Students from across the University are invited to enter prestigious poetry competition

University of Reading students are being encouraged to explore their creative side by entering the annual Raymond Wilson Poetry Prize.

The competition is held in memory of brilliant educationalist Raymond Wilson (1925-1995), former Emeritus Professor of Education at the University. The prize of £200 will be awarded for the best poem for children.

Competition organiser, Stephanie Sharp of the Institute of Education, said: “This competition will be judged by children in a local school and their vote carries equal weighting with that of a published children’s poet and with mine as an academic. This brings the perspectives of teacher, writer and young reader to bear on the judging.”

Last autumn, after much deliberation over a very impressive standard of entries, the judges announced PhD student Heike Bruton as winner for her poem, ‘I am the Love for you’.

This year, the closing date for entries will fall on National Poetry Day on 8th October 2015, with the winner being announced on 2nd November.

Raymond Wilson was an exceptional educationalist, as well as an inspired educational editor who introduced new editions of Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s poetry and Jane Austen’s novels. Wilson was also well-known as an intuitive, sensitive critic and a prolific anthologist.

Entries to the Raymond Wilson Poetry Prize may be sent to the competition administrator: Chris Tibbenham, Institute of Education, University of Reading, London Road Campus, RG1 5EX.

Queries about any aspect of the competition can be addressed to Stephanie Sharp: (ext 2675).

raymond wilson children reading

The Raymond Wilson Poetry Prize Rules:

  • Poems should be written for children.
  • Entrants may submit up to three poems with a maximum length of 40 lines for each poem.
  • Poems must be the original work of the entrant.
  • Poems should be word processed.
  • Poems are regarded as copies and cannot be returned.
  • The writer’s name should not be included with their poem(s). The poem(s) should be submitted in an envelope accompanied by a separate sealed envelope giving the author’s name, connection with the University, contact address and either the title or first line of their poem(s).


Has Health and Safety gone mad?


It may seem so when a simple tweet could win you a Macbook Air. Health & safety is one of those topics that we love to hate, don’t we? Well not anymore…

The University is inviting you to come up with a stunning creative idea to get the message across that staying safe and sound at University is easy when you know how. In return, the winner walks away with a brand new Macbook Air courtesy of Health & Safety.

Crazy, isn’t it?

The end game is a film that will be a professionally produced and made over the summer in time for the arrival of all our new students in September, and that all important safety talk.

But it has to be good…and it has to be created from the student’s perspective so the message lands in a memorable and interesting style.

The competition

We want you to tweet us your idea (that’s right, one tweet) for a campaign theme with the hashtag #healthandsafetygonemad

It can be a picture that speaks a thousand words, a film you like that nails the concept, a vine, video or a headline, as long as you tweet it by 29th May.

You can enter as many times as you wish but you must be a current student of the University.

Remember, be as creative in your submission as possible!
fb Health and safety gone mad If we like your submission, we will want find out a little bit more about the idea so we can create a shortlist. The winning idea will be selected by a University panel. Simple!

What’s in it for you?

As the winner of the competition you will be the proud owner of a brand new Macbook air.

But that’s not all.

We will ask you to work with us, over the summer, as an executive producer of the film. Don’t worry, you don’t need to be in Reading during this time.

You will be credited on the film and this can be used to enhance your CV and added to your portfolio of experience.

So what are you waiting for?H&S (6)
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Interested in a career in music education after graduation? You could receive a bursary of up to £9K.

The IoE has places for candidates wishing to train as music teachers on our Music (11-18) PGCE course September 2015 – June 2016. We are looking for skilled and motivated musicians who want to join the Reading Partnership of schools in Berkshire, Oxfordshire, Hampshire and Buckinghamshire. You will receive a bursary to support you in your training year of £9000 (if you have a Ph.D. or 1st) or £4000 (if you have a Masters, 2:1, or 2:2).

Our excellent training programme combines subject specialist training with a focused professional studies course to prepare you for work in schools. Our trainees enjoy very high employability rates after graduation. Our music PGCE alumni work in a wide range of music education setting in state and independent schools, special schools, music services and in youth and community arts organisations.

Contact Dr Rebecca Berkley on for more information about the Music PGCE.

