Truth

History in Context

Dr Tony Keating, Senior Lecturer in Social Sciences, has contributed to a TV series about the history of Irish newspapers, hosted by investigative journalist Donal McIntyre. Dr Keating appeared and provided academic consultancy on Print and Be Damned, which highlights the importance of the Irish print industry in uncovering the truth.

Computing expert Dr Mark Anderson has developed a new programme designed to bring historic locations to life using a unique combination of virtual world platforms, GIS and agent-based simulations. HistorySpace is an online portal that uses historic data to create 3D representations of urban environments that allow users to see how buildings or streets looked in the past. These will be supported by documentary evidence enabling historians and social scientists to explore and further understand the evolution of urban landscapes.

Creating More Leaders

The Faculty of Education has won a major contract with the National College for Teaching and Learning to expand its national leadership training programme for headteachers and aspiring middle leaders in schools. The extended licence means that Edge Hill can now offer the programme in its partner schools in China for the first time.


Research and Impact

Bridging the Research Gap

New Focus for Educational Research

Edge Hill University has established a new research centre designed to bridge the gap between academics and teachers, and help raise educational standards in schools.

Traditionally, researchers complain that schools are more interested in ‘quick fix’ solutions which might lack validity, while teachers often argue that academic research is out of touch with classroom realities. The Research Centre for Schools, Colleges and Teacher Education (SCaTE), launched in January 2013, aims to work in partnership with teachers to develop their own practices to raise standards, as well as change perceptions about the value of academic research.

A new Centre for Literacy and Numeracy Research is bringing together academics from across the University to share their ideas and develop new projects to support these vital school subjects.

Current projects include looking at early screening of children for risks of reading difficulties, and evaluating the national phonics programme. The Centre aims to make evidencebased insights available to education providers and, ultimately, influence local and national school policy-making decisions. Director of the Centre, Professor Victor van Daal, said: “This collaboration allows us to look at issues in more depth, increase our work within schools and take on larger-scale projects.”

Living with Technology

International Broadcast

Collaborative research between the Department of Computing and security systems company Securecom Ltd is helping elderly people enjoy the freedom of independent living, while reducing NHS costs.

An Edge Hill University academic has appeared on a prestigious American radio show to discuss her internationally acclaimed research into young people and mental health.

The team has developed a unique technology that constantly transmits sensory data from the home to a central monitoring station via the internet to create a picture of a person’s daily routines. This data is then analysed for anomalies, or gradual changes in a persons’ usual activities, to identify and predict when help may be needed. The research has contributed to enhancing a new commercial product for the assisted living market that is helping local councils better support elderly and disabled people in their care.


Vicki Coppock, Reader in Social Sciences: Childhood Studies and Mental Health, joined renowned critical psychiatrist Dr Peter Breggin in New York for his radio show, The Dr Peter Breggin Hour, where she spoke about the overdiagnosis of ADHD and the medicating of children from a children’s rights perspective. This is based on her longstanding research which challenges adult-centred, medically dominated discourses, policies and practices in child and adolescent mental health.

Annual Review 2012-2013

Senior Lecturer in Performance Mark Edward, aka Gale Force, presented his latest practice as research investigation into the implications of ageing for drag queens at the International Federation for Theatre Research Conference in Barcelona.

Behind the Glamour


International Partnerships


International Partnerships

A University that looks beyond its borders Edge Hill continues to embed international perspectives across the University. Students and staff from across the globe are adding to the rich and diverse learning experience enjoyed by all of our students, while our strategic partnerships with international organisations are enhancing student exchange, research and staff development opportunities.

International Partnerships




Annual Review 2012-2013

Chinese Recognition

Science Without Borders

Edge Hill’s links with China have been further strengthened with the award of prestigious Confucius Institute status.

A new cohort of students brought a taste of Rio to Edge Hill when the University welcomed its first Brazilian students as part of the Science Without Borders international exchange programme.

The Edge Hill Confucius Institute, established in partnership with Chongqing Normal University, is supported by the Chinese Ministry of Education and aims to promote Chinese language and culture, support local Chinese teaching and facilitate cultural exchanges.

Edge Hill is one of 70 institutions to participate in the Brazil Science Without Borders scheme, which offers Brazilian students one-year scholarships to study abroad at both undergraduate and PhD level.

The initiative opens up opportunities for staff and students to learn more about life in the world’s fastest growing economy. The initial focus will be on giving all trainee teachers the chance to learn more about China and its languages, with the most promising students participating in summer camps in Chongqing.

The programme, run by the Brazilian Government, aims to send 100,000 Brazilian students overseas to study science, technology, engineering, mathematics and the creative industries at top universities around the world. This ground breaking initiative, will not only see the UK welcome up to 10,000 Brazilian students, but will also provide opportunities for ‘Inbound Fellowships’ which will bring 1,250 international researchers to Brazil and pave the way for future collaborations.

Professor David Law, Director of the Confucius Institute, said: “Our Edge Hill Confucius Institute will provide students with new opportunities and experiences that will help them be better global citizens.” To celebrate the launch, students, staff and local schoolchildren came together for a day of Chinese themed activities, from calligraphy to chopstick practice, hosted by Edge Hill’s Chinese Society.

Bill Johnson, Deputy Director of Edge Hill’s International Office, said: “Feedback from colleagues working with the students, overwhelmingly confirms that the contribution these students make in terms of the quality of the work they have produced, and the high levels of engagement and participation in sessions has brought substantial mutual benefits to the cohorts they are in.”

Li Zhan, who helped plan the event, said: “We were able to use the day to promote all things China. Edge Hill has students from many countries and it’s great for us to come together to celebrate the different cultures and share knowledge.”




