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Archive for the ‘Learning and Teaching’ Category

Real-world insight: Our students pitch AECOM entrepreneurship expertise

Friday, December 9th, 2016

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Entrepreneurship is about more than individuals starting businesses – in fact increasingly, big businesses are thinking and working more entrepreneurially.

As a part of our MSc Entrepreneurship and Management, students pitched ideas for entrepreneurship inside an organisation to directors at AECOM, a multinational engineering firm.

The module leader, Dr Chay Brooks, emphasised the importance of working with AECOM on the module, explaining: “Visiting AECOM is a great opportunity for our students and is a part of the learning experience, the contribution of AECOM to the module brings the realities of entrepreneurial activity in a corporate setting to life.”

This semester, students have studied the theory and practice of how big businesses are looking to create environments that encourage employees to be more entrepreneurial, while continuing to deliver their core business. Our collaboration with AECOM gives students a unique opportunity to see how an organisation with over 90,000 employees is changing its working practices to become more innovative and entrepreneurial. As a part of the module students have had guest lecturers by AECOM staff that provide real-world insights, and as a part of their final assessment they presented their recommendations for them to become a more entrepreneurial organisation.

Professor Tim Vorley, Director of the Centre for Regional for Economic and Enterprise Development (CREED), who developed the relationship with AECOM, said: “Taking our students out of the Management School to present their work in a corporate environment is a fantastic opportunity for them, and it is great to see them rising to the challenge as they pitch their ideas.”

The MSc Entrepreneurship and Management provides students with an understanding of entrepreneurship in different countries and contexts, as well as from start-ups to corporate organisation.

In 2017 Sheffield University Management School is hosting the EFMD Entrepreneurship Education Conference, the theme of which focuses on ‘Entrepreneurship inside Organisations’. This area of entrepreneurship education is of growing in interest to business and management schools, and is one in which Sheffield is a leading by example.

Click here to find out more about the conference.

Global entrepreneurship education conference comes to the Management School

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2016

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Sheffield University Management School is hosting the 2017 EFMD Entrepreneurship Education Conference, from 8- 10 March 2017.

As home to the Centre for Regional Economic and Enterprise Development (CREED), a team of researchers focused on enterprise and entrepreneurship, whose expertise feeds into our Masters in Entrepreneurship and Management, the School is committed to advancing knowledge through research insights and communicating its work to policymaking and practitioner communities to promote stronger entrepreneurial environments in the UK and internationally.

Director of CREED, Professor Tim Vorley, is leading the event. He said: “Researchers and practitioners in the field of entrepreneurship continue to push the boundaries about what we understand about entrepreneurs and how they operate. This has important implications for entrepreneurship education, both in terms of what leading businesses and management schools teach and how they teach it.

“Entrepreneurship education is no longer characterised by classes on start-up and business plan assessments. Over the past five years the EFMD Entrepreneurship Education Conference has showcased a range of pedagogic approaches and practices at the frontiers of the field. In 2017 the theme of the EFMD conference focuses on ‘Entrepreneurship inside Organisations’ as an area of entrepreneurship and management education that is growing in interest.”

Working closely with businesses and organisations of all sizes, both on our doorstep and globally, is essential to all aspects of Sheffield University Management School; by doing this our research is informed by practitioners, our students benefit from a comprehensive employability programme, and we know we’re teaching cutting-edge material across all courses.

Associate Dean for Learning and Teaching, Dr Robert Wapshott, said: “Students at business schools, from graduates to executives, are increasingly concerned with the question of how to foster entrepreneurship inside organisations, which for academics and entrepreneurship educators leads us to rethink the learning environments we’re developing. Through the conference participants will be encouraged to reflect upon their own professional practice.”

The notion of entrepreneurial practices occurring within organisations is increasingly regarded as a driver of productivity and profitability. During the conference, keynotes, sessions and workshops will explore how companies have come to approach the challenge of becoming more entrepreneurial and what this means for entrepreneurial education and entrepreneurial educators.

