The impact of feedback practices, modes, and student background: Voicing the student perspective

The impact of feedback practices, modes, and student background: Voicing the student perspective

Eligibility: UK/EU/International graduates with the required entry requirements

Funding details: Bursary plus tuition fees (UK/EU/International)

Duration: Full-Time – between three and three and a half years fixed term

Application deadline: 30th June 2021

Interview date: Will be confirmed to shortlisted candidates

Start date: September 2021

For further details contact Dr. Siân Alsop.

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Coventry University is inviting applications from suitably-qualified graduates for a fully funded PhD studentship at the University Research Centre for Global Learning (GLEA), for a September 2021 start. The Centre conducts fundamental research that impacts upon the higher education sector, creating better futures and societies.

Project details

This project seeks to address a longstanding, and increasingly relevant, blind spot in sector-wide understanding of feedback practices and their differential impact on different groups of students. Its aim is to better understand what sort of feedback is effective and why, from the student perspective.

In light of known attainment and engagement gaps between different student groups in HE, including between White/BAME students and in relation to student socioeconomic status, the project further explores how students from different backgrounds may receive and action feedback differently, and the reasons for this. The contribution is twofold:

  1. Giving voice to a widely overlooked student perspective to enhance pedagogical understanding.
  2. An investigation of difference based on background to enhance understanding of issues of equity, engagement and attainment in HE.

Primary data will be gathered using a mixed methods approach, and analysed through an educational linguistic lens.

This project is particularly timely given universities’ rapid shift to remote teaching and learning because written feedback is particularly important when there is less face-to-face teaching. Remote learning is likely to be a long-term feature of HE globally, and may propagate existing inequities in student experience, including those recently highlighted by the Black Lives Matter movement.


This is a fully-funded studentship including full tuition fees (UK/EU/International) plus stipend (based upon the applicable UKRI rate at the point of the award) and additional allowances.


The successful candidate will receive comprehensive research training including technical, personal and professional skills.

All researchers at Coventry University (from PhD to Professor) are part of the Doctoral College and Centre for Research Capability and Development, which provides support with high-quality training and career development activities.

Entry requirements

  • A minimum of a 2:1 first degree in a relevant discipline/subject area with a minimum 60% mark in the project element or equivalent with a minimum 60% overall module average.


  • The potential to engage in innovative research and to complete the PhD within a 3.5 years.
  • A minimum of English language proficiency (IELTS overall minimum score of 7.0 with a minimum of 6.5 in each component).

How to apply

All applications require full supporting documentation, a covering letter, plus a 2000-word statement showing how the applicant’s expertise and interests are relevant to the project. 

To find out more about the project, please contact Dr. Siân Alsop.

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