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7 June 2013 | Issue 613

To view previous editions see LU Text Archive
See the Press Office news and events pages here

Contents: News| Ryan Rostron| People| Job Opportunities| Lancaster in the news| Notices| Sports news| Food & Drink| Training & Courses| What's On| Adverts|


Vice-Chancellor to chair A level reform panel

The Vice Chancellor, Professor Mark E. Smith, will chair a new panel which will report on the future content of key A level subjects. A series of reforms to A levels in England will be made in the coming years including changes to the structure of the qualification, the introduction of a standalone AS qualification and arrangements for the involvement of higher education in future A level design.

As part of preparations to introduce these reforms, the curriculum content requirements of current A levels will be reviewed by the exam boards who will then make recommendations to the panel, made up of senior exam specialists, and chaired by Professor Smith. The panel will test the recommendations and report to Ofqual, the exams regulator, in July.

A levels are a very important part of the education system which must provide students with high quality courses of study with one of their key purposes being a good grounding for progression to higher education. A Levels are therefore very important for Lancaster, which now has more than 60% of students with AAB grades or better – towards the very upper end across all UK universities.

For more detail please see here.

Bowland South, East and Tower Refurbishment

Staff will have noticed the scaffolding on Bowland Tower – a landmark part of the University’s architecture. £4.36m is being invested by the University into the refurbishment of the tower and Bowland South and East wings to provide high quality student accommodation, available from January 2014. The project includes alterations to Bowland Tower and a change of use of existing offices within Bowland South and East back to their original use as student accommodation. For more information and for students to book the new accommodation visit For any queries about the project contact the Facilities Helpdesk, 93333, or see the website.

Unborn babies ‘practise’ facial expressions in the womb

Unborn babies ‘practise’ facial expressions of pain in the womb, according to a study. The researchers, from Durham and Lancaster Universities, suggest that a foetus's ability to show a “pain” facial expression is a developmental process which could potentially give doctors another index of the health of a foetus. The study is published in PLOS ONE. Full story.

The Guardian University Guide 2014

Lancaster is ranked 11th in The Guardian’s university league tables with several subjects in the top ten: Physics is ranked joint 2nd with St Andrews; Art and Design 3rd; Sociology 3rd; Geography and Environmental Sciences 3rd; Drama and Dance 4th ; Social Work 5th; Religious Studies 7th and Mathematics 10th.

LUSU Shortlisted for an NUS Award

LUSU has been shortlisted for Higher Education Students’ Union of the year in the NUS Awards 2013. Further details here.

Ryan Rostron

A memorial service for student Ryan Rostron will be held in the Chaplaincy Centre at 2pm on Monday 24 June. Refreshments will be offered after the service in Furness Bar, where a pool table, bought in memory of Ryan, will be situated.


A team of eleven staff from the International Observatory on End of Life Care attended the 13th EAPC World Congress on Palliative Care in Prague last weekend. EAPC blog – an online platform for news, opinion and debate on palliative care in Europe and beyond,

Lancaster Alumnus Professor Rami Hamdallah has been appointed as the new Prime Minister of the Palestinian Authority this week. Professor Hamdallah has a PhD in English-Linguistics Research and studied here in the 1980s. Full story.

Four FASS students - Simon James, Jonathan Kennedy, Chloe Taylor and Katherine Bellamy - spent a week-long placement with the Lancaster Guardian thanks to a new scheme set up by the FASS Enterprise Centre in partnership with Lancaster and Morecambe News Group. They were selected from a pool of 75 applicants all wanting to get experience in journalism. The scheme will be repeated on a termly basis.

Researchers Dr Judith Lunn and Prakriti Joshi are looking to conduct a research study on how children recognize different emotions and are trying to recruit children in mainstream school between the ages of 13 –17 years. Taking part will involve attending one test session (approx 1 hour) to measure their eye movements (non-invasive study). Contact

Dr Laura Machin (Lancaster Medical School) is conducting a research project about patients’ experiences of medical self-discharge from hospital. If you would like to be interviewed about your experiences please contact Dr Machin on email or telephone 594973. The project is funded by a Lancaster University Early Career Small Grants Scheme and has received ethics approval from the National Research Ethics Service. Further information on the project can be found here.

