Modes of delivery

Strategic Aim 5: Modes of delivery

I. To ensure all students are taught by the very best educators, providing inspiring, challenging and innovative, learning

II. To make available the best learning spaces and technologies

III. To equip students and staff with the ability to use technologies effectively for learning and educational success

Sociology and Anthropology students complete several projects on everyday artefacts of their choice, culminating in a report and a presentation. Students apply the skills they are learning to things that interest them. This makes the subject accessible and enjoyable to students while allowing them to develop key skills in their field of study.

Sociology/Anthropology: Imagining Social Worlds: Artefacts

In this first-year module, students complete a group project on cultural artefacts such as food, films, instruments, pop songs or paintings. The ELE page includes links to various multimedia sources to expand students’ horizons for research, while guest lectures also provide students with further insight into the research of artefacts within academia. This module also makes good use of the on-site Bill Douglas Cinema Museum as the curator provides introductory hands-on sessions in artefact analysis. 

SOC/ANT1008 – Professor Michael Schillmeier


Sociology/Anthropology: Cultures and Race, Ethnicity and Racism

In this module, students are asked to bring in media based articles and artefacts (an object, photograph, book and so on) in order to consider their wider significance in relation to the seminar topic. The module also makes good use of audio-visual resources through a range of films, with students also being encouraged to use music as a source for learning. 

ANT2089/3089/SOC3089 – Dr Katharine Tyler

Theology and Religion: Intermediate Biblical Hebrew

This module embraces the ways in which modern university students learn, and equips them to use technologies and develop their skills in Hebrew. Software and advice are provided for typing in a non-Roman script, and advice is given on where to find online help and the best editions of texts. A 'course' utilsing the 'Memrise' app platform, based on the content of the module, allows students to use a variety of media including audio files, flashcards and vocabulary guides. Revision is supported by online verb website portals, video lectures, YouTube animations and a Padlet online collaborative learning space which allows students to interact with each other and the module convenor by discussing ideas, posting resources or asking questions about the module.

THE2035/3035 – Dr Jon Morgan

Philosophy: Introduction to Asian Philosophy

The module analyses ancient classical texts and looks at different conceptions of reality, selfhood, consciousness, meditation, virtue and self-cultivation. Students are introduced to meditation techniques associated with different philosophical traditions, and the incorporation of meditation practice gives them a deeper understanding and appreciation of the subject matter. A class presentation on meditative practices related to the philosophical tradition studied that week helps to consolidate the set texts and aid learning through sharing information amongst peers. The ELE page contains many resources, including YouTube links to meditation exercises and other media materials to engage students.

PHL1010 – Professor Giovanna Colombetti

Geography: Geographies of Material Culture

Instead of a generic lecture structure, the timetable for this module consists of a few introductory lectures followed by group discussions, workshops, drop-ins and presentations for the rest of the term. Students are given the opportunity to develop their own ideas and research topics, and are actively encouraged to share and discuss these in an environment where innovation is celebrated. Professor Ian Cook integrates social media accounts and blogs into the delivery of the module, inviting students to participate and engage both digitally and in the classroom. His website ( often showcases students' work from the module, enabling students to engage with the material and research uploaded to the spoof shopping website, involving themselves in the contemporary issues and debates surrounding material culture.

GEO3123 – Professor Ian Cook

Medical Science: Anatomical Sciences

In this module students work in groups to create their own Google site, showcasing their research, knowledge and creativity through a public-facing webpage. The assignment includes the creation of a 3D model using a mobile app and corresponding software to embed the models into the website. Step-by-step instructions and guidance on the module’s own Google site are provided, supported by IT drop-in sessions. Students present their work to their peers with question and answer sessions. The ability to present research in a concise, user-friendly way through the development of new technological teaching resources is a valuable skill for any graduate.

