Imagining Futures: Solution Focused Practice in an Interdisciplinary Creative Arts Foundation Year

  • Kirsty Wagstaffe University of Northampton
Keywords: Foundation Year, Sustainability Development Goals, Arts, Social Innovation, Changemaker


This personal and self-reflective paper describes the development of an Arts Foundation Year module focused on employability, professionalism and social innovation and change. The module was developed over a three-year period and involves students being engaged with the university’s strategic plan and ‘Changemaker’ ethos and investigating a range of creative solutions to global problems. The structure of the module and changes made are discussed. Evidence is provided that developing the module has led to greater student engagement and satisfaction and an improvement in success and attainment rates.


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Author Biography

Kirsty Wagstaffe, University of Northampton

Kirsty Wagstaffe is a senior lecturer on the Integrated Foundation Year at the University of Northampton. She lectures mainly across the Arts cognate but has qualifications in photography, psychology and art history. She has over twenty years of teaching experience, including primary, secondary and further education, and undergraduate teaching across the arts and teaching teachers at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels. She has a strong belief in the Widening Participation, Every Youth Matters and Arts for Mental Health agendas, and is a qualified life coach.