Professor Janice Kay

Student engagement

Name Professor Janice Kay

Sue Smith (Executive PA)


Provost and Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor

Division University Management Team

Engaging students as partners

Over the course of her career at the University of Exeter, Professor Janice Kay has played an active role in overseeing the shaping and development of the university's strategies for education. “We anticipated very early what we wanted to do with the students around their learning in partnership. It has always seemed to me that… if you are a student, you have very strong views about how you learn and how you wish to learn. So while we have some great and inspiring teachers, and The Teaching Awards… and the National Student Survey tells us that… it is as much to do with learning and assessment… I wanted a strategy that allowed us to explore that partnership with students.”

Multi-disciplinary learning

“I think that when considering the major challenges of the 21st century around, for example, growing older and being alive longer, but not necessarily more healthily… one can think about that as being a problem for modern medicine, but that would be a very narrow view… Similarly, one can think about the genetics of aging, in experimental medicine around the problems to do with chronic diseases… and one can think about how that translates into health service. But the health service problem is actually a problem as much to do with social care as to do with medicine. Then that brings you to concepts of psychology, depression and mood, and helping your mental health as you age, and that has all kinds of implications around government policy and medical humanities, for example, what has happened in the past and how literature can help; we have in English, for example, a care homes reading project. And fundamentally it has to do with our happiness… so all of this is interdisciplinary, and it’s something that our students, if not studying it directly at the university, have to be able to manipulate and think across lots of different areas. I see that when I see students accessing different kinds of information on the web, talking to people, from Yik Yak to Twitter it’s kind of little bits and bobs of knowledge and different areas that people are bringing together and synthesizing. So I think the 21st century actually for all of us, whether a student or an 80 year old, is fundamentally about bringing together knowledge from different disciplines.”

Aim 1: Talented, Active, Engaged Students

To increase levels of proactive student engagement with their academic studies

Engaging students as partners

“You can see in the various iterations of the Education Strategy that we’re evolving.”

Multi-disciplinary learning as a strategic aim

“Climate change… research covers each one of our six’s inherently interdisciplinary.”

The importance of multi-disciplinary learning

“You go to university for the love of learning... I really fundamentally believe in that”.