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Heads of University Biosciences (HUBS) offers grants for teaching & learning workshops


HUBS Bioscience Learning & Teaching Workshops

The HEABIOPEDR group, that is run through the JISC network, is maintaining an active community of academic staff who are committed to the development of learning and teaching within the biosciences. This is supported by a series of meetings which will take place each year, comprising:

  • The annual Bioscience Education Summit, the Heads of University Biosciences (HUBS) Annual Meeting, and the HUBS workshop series.

1. Overview

HUBS are pleased to invite UK bioscience departments to be part of a series of workshops on learning and teaching to supplement the two annual events. Funding has been provided to enable us to offer a grant of up to £1000 to individual institutions to host and deliver a workshop on learning and teaching in the biosciences, with the aim of there being three such workshops, delivered by different institutions, per year.

2. Aims

The workshop series has the following aims:

  • to support the bioscience sector in enhancing the student learning experience;
  • to enable institutions to disseminate findings from research or evaluation studies, or evidence-informed policy and/or best practice;
  • to facilitate the sharing of policy, practice and evidence, across institutions;
  • to facilitate the establishment of networks of staff supporting teaching and learning in the biosciences;
  • to promote critical discussion in relation to enhancing the quality of the student learning experience in the biosciences.

3. Timing

Workshops will be held during the 2020-21 academic year. Proposing departments are asked to specify their preferred dates on the proposal form. Where possible we will aim to spread the workshops across the year, preferably with one in each of late Autumn, early Spring and in the Summer to interlink with the annual events. Each workshop should typically run from 10.00-16.00 hours with opportunities for networking and/or discussion.

Due to the ongoing uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, proposals for workshops taking place prior to April 2021 should be for virtual meetings only. If you plan to host an in-person meeting this will need to be scheduled from April 2021 onwards.

4. Audience

Organising departments should aim to attract 30-40 attendees from their own constituency, from neighbouring higher education providers and from the wider higher education sector.

5. Organisation

The seminars will be hosted by and held in the institutions that have had a proposal accepted in response to the call. Institutions interested in hosting a workshop or seminar during the series must ensure that their workshop or seminar is fully accessible to any delegates who may wish to attend. This includes the provision of an accessible venue and accessible presentations, which are made available to delegates electronically (preferably in advance). Hosts may be able to minimise room booking costs by badging the activity as a development event if a number of local staff are attending.

Host institutions will be solely responsible for managing bookings and communicating with delegates. The host will also be responsible for advertising the workshop or seminar. HUBS will assist, using a number of established mechanisms to advertise the workshop via the Royal Society of Biology communication channels and HEABIOPEDR JISC mailing list.

Joint applications for workshops run collaboratively by two institutions will be welcome as well as individual applications.

6. Hosting a workshop or seminar

To be considered to take part in the 2020-21 series, please complete a proposal form and send it as an email attachment to hubs@rsb.org.uk by 30 September 2020.

Institutions will be contacted by HUBS to confirm whether or not a place in the series has been allocated to them.

7. Selection criteria

The following criteria will be used to select proposals for the series:

  • The workshop content is relevant to developing teaching and learning priorities within the biosciences. 
  • The programme for the workshop or seminar is well planned and structured. 
  • Proposers will be required to agree to draft a short report on the outcomes of the workshop.

8. Themes

Applicants are welcome to propose the themes that they consider to be particularly relevant. Examples of previously selected themes can be seen below.


  • Enhancing Teaching and Learning Partnerships
  • Re-imagining the first-year student experience

  • Reimaging non-traditional Final Year Research and Honours Projects: Preparing graduates for the 21st Century workplace

  • Closing Attainment Gaps in the Biosciences


  • Rubics for all: designing robust and transparent grading rubrics in the biological sciences
  • Work-integrated learning: enhancing graduate employability
  • Building resilience in and out of the curriculum
  • Overcoming barriers in chemistry teaching within the biosciences (Joint HUCBMS & HUBS)


  • Minecraft in the biosciences
  • Collaborative learning and teaching: developing skills for the future
  • Improving the transition to higher education in the biosciences

9. Reporting

Applicants must agree to write a short report to be posted on the HUBS website following the meeting. Where possible this should also include access to any presentation resources used to support the workshop.

10. Enquiries

If you would like to discuss the programme for your workshop before submitting a proposal, please contact Jon Green.


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