Welcome to our blog and our opportunity to share with you our knowledge of life sciences and education.  Here you will find out about our events, our students and staff, as well as everything that excites us, and hopefully you, about the world.

In the School of Life Sciences and Education we work together with key external partners to deliver flexible and applied courses in psychology, sport & exercise, biological and biomedical sciences, and education.  Our students experience exciting, interactive and digitally supported learning environments.  We focus on applying research and learning to real work settings, and working with employers and industry partners to provide our students with employability skills and networks and to contribute to our communities.

Our staff are conducting international research and our staff and students are making a real difference in our regional communities. This blog is all about sharing the news and stories of our students, staff and partners, the connections we are making and the impact of our School.  This blog is about connecting to you, so please take the opportunity to interact with us through:





Placement Power

In this post our Level 6 student, Sophie Barlow, discusses the power of the placement.

When I was at school my interest to study Biomedical Science was confirmed by a week’s placement work experience at a NHS hospital. At the time I was unclear about what I wanted to study, but knew that I wanted to work in a laboratory. I was given some advice from a Biomedical Scientist who told me a degree that was accredited by the Institute of Biomedical Science (IBMS) was what I need to achieve in order to work in a NHS Laboratory. This led me to a small number of universities that actually offer IBMS accredited Biomedical Science degrees and eventually I chose a Biomedical Science award at Staffordshire University. Continue reading

Advice to Level 4’s

This post comes to you from one of our Level 5 students, Katie Ryder, who wanted to share her advice with our current Level 4’s.

As a level 5 (second year) Biological sciences student, I wanted to share some advice with level 4 students about handling exams, revision and stress because last year some words of encouragement from someone whom has experienced first year would have helped me.

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The Big Biology Day – Why do we do it?

This year will see our Big Biology Day run for the third time.  The last two years have been a huge success and it has been wonderful to see the public reaction to our very own mini science festival.  The day has also been a fabulous way for different departments to work together to promote their own areas of biology to the public.  What I have found most fantastic though is the huge amount of enthusiasm that our students have for events like these. 

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An Academic Summer

It is fascinating how many students think that academics get three months off each summer.  Now wouldn’t that be something.  Three whole months to do whatever we please – but alas, it is not the case.  We thought that maybe our students might find it interesting to know what it is exactly that we get up to over the summer.  So, here is our attempt to explain. Continue reading

Invisible Learning and Your Identity

In my previous blog I mentioned invisible learning. This is learning that occurs at University that is unrecognised and hence invisible. Let me explain. Recognised learning that occurs  in University often involves students acquiring knowledge or actively constructing knowledge. This acquisition, considers knowledge as an entity that can be bought or transferred. Learners are referred to as ‘grasping ideas’. Students are guided in self-construction of knowledge by tutors who act as facilitators. Learning in lectures, seminars and group work occur in this way. The learning is often recognised as it is assessed.  Continue reading

Celebration of Education at Staffordshire University

This month we warmly welcomed our partners onto campus to celebrate all our collaborative work in Education.  Following our Good OFSTED inspection earlier this year, and subsequently being ranked 36th in the country as an Education department in the Complete University Guide 2018, we took this chance to say thanks to all the schools/colleges in the region for working alongside us and supporting all our trainees.

We were pleased to be joined by our colleagues from schools, colleges, nurseries, and OFSTED, as well as graduates from our courses.

Dr Nigel Thomas, Dean of our School of Life Sciences and Education, opened the ceremony celebrating the impact of our ongoing educational partnerships with over 70 organisations.

As well as providing the chance for all of us to network and celebrate, we also shared best practice through a series of talks. Continue reading

What’s in a name?

To celebrate Biomedical Science Awareness Day on Wednesday 19th July, Biomedical Science lecturer Ian Davies reflects upon the identity of the profession and their role in healthcare.

“So what’s that?” “Just like Prime Suspect” “Ugh, you do what?!” – just some of the responses I have had when conversations turn to careers and education. Despite being a biomedical scientist for over 20 years, amongst 23,000 registered by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) within the UK, it can still be difficult to clearly explain what we do and why we do it.

Being a biomedical scientist brings together a unique mix of laboratory skills, scientific and clinical knowledge and patient-centred professional practice and focuses them upon investigating the body’s response to disease. Clinically this could be in the diagnosis and monitoring of disease, in research though uncovering the detail of disease processes (often at the genomic level) or in the development and production of new diagnostic tools or interventions. It’s not just humans either – our ‘patients’ range from flasks of cell culture disease models to the entire range of species encountered by veterinary laboratories. It goes further still – the transferrable skills of biomedical science graduates are well utilised across a wide range of life science and education professions where their ability to integrate knowledge and apply it in a professional and innovative way are prized assets.


Biomedical Science Awareness Day takes place on Wednesday 19th July, the anniversary of the birth of Albert Norman MBE, founder of the Institute of Biomedical Science. In 1912 Albert was fundamental in the formation of the “Pathological and Bacteriological Laboratory Assistants Association (PBLAA)” which aimed to bring communication, advancements of practice and development of methods and techniques to the growing workforce of “unskilled menials” working in early emerging pathology laboratories. Over 100 years later the association, now the Institute of Biomedical Science, is the focus of our professional identity, the workforce is highly educated and skilled, and its practitioners contribute significantly to the scientific community within the NHS. Continue reading