James Winterbotham

Students' Guild Subject Chair

Becoming an efficient problem solver

Name James Winterbotham
College College of Social Sciences and International Studies   

Problem solving in the Student Staff Liaison Committee 

In his role as Sociology, Philosophy and Anthropology Subject Chair, James explains that his main job is to co-ordinate “the information transfer between students and staff”, focusing on “how [students] are taught and assessed… they discuss the issues they found in an open forum with key members of staff in the department”.

James explains how the Exeter experience helps develop students’ skills as effective problem solvers, stating that “there’s a large degree of co-operation present between the Guild, the staff, the management and the students… there’s a lot of horizontal contact, particularly in the SSLC meetings. It’s very much a meeting between equals…”

Promoting the value of team work within the university

James explains how the SSLC helps students “have a place here [at the university]… to have a purpose” and emphasises the value of “working together so that everybody’s strengths are played to the full”. He discusses, for example, the value of working together with the Library Champions, to solve the problem of students having access to “books for the library that students feel they're missing out on”.

Problem solving

“There are always a number of different strategies you need to take to discover student opinions… and to negotiate with [students and staff] to put together some sort of solution.”

Effective team player

“The SSLC… brings people together who would not normally interact socially and it helps people to understand each other.”