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Biological Sciences

Recognition for achievements in teaching and learning for a leading Southampton neuroscientist

Published: 31 May 2016
Dr Amrit Mudher

Dr Amrit Mudher, Associate Professor in Neurosciences, has been honoured in this year’s Vice-Chancellor’s Teaching Awards. She will receive her award at summer Graduation.

Amrit’s research involves investigating the role of tau proteins in the dysfunction and degeneration of the brain in patients with Alzheimer’s disease and fronto-temporal dementia.

She was nominated for setting up a new module for final year students involving the communication of science to an audience. Although this is ideal preparation for undergraduates considering a career in teaching, it also helps them to develop valuable transferable skills for the workplace.

“Not everyone studying biological science wants to work in a laboratory,” explains Amrit. “We challenge our students to research a suitable subject and devise an activity to explain the concept. Up to now, we’ve worked with Peter Symonds College in Winchester and the education centre at Marwell Wildlife. Topics chosen have included the role of animal research in Parkinson’s disease and memory tests to diagnose Alzheimer’s disease.”

Bioscience Education has proved popular with students.

“I'm hoping to go on to a graduate job I have secured at GSK and even though pharmaceuticals are very much different from teaching, the skills I have obtained in communicating science will be extremely useful,” says student Thomas Cross.

“I am not planning on going into teaching (I’m currently applying for graduate medicine), yet I still think I have gained valuable skills from this module. I have developed planning and researching skills and improved my confidence in keeping an audience engaged. Another element I found beneficial was the freedom to choose any subject that I felt passionate about,” says student Charlotte Soffe.

The annual Vice-Chancellor’s Teaching Awards celebrate and reward creativity, passion and excellence by teaching staff throughout the year.

All 2016 winners can be found here.

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