University of York Students' Union (YUSU)

James Hare

Academic Officer

WHAT DO I DO?

It’s my job to represent you in everything academic - including learning, teaching, assessment and feedback. I will facilitate dialogue between students, academic reps and the University at all levels, from informal meetings between students and departments, right up to discussions with senior managers in the University.  I will push for tangible improvements to the academic experience at York, making your engagement with your degree the best it can be.

AcademicOfficer@yusu.org

 

James Hare

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WHO AM I?

A native Yorkshireman, I made the onerous 20 mile trip to York in 2015 to study Politics with International Relations. The highlight of my degree - apart from my agony aunt column in Nouse - was my year abroad in Poland, which sparked my interest in public policy and led me to run to be your Academic Officer.

 

View Manifesto

 

MANIFESTO PRIORITIES

Improving assessment feedback at York, by advocating a FEEDFORWARD approach.

York has repeatedly underperformed in terms of feedback given to students. Students have reported dissatisfaction with the usefulness of their feedback - e.g. the lack of connection between one piece of assessment feedback to the next. I want to work with Departments on taking a new FEEDFORWARD approach, which doesn’t just tell you about your past performance, but gives you achievable goals for the future.

 

Ensuring you have equal opportunity to engage with your course, be that through the removal of hidden costs or through technological solutions to accessibility.

You never feel that your academic potential is being inhibited by circumstances outside your control. Hidden course costs present a huge problem, but it is a problem that can be fixed - e.g. through the digitisation of essential reading and the extension of e-submission to all assessments. If you can’t attend every lecture due to personal circumstances you shouldn’t be penalised. I want to see the full roll-out of lecture capture to all departments and an increased push to build digital learning capacity.

 

Advocating for greater transparency around how your tuition fees are spent.

Despite spending a huge sum of money on tuition fees each year, students are left in the dark about where exactly that money goes. I believe you deserve to know how your fees are spent, so you can judge whether you are getting value for money from your degree and so you can lobby for change if needed.

 

Other Priorities

  • Lobbying the University to increase study space, through a live update room booking system and by pushing for designated study rooms in every Department.
  • Developing an interactive pre-induction module for Freshers, so that everyone can access all the support and guidance they need from results day onwards
  • Improving access to resources for students in Departments on Campus East - e.g. by pushing to have Key Texts for Law, Management, Computer Science and TFTV placed in the Piazza Library.
  • Collaborating with the Graduate Students’ Association (GSA) on projects jointly affecting undergraduates and postgraduates - e.g.“hot-desking” for Postgraduate Researchers and the provision of unconscious bias training for Graduate Teaching Assistants.