International Partnerships

Indian Collaboration A collaboration between Edge Hill University and the Holdsworth Memorial Hospital (HMH) in India is helping to improve the care of mentally ill patients, particularly those who have attempted suicide. Three members of the Faculty of Health and Social Care’s Continuing Professional Development team travelled to India as part of a Tropical Health and Education Trust funded trip, to give guest lectures at hospitals and develop links with clinical research staff.

International Emergency A group of Edge Hill paramedics helped respond to emergency calls in South Africa as part of a knowledge transfer exchange with the University of Johannesburg’s Department of Emergency Medicine.

While in India they signed a Memorandum of Understanding with HMH, cementing a longstanding relationship with the hospital and enabling education projects that will help HMH staff better assess and treat people in crisis.

The week-long project saw the team working alongside South African paramedic lecturers and practitioners, both in the university and in the field. The visit aimed to give insights into practices across the globe, enhancing staff knowledge and improving the Paramedic curriculum, while offering opportunities for further staff and student exchanges in the future.

Creativity out of Crisis Hot on the heels of hosting the American Ann Arbor Film Festival tour, Edge Hill’s expertise, research and knowledge around film festivals has again attracted a renowned international festival to campus. The Athens International Digital Film Festival, screened in the Arts Centre, featured 12 short films, proving that the economic crisis can’t stifle creativity. Film lecturer Yiannis Koufonikos said: “The festival is committed to celebrating visionary filmmaking which chimes with our Media Department’s own mission and builds on our already strong links within this area. There are also many exciting opportunities for our students to submit their work for future inclusion in the festival.”


Annual Review 2012-2013

Edge Hill students welcomed Chinese New Year in style with traditional performances, food and decorations designed to showcase Chinese culture and promote international understanding and cooperation.

Enter the Dragon


International Partnerships

BSc (Hons) Engineering Management students Genn Seng and Sabrina Loy visited Edge Hill for the first time to collect their degrees, after completing their course at the FY Institute of Technology in Singapore.

Singapore Celebrations


Annual Review 2012-2013

Birthday Treat

Animated Exchange

America’s longest running independent film festival made its second appearance at Edge Hill as part of its 50th anniversary celebrations. The Ann Arbor festival gave a special seven-film screening at the Arts Centre – the only UK venue on its birthday tour across the world.

A creative collaboration with the Beijing Institute of Graphic Communication is giving Animation students the opportunity to showcase their work internationally, and has led to the launch of a dedicated animation conference.

International Experience

Students in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences can now enjoy a year studying or working abroad as part of a new range of four-year undergraduate programmes designed to boost employability. Edge Hill’s growing international partnerships mean students can study or undertake work experience or ‘sandwich year’ industrial placements with organisations in Europe, North America, China and Australia.

Edge Hill students and staff visited China recently to share experiences and discuss further exchanges and research projects. They also started planning the Creative Animation Knowledge Exchange (CAKE) conference, which will include screenings, workshops and seminars to promote creativity across boundaries. Alex Jukes, Course Leader for Animation, said: “Trips like this allow our students to benefit from the cultural and aesthetic differences they experience, and develop new ideas and visual approaches in their studies.”

Language Centre

Edge Hill has launched a new Language Centre to improve students’ communicative and linguistic competency in a range of languages. The Centre runs a number of courses, including Foundation and pre-sessional language programmes, aimed at both overseas students looking to improve their English and home students who want to study, live or work abroad. The Centre will be working closely with the Confucius Institute to develop and promote programmes, and there are plans to develop an MA in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages.


A Year of Culture

A Year of Culture

From acrobatic drummers in the sky to legendary drummers in the lecture theatre, this year has been a whirlwind of cultural activity, with even more events to wow our students, staff and local communities. At the heart of our cultural campus is the refurbished and extended Arts Centre, which recently celebrated a year of bringing both well-loved and ground breaking artists to Edge Hill.


Annual Review 2012-2013

Suspended Fascination

Red Carpet for Top Film Producer

Internationally acclaimed French theatre troupe, Trans Express, presented Mobile Homme, an aerial spectacular featuring vividly-costumed acrobats, dancers and musicians performing high above the audience’s heads.

Edge Hill experienced a little bit of Hollywood glamour when American movie producer Evan Ginzburg visited the Arts Centre to introduce a screening of his new film, Theresa Sareo: Alive Again.

Ginzburg, best known for his work on The Wrestler (2008), took the audience behind the scenes of the making of the inspirational story of singer/songwriter Theresa Sareo, whose life was forever changed when an accident caused the loss of her right leg. He also read from his book, Apartment 4B, Like in Brooklyn, and hosted a question and answer session about his work.

The highlight of the show was a human mobile – a band of drummers swept from the ground by a crane and suspended in the air to beat out their hypnotic rhythm to a crowd of more than 3,000 delighted spectators.


A Year of Culture

Justice in Focus

This Charming Man

Musicians mingled with students, staff and members of the Hillsborough campaign for the launch of a new exhibition of photographs celebrating the hugely successful Justice Tonight band.

Mike Joyce, drummer with iconic 80s band The Smiths, shared his unique experiences of the music industry as part of ‘Week 13’, seven days of industry focused events designed to enhance the employability of Media students.

Justice Tonight: The Photographs – the first public exhibition by Preston-born photographer Peter Stevens – featured candid shots of founding members, Mick Jones from The Clash, Pete Wylie and The Farm, including bassist and Edge Hill Media lecturer, Carl Hunter, performing on tour in 2012.

