An Evidence-Based Approach to Embedding Resilience Within the Curriculum


Lydia Bleasdale and Sarah Humphreys, School of Law

This report considers the findings of a year-long research project – Realising Resilience: An Evidence-Based Approach to Embedding Resilience Within the Curriculum, into the ‘resilience’ of undergraduate students at the University of Leeds.

Focused upon second year undergraduates in six disciplines (Biological Sciences, Geography, Law, Mechanical Engineering, Medicine, and Music), the project sought to understand more about existing levels of student resilience, and how their resilience might be supported within Higher Education Institutions.

To that end, 35 members of staff and 55 students were interviewed, alongside 185 students completing a survey designed to measure existing levels of resilience.

Lydia and Sarah explore these themes further as part of their LITE project. Read here the full executive summary.

To read Lydia and Sarah’s full report click here.

For more information and to request the full report contact Lydia at:

READ: Lydia’s LITE blog ‘Building Student Resilience’


Internal Impact and Dissemination

University and School policies

  • The University’s Personal Tutoring Task and Finish group (Bleasdale invited contributor)
  • The University’s Wellbeing strategy group (Bleasdale and Humphreys invited contributors)
  • Leeds University Union’s Wellbeing strategy group (Bleasdale and Humphreys invited contributors)
  • Mechanical Engineering Academic Board (invited speakers), January 2018. This School is establishing a Task Group to implement the Report’s recommendations
  • Leeds Institute for Medical Education Learning and Teaching Forum(Bleasdale, invited speaker), November 2017. LIME is trialling a revised approach to personal tutoring on the basis of the research
  • Bleasdale’s Full University Student Education Fellowship (2016) is being used to further embed the resilience findings within the School of Law’s LLB and BA Criminology and Criminal Justice curriculum
  • The Careers Centre is currently in discussion with the Alumni Office regarding diversifying the Alumni banners around campus – a key message from the Report was that we need to consider who we celebrate, and what messages that sends out to our students about versions of ‘success’
  • Bleasdale and Humphreys will soon begin working with the Careers Centre on resources around failure, and on delivering a resilience workshop for students

Resilience workshop

  • Women Breaking Barriers Network Resilience Workshop (invited convenors), University of Leeds, February 2018 (Bleasdale and Humphreys designed a resilience workshop in light of the research findings; this has since been delivered to numerous external parties as well – see below).


  • University of Leeds Employability Network (Bleasdale, invited speaker, reflecting upon how to improve student resilience for employability purposes), April 2018
  • LITE -visiting Utrecht University Delegation (Bleasdale, invited speaker) February 2018
  • Promoting Well-being, Resilience and Achievement in Medicine, Dentistry, Healthcare and Veterinary Medicine Students Conference(Bleasdale and Humphreys, invited speakers), December 2017
  • Centre for Innovation and Research in Legal Education Work in Progress seminar (Bleasdale and Humphreys), November 2017
  • Supporting Wellbeing and Good Mental Health in Health Professions Students Annual Conference (Bleasdale and Humphreys, invited speakers), December 2016
  • Leeds Institute for Teaching Excellence, Work in Progress seminar, (Bleasdale and Humphreys) November 2016

External Impact and Dissemination


  • Bleasdale and Humphreys ‘Well-Being Knowledge, Skills and Attitudes’ in Strevens and Field (eds) Educating for Well-Being in Law: Positive Professional Identities and Practice (Forthcoming)
  • Leeds Law Society commissioned research from the Law School on ‘Millennial Lawyers,’ seeking to better understand some of the anecdotal generational differences between senior and junior lawyers. Bleasdale (along with colleague Prof. Andrew Francis) has conducted surveys and four focus groups with members of the profession, and will be producing a final report (with recommendations) in September 2018

Press coverage

  • Times Higher Education (January 30th 2018) ‘Generation snowflake? What’s that? say students’

Resilience workshops

  • Leeds Law Society Resilience Workshop (Bleasdale and Humphreys, invited convenors), May 2018
  • Newcastle University Law School Resilience Workshop (Bleasdale and Humphreys, invited convenors), April 2018
  • Socio-Legal Studies Association Annual Conference: Postgraduate Researchers Resilience Workshop (Bleasdale and Humphreys, invited convenors), April 2018 
  • Leeds Junior Lawyers Division Wellbeing Workshop (Bleasdale and Humphreys, invited convenors), Squire Patton Boggs, November 2017

External recognition

  • ‘Contextualising Undergraduate Student Resilience’ (Bleasdale), Stan Marsh Best Paper Prize at the Association of Law Teachers Annual Conference (March 2017)


  • ‘Trigger warnings and ‘generation snowflake’: Students’ perspectives on narratives surrounding the ‘modern’ University student’ given for the Society of Legal Scholars September 2018 Annual Conference (London)
  • West Midlands Legal Doctoral Network Launch (Bleasdale and Humphreys, invited speakers), October 2018
  • Legal Education Symposium (Bleasdale and Humphreys, invited speakers), Portsmouth University, May 2018
  • Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry Wellbeing Conference (Bleasdale, invited speaker), London, April 2018
  • ‘Law Students, Resilience, and the Role of Universities’ Socio-Legal Studies Association Annual Conference (Bleasdale and Humphreys) Law and Emotion Stream, April 2018
  • London and South East section of Principal Fellows of the Higher Education Academy(Bleasdale, invited speaker), City University, November 2017
  • Futures of Legal Education Conference(Bleasdale, Wellbeing in Law stream convenor), Open University, September 2017
  • British Society of Periodontology conference‘Coping with Life, the Universe and Everything: Personal Resilience in the 21st century’ (Bleasdale, invited speaker), June 2017
  • ‘Contextualising Resilience’ Association of Law Teachers Conference (Bleasdale), April 2017
  • ‘Perceptions of Wellbeing in Law Teachers’ workshop(Humphreys, invited participant), City University, April 2017
  • LawCare Wellbeing in the Legal Profession Network(Bleasdale, invited participant), December 2016