Click here to find out more and book your place.

Engaging and innovative: Kamal Birdi wins teaching award

Thursday, October 6th, 2016


The route from research paper to the classroom is rarely as clear cut as Kamal Birdi’s work on creativity and innovation, which has led to him receiving the Award for Outstanding Practice in Learning and Teaching from the Faculty of Social Sciences.

Using his CLEAR IDEAS innovation development model as a basis for learning, over 13 years Kamal (pictured above) has trained over 1,000 people from private, public and third sector organisations to fulfil their creative potential through research-led teaching in innovation and workplace training/development.

More recently, Kamal has brought CLEAR IDEAS into the classrooms at the Management School – imparting and applying the theory to his Creativity and Innovation module which has been well received by students. Another model developed by Kamal, the Taxonomy of Training and Development Outcomes (TOTADO), has been taught to Occupational Psychology and Human Resources Management students for many years and in 2012 helped a former student to win the Occupational Psychology Practitioner of the Year Award, having applied TOTADO to her training work.

The CLEAR IDEAS app and website portal has brought the problem solving model to the masses, and also allows students and trainees to carry on the practice beyond their taught hours.

On his win, Kamal said: “It is an honour to be given this award and I would like to thank all my Institute of Work Psychology and other Management School colleagues who have helped in the journey and without whom this would not have been possible.

“I am lucky to be teaching something I feel passionate about – you just need to look around at recent events to see that the need for innovative ways of dealing with challenges is something continually faces us. As academics, I do feel we therefore have a crucial role in helping learners to understand how research-based strategies can be used to make a positive difference to the lives of students, communities and organisations. Teaching creativity also forces you to be creative in your own teaching!”

Kamal’s nominator, Professor John Cullen, said: “Kamal works hard to ensure his teaching is engaging, stimulating and innovative. He provides links between research and real-life challenges and issues, and encouraging supportive and constructive collaboration between learners has always been a key focus of his teaching activities.”

Deputy Pro-Vice Chancellor for Learning and Teaching and Chair at the Management School, Prof Paul Latreille, added: “Kamal is an exceptional educator. His research journey has always linked into teaching – ensuring an impact on students at all levels, as well as on organisations and policy.

The Teaching Excellence in Social Sciences (TESS) ceremony takes place on 18 October 2016 at ICOSS. Kamal will receive a certificate and £500 towards developing his learning and leaching at the Management School.

Click here to download Kamal’s CLEAR IDEAS app, or here to visit the online portal.

Management School joins ‘Startup Europe Comes to Universities’ initiative

Tuesday, October 4th, 2016


The number of university graduates willing to start new businesses—the largest producer of private sector jobs over the past 25 years—still depends heavily on the entrepreneurial focus and structure of the institutions from which they graduate.

Years ago, it was rare for a student to have entrepreneurship experience because the cost of starting a business was so high and they didn’t have the resources or expertise to pull it off. Times have changed with ‘Startup Europe comes to Universities (SEC2U)’.

SEC2U is an initiative endorsed by the European Commission (Startup Europe) to create a strong culture of entrepreneurship and innovation within universities across Europe. This consists of a series of events that bring together entrepreneurs, business people and representatives of local governments and universities in order to showcase the available support, share success stories and cases of failure, as well as network. Sheffield University Management School is joining the first edition of SEC2U which will take place from 17 to the 21 of October.

Two free events are taking place at the School, led by Prof Tim Vorley, Dr Robert Wapshott and EU project officer Kate Penney. On Wednesday 19 October there is a two-hour workshop (10am-12pm) for students with an interest in learning the basics of entrepreneurship, business and digital startups, followed on Thursday 20 October by an interactive discussion (Google Hangouts, 10-11am) on international and collaborative partnerships in entrepreneurship education. Click here to book.

This cooperation has been led by STARTIFY7 at the University of Sheffield, a step towards internationalisation also taken by Cambridge University, University Nova of Lisbon and Dublin City University.

