Teaching Fellow in Chemical Education – Physical Chemistry

Updated: about 2 months ago
Location: Durham, ENGLAND

Teaching Fellow in Chemical Education – Physical Chemistry (
Job Number:
Department of Chemistry
Grade 8: - £44,414 - £52,841 per annum
Fixed Term - Full Time
Contract Duration: 48 months
Contracted Hours per Week: 35
Closing Date
: 10-Apr-2023, 6:59:00 PM
Disclosure and Barring Service Requirement: Not Applicable. 

Durham University 

Durham University is one of the world’s top universities, boasting a welcoming and vibrant international community. Our strengths across the Arts and Humanities, Sciences and Social Sciences see us listed as a top 5 UK and top 100 global university with our students. Durham is an incredible place to define your career while enjoying a high-quality work/life balance. We are home to some of the most talented scholars and researchers from around the world who are tackling global issues and making a difference to people's lives. As part of our ambitious strategy, we are growing and we look forward to welcoming your application. 

The University sits in a beautiful historic city where it shares ownership of a UNESCO World Heritage Site with Durham Cathedral, the greatest Romanesque building in Western Europe. A collegiate University, Durham recruits outstanding students from across the world and offers an unmatched wider student experience. 

Less than 3 hours north of London, and an hour and a half south of Edinburgh, County Durham is a region steeped in history and natural beauty. The Durham Dales, including the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, are home to breath-taking scenery and attractions. Durham offers an excellent choice of city, suburban and rural residential locations. If you’d like to find out more about the University, please visit www.dur.ac.uk/jobs/recruitment/  

A competitive salary is only one part of the many fantastic benefits you will receive if you join the University: you will also receive access to the following Total Rewards - Grade 8.     

The Department 

A World Top 100 department, the Department of Chemistry at Durham is one of the very best in the UK, with an outstanding reputation for excellence in research, teaching and employability of our students. We are an active and vibrant department, with a strong cohort of early career academics and future leaders. We hold an Athena Swan Silver Award, recognising our commitment to gender equality. Our undergraduate programmes are ranked fifth in the Complete University Guide 2023 due to our commitment to ensuring excellent teaching quality, stimulating learning environments, and innovative curricula for all our students. 

Find out more about our vibrant community here Chemistry Department - Durham University .

The Role 

Applications are invited for a fixed-term, Teaching Fellow in Chemical Education specifically on the delivery of all aspects of physical chemistry teaching, including mathematical methods. 

Teaching Fellowships offer the opportunity of valuable experience to those early in their academic careers and the University is keen to maximise the benefit to as many people as possible.  The post of Teaching Fellow will involve a significant teaching load, which may extend into the summer period, and there may be related scholarship and the opportunity for administrative duties which relate to education and pedagogy. We will fully support you to develop your teaching expertise and to develop innovative teaching, including practical help such as resources to attend conferences and a designated mentor.

The post is full time, for a fixed term of 48 months only, and it is not anticipated that the post will be extended beyond this fixed term. However, requests for flexible working arrangements including potential job shares will be considered. 

Successful applicants will, ideally, be in post by the 1st October 2023. 

The University provides a working and teaching environment that is inclusive and welcoming and where everyone is treated fairly with dignity and respect. Candidates will be expected to demonstrate these key principles as part of the assessment process. 

Key Responsibilities 

  • Develop, design and teach modules in a variety of settings at undergraduate and/or postgraduate levels and in complex formats.
  • Demonstrate best practice and develop innovative approaches to, and methods of, teaching and supporting student learning, as well as engaging in related activity such as assessment. 
  • Develop teaching materials for lecture courses and the tutorials and teaching laboratories that support those courses. 
  • Write teaching materials, progress reports, handbooks and marketing and/or publicity materials.
  • Act as module leader, and contribute to modules led by others, by collaborating with colleagues on course development. 
  • As module leader, being accountable for resources of the module, e.g. delegated budget, staffing and equipment.
  • Participate in the quality assurance of modules and programmes.
  • Develop and deliver an inclusive and innovative curriculum and make an active contribution to an inclusive community in which diversity is embraced and celebrated. 
  • Seek and take on board feedback on teaching and engage with others in continuing professional development (CPD). 
  • Supervise undergraduate students and, where appropriate, act as part of a PhD supervisory team. 
  • Tailor one to one sessions to the needs of individual students.
  • Contribute to the educational skill of colleagues (e.g., giving a seminar to colleagues or engaging in constructive discussion about a seminar) and contribute to the induction, training, mentoring and development of junior colleagues.
  • Engage in scholarship (the creation, development, and maintenance of the intellectual infrastructure of subjects and disciplines). 
  • Provide leadership of teaching and learning, including coordinating and delegating within the department.
  • Be a member of some departmental committees and professional body memberships, taking on a leadership role in relation to relevant teaching/programme committees.
  • Support students, assess academic performance and provide feedback, and deal with student disciplinary matters and complaints. 
  • Liaise with contacts internally and externally in order to influence opinion and decision making, for example negotiation of future partnership arrangements for providing programmes in other organisations, negotiations for external funding.
  • Participate in and develop external networks, in order to contribute to student recruitment, secure placements, facilitate outreach work and income generation.
  • Actively promote and market programmes to prospective students and other organisations.
  • Undertake effectively and efficiently any administrative role allocated by your Head of Department. 
  • Contribute to fostering a collegial and respectful working environment which is inclusive and welcoming and where everyone is treated fairly with dignity and respect. 
  • Engage in wider citizenship to support the Department, values of the Department, and the wider discipline. 
  • Engage in CPD by attending relevant training and development courses. 

