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As a first encounter, we brought new students together to help them get to know each other as well as an opportunity to get to know the staff. We wanted to build on the excitement about being an Ed Studies student and also introduce them to creative practice right from the start of their course. So, as a part of their induction week, all new students joined together to write, create and sing new songs about being a Chester student.

As a follow up we wanted the students to really connect with their subject and the history of education. We developed a Victorian Head Master character and worked with an actor to redesign the delivery space and content of the first module. Using immersive theatre practice, we redesigned the entrance to the lecture room to build a sense of anticipation and reconfigured the room layout so that, on entry to the space, students felt and were treated as if they were Victorian school children.

As a result of this immersive learning experience, students felt a deep connection to the subject through their emotional responses, connected more meaningfully with the socio-political issues of the time and were able to critically examine their relationship with both the current education system and contemporary society.