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THE University of Portsmouth has won a grant to study how students’ beliefs about themselves, their ability to learn and their employment prospects develop.

The grant is part of a wider project by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (Hefce) in which £4m has been given to 12 universities to pilot and evaluate how learning gains in higher education might be measured.

The studies will last for three years and the results will be made public to help all UK universities better understand how learning takes place.

Dr Sherria Hoskins, head of psychology, is leading a cross-faculty team from four universities. Her group was awarded £268,772 to examine students’ personal development and readiness for employment.

She said: ‘We were delighted to have been selected from stiff competition to study important underlying factors, such as what sort of teaching and learning leads to more resilience or flexibility.’

The team will examine 3,000 undergraduates studying a wide cross-section of subjects in four universities at four points in their period at university.