CSC2009 – Dr Claudia Leitner

Use of Twitter Across Colleges

The opportunities for engagement, discussion and collaboration have been expanded and enhanced by online technological developments in the 21st century. A key product of these developments is social media, where ideas can be shared worldwide at the click of a button. A second year English module run by Dr Christopher Stokes and a final year Physical Geography module run by Dr Damien Mansell are two examples of many modules using hashtags to connect students to up-to-date news and cutting-edge research. Students are encouraged to share their own thoughts and discoveries through the medium of Twitter and use this to aid their research and discussion with peers as well as extend their personal interest in the topic.

GEO2320: Applied GIS for Physical Geographers – Dr Damien Mansell
GEO3220: The Cryosphere – Dr Damien Mansell
GEO3139: Geographies of Technology – Dr Sam Kinsley
TRU2010: From Romanticism to Decadence – Dr Christopher Stokes
PAM1017: Clinical Imaging 1 – Dr Robert Meertens
PSY3411: Psychology and Law – Dr Cris Burgess & Dr Avril Mewse

Various modules across the University use role-playing simulations and debates as an innovative way of helping students to engage with current issues in their field or to gain experience in potential career situations. Some examples are listed below.

Politics simulations

'War and Peace in the Middle East' allows students play the role of expert advisors to the national negotiating teams of Israel and Palestine in a simulated peace conference. In 'Democracy in the EU', students take on the roles of EU delegates and members of the press while simulating a legislative decision, allowing students to understand the procedures much more effectively than simply by reading about them. Students can immerse themselves in the topic of study as their varying roles within their groups expose them to different perspectives, gaining in-depth knowledge as a result.

POL2038: War and Peace in the Middle East – Dr Irene Fernandez-Molina
POL3196: Democracy in the EU – Dr Sandra Kröger


Mock trials

'Introduction to Criminal Justice' involves a simulated court case, with students taking the roles of defence, prosecution, etc. This is a hands-on way for students to learn not only about the various roles in the justice system, but also for them to test their knowledge of the issues surrounding criminal justice.

As part of 'Legal Foundations', students take part in a simulated legal situation. The graphics and tongue-in-cheek characters and scenarios in animations on ELE are good examples of using technology to make the exercise enjoyable and memorable. However, students also visit a court session in preparation for a group video presentation. The combination of skills learnt in the simulation and observing the real-life courtroom will prepare students well for a career in law.

In the Biosciences module, 'Forensic Science', students are taught analysis skills necessary to give evidence as an expert witness in court. Techniques taught include ballistics, DNA analysis and fingerprint identification and talks from external experts and law enforcement professionals support course content.

SOC1045: Introduction to Criminal Justice – Dr Ashley Frayling
LAW1036: Legal Foundations – Dr Luke Price
BIO2068/66: Forensic Science – Dr Andrew Shaw

Theology and Religion: Theology and Criminal Justice

This module provides a collaborative ethos and approach to learning, distinguishing itself from a typical structure with visits to local establishments, supported by guest lectures and seminars. A visit to the Magistrates, Crown Court and prison in Exeter are integrated into the course, where students can become immersed in learning material outside of the lecture theatre. Guest lecturers and speakers deliver specialist lectures and seminars, based on their own experiences and publications. In the past, these have included a recently qualified criminal barrister, the UK’s leading Christian theologian and Chief Executive of a Community Rehabilitation Company. The opportunity to interact with experts in the field, ask questions and gain a deeper insight into the concepts introduced offers a unique and enhanced learning experience.

THE2199/3199 – Dr Esther Reed

Field trips offer the opportunity for students to engage with real-life experiences, apply their knowledge to a real-world context and develop numerous skills outside of the lecture theatre. The range of trips led by experts in their field that are available throughout the University is second to none, with opportunities stretching from a short walk down the road to a flight to the other side of the world.

Art History and Visual Culture: Florence Field Study

The integration of a field study to Florence into the second year of the Art History and Visual Culture course allows students to apply their knowledge and understanding to location-specific contexts through both peer learning and expert-led visits. Students develop their research and communication skills through a series of pre-trip workshops, all contributing to their ability to deliver a confident presentation of their research whilst in the field and after the trip. The integration of museum and gallery visits alongside group project activities all enhance the learning and skill development process. The delivery of the module aims to provide students with the skills and knowledge required to undertake their independent research dissertations in their final year.

