Escape Studios shortlisted for a Higher Education Academy Collaborative Award for Teaching Excellence (CATE)

Escape Studios, part of Pearson College London, is the first Alternative Provider to have been awarded a National Teaching Fellowship and to have also been a finalist in the 2016 Higher Education Academy Collaborative Awards for Teaching Excellence (CATE), an outstanding achievement!

Escape Studios was shortlisted for the CATE Award, following the delivery of a unique Studio Learning Project. The aim of the project was to design unique and industry focused undergraduate programmes within the creative industries. Our students, industry partners and academics worked in partnership to co-create the curriculum.

Ian Palmer, Director of Escape Studios, attended the event: "it was fantastic to be shortlisted and attend the awards ceremony as an alternative provider alongside so many excellent nominees from other Higher Education institutions. Whilst we were obviously disappointed not to win, seeing the quality of the other teams made us very proud of what we've achieved in such a short time. And of course even more determined to carry on innovating and pushing the boundaries of higher education practice."

Four different ‘Studio Learning Projects’ were created in order to try out different approaches to ensure we deliver the knowledge and skills required by the creative industries, focusing primarily on employability skills.

The project feeds directly into the new undergraduate programmes at Escape Studios. Some examples include, ‘the production pipeline’ – to understand your part in the production process, understanding others’ roles and how to work with colleagues to ensure productivity, efficiency to meet deadlines and ‘make and iterate’ – creating mood boards to share ideas with colleagues and gain feedback to improve.

This project has been designed to have impact beyond its immediate academic environment of Escape Studios with the approach successfully utilised on programmes in other disciplines across Pearson College London, namely business.

Facilitated by Professor Michele Russell-Westhead, Dr Ian Palmer, Simon Fenton, Davi Stein and Mark Spevick, the Studio Learning Project team comprised current Escape students, alumni, external school and college students as well as applicants who accepted offers from us.

The feedback of the approach at events and academic presentations internally and externally, and at the Eurographics 2016 conference has shown potential for curriculum design, learning, teaching and assessment more broadly in higher education

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