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International collaboration for public relations project


Professor Elena Gutiérrez-García from the Universidad de Navarra in Spain

Pictured above is Professor Elena Gutiérrez García who will be working alongside Professor Anne Gregory (shown below) in studying the capabilities of public relations and communication professionals around the world

Tue, 23 Aug 2016 10:50:00 BST

Nine countries join forces to create Capability Framework with the support of Global Alliance and the Cabinet Office

Global Alliance THE University of Huddersfield continues to develop international research partnerships with institutions around the world.

‌Professor Anne Gregory is one of nine international partners embarking on a two-year research project studying the capabilities of public relations and communication professionals around the world.  Professor Gregory is joined by academics from Spain, Sweden, South Africa, Singapore, Australia, Canada, USA, and Argentina.

The project is funded by a University Research Fund grant of £160,000 and has the support of the Global Alliance – the international association of communication professional bodies, the Cabinet Office and the national communication or PR directors of professional associations in each of the participating countries.

Research will be carried out in each of the nine countries with each partner working closely with their professional associations. The research activity will take place in 2016-2017 and the results, which will be a global capability framework, will then be shared worldwide. 

Cabinet Office One of the partners in this global research project, currently visiting the University of Huddersfield, is Professor Elena Gutiérrez-García from the Universidad de Navarra in Spain. Professor Gutiérrez-García works in the Faculty of Communication, the oldest communication school established in Spain in 1958. As the Director of the Master’s in Political and Corporate Communication, recognised as the the premier communication course in Spain, Professor Gutierrez-García teaches undergraduate and postgraduate students.

Having met Professor Gregory at an international research conference four years ago a partnership was developed between the two institutions. Professor Gutiérrez-García is currently in Huddersfield on a prestigious scholarship from the Ministry of Education in Spain for three months which provides researchers with the opportunity to work with other institutions as part of an international research team.

Professor Anne Gregory (pictured below right) has worked with Professor Gutiérrez-García for the past three years and visits Spain each year as a visiting professor teaching on the Master’s in Corporate and Political Communication. 

Establishing standards for the PR industry

Professor Elena Gutiérrez-García from the Universidad de Navarra in Spain (left) with Professor Anne Gregory As with other professions such as law, medicine and accounting; public relations and communication requires its own internationally recognised standards. By developing a Global Capability Framework this research will help to establish capability criteria for the profession.

The researchers recognise that as well as developing a framework which shares common core competencies, it is also necessary to adapt practice within each country according to local differences.

These differences include contrasting cultural and political environments with varying levels of decision making power depending on, for example, levels of bureaucracy and very diverse media landscapes, with a variety of attitudes towards transparency and accountability. Corporate communication also has different levels of resources available for continuing professional development with some countries having no academic programmes, or professional qualifications at all.

Following the comparison and analysis of the research findings the aim is to clearly define the core skills, knowledge and behaviours required to work in this profession, whilst taking into account the significant differences in the way it is practiced in different continents and countries.

The Global Capability Framework will be a benchmark against which national professional bodies and employers internationally can measure the capability of their professional communities. 

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U.S. students will flock to town for cultural exchange


USA flag and students

Fri, 19 Aug 2016 14:50:00 BST

“…the partnerships will offer more students the opportunity to spend a term/semester studying in Huddersfield…”

Generation Study Abroad A CROSS-Atlantic collaboration has been forged to increase the number of American students taking part in study-exchange programmes at the University of Huddersfield.

The initiative called Generation Study Abroad was launched by the Institute of International Education (IIE) after it was documented that fewer than 10 per cent of US students gain international experience during their studies.

“Globalisation has changed the way the world works and employers are increasingly looking for workers who have international skills and expertise,” says Dr Allan Goodman, President of IIE.  “International experience is one of the most important components of a 21st century resume so studying abroad must be viewed as an essential component of a college degree.”

The University is among a small roster of international partners that will aid the IIE with their goal of doubling the amount of US students studying abroad by the end of the decade.

Professor Dave Taylor This new development means new exchange partnerships will be created with more students than ever before being given the opportunity to spend a term/semester studying in Huddersfield.  A new scholarship will also be created to assist with students coming to join Huddersfield’s Study Abroad Programme.

Professor David Taylor (pictured left), the University’s Pro Vice-Chancellor, International, recognises the transformation that can happen to students who spend time studying abroad.

“The impact on employability, academic performance and personal development is a key reason for engaging with global mobility schemes,” said Professor Taylor.  “Located in the heart of historic Yorkshire, the University of Huddersfield offers a fantastic and affordable study abroad experience for students from the USA and we look forward to welcoming them to our campus.”

Over the next four years, the IIE’s Generation Study Abroad will raise awareness about the need for USA students, from all backgrounds and in all fields, to gain international experience, as well as language and cultural skills.  Collaborators will also meet up at a yearly summit to discuss best practice, with last year’s summit paper available here.

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Links grow with the University of Babylon


Pictured with Huddersfield’s Ray Dance (far left) and Dr Mosttafa Alghadhi (second right) are (left to right) University of Babylon’s President Professor Adil Hadi Al-Baghdadi, Dean of Information Technology Professor Tofiq A Al-Assadi, Dean of School of Nursing Dr Ameen Hadi and Director of Scholarships and Cultural Relations Dr Asam Aljebory.

