Professor Catherine Bovill

Prof Catherine Bovill. Senior Lecturer in Student Engagement.

Prof Catherine Bovill

Personal Chair of Student Engagement in Higher Education

Contact details

Role in the IAD

I am Professor of Student Engagement in Higher Education and a member of the Learning and Teaching Team. The team provide support to staff and students relating to curriculum, learning, teaching and assessment enhancement within the University.

Advance HE National Teaching Fellow 2022

I have a diverse portfolio of work, and lead a range of strategic initiatives: supporting academic staff across the institution to enhance student engagement in learning and teaching; I lead a team in IAD to support Programme and Course Design across the University; I have multiple roles within the large scale University Curriculum Transformation Programme – member of the support group for the Curriculum Transformation Board, co-chair of the Curriculum Transformation Student Engagement Strategy Group, and member of the Curriculum Design Principles and Architecture work-stream; I lead the University’s Student Partnership Agreement and associated funding scheme; I lead the Edinburgh Network: Growing Approaches to Genuine Engagement (engage), which brings together staff and students to share good practice in student engagement at regular monthly events.

I also teach on our PGCAP programme and mentor staff undertaking the Edinburgh Teaching Award, our CPD framework to gain recognition with Advance HE. I also assess colleagues seeking to be recognised by Advance HE as part of this scheme. I manage a small team in IAD who lead work on digital education, assessment and feedback, the University’s Learning and Teaching Conference and the University’s highly successful Teaching Matters blog.

Professional interests

My research focuses on co-created curriculum and student-staff partnership in learning and teaching. I have published extensively and given many keynote presentations in 15 countries. I am a Visiting Fellow at the University of Bergen, Norway, and a Visiting Fellow (Knowledge Exchange) at the University of Winchester and Fulbright Scholar (2019-20). I am a National Teaching Fellow, a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, a Fellow of the Staff and Educational Development Association and a member of the Society for Research in Higher Education. I am a member of the UK National Teaching Excellence Awards Panel.  I have previously been Associate Editor (Europe) of the International Journal for Academic Development, and on the International Advisory Group for the International Journal for Students as Partners and I am currently an Editorial Board member for Teaching in Higher Education.

Selected publications

Bron, J., Bovill, C. and Veugelers, W. (2022) Students experiencing and developing democratic citizenship through curriculum negotiation: the relevance of Garth Boomer’s approach. Curriculum Perspectives, Online first:

Bovill, C., Matthews, K.E. and Hinchliffe, T. (2021) Student partnerships in assessment (SPiA). York: Advance HE:

Lubicz-Nawrocka, T. & Bovill, C. (2021) Do students experience transformation through co-creating curriculum in higher education? Teaching in Higher Education Online first:

Bovill, C. (2020) Co-creating learning and teaching: Towards relational pedagogy in higher education. St Albans: Critical Publishing.

Bovill, C. & Woolmer, C. (2020) Evaluating student engagement and student engagement in evaluation: expanding perspectives and ownership, in Lowe, T. & El Hakim, Y. (Eds) A handbook for student engagement in higher education: theory into practice. SEDA Series, Abingdon: Routledge.

Bovill, C. (2019) Co-creation in learning and teaching: the case for a whole-class approach in higher education. Higher Education 79 (6) 1023-1037.

Bovill, C. (2019) A co-creation of learning and teaching typology: what kind of co-creation are you planning or doing? International Journal for Students as Partners 3 (2) 91-98:

Bovill, C. (2019) Staff-student partnerships in learning and teaching: an overview of current practice and discourse. Journal of Geography in Higher Education 43 (4) 385-398.

Mercer-Mapstone, L. & Bovill, C. (2019) Equity and diversity in institutional approaches to student-staff partnership schemes in higher education, Studies in Higher Education:

Martens, S.E., Meeuwissen, S.N.E., Dolmans, H.J.M., Bovill, C. & Könings, K.D. (2019) Student participation in the design of learning and teaching: Disentangling the terminology and approaches. Medical Teacher 41 (10) 1203-1205.

Bovill, C. & Woolmer, C. (2019) How conceptualisations of curriculum in higher education influence student-staff co-creation in and of the curriculum. Higher Education 78 (3) 407-422.

Bron, J., Bovill, C. and Veugelers, W. (2018) Distributed curriculum leadership: how negotiation between student and teacher improves the curriculum. Journal of Ethical Educational Leadership Special Issue 1 March, 74-95:

Bovill, C. (2018) Lectures and Legoland: recapturing the excitement of learning Journal of Danish University Education / Dansk Universitetspædagogisk Tidsskrift 24 (1) 1-4.