Mike’s inspirational talk and Q&A session coincided with the 30th anniversary of The Smiths’ seminal performance in the Edge Hill Student Refectory in 1983. A neverbefore-heard recording of the gig, which broadcaster and alumnus Stuart Maconie called “a significant event in the annals of Edge Hill”, was unearthed and released to fans this year.


Annual Review 2012-2013

A Special Performance

Painting with Words

Sir Horace ‘Gentleman’ Panter, bass player with The Specials, took centre stage at the Arts Centre for an evening of Two-Tone memories, in conversation with fellow bassist Carl Hunter.

A partnership between a poet and a painter brought an intriguing exhibition of paintings, printmaking and poetic text to the Arts Centre in March.

Manifest: poetry beyond text, which includes poetic text resembling headlines and fragmented ‘body’ text suggestive of Russian Constructivist prints, is the result of a three-year collaboration between Professor of Poetry and Poetics at Edge Hill, Robert Sheppard, and Peter Clarke, Principal Lecturer in Fine Art at the University of Central Lancashire.

During a lively Q&A, Sir Horace spoke about his journey from member of the most dynamic rhythm section on the TwoTone scene, to artist, and back again, when the band reunited for a tour in 2008.


External Engagement


External Engagement

Sharing our campus with our communities and our expertise with external partners From public lectures, entertainment and facilities that can be used by all, to our links with businesses and public sector organisations, we endeavor to make a positive and lasting impact on the economic, cultural, social and political life of the region.

External Engagement

A Sound Partnership

Ahead for Business

Edge Hill University has collaborated with Liverpool Sound City on a major annual music event, giving staff, students and graduates the chance to work with leading figures from the music industry.

Edge Hill has built on its strong links with employers with the introduction of a dedicated Employer Engagement team tasked with raising the University’s profile among the business community, forging new partnerships and improving the employment prospects for future Edge Hill students.

Liverpool Sound City, the largest international music, digital and film festival and conference in the UK, brings together more than 360 artists, 40,000 music fans and 300 industry professionals for three days of performances, discussions and lectures.

The team was established with funding from the Higher Education Funding Council’s Co-Funded Employer Engagement scheme (CFEE), to develop and sustain relationships with employers and engage them in workforce development partnerships. The scheme has allowed Edge Hill to offer the equivalent of more than 1,000 full-time places for employersupported students – one of the largest allocations awarded in the UK.

Edge Hill’s contribution to the festival included acclaimed all-male dance troupe Edge FWD, who performed their latest piece, Wingman, and a screening of Made in Birmingham/ Reggae Punk Bhangra, a music documentary by Roger Shannon, Professor of Film at Edge Hill University. This year’s festival conference saw the launch of the UK Student Music Awards aimed at nurturing new talent and helping students get the first step on the music industry ladder. Created as a result of the ongoing partnership between Edge Hill and Liverpool Sound City, the national competition asks entrants to come up with an idea that addresses specific music industry issues.

As well as working closely with local and national companies to meet their staff training requirements, the Employer Engagement team is also working with other departments within the University to expand the provision of business and research consultancy services and knowledge exchange activities, such as Knowledge Transfer Partnerships. “There was already a lot of enterprise and engagement activity being undertaken across the institution,” says Lisa Knight, who heads up the team. “Part of my role has been to pull it together into a coherent offering, support those who are working with industry and share best practice across the University.”

A team from Edge Hill’s Media Department was voted the overall winner, securing work placements as well as making valuable industry contacts – see page 53 for details. Image: The Walkmen at the Anglican Cathedral as part of Liverpool Sound City 2013.

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External Engagement

With the support of Arts Council England and Lottery Awards for All, Small Things began to work across surgical wards, such as Cardiac and Orthopaedic, with children and young people often experiencing acute pain.

Moving Stories A dance artist from Edge Hill is using the power of movement and creativity to improve the health and wellbeing of children with acute conditions.

Small Things then developed a film project and a study measuring the effects of this practice for children and young people with acute pain. This led to a series of intimate films, Invisible Duets, which documented their ground-breaking approach. The project has since resulted in an apprentice scheme, to mentor and share practice with other dancers, and a CPD programme that attracts practitioners from across Europe.

Lisa Dowler, Senior Lecturer in Dance, has been carrying out pioneering practice-based research with staff and patients at Alder Hey NHS Foundation Trust since 2006, through her company, Small Things Dance Collective. The initial project, From Where You Are, a qualitative study funded by the National Lottery Awards for All scheme, originally saw Lisa and a colleague working with children on the Neuromedical and Oncology wards to aid their rehabilitation through dance.

Lisa said: “Our findings have been quite astounding: 92% experienced a reduction in pain and for 80% this was more than a 50% reduction.�


Annual Review 2012-2013

A love of cartoons and a passion for drawing helped Stuart Gibson, who was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome at the age of four, to become one of the best 2D animators at Edge Hill and graduate with a 2:1 in Animation.

Top Drawer


External Engagement

Exploring Social Work Challenges

Experts from Edge Hill and practitioners from across the UK came together to discuss social work in the 21st century in a thoughtprovoking series of public lectures. Covering subjects from child neglect and the care of vulnerable people to leadership and emotional intelligence, the lectures provided an opportunity to hear some of the profession’s leading thinkers discuss contemporary, and often contested, areas of social work.

A Personal View of Hillsborough Former Bishop of Liverpool, the Right Reverend James Jones, gave an emotional public lecture about his role on the Hillsborough Independent Panel (HIP), to an audience that included survivors and members of the victims’ families.

