Training weekend electives

On this page you can find information about the electives for the March 2019 training weekend. Below are the elective titles and blurbs. Please note that some electives are only being run in one location.

Underneath each blurb are suggestions for which electives are suitable for which tutors. Please note that these are recommendations and all tutors are welcome to attend any elective they wish. Returning tutors may want to attend an elective aimed at new tutors in order to revisit material in the light of having delivered placements.


1 in 4, 1 in 50

This elective introduces researchers to the broader context of widening participation, looking at current statistics around progression to university as well as the impact on social mobility more broadly. Participants will explore some of the key terminology used in the fair access sector, as well as government, HE and third-sector organisations’ efforts to increase fair access among under-represented groups. Through this session, PhD tutors will be more informed about their own work as widening participation professionals in schools and at university.

Suitable for: All tutors (particularly new tutors)


Questioning to cause thinking

This elective builds on the questioning session covered in core pedagogy to think about how asking questions in tutorials can support and extend pupils’ learning. In this session, we will look at how to plan questions and the types of questions to ask to help pupils achieve your intended outcomes.

Suitable for: All tutors (particularly returning tutors)


Differentiating your delivery

What do you do when you have a group of pupils with different skills, knowledge and attributes? How can you ensure that pupils are supported and extended even when those needs vary across your tutorial group? This session will look at some practical tips for differentiating your delivery to help you manage tutorial dynamics while also challenging all pupils at the right level.

Suitable for: All tutors (particularly returning tutors)


Effective explanations in STEM

To lecture or not to lecture? That is the question facing all tutors when you need to give your pupils key information. While lecturing has its merits, it is not always the most effective explanation of explaining new and often complex content. In this tutorial, we will look at strategies for how STEM tutors can impart information while ensuring pupils understand and engage with important ideas.

Suitable for: All STEM tutors


Giving a Guest Lecture for younger students

Guest lectures are a fantastic tool for giving school-aged pupils a taste of university-style learning and research. But how do you make a guest lecture relevant and engaging for younger pupils who are used to very interactive lessons? This elective will provide pedagogical advice for tutors interested in developing a guest lecture for KS2 or KS3 pupils and will, of course, include Simpsons memes and cat photos.

Suitable for: All tutors


Sausage rolls, sobbing on the sofa and the Wombling Song: A guide to surviving your PhD

How can you look after yourself during your PhD and find the time to focus on your own wellbeing? This elective will draw on advice from PhD graduates to share some insights and tips that they wish they had known earlier, including issues of time management, financial organisation, your relationship with your supervisor and peers and managing stress and isolation.

Suitable for: All tutors


Sharing your academic journey to inspire pupils

As a Brilliant Club PhD Tutor, you act as a role model for young people. But how can you ensure you share your academic journey to best inspire pupils? And how can you encourage productive conversations to take place with your tutorial group about university access?

In this session we will consider and practice approaches for sharing your academic journey with pupils from how you introduce yourself on the Virtual Learning Environment, on the Launch Trip, to the ongoing interactions and conversations you may have as part of tutorials. We will consider ice breaker conversations which will encourage your pupils to share their academic hopes and ambitions with you and how you can use these conversations pro-actively to encourage engagement and learning in tutorials.

Suitable for: All tutors


Success criteria


Suitable for: All tutors

Only running in London and Manchester


The British Education System

This session gives a beginner’s guide to the British education system and an overview of the school journey working with The Brilliant Club. Get top tips on working with your lead teacher and pupils and gain a better understanding of pupil’s educational context. This session is not recommended for those who went to school in Britain.

Suitable for: All tutors (particularly new tutors)

Only running in Bristol and London


Working in KS2

What does excellence look like for a ten-year-old? How do primary schools differ from the secondary school environment? And what does this mean for your course and programme deliver? This elective will introduce tutors to the landscape of Key Stage 2 in the UK and support them to consider how they can adapt their tutorial and programme deliver to work effectively with both primary school students and teachers.

Suitable for: All tutors with placements in Key Stage 2

Only running in London





Please note that sessions will only run in one slot.