Taylor, C. and Bovill, C. (2018) Towards an Ecology of Participation: Relational Ethics and Co-construction of Higher Education Curricula. European Educational Research Journal 17 (1) 112-128.

Rogerson, N., McKenna, K., Robinson, L., Wemyss, C. Bagg, J. and Bovill, C. (2017) Enhancing dental electives through participatory research. Journal of Educational Innovation Partnership and Change. 3 (2) 1-14:

Bovill, C. (2017) Maintaining criticality: attempts to stop an unacceptable proportion of students from feeling alienated. Journal for Educational Innovation Partnership and Change 3 (1) 14-17.

Könings K.D., Bovill, C. and Woolner, P. (2017) Towards an Interdisciplinary Model of Practice for Participatory Building Design in Education European Journal of Education 52 (3) 306-317.

Bovill, C. (2017) A framework to explore roles within student-staff partnerships in higher education: which students are partners, when and in what ways? International Journal for Students as Partners 1 (1):

Bovill, C. (2017) Breaking down student-staff barriers: moving towards pedagogic flexibility. In I. Kinchin and N.E. Winstone. Pedagogic frailty and the University. Rotterdam: Sense Publishers

Deeley, S. and Bovill, C. (2017) Staff-student partnership in assessment: enhancing assessment literacy through democratic practices. Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education 42 (3) 463-477.

Bron, J., Bovill, C. and Veugelers, W. (2016) Curriculum negotiation: the relevance of Boomer’s approach to the curriculum as a process, integrating student voice and developing democratic citizenship. Curriculum Perspectives 36 (1).

Bovill, C., Cook-Sather, A., Felten, P., Millard, L. and Moore-Cherry, N. (2016) Addressing potential challenges in co-creating learning and teaching: overcoming resistance, navigating institutional norms and ensuring inclusivity in student-staff partnerships. Higher Education 71(2), 195-208.

Healey, M., Bovill, C. and Jenkins, A. (2015) Students as partners in learning. In Lea, J. (Ed.) Enhancing learning and teaching in higher education: Engaging with the dimensions of practice. Maidenhead: Open University Press.

Bovill, C. Jordan, L. and Watters, N. (2014) Transnational approaches to teaching and learning in higher education: challenges and possible guiding principles. Teaching in Higher Education 19 (1) 13-25.

Cook-Sather, A., Bovill, C. and Felten, P. (2014) Engaging students as partners in learning and teaching in higher education: a guide for faculty. San Francisco: Jossey Bass

Bovill, C. (2014) An investigation of co-created curricula within higher education in the UK, Ireland and the USA. Innovations in Education and Teaching International. 51 (1) 15-25.

Jordan, L., Bovill, C., Othman, S.M., Saleh, A.M., Sahbila, N.P. and Watters N. (2014) Is student-centred learning a western concept? Lessons from an academic development programme to support student-centred learning in Iraq. Teaching in Higher Education 19 (1) 13-25.

Bovill, C. (2013) Students and staff co-creating curricula: an example of good practice in higher education? In Dunne, E. and Owen, D. (Eds) The Student Engagement Handbook: Practice in Higher Education. Emerald.

Bovill, C. (2013) Students and staff co-creating curricula – a new trend or an old idea we never got around to implementing? In Rust, C. (Ed) Improving student learning through research and scholarship: 20 years of ISL. Oxford: The Oxford Centre for Staff and Educational Development. (Chapter 3 pp96-108). ISBN: 9781873576922

Bovill C., Cook-Sather, A. and Felten, P. (2011) Changing Participants in Pedagogical Planning: Students as Co-Creators of Teaching approaches, Course Design and Curricula. International Journal for Academic Development 16 (2) 133-145.

Bovill, C., Bulley, C.J. and Morss, K. (2011) Engaging and empowering first-year students through curriculum design: perspectives from the literature. Teaching in Higher Education 16 (2) 197-209.

Bovill, C. (2011) Sharing responsibility for learning through formative evaluation: moving to evaluation as learning. Practice and Evidence of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, 6 (2) 96-109.

Bovill, C. and Bulley, C.J. (2011) A model of active student participation in curriculum design: exploring desirability and possibility. In Rust, C. Improving Student Learning (18) Global theories and local practices: institutional, disciplinary and cultural variations. Oxford: The Oxford Centre for Staff and Educational Development, pp176-188.

Bovill, C., Aitken, G., Hutchison, J., Morrison, F., Roseweir, K., Scott, A. and Sotannde, S. (2010) Experiences of learning through collaborative evaluation from a Postgraduate Certificate in Professional Education. International Journal for Academic Development 15 (2) 143-154.

Full publication list available on request