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Accessible version: Developing Student-Staff Partnerships to Enhance Digital Capabilites Report

Principal focus of the project

The four projects (Bishops Auckland College, Basingstoke College of Technology, City lit and Heart of Worcestershire College) were commissioned to explore how students’ digital capability could support teachers and trainers in developing their understanding and effective use of learning technologies.

What is this about and what were the main findings?

• Although some of the project leads already had digital student champions in place, harnessing students’ digital capabilities to support and mentor staff, as part of a structured project, was seen to have real value and staff/ students were keen to engage. The early outcomes and impact (as set out above) confirm this and many of the colleges involved are strongly considering implementing student mentors as part of their longterm digital learning strategies

• Assigning an expert mentor to each project to provide support, input and guidance helped projects to quickly get off the ground, maintain momentum and underpin the quality of the practical and research outputs.

• Working with projects upfront to understand the nature of practitioner inquiry and spending time at the start to shape and refine their project model was vital. They held an initial inception meeting to help project leads shape their project with follow-up CPD where needed. Feedback from project participants was very positive.

Number of participants who worked with the project
Name of associate programmes



The objectives of the pilot were to identify, explore, develop and disseminate, through four practitioner-led collaborative projects, effective approaches to developing student-staff partnerships to enhance staff members’ digital capabilities.