Graduates throwing their hats into the air in celebration

Academic Practice Directorate

The Academic Practice Directorate (APD) supports colleagues and students in the design, delivery and recognition of outstanding programmes and outstanding academic practice.

Our specialist team is here to support any academic development activity related to teaching, learning and assessment, to facilitate and promote an institutional culture of ongoing enhancement.

Activities and services

Academic Practice Directorate activities and support services include:

  • working directly with programme teams on the development and enhancement of their curricula and teaching practices
  • providing individuals and groups with support and mentoring for internal and external recognition awards (eg HEA Fellowships, National Teaching Fellowships, Collaborative Awards for Teaching Excellence)
  • promoting and facilitating educational enquiry, evaluation and development, through internal seed-corn funding awards, and supporting and partnering colleagues in the pursuit of external funding
  • bringing staff, students and external partners together to exchange ideas and share expertise and experience through institution-wide events and bespoke team-based development workshops.

The Academic Practice Directorate is currently under development and our support will be growing and developing over the coming months. If you have any suggestions or queries please email us at

The team

Professor Elizabeth Cleaver
Director of Learning and Teaching

Andy Birch
FHEA, MA(Ed), PGDipHRD, BA(Hons)
Deputy Director and Head of Digital Learning

Helen King
NTF, PFHEA, SFSEDA, PhD., BSc(Joint Hons)
Associate Director of Academic Practice

Petia Petrova
SFHEA, PhD, MSc, BA(Hons)
Associate Director of Academic Practice

Laura Bennett
SFHEA, PhD, MA, BA(Hons)
Associate Director of Academic Practice

Shaun Mudd
Senior Lecturer in Academic Practice

Rebecca Ward
BSc(Hons), Dip
CPD Recognition and Framework Manager

Kirstin Barnett
BSc (Hons), Dip, MAUA
Project Coordinator  

Russell Brookes
Senior Learning Technologist

James Brennan
BA(Hons), AinstAM, AEPAA
Senior Administrator and Executive Support to Professor Elizabeth Cleaver

Julia Denman
Administrative Assistant

Louise Mighall
Administrative Assistant

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