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Disciplines & Themes 

  • Degree Apprenticeship
  • University faculty / staff development

Learning focus:  

  • Developing academic teaching practice
  • Reflection

Design focus:

  • PebblePad Templates & Workbooks
  • Developmental, formative and summative feedback

Melding the Workplace and The Real World

UWE Bristol is one of Britain's most popular universities with over 29,000 students and 3,000 staff. UWE is a practice-orientated institution, and its programmes aim to have strong links to employment, the workplace and ‘the real world’. They’ve been a PebblePad partner since 2014. In this project, PebblePad was adopted to support the switch of their academic development program from a PGCert to a Degree Apprenticeship.

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Supporting learning on the go - PebblePad

In February 2019, The University of the West of England (UWE) launched its new professional development programme for academics starting at the institution. By adopting PebblePad for this programme, we were able to showcase to everyone how PebblePad can be a tool which facilitates the learner journey, aids the programme in a structural sense, and makes everyone’s work easier.



The ‘Supporting New Academics’ Ambition 

This is a large-scale programme. with between 200 and 300 participants, nearly 150 mentors, and over 30 colleagues in the programme’s teaching and support team. The programme is an atypical UWE programme, as the participants are in both staff and student roles. The team was mindful that new academics on the programme are often facing a steep learning curve in terms of doing their job, are low on time, and are dealing with many competing pressures. Our aims were:

  • To use PebblePad to best facilitate the learner journey.
  • To house many of the apprenticeship’s administrative and structural processes in one place, and aid in the reporting and auditing processes.
  • To model the effective use of PebblePad in supporting teaching, learning and assessment activity, since the programme assembles many colleagues from across the whole institution.


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PebblePad offered greater flexibility than our Virtual Learning Environment and greater scope to aid participants’ regular engagement with mentors and tutors. 

The Successful Workflow

The UWE Academic Professional Programme has transformed the University’s traditional Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) into an apprenticeship, focusing on developing and enhancing academic practice, especially in teaching and supporting learning, in part through engagement in regular reflective practice.

The team designed a single PebblePad workbook to be used throughout the programme which locates all participant-generated and related digital material in one place, including activities, reflections, documentation and assessments. The workbook is thoroughly embedded into the programme, supports the learner journey throughout, and requires regular engagement. This supports the programme’s aim of encouraging participants to develop a sustained, reflective and deliberate approach to academic practice.



            Our PebbleVision video, while not specifically about this case study, provides a brief overview of how PebblePad can support             some of the  pedagogical and pebblegogical practices discussed in this case study.

The PebblePad Difference

"Several participants who had not previously used PebblePad are also now interested in using it in their own teaching. In the first ten months of our programme we have been contacted by four separate colleagues from one faculty asking for guidance in implementing PebblePad in their own modules. We are now supporting these colleagues, in the hope that these trailblazers will help disseminate this practice more widely."

PebblePad has helped the University of the West of England achieve these benefits ...
  • The ability to easily record all off-the-job learning and relevant development activities undertaken whilst on the programme.

  • PebblePad feedback templates enable live edits to be made and better facilitates contributions by multiple authors, thereby making second marking easier.

  • The ability to gather up-to-date progress information rapidly via the inbuilt reporting features in PebblePad's Assessment Engine, ATLAS.

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Four reasons why institutions like The University of the West of England trust us to help them make a meaningful difference to learner success.


We're more than a little proud of our 17-year track record of helping universities scaffold learning journeys which make a meaningful difference to student success. 


We're big enough to be trusted by leading organisations across the globe, but small enough to value every partner. It's why our customer-base, just like our team, is growing year on year.


PebblePad offers unrivalled capability when it comes to student-centred learning - helping universities transform the learning journey on and off campus - at any scale, across any context.


Our customers rely on us to support business-critical activity at scale, 24 hours a day. You only need to look at our uptime and usage data to see that PebblePad is a platform you can trust.


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