Collaborative clusters provide institutions with the opportunity to work together on areas of shared interests which have the potential of adding value for the whole sector once complete. Three cluster projects have been running in 2017-18.

The creative disciplines


This cluster is being led by Glasgow School of Art and The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland with four other institutions also taking part.


This project aims to raise awareness of how institutions are using outcomes metrics in creative subjects, to assess the impact of the education students receive. At the end of June, we held a round table debate for invited key stakeholders in the higher education and creative disciplines sectors to discuss this topic. The cluster team produced a ‘provocation’ document to inform the discussion and we will publish a final version over the summer.

Learning analytics


This cluster is being led by the University of Strathclyde, with contributions from all other Scottish institutions. Two workshops took place in February and May 2018 to identified the key areas of interest, which are as follows:

  • developing a learning analytics framework providing a tool that will help share practice on aspects such as governance, oversight, strategy, policy and guidelines
  • engaging staff and students in learning analytics, exploring how data can be used to support all students in learning analytics either on campus or off
  • applications of learning analytics.

Three student interns will be working over the summer to further scope the areas identified. The University of Strathclyde will host one student intern and the University of Stirling will host the other two. Other institutions are also helping to support the interns’ work.

Employability and distance learning workshops


This cluster is being led by The Open University in Scotland and involves 16 other institutions across the two topics. The project team held two workshops in May 2018 to scope the potential for collaborative work on these topics in years 2 and/or 3 of the Enhancement Theme.


The employability themed workshop highlighted interest in supporting international students and contextualising data.


Visibility of students was the key topic emerging from the distance and student belonging workshop.