Ruskin Modules

Ruskin Modules are an exciting innovation in ARU’s curriculum to give our students an additional edge in the workplace.

Ruskin Modules are incorporated into most of our undergraduate degrees, bring together students from different courses to tackle challenges. With no single answer, the challenges let you:

  • explore solutions outside your area of study
  • take different perspectives
  • develop innovative thinking and the creative problem-solving skills that the jobs of the future demand.

Another feature of our undergraduate degrees is live briefs. Live briefs give you the chance to apply what you’ve learnt in the classroom, gain hands-on experience working with clients, and add value to a business.

On this page you'll find a selection of the exciting Ruskin Modules which most* of our Level 4 students will be able to choose from.

*Please check with your Course Leader if your course is accredited by a Professional Statutory Regulatory Body (PSRB) such as the GOC, GMC, HCPC, NMC or SWE.

AI and the Future: a threat to humanity?

Learning activities: weekly lectures, interactive workshops, supported by Canvas-based scaffolded learning.

Assessment: portfolio comprising a weekly blog, final essay and Live Brief with local businesses.

Find out more about 'AI and the future: a threat to humanity?'

AI and the future: a threat to humanity?

How can we ensure that the values of AI are aligned with our own? What ethical principles should we programme AI with? How can we ensure that it benefits our lives? And what effects will it have on our lives, both in the workplace and in the home?

Can we design a better future?

Learning activities: seminars, workshops and work sessions supported by student-managed, independent study.

Assessment: group presentation and an evaluative report on reflective practice.

Find out more about 'Can we design a better future?'

Can we design a better future?

The big challenges of our contemporary societies require new and different approaches based on creativity and imagination. This module applies methods and techniques for problem solving. Based on an interdisciplinary approach it brings together elements from creative arts, culture and sociology, systems and management converging in the Design Thinking methodology.

Climate justice and social inequality: could you be an agent for change?

Learning activities: tutor-led presentations and a set of staggered sessions of varying lengths supported by independent study.

Assessment: a group presentation of a community-action project based on interdisciplinary team work, and an individual reflective essay.

Find out more about 'Climate justice and social inequality: could you be an agent for change?'

Climate justice and social inequality: could you be an agent for change?

What does racism have to do with the environment? Will climate change affect us all equally? In this module, you will learn about some of the links between climate change and inequality, and how we can all become agents for change.

Do I matter?

Learning activities: weekly study session comprising lectures, webinars, activities and student presentations supported by structured learning activities through Canvas.

Assessment: An individual reflection supported by a series of reflections reflecting developing identity and self-understanding (e.g., personal narratives, biographies, critiques of films) collected during the module.

Find out more about 'Do I matter?'

Do I matter?

How do you articulate who you are when bound by knots of frustrated emotion? In this module we will consider who we are, exploring our identities from a range of perspectives from culture and art, to psychology and philosophy. We will develop a polymathic perspective to empower, assert, include and accept and come to better know ourselves.

Do numbers lie?

Learning activities: weekly session comprising tutorials, seminars and workshops supported by independent and team study.

Assessment: portfolio of work including computer-based assessment and patchwork text.

Find out more about 'Do numbers lie?'

Do numbers lie?

We live in an age of ‘communicative abundance’. Almost everything you are told will be biased in some way - this is even more true where numbers are concerned. Chances are that the numbers with which you are presented have been manipulated to influence you. How can you tell? What can you do?

Do we know what it takes to be an anti-racist?

Learning activities: reflection, critical knowledge and understanding of personal experience, creativity, skills, attitudes and behaviours to reduce personal and structural discrimination and inequalities.

Assessment: a journal including describing ‘a day in the life’ of one experience of anti-racism, and an Anti-Racist Action Plan describing actions to reduce personal or structural discrimination and inequalities.

Find out more about 'Do we know what it takes to be an anti-racist?'

Do we know what it takes to be an anti-racist?

