Category 1 - A New Initiative in Partnership

This award is for a new project or initiative that has developed partnership in the quality of the learning experience since our last awards in 2021



IMPS sports day ~ Institute of Molecular Plant Sciences Outreach Team, The University of Edinburgh

The team behind this nomination wanted to bring a school sports day atmosphere to the Institute of Molecular Plant Sciences, to help build community among the staff and students at the institute. In the words of the submission:

“The sports day was no ordinary sports day; it included games that require technical skills of a scientist such as pipetting accuracy, speed PPE dressing, speed calculation and many more.”

There were 40 participants from across a range of staff and student roles, and being scientists the organisers of course included a graph and statistics in their submission, showing that in their evaluation the overwhelming majority of participants met more than four new people, would like to see the day be repeated, and felt like a part of a community as a result.  Following high interest, resources will be shared to help other institutes in the university do similar events.

Judges praised the sports day’s simplicity, originality and effectiveness in bringing staff and students together.


Protecting Students’ Academic Integrity ~ City of Glasgow College, CitySA

An excellent initiative tackling the widespread increase in file sharing sites and essay mills, which pose a huge risk, not only to the academic integrity of students, but also to their mental health and wellbeing. A joint working group of staff and student officers, was set up in AY 2021/22 to address this challenge, utilising a two-pronged approach: 

    1. A shift in college culture from preventing malpractice to maintaining academic integrity.
    2. A student-facing campaign to help students understand the risk of essay mills, how to spot them, and where to access genuine support.

Revamping both policy and practice and delivering a comprehensive rollout of training, resources and events to both staff and students was hugely effective and raised widespread awareness. Working in partnership with commercial companies, the initiative encouraged them to remove suspected Essay Mills from their client base, update their due diligence processes, and raise further awareness within the industry.


Student Quality Panel Member Scheme ~ Edinburgh Napier University

Launched in 2021, the Student Quality Panel Member Scheme recruits students to paid panel member roles to address historical recruitment challenges, and responds to an ELIR2019 recommendation to ensure effective arrangements for recruitment, training and support for students participating in approval boards and ILRs. The scheme has employed 14 students since its inception, with each student participating in several quality events per year. 

The scheme has resulted in the development of a more attractive, professional role for students and improvement of recruitment and training processes.  It has been well received by Student Quality Panel Members and has had both internal and external impact in terms of the activities undertaken, e.g. contribution to national and international projects and conferences. 

Student Engagement Framework

National Education Officers' Network meeting

21 Mar 2024

This meeting of sparqs’ National Education Officers’ Network (NEON) continues our series of meetings for academic year 2023-24. …


Student Engagement Staff Network meeting

19 Mar 2024

This meeting of our Student Engagement Staff Network (SESN) for academic year 2023-24 continues our series of half-day events for…