Director of First Year Student Experience

An Inspired Learning Initiative

Associate Professor Richard Buckland

By supporting the embedding of the Scientia Education Model, Associate Professor Richard Buckland, the Director of First Year Student Experience, will enhance the student experience and workplace preparedness.  The aim of this role within the Inspired Learning Initiative is to transform UNSW's programs and courses so they are outstanding examples of offerings that meet the needs of our future students, industry, the professions and the wider community.

The Director will work closely with the Deputy Vice-Chancellor Education/Pro-Vice-Chancellor Education in the strategic and operational planning and coordination of the first year experience at UNSW.  

The goals of the Director include:

  • Developing and implementing a plan to enhance the first year experience in line with the Scientia Education Model, including a focus on building communities, enabling feedback to and from students, celebrating outstanding examples of education, and utilizing technology
  • Provide advice and support to faculties in the design, administration, delivery and evaluation of a first year experience
  • Work with the Pro-Vice-Chancellor Education Portfolio to improve the first year experience
  • Promote outcomes and support academic staff engaging in teaching or conducting research aimed at improving the experience of first year students
  • Establish and maintain a community of academic and professional staff focussed on supporting and enhancing the first year student experience
  • Personalise transitional learning for first year students to support the needs of diverse student cohorts

About Associate Professor Richard Buckland

Richard Buckland is an Associate Professor in Computer Security, Cybercrime, and Cyberterror at the University of New South Wales. His research areas lie in Learning and Teaching and Security Engineering. Currently he is working on non-mark based motivation in online education, and protocols for secure electronic elections in untrusted environments. Richard is the Chair of the Academic Board of the Australian Computer Society, a member of the UNSW Academic Board and the University Quality Advisory Committee, the Director of First Year Studies and the Chair of the Skills Syllabus Group of the School of Computer Science and Engineering at UNSW.

He holds degrees in Science and in Economics, and has been awarded the University Medal in Computer Science and the Vice Chancellors Award for Teaching Excellence (twice). He has been awarded numerous state national and international teaching awards including awards from the Australian College of Educators, the Australasian Association of Engineering Educators, and the The Australian Learning and Teaching Council. Richard was the Australian ICT educator of the year in 2013 (iAwards) and in 2008 was the Engineering Educator of the Year for Australia and New Zealand.

Richard has a love for teaching and a deep faith in the potential of all his students. He has taught over 10,000 students face to face at numerous levels including primary school, high school, undergraduate, postgraduate and professional students, and hundreds of thousands of students electronically. He has a passionate belief in the importance of education, of learning, of thinking. He has a particular interest in gifted and talented students and students with learning difficulties.

Richard's online computing lectures have had over two million views and in 2012 he ran the first Australian MOOC "UNSW Computing 1". He is co-founder of education startup an open MOOC and flipped teaching platform designed to delight students as well as teachers.

Before commencing his second degree he worked as an actuary and management consultant and has qualified as a Fellow of the Institute of Actuaries of Australia.