How to Apply 

For informal enquiries please contact Professor Chris Greenwell, Head of Department (Chemistry) chris.greenwell@durham.ac.uk , or Dr Andy Hughes, Director of Education (Chemistry) a.k.hughes@durham.ac.uk , or Dr David Carty (Chemistry) david.carty@durham.ac.uk . All enquiries will be treated in the strictest confidence.  

We prefer to receive applications online via the Durham University Vacancies Site. https://www.dur.ac.uk/jobs/  

Applications are particularly welcome from women and black and minority ethnic candidates, who are under-represented in academic posts in the University. 

What to Submit 

All applicants are asked to submit: 

  • A CV and covering letter that details your experience, scholarship, skills and achievements in meeting (or the potential to meet) the criteria set out above. 

  • A statement on your aspirations in terms of what motivates you, what you would like to achieve and what your broad approaches to teaching excellence and innovation are (maximum 2 pages). 

  • A personal scholarship plan (maximum 2 pages). 


You should provide details of 3 referees and the details of your current line manager so that we may seek an employment reference (if they are not listed as an academic referee).  Please note: 

  • We shall seek references during the application process.  Unless in the case of very early career candidates, referees should not (if possible) include your PhD supervisor(s). References from a University other than your own are encouraged. 
  • We would ask that you alert your referees to this application as soon as possible so that we can quickly obtain references.  If you do not wish (some or all) of your referees to be approached during the recruitment process, you must clearly indicate this to us at the time of your application. 
  • References sought for candidates may be made available to the panel during the shortlisting process. 
  • We will seek a reference from your current line-manager if we make you an offer of employment (albeit you may have also nominated your line manager as an academic referee).  Please clearly indicate on the application form which referee is your current line-manager and indicate if we should only approach them once an offer has been made. 

Next Steps 

We will notify you on the status of your application at various points throughout the selection process, via automated emails from our e-recruitment system.  Please check your spam/junk folder periodically to ensure you receive all emails. 

Shortlisted candidates will be invited for interview and assessment. 

Person Specification 

Candidates applying for a Grade 8 post will have completed or will be concluding their PhD and, while they may have limited direct experience of the requirements for the post, they must outline their experience, skills and achievements to date which demonstrate that they meet or that they have the potential to achieve the following criteria:   

Essential Criteria 

  • A good first degree in Chemistry. 

  • A PhD in Chemistry or a related subject, or equivalent demonstrable practitioner experience which may include appropriate certification and/or membership of a relevant professional body. 

  • To hold, or have the ability to attain, the rank of Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (www.heacademy.ac.uk/individuals/fellowship/fellow ). 

  • Experience of teaching high-quality lecture courses, tutorials and laboratory courses, and examining at university level with positive student feedback and/or peer reviews of teaching. 

  • Experience of successfully developing innovative teaching methods for the design/delivery of high-quality teaching. 

  • Experience of leading teaching courses and running of teaching laboratories. 

  • Experience of contributing to the development and delivery of high-quality teaching and/or assessment of learning, including the design and creation of successful learning environments and curricula and/or using technology or other techniques to enhance learning and/or assessment. 

  • Experience of successfully working in an administrative role within an organisation or department, e.g. leading a substantial course or module. 

  • Excellent oral and written communication skills with the ability to engage with a range of students and colleagues across a variety of forums. 

  • Desirable Criteria 

  • Experience of providing high-quality, one-to-one student supervision. 

  • Evidence of work undertaken (or which would be undertaken) in preparation for teaching. 

  • Evidence of keeping up to date with developments in the subject area, such as: 

    • Active membership and engagement with a professional body; 

    • Demonstrable innovation in educational practice; 

    • Publication in a scholarly journal or relevant professional publication; 

    • Presentation of, or attendance at, internal and/or external seminars or at regional conference; 

    • Materials/curriculum development for wider use in a department. 

  • Demonstrable ability to participate in the collegial/administrative activities of an academic department and/or discipline. 

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