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1 FDTL5ing: Opportunities, challenges and lessons Lesley Lawrence University of Bedfordshire FDTL Final Conference November 2009.

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Presentation on theme: "1 FDTL5ing: Opportunities, challenges and lessons Lesley Lawrence University of Bedfordshire FDTL Final Conference November 2009."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 FDTL5ing: Opportunities, challenges and lessons Lesley Lawrence University of Bedfordshire FDTL Final Conference November 2009

2 2 FDTL5ing Involvement?? Five and a half years. Five and a half years. Three projects from Sept 2003 – Feb Three projects from Sept 2003 – Feb £££££ - ranging from £150,000 to £249,715. £££££ - ranging from £150,000 to £249,715.Outcomes?? One completed project. One completed project. One re-profiled + completed project. One re-profiled + completed project. One failed project. One failed project.

3 3 Varied roles and experiences Why so much involvement? Differing roles in same institution. Differing roles in same institution. Love FDTL or glutton for punishment? Love FDTL or glutton for punishment? Aim of presentation To share personal reflections and project lessons. To share personal reflections and project lessons.

4 4 Completed? Re-profiled + completed? Failed? Completed? Re-profiled + completed? Failed? P PD PM CSG P PD PM CSG PD PM P Project A Project B Project C C P

5 5 Early FDTL5ing days – enthusiasm and opportunities Had received funding from LTSN Subject Centre for HLST on student assessment strategies. Had received funding from LTSN Subject Centre for HLST on student assessment strategies. FDTL5 invitation to bid – Stage One – 5 th December 2003 deadline – T and L role. FDTL5 invitation to bid – Stage One – 5 th December 2003 deadline – T and L role. Attended LTSN subject centre events – networking opportunities. Attended LTSN subject centre events – networking opportunities. Full of enthusiasm Full of enthusiasm Involved in two project bids (Stage One).

6 6 PROJECT B Optimising skills transfer by design: utilising experiential learning in the undergraduate curriculum. Optimising skills transfer by design: utilising experiential learning in the undergraduate curriculum. Project met priority needs in Business and Management + Hospitality, Leisure, Sport and Tourism. Project met priority needs in Business and Management + Hospitality, Leisure, Sport and Tourism. Sole applicant bid/role as project director. Sole applicant bid/role as project director. PD PM CSG

7 7 PROJECT B: ELIGIBILITY SAGA Bid prepared in good faith – The department … is eligible to bid (HEFCE, 1 Oct 2003). The University is eligible to submit a bid as sole applicant (HEFCE, 17 Oct 2003). Bid prepared in good faith – The department … is eligible to bid (HEFCE, 1 Oct 2003). The University is eligible to submit a bid as sole applicant (HEFCE, 17 Oct 2003). Changed advice – advice is not valid (HEFCE, 26 Nov). Changed advice – advice is not valid (HEFCE, 26 Nov). Senior Management directed project team to submit bid for 5 Dec. Senior Management directed project team to submit bid for 5 Dec. Ineligible FDTL5 Stage 1 application letter from HEFCE (dated 23 Dec 2003) – nice Xmas present! Failed Failed

8 8 PROJECT A Engaging Students with Assessment Feedback (Stage Two bid successful). Project met priority needs in Business and Management. Project met priority needs in Business and Management. P PD PM CSG P C P

9 9 PROJECT A: ENJOYMENT AND COMPLETION Personally – best of both worlds: FDTL5 involvement but no lead responsibility. Personally – best of both worlds: FDTL5 involvement but no lead responsibility. Partner liaison officer role - partnership seemed to work. Partner liaison officer role - partnership seemed to work. Initiatives directly arising from project involvement now implemented within own institution and ex-department. Initiatives directly arising from project involvement now implemented within own institution and ex-department. Enjoyable experience! Enjoyable experience! Completed Completed

10 10 PROJECT A: TRAVEL OPPORTUNITIES

11 11 PROJECT C Developing a teaching and learning resource to aid the non-specialist when teaching biomechanics. Project met priority needs in HLST. Project met priority needs in HLST. P PD CSG P PM PD BID + START END PD

12 12 PROJECT C: BOLT FROM THE BLUE Inherited project - emerged when HEFCE froze funding, coinciding with institutional merger. Inherited project - emerged when HEFCE froze funding, coinciding with institutional merger. Funding frozen after two years: non-delivery, under-spend, lacking direction etc. Funding frozen after two years: non-delivery, under-spend, lacking direction etc. HEA – set several conditions for continuation. HEA – set several conditions for continuation. One condition - new project director – who? In the wrong place at the wrong time – LL?? One condition - new project director – who? In the wrong place at the wrong time – LL?? Why continue project? Saving grace –resource needed in the biomechanics community. Why continue project? Saving grace –resource needed in the biomechanics community.