You'll reflect on your personal experiences of race and racism by questioning your self-concept to nurture your community cultural wealth. The module explores interdisciplinary perspectives through historical context, influential thinkers, creatives, anti-racist activists, models and methods that underpin race and racism in the UK and from broader global theoretical understandings. You'll work with other students to understand anti-racist practices, acquiring skills, attitudes and behaviours to reduce personal & structural discrimination and inequalities.

Do we need humans as teachers?

Learning activities: weekly workshops including some short, pre-recorded lectures supported by independent work (including study groups).

Assessment: practical production, presentation or performance and a reflective learning journal in the form of a blog/vlog or learning diary.

Find out more about 'Do we need humans as teachers?'

Do we need humans as teachers?

Our understanding of how humans learn evolves constantly. We will draw on philosophy and sociology to consider notions of knowledge transfer versus the fostering of enquiring minds and the limits and capabilities of technology in humans’ learning. Finally, we will consider how the role of teachers and technology in the future might promote inclusive, equitable education for all and reduce societal inequalities.

Do we own animals?

Learning activities: developing digital fluency, critical evaluation skills, logical and well-reasoned arguments, balancing ethical and economic perspectives.

Assessment: a lobby paper arguing change in policy or legislation regarding the use of animals, and a reflection on your journey through the module.

Find out more about 'Do we own animals?'

Do we own animals?

Animals are generally considered to be beings, that are sentient, but they also contribute to the world's economy. How can we balance these two ideas? Why do we recognise animals as sentient beings? How do the relationships we develop with animals impact their treatment? How do animals contribute to the economy? How do we recognise the rights of animals and the rights of animal owners and what actions can we take to support this?

Does language affect the way I think?

Learning activities: weekly workshops including some short, pre-recorded lectures supported by independent work (including study groups).

Assessment: practical production, presentation or performance and a reflective learning journal in the form of a blog/vlog or learning diary.

Find out more about 'Does language affect the way I think?'

Does language affect the way I think?

Language is integral to how we think and act. In this module you will examine how language can be used to shape ideas and the future; its dangers and misuse; our own personal inner language; the link between words and concepts; and whether we feel differently depending on the language we speak.

How do you disagree with the majority view and still be respected?

Learning activities: lectures and sessions comprising case studies and multi-media followed by enquiry and discussion supported by student-led workshops, debates and discussion.

Assessment: practical assessment.

Find out more from Austin's 60 Second Seminar

How do you disagree with the majority view and still be respected?

With the growing incidence of cancel culture in the digital social space, this module explores the alternate narrative. You will discover the contradictory, complicated and often complementary nature of the multicultural communities we live in locally, regionally, nationally, and globally whilst providing a safe space to explore difficult themes which are often avoided for fear of inadvertently being impolite or politically incorrect.

Is technology changing us?

Learning activities: teaching sessions supported by student-managed groupwork and collaborative proposal and artefact development.

Assessment: topic proposal (small group work) and a coursework portfolio.

Find out more from Neil Dixon's 60 Second Seminar

Is technology changing us?

Neil Dixon, Learning Technologist at Anglia Ruskin University, explains in a 60-second seminar about the Ruskin module he is leading: Is technology changing us?

Performing Activism: How can we use our bodies for change?

Learning activities: lecture seminars and performance workshops supported by tutorials and independent study and performance protest making.

Assessment: creation of one performance event articulated as protest. Performed with an explanatory presentation.

Find out more about 'Performing activism: how can we use our bodies for change?'

Performing activism: how can we use our bodies for change?

Education tends to focus on the mind rather than the body, neglecting a source of change and innovative ideas. Body intelligence is developed by bringing together politics, history, social sciences and performing arts to offer a practical approach to activism, protest and performance. Through a close look at performance, you'll understand leadership and agency of your actions.e to better know ourselves.

To be or not to be enterprising?

Learning activities: active learning workshops integrating guidance and facilitation through aspects to approaching a problem supported by individual and team work on a real-life project.

Assessment: reflection using an e-portfolio documenting your learning journey and team proposal for addressing one of the problems chosen.