Speakers included: Edge Hill’s Professor of Social Work, Tim Kelly; author Dr Neil Thompson; Brian Taylor, Professor of Social Work, University of Ulster; Professor of Child Welfare at University of Sheffield, Jan Horwath; and Mike Maas-Lowit, Senior Lecturer in Social Work at Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen.

Bishop James, who retired in 2013, was appointed to chair the HIP, which was set up to ensure the maximum possible disclosure of documents relating to the disaster, which killed 96 people in 1989. As a result of the panel’s work, the police ‘cover up’ around Hillsborough was exposed, finally moving towards justice for the families.

Building Business Edge Hill University has played a major role in the region’s biggest business event, further strengthening its relationship with Wigan Council.

In his lecture he paid tribute to Edge Hill's contribution to understanding of the tragedy, primarily through the work of Professor Phil Scraton, a member of the panel who began his work on Hillsborough when he was at Edge Hill University. He also discussed how the HIP had affected him personally, making him question his own faith, and how moved he had been by the dignity of the Hillsborough families.

The Wigan Business Expo Twenty13 attracted more than 140 exhibitors and over 1,000 delegates, and has proved one of the most effective networking opportunities for North West businesses. As well as being the main sponsor of the event, Edge Hill also shared its business expertise with local companies through a series of ‘business surgeries’, covering topics such as the benefits of student placements, finance for growth, using social media to win business, and how Knowledge Transfer Partnerships can harness academic knowledge to tackle key challenges.


Annual Review 2012-2013

Entrepreneurial students, Daniel Cain, Charlie Denton and Sean Stoakes, beat teams from universities across the country to win the inaugural UK Student Music Award after pitching their idea for a local gig-finding app to a panel of music industry experts.

Talented Trio


Student Profile

“Being a care leaver isn’t easy but since coming to Edge Hill life seems to run a little smoother thanks to the personal and professional support I have around me.” Pippa Daniels, Health and Wellbeing student

Life after Care

Edge Hill offers a targeted support package for care leavers that includes a £750 annual bursary for three years, year-round halls of residence accommodation and a designated member of staff on hand for support on any aspect of university life.


Annual Review 2012-2013

Recycling Knowledge The Faculty of Education is helping to develop the workforce of one of the UK’s leading recycling, renewable energy and waste management companies. The partnership with Viridor, which has over 3,000 employees, forms the core of the company’s management development strategy by delivering a bespoke programme of study accredited to Foundation Degree level.

Legal Advice

Computer Ada’d

Edge Hill is drawing on the knowledge and experience of law professionals from across the region with its new Law Advisory Panel. The group, which includes Alistair Fletcher, President of the Liverpool Law Society, was established to ensure the curriculum continues to reflect external practice, and increase networking opportunities for staff and students.

Edge Hill showed that IT isn’t just for boys with an event designed to encourage more girls to study computing and technology-related subjects at school. Ada at the Edge, named after Ada Lovelace, considered to be the first computer programmer, covered subjects such as wearable technology, stereotypes of computer scientists and creating small computer games and apps.

Prisons and the Public Edge Hill has hosted a special conference reflecting increasing public interest in the ‘private’ world of prisons. Academics from Law and Criminology and English and History discussed topics such as representations of prisons in film, TV, literature, art and photography, the role of journalism in relation to the prison, and prison museums and exhibitions.





Celebrating the outstanding contribution of our staff and students to the University and beyond Edge Hill provides an environment where staff and students are valued and supported in their academic and personal endeavours. We recognise and reward strong performance and celebrate individual achievements, and work hard to ensure our decisions and plans are informed and influenced by all of our people.


Dedication Rewarded

Royal Recognition

Volunteering has not only changed the life of Children’s Nursing student Tom Holt – it has made a difference to thousands of children across Britain. His outstanding commitment to helping others has now earned him the title of UK Student Volunteer of the Year 2013.

Edge Hill’s Head of Midwifery, Jane Morgan, has been awarded the MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours 2013 for her lifelong commitment to the profession. Jane was recognised for outstanding services to midwifery in the UK, and also for maternity services in Rwanda, where her lifesaving work is making a real difference to women and their childbirth experiences.

Tom, who has been volunteering since school, dedicates four hours a week to ChildLine as a telephone counsellor, plus a further four hours to an Action for Children mentoring scheme in Knowsley. He is also a Beaver, Cub and Scout leader, working with more than 50 children a week. As if this isn’t enough, he regularly takes part in CHICKS respite weekends in Cornwall for disadvantaged youngsters.

As well as raising funds to build a new maternity hospital in Shyira, a village in Rwanda, Jane has also established two scholarships to enable local nurses to train as midwives. Since the first two midwives qualified, the maternal and infant mortality rate in Shyira has been significantly reduced.

Tom, who won an Edge Hill Excellence Scholarship in 2011 in recognition of his voluntary work, is also an active blogger and has had an article published in the international online magazine The Huffington Post about winning his award.

Jane, who started her career in 1984 as a community midwife in Liverpool, said: “I was overwhelmed to be given an MBE because I feel as though I’ve just been doing my job. Even now after so many deliveries I still well up at the sight of a newborn baby. Every birth is so special; it’s just such a privilege to be a part of that amazing experience.”

“Winning UK Student Volunteer of the Year was absolutely fantastic – I really wasn’t expecting it,” said Tom. “I feel the award reflects what I have achieved and I hope it will inspire others to put an hour or two aside a week to volunteer.”




Annual Review 2012-2013








Annual Review 2012-2013

Creative Duo’s Dramatic Career

Vote of Confidence from BBC

A theatre company set up by two Drama graduates is not only showcasing their talents across the UK, but also giving current Edge Hill students vital skills and experience to help them succeed in their careers.