Apply for your PGCE at the University of Reading through UCAS

Find out more about our education courses, including training as a Primary teacher, Masters degrees and other postgraduate courses on this site and follow us on Twitter @UniRdg_IoEDSC_2907

Calling all staff… this is your chance to ‘Ask the Board’about Diversity and Inclusion

Join us at one of the sessions below. Please come, ask questions and encourage your colleagues to attend. You can send in questions ahead of time to

Tuesday 19 May 2015 13.00-13.50 Madejski Lecture Theatre, Agriculture, Whiteknights

Wednesday 20 May 2015 10.00-10.50 National Grid, Greenlands

Wednesday 20 May 2015 13.00-13.50 G11, Henley Business School, Whiteknights

Thursday 21 May 2015 13.00-13.50 LO22 G01, London Rd

questions, decision making or uncertainty concept - a pile of colorful crumpled sticky notes with question marks
questions, decision making or uncertainty concept – a pile of colorful crumpled sticky notes with question marks


Come to one of our Open Days to explore our beautiful campus, meet students and lecturers from all our courses, see our accommodation and enjoy talks and taster lectures. This year’s dates are:

  • Friday 19 June
  • Saturday 20 June
  • Saturday 3 October
  • Saturday 17 October

Ensure you’re the first to hear when booking commences: Register your interest

Get a taste of the fun here

Prospective students and student helpers outside the dome during Open Days 2014
Prospective students and student helpers outside the dome during Open Days 2014

What other people had to say about our open days:

‘I chose to study at the University of Reading because of the beautiful campus, supportive atmosphere and high academic standards. When I came to an open day I met a student ambassador who not only inspired me to come to the University but also made me want to become an ambassador myself!’

‘We had a wonderful day… All staff and student ambassadors we came into contact with were so friendly and helpful. Instantly my daughter felt comfortable and could see herself fitting in … As a family we loved Reading and our daughter will most definitely be applying. Thanks to all for a great day!’

‘An absolutely incredible open day!’

‘I felt that the overall day was amazing. I was so happy with everything that Reading had to offer. My family and I felt very welcomed by the students and the staff.’

‘I was thoroughly impressed… I went away from the open day having had a fantastic time and loved the atmosphere of the whole campus.’

‘I’m sold. This made Reading my first choice’

Got any questions? Get in touch via email


Karen Goulding’s month of dragons

We don’t wish to alarm you, but dragons have infested The Learning Hub at the Institute of Education.

The Hub’s director Karen Goulding was invited to write for the prestigious National Share-a-Story Month, run by the Federation of Children’s Book Groups (FCBG). Karen is one of a select group of respected authorities who are exploring aspects of children’s story-sharing, with a particular focus on dragon tales.

In her blog, Karen describes her experiences with her current story group, which began when the Museum of English Rural Life needed a temporary new home for its “Toddler Time” sessions. The Learning Hub next door to the Museum proved the perfect venue for the toddlers’ singing, stories and craft and Karen now reads to them each month. This led her to base her blog on the exceptional dragon story she had carefully chosen to suit her young group.

Karen said: “Finding an appropriate dragon book for this age group was challenging, even taking into account The Learning Hub’s rich resource base. Eventually, after reading many dragon-themed stories, I found ‘Don’t you dare, Dragon!’ by Annie Kubler; the front cover convinced me this was the perfect book for Toddler Time.”

Other bloggers in Share-a-Story Month include literacy consultant Prue Goodwin, Story Sacks creator Neil Griffiths and authors and story tellers Margaret Bateson-Hill and John Kirk.

The FCBG was established in the 1960s by Anne Wood, who later founded Ragdoll Productions, known for its award-winning Teletubbies and In The Night Garden children’s programmes.

Dates for the National Share-a-Story-Month series of blogs:


1st Prue Goodwin
8th Margaret Bateson-Hill
15th Karen Goulding
22nd John Kirk
29th Neil Griffiths
30th Ann Lazim
31st Chris Routh


don't you dare, dragontoddler time at The Hub


Fantastic show at BA Ed Art Exhibition last week

Gill Hopper, Head of the BA Ed Art department and Course Leader commented: “The students have worked incredibly hard within a very tight time-frame to create an exhibition of art for the first Year 3 Exhibition.”

A small selection is shown here, but the range of talent and impressive artwork on show was very wide.

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Dr Richard Harris wins highly competitive University Award

Dr Richard Harris, MA Programme Director and Secondary History leader at the IoE, has been named as one of three recipients of the 2015 University Collaborative Awards for Outstanding Contributions to Teaching and Learning. This highly competitive scheme recognises select groups of staff who have made significant, ongoing contributions to student learning and who have also demonstrated an integrated team approach to enhance teaching and learning.

One of Richard’s fellow recipients is Dr Elizabeth McCrum, formerly Director of Teaching and Learning at the IoE, now Associate Dean for Teaching and Learning in the Faculty of Science, who retains close links with Education. Dr. Catherine Tissot, the IoE’s current Director of Teaching and Learning said: “It is wonderful to see that Richard and Elizabeth, along with Dr Elizabeth Matthew of the History department, have just won this important University award. This is a recognition for the development of a History Education module. The IoE has a long tradition of sharing good practice in terms of teaching and learning and it is exciting to see that continue.  The University Awards for Teaching and Learning are very competitive and therefore it is good to see their success.”