This is a time to showcase the work of universities in the entrepreneurship area, build bridges between university communities and startup ecosystems, and facilitate connections.

Take the right step towards your future and don´t miss out on this opportunity. Click here to get your free ticket.

Taking the lead on learning and teaching at SUMS

Thursday, September 1st, 2016


The Management School has a new Associate Dean for Learning and Teaching.

Dr Robert Wapshott, who was awarded an Early Career Senate Award for Learning and Teaching in 2014, is taking on the role following Professor Paul Latreille’s appointment as Deputy Pro-Vice Chancellor for Learning and Teaching for the University of Sheffield.

On his appointment, Robert said: “I’m really looking forward to building on excellent learning and teaching activity already happening in the Management School.

“It is a time of significant change in the economy and the higher education sector. By advancing Sheffield’s excellent reputation for student experience underpinned by high quality research and teaching I am confident we will continue to develop knowledgeable and employable students who are socially aware and who impact positively on organisations and society.

“I am keen to thank Paul Latreille for his fantastic contribution and to wish him the best of luck in his new role – with colleagues, he has built a strong foundation of innovation and support in learning and teaching at the Management School. Thanks also go to all of my colleagues, who have welcomed me into this role with enthusiasm and positivity.”

Robert invites feedback and ideas from Management School staff and students, and beyond. Contact him on

CREED summer school explores migrant entrepreneurship

Tuesday, August 30th, 2016


Dr Chay Brooks from the Centre for Regional Economic and Enterprise Development (CREED) has been leading the European Entrepreneurship Summer School held at the University of Sheffield’s International Faculty in Greece. The summer school, now in its seventh year, is held in conjunction with our international partners from University of Groningen (Netherlands), High School of Economics (Russia), and the University of Twente (Netherlands).

Dr Brooks said: “It has been amazing week with the students learning about entrepreneurship in the sun! We have had a great range of international speakers sharing insights from their research.”

Across the week students were involved in a series of lectures, workshops and debates in different areas of entrepreneurship. This year the central theme of summer school was the socio-economic impacts of migrant entrepreneurship, which is an important issue in Europe. During the week students had sessions by academics on research including informal entrepreneurship, technology entrepreneurship, corporate entrepreneurship and entrepreneurship and public policy.

Dr Robert Wapshott, who also taught at the summer school, explained: “The aim of the event is to bring together students from across Europe to learn about and debate cutting edge entrepreneurship research.”

During the week students worked in international teams to develop in-depth presentations on some of the big questions facing entrepreneurship research. As the teams explored their topic in depth they sought to unpack the complexities of creating more entrepreneurial individuals, organisations and societies. The team awarded the best presentation included Ann Lozovaia and Alexander Kalita from HSE, Tuong Nguyen from Leipzig and Zhuang Jing from Sheffield, who gave a critical account about the importance of informal entrepreneurship.

Reflecting on her participation in the summer school, Kelly Lawrence, a Sheffield student, said: “The summer school was a fantastic opportunity to meet other students interested in entrepreneurship research. The programme was excellent and we all had a brilliant week.”

The CREED team participating in the summer school this year led by Dr Chay Brooks. It also included Dr Robert Wapshott, Dr Peter Rodgers, Cristian Gherhes and Professor Tim Vorley. Next year the summer school will be held in Moscow and the topic will be on green and sustainable entrepreneurship. If you’re interested in applying to take part, watch this space.




Fantastic employability data for SUMS

Thursday, July 7th, 2016

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New figures released by the Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) survey reflect the Management School’s commitment to building the employability of its undergraduates.

Of our most recent UK graduates, who were the first cohort to benefit from our investment in the dedicated Employability Hub for all three years of their study, 84% are engaged in activities for which their degree is an essential requirement.

A huge 95% have experienced positive outcomes, which relates to graduates in any positive activity six months after graduation.