13 13 Difficulties prior to funding freeze: summary of contributory factors (1) Partnership arrangement rationale unclear and no partnership agreement signed. Partnership arrangement rationale unclear and no partnership agreement signed. Lead institution depended on partner to deliver resource – not in original specification. Lead institution depended on partner to deliver resource – not in original specification. Personnel problems e.g. early loss of project director/originator and others shaping bid. Personnel problems e.g. early loss of project director/originator and others shaping bid.

14 14 Difficulties prior to funding freeze: summary of contributory factors (2) Key ingredients missing e.g. no project manager for 1 1/2 years/no steering group for 2 years). Key ingredients missing e.g. no project manager for 1 1/2 years/no steering group for 2 years). Technological platform used to construct resources not feasible and resource format changed. Technological platform used to construct resources not feasible and resource format changed. Change in lead institution during merger – opportunity not taken to reinforce focus and timeframe. Change in lead institution during merger – opportunity not taken to reinforce focus and timeframe. (External evaluator report, 2008).

15 15 PROJECT C: TROUBLES CONTINUE … Rescue plan – meeting of project team with HEA in York (Feb 2006). Rescue plan – meeting of project team with HEA in York (Feb 2006). Report accepted with revised targets and an extension (May). Report accepted with revised targets and an extension (May). Advisory Group, internal monitoring, external advisor in place etc.. Advisory Group, internal monitoring, external advisor in place etc.. Promising signs in first few months Promising signs in first few monthsBUT by mid-year report (Sep), HEA major milestone not met: delivery of resource in agreed format and quantity.

16 16 PROJECT C: BRINGING THINGS TO A CONCLUSION Partnership dissolved. Partnership dissolved. Project re-profiled and continued with lead institution and an additional strand in place. Project re-profiled and continued with lead institution and an additional strand in place. Re-profiled outcomes met. Re-profiled outcomes met. Final Report submitted – phew! Final Report submitted – phew! Financial report submitted - 9 tables created to account for shifts and complexities. Financial report submitted - 9 tables created to account for shifts and complexities. Re-profiled + completed Re-profiled + completed

17 17 PROJECT C: COLLABORATIVE WORKING LESSONS The experience of the Project has itself served to raise issues concerned with collaborative working, and particularly what might be seen as the presumption that partnership is always a good thing. The experience of the Project has itself served to raise issues concerned with collaborative working, and particularly what might be seen as the presumption that partnership is always a good thing. More explicit attention should be given to the extent to which any partnership is a result of previous (successful) collaborative activity, as opposed to a new partnership seeking funding for the first time. More explicit attention should be given to the extent to which any partnership is a result of previous (successful) collaborative activity, as opposed to a new partnership seeking funding for the first time. The lead institution in partnership Projects should throughout provide the necessary expertise which enables them to undertake the subject leadership role. The lead institution in partnership Projects should throughout provide the necessary expertise which enables them to undertake the subject leadership role. (External evaluator, 2008).

18 18 PROJECT C: IMPLICATIONS OF CHANGE IN PERSONNEL A clear revisiting and clarification of the aims, objectives, expectations and timescales should be undertaken at an early stage where changes in key Project personnel take place. (External evaluator, 2008). A clear revisiting and clarification of the aims, objectives, expectations and timescales should be undertaken at an early stage where changes in key Project personnel take place. (External evaluator, 2008). Being the 4 th project director – not an easy role to suddenly take on! (4 th Project director, 2009). Being the 4 th project director – not an easy role to suddenly take on! (4 th Project director, 2009).

19 19 FDTL5ing: FINAL REFLECTIONS Its only a job!! Balance between +ves and –ves?? Why get involved in FDTL5ing? What else could I have been doing? Would I do the same again knowing what I now know?? Ranking … A, B, C – should I have said NO to C?? Scary thought - 10% of my life FDTL5ing! How much, + what have I learned??


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