Pictured with Huddersfield’s Ray Dance (far left) and Dr Mosttafa Alghadhi (second right) are (left to right) Babylon’s President Professor Adil Hadi Al-Baghdadi, Dean of IT Professor Tofiq A Al-Assadi, Dean of Nursing Dr Ameen Hadi and Director of Scholarships and Cultural Relations Dr Asam Aljebory

Thu, 18 Aug 2016 09:54:00 BST

A Memorandum of Understanding will see both Babylon undergraduate and postgraduate students finishing their studies in Huddersfield

Babylon’s President Professor Adil Hadi Al-Baghdadi (left) is pictured with Huddersfield’s Pro Vice-Chancellor, International, Professor Dave Taylor STUDENTS from one of the most fabled cities of the ancient world will soon be completing their degrees and boosting their qualifications at the University of Huddersfield.

The University of Babylon, in modern Iraq, was founded in 1991, close to the site of a city that was one of the earliest in human history, established more than 2,000 years BC.  Today’s university is ambitious to raise its international reputation for teaching and research and part of its strategy is to form close links with UK universities – including Huddersfield.

Now, an agreement has been signed that will result on cohorts of undergraduates from Babylon relocating to the University of Huddersfield for the final year of their degrees in subject areas that will include automotive engineering, railway technology and forensic science.  Some students will also take taught Master’s courses.

The link with Babylon began when Dr Mosttafa Alghadhi, who is Project Delivery and Support Officer in the University of Huddersfield’s Research and Enterprise Department, paid visits to the Iraqi university.

Babylon’s President Professor Adil Hadi Al-Baghdadi (left) is pictured with Huddersfield’s Pro Vice-Chancellor, International, Professor Dave Taylor

Babylon’s President Professor Adil Hadi Al-Baghdadi (left) is pictured with Huddersfield’s Pro Vice-Chancellor, International, Professor Dave Taylor

‌Then came a fact-finding visit to the Huddersfield campus by a party that included University of Babylon’s President, Professor Adil Hadi Al-Baghdadi, Professor Tofiq A Al-Assadi, who is Dean of the School of Information Technology, Dr Asam Aljebory, Director of Scholarships and Cultural Relations and Dr Ameen Hadi, the Dean of Babylon’s School of Nursing.

Welcomed by Professor Dave Taylor, the University of Huddersfield’s Pro Vice-Chancellor, International, the Babylonian party were shown round several departments and research facilities, including the Schools of Computing and Engineering and Applied Sciences, and the Institute of Railway Research.  A Memorandum of Understanding between the universities of Huddersfield and Babylon was drawn up and signed.

Subsequently, Babylon’s Dr Aljebory paid a second visit to Huddersfield to finalise details of the subject areas that will be studied for top-up degrees by Iraqi undergraduates and for Master’s courses.

It is anticipated that the first students from Babylon will arrive in 2017 and that eventually there will be up to ten on each of the agreed subject areas.

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Uni 3rd best in UK for ‘student assessment and feedback’


Students

Wed, 17 Aug 2016 10:22:00 BST

The results are part of the National Student Survey on final-year student satisfaction

NSS logo RESULTS from the 2016 National Student Survey show that the University of Huddersfield is poised to perform well when the Government introduces an influential new method for appraising educational excellence.  One of the most impressive indicators is that the University has the third highest score for providing assessment and feedback to students.

The new NSS figures, compiled from a survey of more than 300,000 final-year undergraduates throughout the UK, show that the average overall satisfaction rate with the university experience stands at 86 per cent for the nation as a whole, and 85 per cent in England.  The University of Huddersfield exceeds both these scores, with a figure of 87 per cent.

In addition to overall satisfaction ratings, the NSS also has detailed survey findings about specific degree courses.  The top performing subject areas at Huddersfield include politics, food and beverage studies and initial teacher training, which all scored 100 per cent overall satisfaction ratings.

Student reading The National Student Survey will be a major source of data for the Government’s Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF), which will be piloted in the 2017/18 academic year.  A White Paper states that the purpose of the TEF is to “provide clear information to students about where the best provision can be found and to drive up the standard of teaching in all universities”.

‌NSS categories that cover assessment and feedback, academic support and teaching will feed into the TEF.  This means that University of Huddersfield chiefs are delighted with the 2016 findings, which show that 79 per cent are happy with assessment and feedback.  This the third highest score nationwide, a two per cent rise on the 2015 figure and five per cent higher than the UK average, resulting in a shared fifth place in the rankings for the TEF.

Professor Christine Jarvis In the academic support category, an average 84 per cent of Huddersfield students registered their satisfaction.  This is a rise of one point from last year and two higher than the UK average, meaning the University is ranked 13th in the country.

A total of 87 per cent of final-year students are fully satisfied with their teaching, a figure that was also achieved in 2015.

‌This performance in NSS categories that are relevant to the TEF helps to confirm predictions that the University of Huddersfield will be established as one of the UK’s leading institutions for teaching excellence when the new framework is issued.

In July, the influential journal Times Higher Education published the results of an in-depth exercise that predicted the likely outcome of the TEF.  It placed the University of Huddersfield at 17th out of 120 institutions that were assessed.

Professor Christine Jarvis (pictured right), the University’s Pro Vice-Chancellor for Teaching and Learning, commented: “The University's continuing success in these surveys is a tribute to the dedication of staff and students and the way they work in partnership to improve learning for all our students.  It also reflects the rich learning experience our students have because our excellent partners in industry, the public sector and the community help us to ensure that our courses have a strong, real world focus.” 

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