Prizes for Teaching Excellence at Kent Business School

In a true testament to Kent Business School’s innovative teaching, we are pleased to announce that Dr Ben Lowe, Senior Lecturer in Marketing, Des Laffey, Senior Lecturer of E-commerce of Kent Business School as well as Dr William Collier, Lecturer of Economics of the School of Economics, were recently awarded prizes for teaching excellence for using the social media website Twitter in their classes in order to enhance student learning.

During the Annual Teaching Prizes ceremony which was attended by around 70 staff, organised by the University’s Unit for the Enhancement of Learning and Teaching (UELT) on October 3rd, 2011, awards were also presented to academics from other faculties, as well as Learning Support. Congratulating all the winners, who each received a certificate and cash award, was Vice-Chancellor, Professor Dame Julia M Goodfellow who said:

“There has never been a better time to focus on excellence and innovation in teaching. As we approach the new fees structure in 2012, students and their parents will want to know what they are getting for their money. Awards such as this show that the University of Kent is ahead of many others in recognising the importance of high-quality teaching and we will continue to promote that.”

By incorporating social media into their teaching, Dr Lowe, Mr Laffey and Dr Collier specifically found that the use of Twitter in business and economics modules improved student learning outcomes. Following their research, together they have produced and published an article (an extract below) in the highly regarded Journal of Marketing Education on the subject, which evaluates students’ experiences of using Twitter as a tool to facilitate learning in marketing courses.

“We are delighted to receive the award and the recognition of our efforts, by the University, to introduce innovations in our teaching” says Dr Ben Lowe on behalf of his co-authors and fellow prize winners. “Web 2.0 technology is an increasingly important aspect of the learning environment and exploring its benefits to student learning has been a positive and thought provoking experience.”

This collaboration between the School of Economics and Kent Business School represents the quality and rigour of our teaching and research and we would like to congratulate all three on this achievement.

Photo from left to right, Professor Dame Julia M Goodfellow, Dr Ben Lowe, Senior Lecturer in Marketing, Des Laffey, Senior Lecturer of E-commerce, and Dr William Collier, Lecturer of Economics.

Article extract from Journal of Marketing Education:

“Is Twitter for the Birds? Using Twitter to Enhance Student Learning in a Marketing Course

Recent years have seen unprecedented possibilities for the use of different technologies to enhance learning in marketing courses. Although Twitter’s unique characteristics were used to enhance and facilitate the learning of marketing concepts, the use of Twitter also helped illustrate marketers’ use of innovative technologies and, therefore, added valuable contemporary curriculum content. Using in-depth interviews, and a questionnaire to evaluate learning outcomes, this research concludes that students’ perceptions of using Twitter were largely positive, though some anticipated and unanticipated barriers emerged to incorporating Twitter into marketing courses. Recommendations for adopting Twitter into the marketing curriculum are made, and future areas for research are identified.”

More detail from this extract written by Dr Ben Lowe, Des Laffey and Dr William Collier can be viewed at the Journal of Marketing Education website.”


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