Two Media, Film and TV students have beaten strong competition from students across the North West to produce a short animated film on the theme of confidence for the BBC’s Learning Zone. Lauren Cholmondeley and Dom Bhattacharjee were invited to pitch their idea to industry professionals at MediaCityUK in Salford. The commissioning panel were impressed by the creativity and innovation of their film, A Journey to the Land of Can-Do, which tells the story of a boy who is scared to try anything new for fear of failure.

Edge of Your Seat Productions, founded by Philip McGuinness and Emily Frodsham in 2010, has recently finished its third successful production using a cast and crew consisting exclusively of Edge Hill students and alumni. “It’s very difficult to get a job in the Performing Arts without professional experience and you can’t generally get that without having a job,” said Production Manager, Emily. “Edge of your Seat aims to fill that gap by giving people the opportunity to take part in professional productions while they’re still studying or recently graduated.”

Eleven students are currently working on the film, with support from lecturers Carl Hunter and Clare Heney, and are involved in a range of roles from illustration, writing, sound and animation to production management, editing and administration. “It’s a very competitive market out there so to be able to have an opportunity like this and develop an idea that is to be used on the BBC’s Learning Zone is incredible,” said Dom. “It’s a fantastic experience and looks great on our CVs.”

Philip and Emily are now both enrolled on PGCE courses at the University. Emily plans to become a primary school teacher, while Philip wants to teach drama to A-level students and adults, to complement their company. Artistic Director, Philip, adds: “The company is continuing to grow. We’re aiming to set up a youth theatre group and have also branched out into events and children’s parties. The aim is to become a really big arts organisation and help people achieve their dreams.”

Lauren added: “To know the BBC like your work is a real confidence boost and there’s even talk of developing it into a game or a mobile app.” 2




Triple Celebrations for FM Putting customers at the heart of everything they do has seen Edge Hill’s Facilities Management team crowned In House Client Team Of The Year at the British Institute of Facilities Management (BIFM) Awards 2013, with an entry described by the judges as “inspiring”.

New Liverpool Scholarship Winner

The win tops a successful year for the team. As well as being awarded the Government’s prestigious Customer Service Excellence standard for its services to students, staff and visitors, FM’s catering services food@edgehill, won Best Menu in the Public Sector at the Blakemore Food Service 2012 Catering Awards.

Edge Hill University has announced a new award for outstanding academic achievement to complement its generous suite of Excellence Scholarships. Physical Education and School Sport student Thomas Robinson was the inaugural winner of the Liverpool Scholarship, created to celebrate the University’s Freedom of the City award last year. The award is given to the student with the highest UCAS tariff points score living in the city. With an impressive 620 points, Thomas was a worthy first recipient.

Thumbs Up for Teaching

Edge Hill students showed their appreciation for staff who go the extra mile in the student-led Teaching Awards 2013. More than 700 students nominated 383 lecturers, personal tutors and support staff for enriching the student experience and providing excellent support and advice. Fifteen outstanding members of staff received the Chancellor’s Award and a personal development fund to enhance their role.

Edge Hill awards a range of scholarships each year for students who contribute to University life, either by excelling academically, raising Edge Hill’s profile, promoting equality, motivating others, or by overcoming personal circumstances to achieve.

The Human Touch

National recognition for Edge Hill’s HR team this year included the Universities Human Resources Award for Organisational Impact, which showcases exceptional HR achievement. The team was also nominated for “Outstanding HR Team” in the prestigious Times Higher Leadership and Management Awards (THELMAs), which celebrate the sector’s leadership, management, financial and business skills.


Annual Review 2012-2013

The University’s oldest alumni group, the Edge Hill College Guild, was reunited on campus during the annual Guild Reunion. All of the members graduated before 1959, when Edge Hill was a ladies-only teacher training college.

Ladies Day



Rewarding Excellence

During the year several Edge Hill University academics have been recognised for their contribution to teaching, learning and research.

Professor Barbara Jack

Dr Chris Beaumont

Dr Dave Putwain

Dr Paul Greenbank

Specialist in palliative care Professor Barbara Jack, Head of Research and Scholarship and Director of Edge Hill’s Evidence-based Practice Research Centre, has been made trustee of Hospice Africa UK. The appointment reflects Professor Jack’s strong links with the Hospice and her pioneering research to help the terminally ill in Africa.

Dr Chris Beaumont, Head of the Department of Computing, has been awarded a National Teaching Fellowship – the most prestigious award for excellence in higher education teaching and support for learning. Chris was given the award by the Higher Education Academy for his innovation and focus on problem-based learning.

Dr Paul Greenbank, Reader in Educational Development, has been made a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy in recognition of his commitment to professionalism in teaching and learning in higher education.

Dr Dave Putwain, Reader in Psychology, has been elected chair of the British Psychological Society’s Education Section. During his 12month tenure he will help promote psychology in education and the interests of psychologists engaged in schools, further and higher education, child guidance and the wider community.

Daniel Robinson

Daniel Robinson, Inclusion Officer in Student Services, was named Teacher of the Year in the Daisy UK Desire to Inspire Awards 2013 for his role in organising Edge Hill’s International Day of Persons with Disabilities. Liverpool-based charity Daisy UK helps disabled people fulfill their potential through sports, education and employment.

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Student Profile

Sports Development student Helen Byrne is one of only a handful of female football referees in the country. Her commitment to encouraging girls to take up the beautiful game earned her an Edge Hill Scholarship for Excellence in Sport.

