All posts by Mark

About Mark

Professor of Philosophy at the School of English, Birmingham City University

Event 2: Teaching and Curriculum Design Workshop

Midlands Philosophy Research Training Network
Birmingham, Birmingham City, Keele, Staffordshire, Warwick

Event 2: Teaching and Curriculum Design Workshop
Birmingham City University, 2 December 2009

Attendance: 7 PhD students (BCU: 1, Birmingham: 2, Warwick: 4)

Quantitative questionnaire scores (averages, marked out of 5):


Running seminars and lecturing to a large class: 4.6

Curriculum development: 4.7

Designing a whole module: 4.7


Content of the workshop: 4.7

Presentation of the workshop: 4.6

Overall satisfaction: 4.7

All the participants except one said they were ‘very they approach their PhD/professional development activities as a result of the workshop.

Some comments from participants:

• “Really focused on philosophy- lots of detailed knowledge.”

• “The curriculum design discussion was particularly illuminating.”

Suggestions for improvement/additions from participants:

• “Even more focus on specific philosophy centred work.”

• “Some time set aside to have a go at designing modules.”

• “A ward a certificate of attendance.”

Comments from workshop presenter:

Dr David Mossley (Manager of the Subject Centre for Philosophical and Religious Studies) delivered the first session which was well received.

There was lively discussion and participants felt that they had gained a great deal from the day as a whole. Several of them remarked that the workshops met a real need from both students and departments that was not wholly satisfied by the generic training usually offered to doctoral students. Everyone who has participated in the workshops thought that they will gain much from the network in terms of professional development, networking and information.

The comments about practical activities and working through a module in detail are useful. Time constraints impose selectivity on what material can be covered but it should be possible to incorporate both these suggestions in future deliveries of the workshop.

It is worth considering introducing a certificate of attendance.

Delivering and Designing Modules and Courses

Birmingham City University, Wednesday 2 December 2009
Venue: Birmingham City University, Attwood Building (room A213), City North campus

10.30-11.00 Arrival and coffee
11.00-12.30 Session 1: Running seminars and lecturing to a large class
12.30-1.15 Lunch
1.15-2.45 Session 2: Curriculum development
2.45-3.00 Coffee
3.00-4.30 Session 3: Designing a whole module


For the first session it would be useful to reflect on your experience of teaching seminars. As regards curriculum development you could think about your experiences as undergraduates and taught postgraduates and how the learning experience could have been improved. For the final session you could design a module in an area of interest. If you would like to share this design with the other participants and have it discussed please email a copy to Mark Addis ( BY 30 NOVEMBER so it can be copied.

Travel expenses

We have a limited budget to reimburse your travel expenses if you are not at Birmingham or BCU. Please keep all receipts; we will give you a claim form on the day. Please note we can ONLY pay for public transport (no taxis) or private car, up to a maximum of £10 per person (so if you want to drive, give some other people a lift and you can claim more).

Getting to the University

The easiest way is by bus. From Carrs Lane (which is near Birmingham Moor Street and Birmingham New Street stations) take the limited stop 934, 993 or 997 buses to the University. The service is frequent and takes 10 minutes. Attwood building is a few minutes walk from the bus stop. See the campus map; Attwood Building is A.

If you wish to attend please let Mark know by Monday 23 November.

Employability workshop for advanced Philosophy PhD students

University  of  Birmingham,  Wednesday  11  November  2009

G51,  European Research Institute

1.00-­‐1.30 Arrival  and  lunch

1.30-­‐2.00   What jobs are there out there?

2.00-­‐3.00 Writing your academic CV

3.15-­‐4.15 Preparing for academic job interviews

4.15-­‐4.45     Coffee

4.45-­‐5.45     Giving  an  academic  job  talk

5.45-­‐6.00     Q&A    About  the  workshop

The   philosophy   job   market   is   incredibly   competitive,   so   poorly   presented   CV,   ill-­‐prepared   interview  or  misguided  job  talk  will  almost  certainly  ruin  your  chances.  This  workshop  provides   you  with  some  guidance  on  how  to  present  your  qualifications  and  experience  in  a  way  that   maximises  your  chances  of  success.   The   workshop   will   be   led   by   Prof.   Helen   Beebee,   with   some   help   from   one   or   two   newly-­‐ appointed  staff  who  have  recent  experience  of  the  job  market.  It  is  aimed  at  PhD  students  who   are  getting  towards  jobs;  however,  PhD  sthink  ahead.

Travel  expenses

We  have  a  limited  budget  to  reimburse  your  travel  expenses  if  you  are  not  at  Birmingham  or   BCU.  Please  keep  all  receipts;  we  will  give  you  a  claim  form  on  the  day.  Please  note  we  can  ONLY   pay   for   public   transport   (no   taxis)   or   private   car   mileage,   up   to   a   maximum   of   £10   per   person/car.

Getting  to  the  University

The  easiest  way  is  by  train.  From  Birmingham  New  Street,  take  a  train  to  University  (the  trains   are  normally  heading  for  Longbridge  or  Redditch);  the  service  is  frequent  and  takes  less  than  10   minutes.  The  European  Research  Institute  is  a  5-­‐10  minute  walk  from  University  station.  See  the   campus   map   available   at;   the   ERI  is  building  no.  G3,  on  Pritchatts  Road.  If  you  come  by  car,  the  South  Car  Park  on  Edgbaston   Park  Road  is  a  pay-­‐and-­‐display  car  park  for  visitors.

If  you  would  like  to  come,  please  let  Helen  know  (h.beebee (at)  by  Monday  2  November.