This year has seen significant gains in the DLHE data for the Management School. On these results, Employability Manager for the Management School, Merryn McGregor, said: “It’s gratifying to see that our efforts and investment are paying off. The past three years has seen a more focused and one-to-one approach to employability for our undergraduates and that’s shown in the DLHE figures.

“In September we introduce a programme for undergraduates called Futures First, developed with members of our Advisory Board,  which will get our students talking about their graduate prospects from day one at the Management School. We can’t wait to see the impact it has on their long-term employability.”

Prof Paul Latreille, Associate Dean for Learning and Teaching at the Management School, said: “Balancing employability priorities our students while maintaining a rigorous research base in learning isn’t easy – but we’ve done it here. Our formula obviously works for business and accounting students and we’ll continue to build on our offer to secure equally competitive scores in the future.”

An insight into policy – a GLOSS delegation visits the ILO in Geneva

Wednesday, May 25th, 2016


As part of the Senate Award winning GLOSS programme, Prof Jason Heyes and Dr Tom Hastings took a delegation of students to the 326th session of the International Labour Organisation’s (ILO) Governing Body in Geneva, Switzerland.

This fully-funded trip was one of many offered by the programme, which you can read more about here.

Six undergraduates and postgraduates from across the Faculty of Social Sciences joined Jason and Tom on the visit, including Management School MSc student Monisha Khanna who said: “I remember reading an email from the office of the Associate Dean for Learning & Teaching that mentioned this opportunity. It looked really interesting, so I researched the different GLOSS programmes and the Geneva/ILO opportunity stood out for me.

“I am an MSc Occupational Psychology student and the focus of the ILO’s Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) programme mapped back to some of my areas of interest and study. The ILO’s 2016 World Employment and Social Outlook Report also really resonated with me, so I was curious to get first-hand experience about the inner workings of the Governing Body.”

Aware that her interests aligned with those discussed by the ILO, Monisha was successful in her application and left for Geneva with the team in March. She continued: “Being invited to observe the 326th session of the Governing Body was definitely one of the highlights of my Management School experience. The agenda items covered timely global issues such as promoting fair and effective migration policies. It was really interesting to see how the tripartite system of workers, employers and governments worked together in handling complaints and developing policy. We were also privileged to meet with a few ILO officials who were generous enough to give us a private talk about their work.

“Jason and Tom went out of their way to ensure we had a meaningful educational and cultural experience. With the notion of ‘change’ being a constant in the world of work, understanding how the ILO members promote social dialogue on a global scale, was a valuable experience. This is one of the many benefits of attending international meetings and conferences – immersing yourself into new experiences and then sharing what you learned in real time.”

Following the Governing Body meeting, Monisha wrote a briefing which discusses the notions of decent and safe work which tied in with the ILO’s annual World Day for Safety and Health at Work on 28 April. Click here to read it in full.

Leading innovators in learning and teaching awarded by Senate

Wednesday, May 25th, 2016

For the fourth year running, the Management School has achieved success in the University’s prestigious Senate Awards.

Prof Paul Latreille, Associate Dean for Learning and Teaching at the Management School, scooped the prestigious Senate Award for Leadership in Learning and Teaching. On his win, he said: “I’m delighted with this acknowledgement from the University. We’ve worked hard to become leading innovators in learning and teaching and to deliver an outstanding student experience, and it hasn’t just been my efforts: without an exceptional team of supportive academic and professional services colleagues, this award wouldn’t have been possible. I’m proud of the entire School and this award is a further reflection of our collegiality and the great things we can achieve together.”

Andrea Ward, University Teacher and Postgraduate Director for Teaching Quality and Enhancement, has been awarded the Early Career Senate Award. She was praised for being a dedicated, inspirational teacher and mentor who makes the most of available technology, saying: “My teaching approach is facilitative encouraging participation and to provoke thinking to enable them to reach their potential by helping them create the ability and skill to decipher real world situations. It’s an honour to have this acknowledged by the University.”