Find out more about 'To be or not to be enterprising?'

To be or not to be enterprising?

In this module you will learn about Enterprise Education and how you can develop the abilities, skills and competencies that will give you the lifelong skills to succeed in your education, employment and life.

What can we learn from a global pandemic?

Learning activities: team-working, critical thinking, communication, debating and reflective thinking skills.

Assessment: a portfolio containing one reflective pre-positioning statement, one multi-media team presentation and one reflective post-positioning statement.

Find out more about 'What can we learn from a global pandemic?'

What can we learn from a global pandemic?

The module explores the impact of global pandemics on populations, with discussions evaluating the consequences for global communities. Topics such as global public health, businesses and tourism and lifestyle are included, and conversations will focus on how communities can evolve in an ethical and responsible way to ensure our future is sustainable.

What does social justice in the twenty first century mean?

Learning activities: a set of workshops, webinars and tutorials to aligned with module themes supported by discussion board activities and tutor support.

Assessment: practical assessment.

Find out more about 'What does social justice in the 21st century mean?'

What does social justice in the 21st century mean?

According to some of our much-loved films we should all be worrying about Terminators coming back from the future, aliens who are sensitive to noise and flying cars... but in reality can we even say we have social justice in our society? It is the year 2021 and we are still arguing about rights, justice and freedom for all. Why do you think that is?

What's the real price tag on fashion?

Learning activities: lecture series, interactive seminars and workshops supported by discussion activities, reading and research.

Assessment: poster, presentation video and an individual report on the journey through the stages of love, think and act reflecting on your own consumption and clothing brands' approaches.

Learn more about Dr Helen Benton's 60-second seminar for the Ruskin module

What's the real price tag on fashion?

Clothing is a necessity for protecting us against the elements, however, the majority of clothing is purchased as a luxurious item for self-expression/image, for fashion or to meet societal expectations. You will take a journey to explore your role as a Global Citizen from the perspective of your personal approach, reflecting and evaluating your consumption and its impact.

What if imagination could save the world?

Learning activities: developing critical analysis, critical reflection, collaboration, research and climate literacy.

Assessment: your own image of the future using either creative or practice-based methods (e.g., science fiction, a podcast set in the future, or a narrative/report), supported by a 1500-word critical reflective essay.

Find out more about 'What if imagination could save the world?'

What if imagination could save the world?

The overwhelming image of the future is one of doom and gloom and many people are worried about what it might hold, but what if we could use our imaginations to think differently about the future? This module will analyse how others have thought about the future, drawing on historical ideas such as Garden Cities and Science Fiction. We will explore how we might shape the future in more open and democratic ways.

Where do you belong in this city?

Learning activities: lectures and online team tutorials supported by project work in interdisciplinary teams.

Assessment: individual reflection, team peer assessment and presentation of team project.

Find out more about 'Where do you belong in this city?'

Where do you belong in this city?

Who are you in a place? What does architecture have to do with linguistics, and literature with life science? In this module we will explore the layers of cities and how they might shape the way we see ourselves.

Who, me? Make a difference in my community?

Learning activities: 2 lectures, group tutorials and online tutor support, supported by group meetings, discussion, solution development and writing.

Assessment: group academic poster and individual critical reflection.

Find out more about 'Who, me? Make a difference in my community?'

Who me? Make a difference in my community?

We all live as part of various communities. Many of these communities face issues which impact negatively on their quality of life. We often feel powerless to help change things for the better – but we can! This module will show you how communities can organise to make change.

Work: what is it good for?

Learning activities: weekly session comprising tutorials, seminars and workshops supported by independent and team study.

Assessment: portfolio of work including computer-based assessment and patchwork text.

Find out more about 'Work: what is it good for?'

Work: what is it good for?

The boundaries between work and home have become increasingly permeable, with both positive and negative consequences. Although these problems may seem contemporary it is possible to trace similar shifts and anxieties over the centuries. Explore work through the ages – from the Garden of Eden to Amazon and Uber.