Writtle University College and ARU have merged. Writtle’s full range of college, degree, postgraduate and short courses will still be delivered on the Writtle campus. See our guide to finding Writtle information on this site.

Dr Isobel Gowers

Academic Lead: Active and Inclusive Learning

Isobel is Academic Lead: Active and Inclusive Learning at Anglia Learning & Teaching. Her work focuses on promoting a student centred learning environment where all students have the opportunity to actively create their own learning.

[email protected]


Isobel is responsible for taking the lead on the adoption of active inclusive learning and teaching methods across the institution. Working with colleagues in the faculties, she supports the integration of a range of active inclusive learning and teaching practices, including team-based learning, inquiry-based learning, project-based learning, collaborative and cooperative learning, scenario-based learning, jigsaw and other techniques, into the curriculum. It is not just about getting lecturers started using these methods but ensuring that the selection of the active learning activities is appropriate for the intended outcome, that good practice relating to these techniques is shared across the institution and that active and inclusive learning methods are fully evaluated.

Isobel’s interest in active inclusive learning started when she worked as a lecturer and course leader first at the University of Sheffield and then at Writtle University College. Both through her own experience of learning and during her teaching she realised that students learnt much more when they were actively involved in creating their own knowledge. This might be from creating artefacts, such as a paper, a video or a presentation or by teaching others about a concept and could be facilitated both in the classroom and the digital environment.


PG Cert Learning and Teaching 
PhD Molecular Biology and Biochemistry
MSc Physiology
BSc (Hons) Equine Science

Memberships, editorial boards

Senior Fellow, Higher Education Academy
Fellow, Staff and Educational Developers Association

Selected recent publications

Lee, L.J., Gowers, I.R., Ellis, L. and Bellantuono, I. (2010) Well rounded postdoctoral researchers with initiative, who are not always 'tied to the bench' are more successful academically. International Journal for Researcher Development, 1(4).

Recent presentations and conferences

Gowers, I.R., Carter, T., Wascher, C. and East, M. (2019) So much data, but what tells the most accurate story? Analysis of engagement metrics vs student attainment using multiple sources across physical and virtual spaces at Anglia Ruskin University. ALT Annual Conference, 3-5 September 2019, Edinburgh, UK.

Gowers, I. R., 2018. #ProjectFeedback: Strategies for encouraging greater engagement with feedback. SEDA 23rd Annual Conference, 15-16 November 2018, Birmingham, UK.