The University of Southampton

Professionalism in teaching

Physics and Astronomy is a research department with an international reputation. But research isn’t our only focus. We’re also passionate teachers, who take care and pride in our teaching. This is reflected in our excellent National Student Survey results, league table rankings and teaching awards.

  • 99% of Physics and Astronomy students said they were satisfied or very satisfied with the overall quality of their course (National Student Survey 2017)
  • We also achieved a 91% overall teaching score (National Student Survey 2017)
  • Physics and Astronomy teachers are regularly nominated for – and win – university-wide awards including Union Southampton Academic Awards, voted for by students. In 2017, four of our teaching staff members won university awards.

Achieving and maintaining high teaching standards

  • We expect our staff to achieve membership of the Higher Education Academy and all new staff are required to take a Postgraduate Certificate in Academic Practice.
  • Every semester, the Director of Programmes holds a course feedback session in a core lecture for each year group of students, at which every student has the opportunity to speak directly about anything to do with their studies.
  • Our staff voluntarily take part in peer observations, so they can learn from one another and build on feedback.

"The open-door policy in the Physics & Astronomy department makes approaching academic staff incredibly easy. Teaching standards are high."

Ben Stray, Master of Physics (MPhys), 2016

Professor Jonathan Flynn

Jonathan combines work as a lecturer in Physics and Astronomy with being Head of Department and carrying out his own research.

Professor David Smith

David leads the third-year experimental laboratories. He won a Vice Chancellor's teaching award in 2016.

Dr Caitriona Jackman

Space Environment lecturer Caitriona is involved with a range of teaching activities at Southampton.

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