AHV2005 – Professor Fabrizio Nevola


Politics and International Relations: US Field Course

Final year students at Penryn are given the opportunity to spend a week in New York, where they are given an in-depth and hands-on approach to US politics and society. In 2016, this module ran days before the US presidential election, allowing students to experience first-hand the political structure and key issues shaping America. The assessment for the trip includes a record of conversations with members of the public, analysed through academic theory. Students are encouraged to reflect and analyse their own experiences within the city, and the shaping of their perceptions of American culture and politics.

POC3048 – Dr Joanie Willett


Renewable Energy: Third Year Field Course

This module offers a unique approach to a field trip method of assessment. Students perform the role of renewable energy consultants who are ‘flown in’ to address an issue in a different environment, where they will develop solutions to problems provided by real clients. In 2017, this location was Barbados. Previous trips include Tenerife, Gran Canaria, Guernsey and Jersey. Students develop a group consultant-level report and then present it to their client, aiming to develop an enhanced degree of industrial awareness, applicable to further study and employment beyond the course.

CSM3034 – Dr Xiaohong Li

Every geographer at the University will undertake field courses throughout their study, in a wide range of environments from the natural to the social, exploring them first-hand through a variety of cutting-edge research projects. All trips develop students' practical research skills involving field techniques and data analysis. For instance, students may spend a week immersed in the Brazilian rainforest measuring various forest biomass components but also using remote sensing and GIS skills applied to the conservation of tropical biomes.

Most trips focus on group projects, usually with a real-world application, and the results of which are presented to class and often 'clients', developing students' collaborative skills and experience in a professional work environment. There are unique opportunities to visit a wide range of ecosystems, communities and organisations, with close interaction and input from global experts in their field. Examples include a Geothermal Energy Plant in California, local communities in Kenya, biological reserves in the Atlantic forest in Brazil and museums.

GEO2308: Human Geography Field Trips
GEO2307B : Physical Geography Brazil Field Trip – Dr Lina Mercado
GEO2307C: Physical Geography California Field Trip – Professor Rolf Aalto
GEO3443: USA Field Course – Dr Karen Anderson
GEO3451: Kenya Field Course – Dr Thomas Currie


Virtual Field Trip

Should circumstances prevent a student from attending a field course, the Geography department ensures that the skills and knowledge can still be developed right here in Exeter. The 'Virtual Field Trip' runs alongside the Iceland trip, integrating their collected geospatial data, measurements and photos. Students work through an ArcGIS Story Map mimicking the locations seen in Iceland, before they develop their own research project on a glacier of their choice. The project is supported by videos and presentations recorded by the module convenor, giving short lectures introducing the topic and area, as if the students were in the field.

GEO2307E: Physical Geography Virtual Field Trip - Dr Anne Le Brocq

Exeter Biosciences students are offered an impressive array of field course options, tailored to a range of interests and specialisms. Students on the Penryn campus may choose to see Darwin's finches first hand in the Galapagos Islands, or explore the jungles of Indonesian Borneo, whilst second year Streatham students have the unique opportunity to visit the Gerace Research Centre in the Bahamas. All field courses have a significant research component, with a range of assessments both in the field and on their return; the standard assessment methods are posters, presentations, videos, and essay exams.

Students will spend one to two weeks in the field, developing the skills they have learned throughout their degrees. Courses are delivered by a team of lecturers with support from their PhD/MRes students. In the Bahamas, Costa Rica and Tenerife, students will benefit from conservationists and researchers working in the field, whilst students in Borneo will work with local stakeholders from base camps deep in the island's primary rainforest.

BIO2081: Coral Reef Field Course – Dr Jamie Stevens
BIO3122: Africa Field Course – Dr Nick Royle
BIO3403: Bahamas Field Course – Dr Lucy Hawkes
BIO3404: Borneo Field Course – Dr Frank Van Veen
BIO3417: Tenerife Field Course – Professor Tom Tregenza