National Teaching Fellow 2015
Dr Patricia (Paddy) Woodman was appointed to her current senior position in recognition of her outstanding contributions in the areas of both student development and access over recent years. Her professional career has been devoted to creating life-wide learning opportunities for students, academic colleagues and the community, through her early career in adult education (life-long learning), drive to embed experiential learning (learning through life) within and alongside the degree curricula, championing of diversity and inclusion (reducing barriers to opportunity for all); to her dedication to the professional development of colleagues (professional learning).
Paddy's cross-institution work at the University has impacted the lives of tens of thousands of students. In particular she introduced the University's first employability/skills award: the Reading Experience and Development (RED) Award, which not only encourages students to get involved in a wide range of extra- and co curricular activity but crucially engages students in a process of peer-facilitated reflection on the skills they have gained as well as considering their future goals. The RED award provides the sector with a model of an award that is popular with students and staff and has high completion rates. It has become part of the fabric of the University’s student experience, so much so that 2014-15 sees the establishment of the RED award at the Reading’s branch campus in Malaysia alongside the launch of the very first degrees.
Paddy has a strong and pro-active commitment to diversity and inclusion and has implemented a substantial programme of measures to enhance social mobility. These include: a placement bursary scheme, a coaching and mentoring programme, substantial expansion of Reading’s internship scheme, a new development programme for staff on inclusive pedagogy, as well as leading a significant project on the Black and minority ethnic attainment gap which led to a commitment to obtain the Race Equality Charter Mark.
Paddy has also been heavily involved in providing support for colleagues' professional development, both formally and informally. Most recently she has taken on the influential and demanding role of chairing the University of Reading's new HEA Fellowship award recognition panel.