Dr. Diane Westwood

Principal Lecturer (Learning & Teaching) in Psychology .

Dr Diane Westwood is an award-winning member of the Faculty of Applied Sciences and is a member of its Psychology department. As a stimulating and adventurous teacher, Diane has developed learning, teaching and assessment methods to engage curiosity and creativity, drawing on her research on playfulness, and taking inspiration from the disciplines of art and design. Crossing pedagogical boundaries, she feels, has helped Psychology students clarify what it means to ‘produce’ new knowledge and to emphasise ‘process’ in learning. Starting with the question ‘What do you do when you’re not at University?’ has led her students to a range of fascinating projects that bridge their academic and outside lives.

Diane supports students to present their research as digital sketchbooks and to produce and screen digital stories, finding that this is, for many, a magical moment – powerfully transformative as a new mode of expression opens up to them – and a moment that she recognises from her own experience of learning the digital storytelling method. A colleague has noted that students seem ‘two inches taller’ during the screening of their digital stories. Diane is currently exploring methods of story-making to support storytelling in the context of students’ personal development.

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