Teaching supported by research is just one of many reasons History students at De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) are 100 per cent satisfied with their course, according to a national survey.
The course scored the highest possible rating in the National Student Survey (NSS) 2016 and has also been ranked in the UK’s top 10 for both teaching quality and student experience in The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017.
The fact that teaching is underpinned by robust research is a key contributing factor in these fantastic results, according to Professor Kenneth Morrison, joint Programme Leader for undergraduate History at DMU.
Professor Morrison said: “All of our History lecturers are both experts in their fields and enthusiastic teachers.
“Our students are literally taught by the people who are writing the books and who have their fingers firmly on the pulse. They really appreciate engaging with lecturers who possess that level of expertise.”
The teaching quality of DMU’s History academics has been widely recognised with three awards in the past six years, two of which were awarded to Professor Morrison, who specialises in Modern Southeast European History.
The course’s international dimension is another reason students rate it highly, with recent curriculum developments leading to an even broader range of modules.
Students learn about contemporary British, American and European history, with opportunities to explore distinctive areas such as photographic history, the history of sport and leisure, as well as Southeast Asia and ethnicity, migration and racism.
They also have access to excellent resources such as a 24/7 library, filmed lecture snippets and early sight of lecture materials, and benefit from a friendly and personal approach to teaching.
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Professor Morrison, whose areas of teaching include 20th century European history, the Cold War and the history of Yugoslavia and its successor states, added: “We make a real effort to get to know students, going to great lengths to ensure that they feel welcomed.
“I personally touch base with all new students when they arrive, which takes away the intimidation of coming to university for the first time. This personal touch goes a long way to break down barriers early on.”
Recent History graduate Joe Harrigan was particularly pleased with “the teaching variety on offer thanks to tutors with a range of different specialisms”.
He found talks and workshops with alumni inspirational, especially hearing about their successes from going into teaching and journalism to taking up further education.
Joe said: “The course emphasises employability in the second and final year with a dedicated workplace module to support students.
“We were encouraged to take up placements and my copywriting roles at Citizens’ Eye and Voluntary Action Leicester (VAL) were both enjoyable and valuable.”
As well as feeling enriched by interacting with the local community in Leicester, Joe’s placement at VAL led to paid work for one-and-a-half-years, helping him fund his MA in public history.
He added: “My dissertation supervisor Dr David Dee was brilliant. He let me evolve in different directions and was always there to support and guide me.”
The NSS 2016 asked hundreds of thousands of final-year students across the country to rate their satisfaction across areas such as teaching, assessment and feedback, organisation and management, learning resources, personal development, and their students' union.
Posted on Wednesday 26th October 2016