Monthly Archives: June 2016

Oxford Brookes Communication, Media and Culture student undertakes BMW work placement

Natalia MitevaNatalia Miteva, a current Communication, Media and Culture student at Oxford Brookes University prepares to head back to her final year of study after completing a work placement with motor giant BMW Group UK.

The year long placement held at their head office in Farnborough, UK has seen Natalia take on the role of an assistant in the Aftersales Department. Natalia landed this role after realising two years into her studies that she was keen to put her knowledge into practice and gain exposure to the job market ahead of graduating.

“Since starting on my placement I have been involved in many different projects and events and the increase in my responsibilities over time has proven very rewarding.”


“My role is based around marketing and promotion; on a daily basis I support the team with launches of new products and the maintenance of existing ones, and pilot initiatives on a national level. I’ve also had the chance to apply and test many of my academic skills learnt during my course, including market research and competitor analysis around customer behaviour and trends.”

Natalia’s work on placement has also involved writing an Independent Case Study; the inspiration for which was based upon the recent launch of BMW’s employee brand.

More information about studying Communication, Media and Culture at Oxford Brookes can be found here.

For information and guidance on applying for work placements please contact our Careers department.

Dr David Colley is elected Chair of SEBDA

David ColleyThe School of Education is delighted to confirm that Dr David Colley, Senior Lecturer in Child Development and Special Educational Needs and Inclusion at Oxford Brookes, has recently been elected Chair of the Social, Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties Association (SEBDA).

SEBDA is a registered charity that has been promoting the social and emotional wellbeing of children, and the staff who work with them, for over 50 years. National conferences, campaigning and staff training are central to the role of SEBDA, along with the publication of the quarterly international research journal, Emotional & Behavioural Difficulties (Routledge).

Reflecting on his new position, Dr Colley commented:

“I would like to thank Oxford Brookes University for supporting my nomination and I am delighted to have been elected Chair of SEBDA. The coming three years will have many challenges but I have a great team around me, drawn from across the country. Together, I am sure we can drive forward the work of SEBDA with a particular focus on improving the emotional wellbeing of all children.”

The School of Education at Brookes offers courses specifically tailored towards increasing knowledge and understanding of Special Educational Needs and Disabilities in children and young people. The new Education Studies – SEN, Disabilities and Inclusion undergraduate course, and the SEN Postgraduate Certificate specialise in this area of Education.


Part-time MA by Research Studentships available in the fields of Methodist History and Culture and Religious History.


The Department of History, Philosophy and Religion are pleased to offer two MA by Research studentships, one in the field of Methodist History and Culture and the second in the field of Religious History.

Both studentships are offered part-time and will be supervised by staff from the Oxford Centre for Methodism and Church History (OCMCH).

Applications are invited for proposals in a field of either Religious History or Methodist History in the seventeenth, eighteenth or nineteenth centuries. Research supervision from the OCMCH can be offered in the following fields: Religion in Britain 1660-1900, Church and State in the Eighteenth Century, Religion and Art in the Eighteenth Century, History and Historical Theology of Methodism and Evangelicalism 1700-1900, History of post-reformation Wales, Book History and Biographical Study in the period 1600-1900.

Previous students have gone on to take PhDs and have gained book contracts with Routledge and Oxford University Press.

“This is a great opportunity for a scholar interested in religious history to explore an area of interest in depth and to use the resources of the Centre and the University to obtain a research degree.”
Professor William Gibson, Director of the Oxford Centre for Methodism and Church History

The successful candidates will receive funding to cover the costs of the University’s part-time research degree fees, currently £2,112, for two years. To see the full eligibility requirements or submit an application please see here. Applications for both studentships should be made by Friday 1 July 2016.

For more information on the Department of History, Philosophy and Religion, please see here.

Oxford Brookes Reader in Law receives a Brookes Union teaching award

Sonia Brookes teaching awards

Dr Sonia Morano–Foadi, Reader in Law at Oxford Brookes University was recently a finalist and a winner of two separate Brookes Union Teaching awards.

Sonia was one of three finalists for the most inspirational lecturer award; this award recognises exemplary teaching practice, and Sonia received an overwhelmingly positive response from students about her teaching, including one student saying “Dr Sonia is a one in a million, her quality of lectures has been both outstanding and inspirational.” Sonia was also highly praised for always making time for her students and making them feel valued.