Job Opportunities

Vacancies which have been released this week include:

Sugarhouse Promotions & Marketing Manager
Commercial Sales & Marketing Manager
Study Abroad Assistant
Director of the Socio-Economic Centre (London)
Lecturer in Design Interactions
Postdoctoral Research Associate in Computational Combustion

Lancaster in the news

The appointment of Professor Sharon Ruston (English and Creative Writing) as Lancaster's new Professor of Romanticism is featured in the THE this week, and joint research with the Univeristy of Durham into babies facial expressions in the the womb, has been reported internationally including the Huffington Post and Sky News

To see other news items featuring colleagues follow the link


Funding available for social projects

Whether you’ve been inspired by Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen, The Big Issue or the Eden Project, you can run a business with a social mission with the help of funding from UnLtd. Awards of up to £5,000 are available to students, staff and recent alumni to help kick-start your mission. To find out more attend the UnLtd Drop-in session in The Base between 12.30pm and 2.30pm on Thursday or email

New mobile phone contracts

Lancaster has now awarded EE as a sole supplier for all departmental mobile phones, for further details see here. All staff and family members are able to take advantage of discounts offered by EE via the Perks leaflet. For further information please contact Sue Harpin 94494.

Take part in the Lancashire Cycle Challenge – win a new bike and other great prizes

Running from Monday 17 June to Sunday 7 July, the Lancashire Cycle Challenge is a fun, free competition in which Lancaster University will be competing against other organisations to see which workplaces can get the most staff to try cycling. We’d like to invite you all to take part and it takes 2 minutes to register here, and join our team.

Sports news

Race for Life

The Sports Centre is hosting Race for Life this year, as part of Cancer Research UK’s largest women-only fundraising events. If you would like to take part, either by walking, running, jogging, or dancing your way around the course, then sign up here. If you can’t take part in the race, you can support Cancer Research UK’s work by volunteering to help with the event. For more information visit the Sports Centre website.

Food & Drink on Campus

Summer events at The Lounge, County South

Test your foodie knowledge at the Lancaster University Food and Drink Quiz night on Thursday 20 June. For more information and to book for these events, see here.

The Herdwick’s Annual beer and cider festival

The Herdwick’s (Graduate College Bar) 12th Annual beer and cider festival will take place from Thursday 20 – Sunday 23 June, featuring 35 beers and 15 ciders. There will be a daily BBQ and live music across the weekend, including music from Tin Pan Alley and The Reggiemental Band. The full schedule can be viewed here and the event is open to all.

Café 21 at Infolab

Café 21 at Infolab has a new menu starting on Monday 10 June with exciting risotto dishes, pasta dishes and salads. Food is served daily from 11.30am to 2.30pm.

Training & Courses

Staff IT training

All training sessions take place in the Library Training suites and require booking online, unless otherwise stated.

More information is available on the ISS Staff IT Training pages.

Organisation and Educational Development

Please find below a list of upcoming staff development opportunities that may be of interest. For further opportunies later in the year please visit the OED website or email directly

What's On

For a full list of all events, please see Events.

Ride across Britain pit stops at Lancaster University

On 12 June between 11.00am – 3.00pm, approximately 500 cyclists (including some famous sporting faces, Paralympic Gold medallist Mark Colbourne and Olympic Heptathlete Kelly Sotherton, to name but a few) will be stopping off on the Sports Centre fields as part of their marathon John O Groats to Land’s End charity cycle ride. They will be raising money for, amongst others, the British Paralympic Association. All supporters welcome. For more information about Ride Across Britain visit their website.

Grad Ball

Tickets are available for Grad Ball at Blackpool Tower Ballroom on 23 June, featuring James Arthur and Tinchy Stryder. Tickets are open to students, staff and guests, priced at £39.50 with a Purple card, £49.50 without. More information available here.

Rudimental at the Sugarhouse

Drum and Bass quartet Rudimental will be doing a DJ set at the Sugarhouse on 15 June. Tickets are available now from LUSU shop and online. More information.

TEDx Live Stream

The upcoming TEDxLancasterU conference will be streamed LIVE from the event if you didn’t manage to get tickets, at from 5pm on Tuesday 18 June. You will be able to watch the conference, including all the speakers that are taking part. Videos of the speakers will also be available to watch online after the event. To see the full line up please visit our website.

Histfest 2013

The eighteenth annual postgraduate conference organised by postgraduates in the Department of History will be held from Friday 7 to Sunday 9 June 2013. The conference has attracted a record number of delegates this year and a full and varied programme will take place over the three days. This year’s keynote speaker will be Professor David d’Avray (University College London) who will give an address entitled 'Motivation, Legitimation, and Historical Interpretation'. Conference webpage.

Can Technology Serve Social Justice? - public Lecture

A public lecture delivered by a leading scholar and activist, Virginia Eubanks, Associate Professor, Women's Studies, University at Albany, State University of New York, on 10 July at 4.30pm in Lecture Theatre 4, Management School. The event is hosted by the Centre for Technology Enhanced Learning and the Centre for Social Justice and Wellbeing in Education, Department of Educational Research. Please note: spaces are limited for this event. For registration and further details of the event, please contact Joanne Dickinson or see the event website.


All adverts posted by staff.