Pitch Perfect


Annual Review 2012-2013

Entrepreneur and food fanatic, Helen Tse, who completed a PGCE in 2010, returned to Edge Hill to talk about the inspiration behind her book, Sweet Mandarin, which tells the remarkable story of her Chinese grandmother, who came to the UK and set up one of the country’s first Chinese restaurants.

Taste of Success


80 Years in Ormskirk

In 1933, Edge Hill College moved from its original location in Durning Road, Liverpool to the “wide horizons” of rural Lancashire. In 2013, local residents joined staff and students to celebrate 80 years of Edge Hill in Ormskirk.

80 Years in

More than 2,000 people flocked onto campus for a spectacular anniversary event to enjoy food, family activities and live outdoor entertainment including Edge Hill’s award-winning all-male dance troupe, Edge FWD, and Granny Turismo, the world’s first and only shopping trolley dance display team.


Main gates 1933

The Changing Landscape

Main Building





The purpose-built Ormskirk campus is officially opened by Lord Irwin, President of the Board of Education.

During the Second World War, the college is evacuated to Bingley in Yorkshire.

The first new Halls of Residence, built to accommodate an ever-increasing student population that now includes men, is opened by Princess Margaret.

Edge Hill unveils its public Sculpture Trail, which today features 17 permanent artworks.


Annual Review 2012-2013

The occasion also saw the launch of a specially commissioned book and exhibition to mark the milestone anniversary. Wide Horizons: Eighty Years in Ormskirk 1933-2013 by Mark Flinn chronicles Edge Hill’s journey from ladies-only teacher training college through its requisition as a military hospital during WWII to the thriving and respected university it is today.

Visitors to campus were also intrigued by a series of unusual signposts around the site, part of an art installation commissioned to commemorate the 80-year anniversary. Habitus, created by award-winning artist Robyn Woolston, contrasts the preceding geological periods with our current, human influenced ‘anthropocene era’ to make viewers question their behaviour and its impact on the environment. The signposts, which reference various geological eons, eras and epochs, culminate in a flashy Las Vegas-style sign declaring ‘Welcome to the Fabulous Anthropocene Era’.

The celebrations continued with a Community Day – a chance for local people to sample some of the University’s outstanding community facilities, such as Sporting Edge and the Arts Centre, discover more about the way Edge Hill has developed over the past 80 years, as well as get a glimpse of future plans.

Edge FWD







The Western Campus transformation begins with the opening of the Business and Management Centre.

The iconic residential tower block, Lancashire Hall, is demolished, making way for the Wilson Centre.

The Faculty of Health building, a masterclass in sustainable construction, marks the completion of the Western Campus.

The Arts Centre, with the Rose Theatre at its heart, enables Edge Hill to bring even more cultural events to Ormskirk.

Creative Edge, the flagship building in the new Eastern campus, opens surrounded by state-of-theart student accommodation a second lake, and even a beach!





Robust financial health and a commitment to investing in our campus ensures that Edge Hill will flourish for the long-term As a sustainable organisation, Edge Hill invests in attracting the best staff and students, and generating surpluses that can be reinvested in the campus and the University community. Eco-friendly policies and practices are a key aspect of overall sustainability, reducing waste and maximising the potential of our green campus.


Onwards and Upwards

Satisfaction Guaranteed

Edge Hill University’s continuing success is reflected in a further rise of four places in the Times/Sunday Times Good University Guide 2014 – making a total rise of 40 places in the last seven years.

Once again, Edge Hill students are among the most content in the UK, voting the University top in the North West for overall student satisfaction in the 2013 National Student Survey.

This remarkable advance in the UK’s foremost higher education league table places Edge Hill in the top three for continuous improvement over the past decade. The Guide also ranked the University joint best in the North West for student satisfaction, and in the top five nationally for ‘Cheapest Rents’.

Edge Hill was also ranked highly in a number of subject areas with Biology coming top in the UK for overall satisfaction, teaching and academic support, and Psychology and Dance in the national top two for assessment and feedback. Dance also came second in the UK for personal development. Sociology features in the top three in the country for personal development and academic support while Creative Writing is third in the UK for academic support. Physical Geography and Environmental Science is fourth in the UK for teaching, and History is fifth for academic support.

Vice-Chancellor, Dr John Cater, said: “Another positive ranking for Edge Hill in the pre-eminent guide for potential students and their parents reflects our commitment to the student experience. Our investment in excellent lecturers, state-of-the-art facilities and a stunning campus continues. Our latest intake of students are moving in to some of the best accommodation in the country, studying in new facilities for film and TV, computing, music, biosciences and geography, and socialising in a refurbished student bar. We are confident that we will maintain our upward trajectory.”

Many other subjects were voted best in the region in one or more categories, including overall satisfaction, teaching, personal development, academic support, assessment and feedback, and organisation and management. The high profile annual census, which canvasses nearly half a million final year students on all aspects of their university experience, from teaching to personal development, gives prospective students, families and advisors an independent view of higher education institutions.




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Annual Review 2012-2013

Green and Pleasant Land

Business with Benefits

A string of ‘green’ awards is helping to boost Edge Hill’s reputation as one of the most attractive and environmentally friendly campuses in the country.

Edge Hill is helping enterprising students, staff and alumni to take their ideas forward with the launch of a new social enterprise project.

