COLLEGE OF HUMANITIES
Minutes of the PGT Staff Student Liaison Committee meeting
Friday 18 February 2011
Present: Jill Collins (ACM, Education), Debbie Freeman (ACM, Education) Andrew
McRae (Associate Dean, Education), Jo Hatt (notes), Elaine Cordy (Head of Registry)
Simon Wright (Head of Student Services), Aeronwen Allison & Diane Workman
(Library), Mark Wynn (DofE Theology), Nick McDowell (PGT coordinator English),
Alexander Ratcliffe (student rep, Classics & PGT SSLC chair), Nicole Graham
(Theology), Nicola Pollard (Drama), Sara Price (English, Streatham), James Bernthal
(English, Streatham), Danielle Davies (Archaeology), Laura Andrew (English,
Tremough), Richard Faul (Translation)
1. Apologies: were received from Rachel Rietz & James Eales
2. Minutes from previous meeting – the minutes from the previous meeting on 12
November 2010 were accepted.
3. Matters arising
3.1 Structure of PGT SSLC – it was agreed that the Associate Dean for Education and
2 department Directors of Education should attend each meeting.
3.2 ELE – a module has been created on ELE, Education Strategy, where SSLC
minutes will be accessible to all students and staff in the College.
3.4 Teaching awards – the chair reminded the committee that the nominations for
the Guild Teaching & Learning awards will soon be open. Categories include
Best Lecturer, Best Feedbacker, Most Innovative Lecturer, Best Support Staff.
3.5 Reapproval of MA Creative Writing – the committee approved the changes to
the core module in MA Creative Writing.
4. Reps Reports
4.1 Department Meetings - SSLC reps are reminded that they should be invited to
attend the open part of their departmental meetings. ACTION: Contact Directors of
Education for the dates of department meetings.
5. Library & Online resources
5.1 Availability of books - Sara requested that the reading list texts could be bought
in advance by the bookshop, as they can be difficult to source. Staff will be reminded
to consider the availability of texts when compiling their reading lists.
5.2 Academic Support Consultants - Aeronwen Allison & Diane Workman attended
from the library. SSLC reps were asked to inform their students that each subject has
an academic support consultant – contact details can be found on the Getting Help
page on the library website. Contact details could also be emailed in Student News in
It was suggested that fines were not deterring students from returning overdue
books. After discussion the SSLC were broadly in favour of a non-monetary penalty
system at the library, for example no further books can be issued until the overdue
book is returned. Aeronwen will feed this back to the library review.
5.3 Forum Update Simon Wright (Head of Student Services) gave an update on the
resources that will be available in the Forum. Currently there are no plans to include
a bookshop in the Marketplace (the catering/retail area) but there will be an online
ordering service (subject to a full tendering process). Online ordering of books is also
an issue for the new Guild Academic Affairs rep. There will be a sampling event on 21
March to help choose suppliers for the Marketplace.
6.1 Timetable update - Elaine Cordy, Head of Registry, gave an update on
Timetabling and the forthcoming Timetable review. All SSLC minutes are read by the
Timetable team and there will be a more senior group of University staff with
responsibility for the Timetable. More staff have been employed for the Timetable
office, so from mid-March, they will have greater capacity. Academic staff will not be
able to add personal constraints to the timetable, unless agreed in their contracts.
The timetable team will be looking at the coding that we use (e.g. module/building
codes) so that personal timetables are easier to interpret. Sara mentioned that it
was difficult to work out exactly when seminars started, due to the numbering of
term weeks. A list of term weeks/numbers was given in the pre-arrival information
but it was agreed that this information could be clearer.
Nicola mentioned that Drama does not publish individual timetables, which are
usually accessed through MyExeter. Instead they are given a timetable of all Drama
teaching and have to work out which sessions they need to attend. ACTION: Elaine
to look into this with Drama
The Computing development officer for the College has been working on a new
system so that academic staff can publish their office hours on the intranet, which
could also link across to ELE. At the moment there is no capacity to book an
To allow time for students to move around the campus, academic staff had been
asked to start teaching 5 minutes after the hour and finish 5 minutes before.
ACTION: Jill to send reminder email to academic staff. It was hoped to overcome
this problem with the next timetable, perhaps by zoning the campus so that the
majority of activities could be arranged in or close to your main ‘home’ area.
6.2 Timing of Creative Writing Module EASM133 - Elaine apologised that the timing
of seminars for EASM133 was changed at very short notice. This kind of late change
obviously impacts on part time/mature students who have to make other work or
childcare arrangements. At the moment there is no standard timeframe for making
timetable changes/cancellations and notifying students.
7. Essay submission
7.1 Essay submission days – it was agreed that it would be better to have separate
submission days for UG/PGT work. It was suggested that some guidelines were
posted in the Postgraduate Common room to avoid problems on busy submission
days e.g. who to contact if the printer runs out of ink.
7.2 BART/ELE failure on 13 January - there have already been improvements to
BART since the server crashed in January. BART has been moved to a separate server
and allocated more memory. Students were unsure of the submission process in the
event of BART not working, but they could still hand in work and were given a
7.3 Centralised submission - Archaeology students are still unhappy with submitting
work to the College Office. This was unlikely to be changed, but the College office
staff will be asked to take special care with individual reports, which may contain
artefacts/experimental material. Academic staff could come in person to the College
office if they need to collect marking on a Thursday.
8.1 Careers Information - Alex asked if careers information should be specifically
provided for PGT students? It was generally felt that Masters students did not need
separate careers sessions and that they could attend UG talks if necessary.
9. Exchange Projects
9.1 Alex reminded the reps that the Exchange project was running this year
(Students as Agents for Change in Learning and Teaching). This project invites
students to engage in active research within their School looking into ways of
improving the learning and teaching experience. Archaeology students will be
holding a Careers Day in May. Alex has contact details if anyone else is interested in
10. Any Other Business
10.1 Seminar sizes Sara reported that English students had felt unable to refuse PhD
students joining their seminars, but this had a negative impact on their learning due
to the increased size of groups. ACTION: Sara to email Jill Collins with details of
which seminar groups were affected.
Meeting ended at 14:10