The Brookes Union Teaching Awards were set up by Brookes Union in 2013 to celebrate the fantastic work that academic and support staff do for the university, and in particular the student experience. There are five categories: most inspirational lecturer, best taught module, best support staff member, best academic advisor and most effective feedback.

Alongside being a finalist for the most inspirational lecturer award, Sonia also won the award for best taught module. Her European Union Law module, an advanced undergraduate law module received particular praise for its logical construction, and how Sonia’s use of visual aids and engaging teaching methods made the subject come alive.

One student commented that it was “The most enjoyable and fascinating module I have ever taken throughout my degree.”

For more information about the Brookes Union teaching award please see the Brookes Union website.

Oxford Brookes Reader in Law presents at European Parliament Committee

Dr Stelios Andreadakis and Dr Sonia Morano-Foadi

Dr Sonia Morano-Foadi, Oxford Brookes University and Dr Stelios Andreadakis, University of Leicester

Dr Sonia Morano-Foadi, Reader in Law, research associate at the International Migration Institute, University of Oxford and Centre for Diversity Policy and Practice, Oxford Brookes University, was recently invited by the European Parliament’s Committee on Constitutional Affairs (AFCO) as an expert to the public hearing on “Accession to the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR): stocktaking after the ECJ’s opinion and way forward” held on 20 April 2016 at the European Parliament’s premises in Brussels.

She presented her research and offered some legal and policy recommendations on the path forward for the EU after the opinion of the European Court of Justice on the EU’s accession to the ECHR.

Sonia, who researches the relationship between European citizenship, migration and fundamental rights, will also be hosting a mini symposium on Friday 1 July 2016 around economic migration in Europe.

For more information about the mini symposium please see here. To see a podcast of the Committee on Constitutional Affairs please see here.

Life in Law: a free summer school for Oxfordshire A-level students

Life in Law main photo

New for 2016, the School of Law at Oxford Brookes University are excited to launch a Summer School programme for aspiring lawyers. This programme is aimed specifically at local A-level students looking to study Law at university or learn about working in the legal sector.

The Beautiful Headington Hill Hall

This non-residential programme runs over four days and students will take part in a range of activities, including a mock trial, visiting the local crown court and police station and engaging in interactive seminars with a range of Law academics.

The summer school will take place from the 16-19 August 2016 and will be based in the beautiful Headington Hill Hall, a stunning 19th century mansion with extensive grounds.

One of the summer school organisers, Dr Michael John-Hopkins, a senior lecturer in Law at Oxford Brookes University and a researcher in International Humanitarian Law said

“We are excited to offer this summer school by way of engaging young people in our legal system and fostering knowledge and skills that will serve them well in their future career”

The closing date for applications is Friday 15 July 2016, to find out the criteria for applying or to submit an application please see here.

Framed! History of Art department bring portraits to life at Ashmolean LiveFriday event

Ashmolean LiveFriday

On Friday 13 May, the History of Art team at Oxford Brookes headed to the Ashmolean museum for LiveFriday, an after-hours experience.

This time around, the theme for the evening was Framed!, focussing on portraits across the museum and beyond, from gargoyles to pop-art, self-portraits to caricatures, and face-swaps to selfies.

Alongside other live performances, hands-on creative workshops and behind the scenes talks and tours, the History of Art team collaborated by designing a portrait trail across the museum’s galleries. It featured a range of portraits and sculptures from the 16th to the 20th century and included highlights such as Titian’s portrait of the Genoese merchant Ashmolean cut out photoGiacomo Doria and Reynolds’ intriguing double portrait of James Paine and his wayward son.

The trail led visitors to various portraits and sculptures based on a set of clues; at each exhibit an academic member of staff or student from the History of Art course were on hand to explain the piece in more depth

Popular features of the portrait trail were the life size cut outs of two famous artworks from the museum’s collection. The Portrait of a Young Man by Alessandro Allori and Music by Edward Burne-Jones proved popular with both young and old visitors.

It was such fun to take part in an event which allowed us, staff and students alike, to work together on a light-hearted, but carefully researched, project and to engage the public in discussion on some of our favourite works in the Ashmolean Museum. It was a wonderful opportunity for some of our second year students to collaborate on an event outside the usual lectures and assessments, really highlighting how exciting art-historical research can be!”
Dr Marika Leino, Senior Lecturer in History of Art

Events such as LiveFriday give visitors the opportunity to experience the museum and explore the collections after hours.

For more information on Ashmolean LiveFriday events please visit their website.