For the second year running the University has been awarded Green Flag status – the national benchmark for parks and green spaces in the UK. The award recognises the University’s huge efforts in minimising the environmental impact of its activities, maintaining natural habitats through its commitment to biodiversity, and developing a sustainable campus for the enjoyment of students, staff and the local community. This latest accolade builds on the success of the University’s recent shortlisting for the EAUC Green Gown Awards, which recognise the exceptional sustainability initiatives being undertaken by universities and colleges across the UK, and the award of ‘Upper Second Class’ in the People and Planet Green League for 2013. Bill Hancox, Director of Facilities Management, said: “Environmental sustainability is at the core of our decision-making. The positive engagement and commitment of our staff, students and the wider community has helped us create a truly stunning campus – arguably one of the finest in the UK.” 1

The University’s partnership with UN Ltd, a charity that supports businesses that have a positive effect on society, has received funding from the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) to award grants to budding social entrepreneurs. More than 70 students and staff are now engaged in the project, which has awarded £17,000 to help them get started and develop their concepts. Among the projects funded through the UN Ltd/HEFCE social enterprise scheme is ADDvanced Solutions, a community-based organisation set up by Edge Hill alumni Rita Jones and Vanda Reeves to deliver services and training to help children with ADHD and their families better manage their lives. The award has enabled the pair, who both have children with complex additional needs related to ADHD, to set up an office and start marketing their services. Within six months of starting they have already tripled their initial projections of working with 15 families and now have three community-based programmes working with 45 families across Merseyside. 2



Vegetarian staff and students can now eat their polenta with pride, as Edge Hill’s catering operations have been approved by the Vegetarian Society. The University is one of only a handful of institutions in the UK to be given this external recognition, and is the first in the country to receive full accreditation for all its vegetarian dishes. 76

Veggie Victory

Annual Review 2012-2013

Students and staff, with the help of a local Brownie group, have produced a bumper crop of fruit and veg in brand new allotments, established as part of NUS project Student Eats, which encourages students to grow, eat and share food.

Growing Their Own


Future Plans

Transformation of the campus continues with construction of a ÂŁ25 million sports complex, which will give Edge Hill students and local communities some of the best facilities in the country.

Future Plans

Work has already started on the 80-acre site on the Eastern Campus, with new 3G pitches, hockey and football pitches, and a new competition standard athletics track already in use by students and residents. By September 2014 these will be complemented by a new 8-court sports centre plus a range of high-spec indoor and outdoor facilities.


Annual Review 2012-2013

The development supports Edge Hill’s vision of a ‘green campus’ with new ecological features and wildlife habitats, including mixed-woodland areas and footpaths linking to Ruff Wood, wildflower meadows, open grassland, a new wildlife pond, and structural screen planting and hedgerow replacement. The whole development will incorporate sustainable drainage and low carbon design and building technologies.

Facilities will include: - Sports Centre building including: 8-court sports hall with viewing gallery; 25m swimming pool; 100-station fitness suite; aerobics studio; sauna and steam rooms and a coffee shop - 3 x 3G small-side football courts with an accredited surface for rugby training - Full-sized floodlit hockey pitch of national match-play standard

Vice-Chancellor, Dr John Cater, said: “The new sports complex will not only give our staff, students and communities access to outstanding facilities, it will also enable us to bring high profile sports events to campus, which will enhance teaching and research and bring economic benefits to the local area.”

- Full-sized floodlit 3G football/rugby pitch - 8-lane floodlit competition standard athletics track with grass banking for spectators - Fitness conditioning trail with changes in gradients and fitness stations along the route - 5 new high quality grass pitches - 4 x floodlit tennis/netball courts


Honorary Graduates

Honorary Graduates Each year Edge Hill University recognises people who excel in their chosen field, and who share our commitment to using and sharing their knowledge, skills and experience for the benefit of society.

Dr Peter Carter OBE Chief Executive and General Secretary of the Royal College of Nursing

Before taking the helm at the world’s largest professional union of nurses, Peter spent almost 12 years as the Chief Executive of the Central and North West London Mental Health NHS Trust, one of the largest mental health trusts in the UK. He started his NHS career by training as a psychiatric nurse and has held a number of clinical and managerial posts. Peter was awarded the OBE for services to the NHS in the 2006 New Year’s Honours List. He also played a pivotal role in developing modern mental health services and, in recognition of this achievement, Peter received the President’s Medal from the Royal College of Psychiatrists. Dr Carter, a regular visitor to Edge Hill, received his honorary doctorate for his extensive knowledge and experience of the nursing profession and his close links with the University.


Annual Review 2012-2013

Frank Cottrell Boyce

Jane Cummings

British screenwriter, novelist and occasional actor

Chief Nursing Officer for England Taking the most prominent role in nursing at one of the most challenging times known for the NHS, Jane Cummings is driving forward the national agenda in health care and developing clinical leadership at every level for the benefit of patients.

Although Frank Cottrell Boyce is renowned for his children’s fiction and for his collaborations with film director Michael Winterbottom, it was as the writer for the 2012 London Olympics opening ceremony that he became a true household name.

She recently launched the national strategy for nurses, midwives and care staff, which puts care and compassion as well as technical skills at the heart of what the profession does.

Frank has written sequels to Chitty Chitty Bang Bang: The Magical Car, a children’s classic by Ian Fleming, and has won two major British awards for children’s books: the 2004 Carnegie Medal for Millions, which originated as a film script, and the 2012 Guardian Prize for The Unforgotten Coat, which was commissioned by a charity.

Jane qualified as a registered general nurse in the early 1980s and has fulfilled a variety of senior management positions within the NHS, including Director of Nursing and Commissioning, Deputy Chief Executive of a large NHS Trust and a senior position within the Department of Health.

He also worked with Edge Hill’s media lecturer Carl Hunter on Grow Your Own, a British comedy film directed by Richard Laxton.

