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Exploring the barriers to engagement in group work



Exploring the barriers to engagement in group work by under-represented students and the relationship to student success.

Sruthi Ramakrishnan supervised by Dr Lisa Marshall

About the student researcher

I'm Sruthi Ramakrishnan, and I'm entering my 4th year of Dentistry at Leeds. I’ve always been curious about research and how to get involved, so I am thankful for this opportunity. I'm so excited to be involved in a LITE research project that has vast potential to redefine the university experience and enhance both academic and social outcomes for my underrepresented peers! 


Project overview

Groupwork is a large, sometimes demanding, component of many university degrees. This project aims to recognise the barriers to participating in groupwork experienced by marginalised students. We will also identify how these influence student outcomes, such as enjoyment, belonging, retention in higher education, and academic success. In this project, we have considered the views of various potential minority groups, predominantly international students, mature students, women, and students with long-term health conditions that impact their studies. The challenges these groups face while partaking in groupwork will be evidenced in a literature review, a detailed student questionnaire, and 1-to-1 student/educator interviews.  Personally, this project is exciting due to its broad scope; as our focus is on minority students’ perspectives on groupwork, our findings, and therefore our recommendations, on this research topic could be translated to various university courses/schools!