Department of History, Philosophy and Religion receives excellent rankings in new Guardian University League tables

HPR guardian rankings photo


The Guardian UK released their new University league tables and the Department of History, Philosophy and Religion achieved excellent rankings for a range of subjects.

Philosophy at Oxford Brookes, is currently ranked 10th for its subject, with a high score of 91.9% of final-year students satisfied with the overall quality of their course, according to the latest National Student Survey (NSS).

History at Oxford Brookes, has recently jumped from 50 to 39 in this year’s Guardian University leagues tables, with a high score of 96.7% of final-year students satisfied with the quality of teaching they received on their course (NSS).

History of Art at Oxford Brookes, is currently ranked 20th for its subject, compared to other providers in the UK and received a rating of 96% of final-year students being satisfied with the overall quality of their course, according to the latest National Student Survey (NSS).

I am delighted to see these results, which are testimony to the hard work and enthusiasm of our teaching staff who use their research to offer inspiring modules and to the committed, high-calibre undergraduates who choose to come and study with us.”
Professor Joanne Begiato, Head of the Department of History, Philosophy and Religion

English literature lecturer announced as editor for critical response series

magazine pics 003 news
Oxford Brookes University’s very own Reader in Early Modern Literature, Dr Katharine Craik, is one of five series editors from across the UK and USA for Beyond Criticism, a series dedicated to formal experiments in critical response. The Bee is the newly-launched online arm of this series, and supports Beyond Criticism as an online community site for students, scholars and creative practitioners, with responses and reactions to published books and shorter works of criticism posted on a monthly basis.

Beyond Criticism is interested in modes of argumentation that take up the strategies of literature itself, both through the book series and through other projects in poetry, prose, life-writing, film, music, photography, co-readings, and more. The aim of the series is to explore radical new forms that literary criticism might take in the 21st century, taking advantage of new opportunities offered by digital technology and contemporary creative practice that take us from abstract theory back to literature itself.

The other series editors are Simon Palfrey (University of Oxford, UK), Joanna Picciotto (University of California, Berkeley, USA), John Schad (University of Lancaster, UK), and Lilliana Loofbourow (University of California Berkeley, USA).

If you have a full book proposal or any short completed piece, be it textual, visual, or audial that speaks to the aims of the series, please get in touch with the series editors via

Follow The Bee on twitter to learn more.

Find out more about what’s happening in the Department of English and Modern Languages. 

Primary Teacher Education Students become accredited teachers of Personal, Social and Health Education and develop extra skills to teach Physical Education.



We are delighted that 32 third year students from the Health and Well Being Pathway of the BA Primary Teacher Education course have completed the PSHE Association Chartered Teacher (NQT) process.

The students have demonstrated excellence in PSHE education and have shown an understanding of and competence in the teaching of Personal, Social, Health and Economic education as part of their initial teacher training.

Of these 32 students, 18 also chose to follow a voluntary specialist pathway in ‘The School Games’, which gives valuable experience to students who hold future aspirations to become Primary PE Coordinators. The students completed workshops based on improving their knowledge, skills and understanding of the primary school versions of the following school games: tag rugby, high five netball, primary basketball, sports hall athletics, key steps gymnastics, mini tennis and mini football. All the students agreed that this opportunity has improved their ability to teach PE and has given them the confidence to lead School Games.

The students also participated in a workshop at Youlbury Scout Centre, Boar’s Hill, Oxford. The workshop was based on Outdoor and Adventurous Activities (OAA) and the students were mentored on taking part in risk activities in the outdoors.

4 students also attended the Outdoors and Adventurous Activities Residential week. This took place in a half term week and was based at Kivrough Manor Outdoor Education Centre on the Gower peninsular in South Wales. This course aims to build upon previous experiences as to how learning outdoors can make a rich contribution to young people’s development and to help the students experience the outdoor environment and its’ unique challenges. The course aims to help develop teacher identity, character and resilience and to build an understanding of the role of a teacher when taking young people on a residential.

Students reported that ‘Pushing myself to try new things was great!’ and that it was a ‘great time discovering more about myself and the benefits to young people academically, socially and emotionally’.

Carolyn Murphy, Senior Lecturer in Primary Education at Oxford Brookes remarked that:

‘In an era of considerable pressure for trainee teachers to reach high standards in the classroom these experiences give them an opportunity to appreciate how they can be effective across other areas of a young person’s education such as developing their social and emotional character and resilience, It engages their creativity as they appreciate how the outdoors can be used as a tool for learning across all subject areas’