Dr Catriona Bell is very proud to be one of a small number of individuals with an international reputation in the field of Veterinary Education. She is recognised for her scholarship, leadership, and advancement of this relatively new discipline, particularly in the fields of Faculty Development for staff, and Clinical Skills training (with embedded Peer Assisted Learning) for students.
More recently, she has focused on advancing cross disciplinary approaches to Faculty Development after being awarded Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (PFHEA) in 2015. This includes championing educational staff development programmes across all 20 schools at the University of Edinburgh, co-coordinating the Scottish network of PFHEAs, and representing the veterinary profession on a prestigious international panel for ‘ASPIRE’ Recognition of Excellence in Education Awards (Faculty Development) in medical, dental and veterinary schools.
Impact of work
Catriona has been passionate about engaging colleagues with educational staff development for many years, and is particularly interested in identifying and overcoming barriers which affect this. This informed her approach to leading the iterative development of a programme for all veterinary educators at the school. Through collaboration with the Institute for Academic Development, they are delighted to have achieved over 50% academic engagement levels with the HEA accredited ‘Edinburgh Teaching Award’, which has produced an additional 31 AFHEA/FHEA/SFHEAs at the school since launching in June 2015.
Her passion for Veterinary Education also led her to make two conscious changes of career focus, 1) from private veterinary practice to academia (1997), and then from Farm Animal Medicine to Veterinary Education (2005). In turn, this has influenced her teaching focus and led her to instigate, develop and deliver (with a talented team of colleagues) innovative Clinical Skills training to enhance workplace transition and employability for undergraduate students, whilst also embedding Peer Assisted Learning to encourage potential ‘educators of the future’.
Plans for the future
Catriona undertakes scholarly research into the teaching and assessment practices that they adopt. Through highly productive collaborations with local, national and international colleagues, she publishes associated work on OSCE (objective structured clinical examination) assessment (global rating scales), work-based learning preparation, peer assisted learning, and curriculum mapping.
Reader in Veterinary Education
Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies, University of Edinburgh