Jane has been awarded an honorary doctorate in light of her notable career, her passionate vision for the future and her links with Edge Hill.

Frank was honoured by Edge Hill for his collaborations with the University and his contributions to children’s literature, film and TV.


Honorary Graduates

Dr Giles Fraser

Colin McKeown

Former Canon Chancellor of St Paul’s Cathedral and columnist for The Guardian

Director, LA Productions Colin McKeown is responsible for some of the most iconic film and television productions to come out of Liverpool in the past 25 years.

As one of the country’s leading Anglicans, Dr Fraser has sought to encourage debate and develop understanding around some of the Church’s most difficult issues including same-sex marriage and homosexuality within the priesthood. In 2003, Giles founded the Inclusive Church, which supports lesbian and gay members and champions all aspects of equality.

He helped to set up Mersey Television in 1982, which launched Channel 4’s flagship soap, Brookside, and through his own company, LA Productions, he remains at the forefront of British television drama. Colin is also heavily involved in charity work with young and disadvantaged people in the North West, and has contributed greatly to education and training in the region. He created the Liverpool Film Academy charity, which uses film as a vehicle to engage young people with issues that concern them. He has also worked in partnership with Edge Hill for several years, helping talented students gain vocational training and employment at LA Productions.

Dr Fraser is most widely known for his role at St Paul’s Cathedral, from which he resigned in October 2011 following the decision of the Church to evict Occupy London protestors from their camp outside the Cathedral. He has been involved in social and political advocacy and has lectured on moral leadership for many years. His award, which was given for his work in this area and for his campaigning around social inclusion, resonates closely with the ethos of the University.

Colin's honorary doctorate was awarded in recognition of his outstanding career and his work in the local community.


Annual Review 2012-2013

Austin Thomas

Chief Nurse for the British Paralympic Association and Associate Lecturer at Edge Hill University A passionate healthcare professional and teacher, Austin Thomas has dedicated 40 years to helping disabled athletes. He originally became involved with the Stoke Mandeville Games, a forerunner of the modern Paralympics, and in 1992 he was appointed Chief Nurse for the British Paralympic squad in Barcelona, a role he again filled at Atlanta in 1996, Sydney in 2000 and London in 2012. In 2003, Austin was involved in a near fatal car crash which left him in a wheelchair for two and a half years. This gave him an even greater sense of admiration and respect for what he describes as “the Herculean efforts made by some of our Paralympians to achieve world class status�. He received an honorary doctorate for his selfless commitment to ensuring disabled athletes receive the best nursing care.


Financial Summary

Cash for Investment in £’000 40,410

39,611 32,359

28,596 20,486 2009





Key Performance Indicators Year Ended 31 July


Total income in £0’000

108,541 99,163 102,405 92,576


Surplus for re-investment in £’000

17, 693 13,036 13,875



Cash generated by activities in £’000

25,990 16,131



Cash for investment in £’000


Financial worth of the University in £’000

108,347 85,160 80,589 65,613


Applications for University FT UG programmes (1)

18,867 17,628




Total number of FT students of the University (2)

10,649 10,110




Percentage of staff who rate the University as a good or excellent employer (3)






Employee turnover






Level of University staff absence






Notes (1) Based on UCAS statistics. (2) Based on HESA Student Record (3) From the University’s independently scrutinised Staff Survey







39,611 40,410 28,596 20,486

Annual Review 2012-2013

Financial Worth of the University in £’000 108,347

51,303 2009








Applications for University Full Time Undergraduate Programmes

16,013 11,461 2009



12,226 2010




Surplus for Re-investment in £’000 17,693 13,875




10,633 6,273 2009





Principal Officers of the University Chancellor Professor Tanya Byron Pro Chancellors Michael Pinfold Chris Trinick

Vice-Chancellor Dr John Cater Deputy Vice-Chancellors Professor Bill Bruce (Academic) Steve Igoe (Resources)

Pro Vice-Chancellors Lesley Munro (University Secretary and Clerk to the Board of Governors)

Seth Crofts (Dean of the Faculty of Health and Social Care) Robert Smedley (Dean of the Faculty of Education)

Professor George Talbot (Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences)


Annual Review 2012-2013



Judith Ashall Pat Baron Christine Bennett Sylvia Bostock Ann Bowden Judith Broughton Eileen Brown Ruth Caine Annette Carter John Cater Paul Cullen Betty Danson Rob Dermot Margaret Ducker Beryl Evans Margaret Evans Peter Ford Pam Gavin Muriel Harrison Sandy Hayes Jenny Healey Kathleen Holmes Des Hope

David Jackson David Jeffries Maureen Jenkinson Emma Lees Andy Lees Betty Leitch Sarah Lindsay Joan Mair Vernon Olive McComb Diane Melia Steven Mullington Esther Owen Anne Pagendam Angela Poyser Duncan Poyser Sarah Riley Isabel Robinson Aislin Shields Polly Shields Lilian Shoesmith Carole Sodo Melanie White



Editor Roy Bayfield Copywriter/Project Manager Sophie Wilcockson Creative Direction/Print Management Andy Butler Design Matt Lewis and Sam Wiehl Photography Stuart Rayner (cover and throughout) Infinite 3D (pages 6-7) Peter Stevens (page 44) AB Photography (page 49) Dan Monaghan (page 54) Iron Bird (pages 70-71 ) Printed by Print Room UK Ltd


Edge Hill University St Helens Road, Ormskirk L39 4QP 01695 575 171

Edge Hill University Annual Review 2012/13  

Edge Hill University Annual Review 2012/13

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