The final award, for Collaborative Activities, was a group presentation to the Global Leadership Initiative Team (GLOSS), including Management School academic staff Prof Jason Heyes and Dr Thomas Hastings. For the past two years Jason and Tom have arranged for groups of Sheffield students to attend meetings of the Governing Body of the International Labour Organisation, a specialist agency of the United Nations. Thanks to Jason and Tom’s efforts, the students have spent a week in Geneva meeting ILO officials and learning about the realities of international policy making. Their commitment to securing valuable international opportunities for students in the social sciences has made a significant difference to student experience across the Faculty.

Dean of the Management School, Prof David Oglethorpe, reflected on the announcement: “I couldn’t be prouder of our achievements in learning and teaching and some of these have been recognised formally by the University again this year with four Management School staff achieving Senate awards. This is the fourth year running that the Management School has members of staff receiving these awards – a true reflection of our commitment to ensuring excellent, innovative teaching provision for students.”

Click here to read more about the Senate Awards and winners across the university.

Business Management students’ expertise to help local charity

Monday, May 9th, 2016

Pictured L-R: Project manager Sue, Jessica Murray, outreach worker Daryl, Dan and Lily Robinson

Many modules at the Management School integrate real-world problems which students are asked to solve. For our third-year Business Management undergraduates, the ‘Management Project’ module, led by Michael Frize, is a great opportunity for their work and recommendations to actually make an impact on an organisation. This was demonstrated recently when problems in eight organisations were subject to the scrutiny of our students.

Ben’s Centre, a Sheffield charity that supports homeless people that are often vulnerable and involved with alcohol, presented a challenge; they needed to raise awareness of the charity and increase donations from the public in terms of funds and volunteering. The response from students Lily Robinson and Jessica Murray focused on their marketing. Lily’s recommendations discussed how shock advertising might help their cause; understanding students as a target demographic; and how they could enhance their digital platforms. Jessica recommended that they develop a brand personality based on the people at the core of the charity; formulate a more relationship focused marketing approach, using storytelling; and reviewed brand guidelines, using a consistent identity, based on a new logo, colour selections and typefaces, all informed by the brand personality.

The charity was so impressed with their recommendations that they intend on integrating them into future campaigns.

Lily said: “The project involved writing a literature review, using literature to solve their issues and then coming up with recommendations. We then had to do a poster presentation to feedback findings to our company. After choosing to deliver on their brief I visited Ben’s Centre, got a feel for the charity and the work they do, and then got going! My placement year helped a lot as I have practical experience in marketing. I also got plenty of support from Michael, the module leader – I had weekly sessions I could attend where we discussed my coursework progress.

Jessica added: “As soon as I saw the pitch by Ben’s Centre, I knew it was the project I was seeking for a number of reasons. Firstly, because I would be able to apply my marketing expertise to offer genuine help to a charity. Secondly, as it would help me to broaden my academic understanding of the subject and finally because the cause is a matter close to my heart. This project has been really rewarding as I have not only enhanced my own learning, but have been able to provide some tangible recommendations that should hopefully be of use to such a great charity. Feedback I’ve received from the charity was amazing – they feel my solutions were very well communicated and a number of the recommendations made have formed the structure of a new marketing and communications policy for Ben’s Centre.”

Lily added: “It was so rewarding to do a piece of coursework I knew Ben’s Centre was going to use – it was a motivation. It was great to present back my ideas to them as they really liked my recommendations and are hoping to implement some of them in the future. I have not done many poster presentations before and it was a great way to improve my communication skills in an unfamiliar setting.”

The Management School is keen to hear from other organisations keen to benefit from our students’ expertise. Associate Dean for Learning and Teaching, Professor Paul Latreille, said: “I’m delighted to see that both parties have benefited from this module. Although our students are introduced to live case-studies throughout their degree, the Management Project puts onus on practical skills and making informed, realistic recommendations. We’re very proud of Lily and Jessica and can’t wait to see Ben’s Centre thrive as a result of their projects.”

Find out more about Bens Centre on their website: