Judith Williams

Judith Williams


Personal profile


I am the Associate Vice President for Teaching, Learning and Students, Director of the Institute of Teaching and Learning and Professor of Academic Enhancement at the University of Manchester.  As Associate Vice President for Teaching, Learning and Students (Inclusivity and Engagement) and Director of the Institute of Teaching and Learning (Academic Enhancement) I have strategic oversight for Teaching Enhancement, Academic Development and Student Success for over 45,000 students and 7,000 academic staff at the UK’s largest civic university. My strategy focuses on three key areas, Student Success, Teaching Enhancement and Culture Change. To realise my vision, I am working in partnership with our students, academics, and professional services, and external partners to develop a step change in our approach.

Student Success: “No boundaries to learning, no barriers to study.” My student success strategy attracts the most talented students, regardless of their background, to provide superb, digitally enhanced higher education and learning experiences. I lead activities for effective and dispersed leadership across Welcome, Induction and Transition. I have set a clear and consistent vision that has brought teams together following a major restructure within professional services. My approach has enabled delivery of high-quality business as usual activity as well as an effective shift in focus and resources as a response to the Office for Students requirements.

As the inaugural Director of the Institute of Teaching and Learning I have set the strategy for academic staff development and teaching quality enhancement creating a step change in Teaching Excellence.”  The Institute supports teaching quality, embeds innovative teaching methods and leads on university-wide strategic projects.  My teaching is highly regarded, having received The University of Manchester Teaching Excellence award, a Distinguished Achievement Medal for Teacher of the year, a Principal Fellowship from the HEA and a National Teaching Fellowship. I am committed to fostering and celebrating a culture of inclusivity, engagement and teaching excellence, and achieve this through effective and collegial partnerships that enable ongoing professional development.


I gained my undergraduate honours degree in Biochemistry with Studies in the USA 1994 from Salford University and went on to study for my Medical Research Council funded Doctorate in Molecular Microbiology at the University of Southampton. Having very much enjoyed the research experience I continued within my research group employed as a clinical scientist. In 1999 I joined the University of Manchester as a BBSRC funded Postdoctoral Research Associate on a project in association with AstraZeneca to study viral directed Gene Therapy. In 2002 I moved to the Heart Failure Research Group as a Lecturer focusing on the molecular mechanisms underlying Heart Failure. While in this post I became responsible for delivering training on the graduate training programme and moved to a full-time position leading skills development across the Faculty in 2004. I was awarded the Northwest hub of Vitae (National body for researcher development) in 2008 and lead the team designing and delivering training across the region. In 2009 I was shortlisted for a Times Higher award for outstanding support for early career researchers and in 2011 I was awarded a distinguished achievement medal for teacher of the year. I have gone on to be awarded a senior fellowship from the Higher Education Academy and a teaching Excellence award from the University of Manchester. In 2017 I was delighted to be awarded a National Teaching Fellowship and a Principal Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy. I was promoted to Senior Lecturer in 2013 and then Professor in 2016.  Until 2015 I was a member of Vitae’s strategy board where I helped shape the national policy on researcher development. As head of the Centre for Academic and Researcher Development I provided support and training for postgraduate taught students through to senior academics and was responsible for academic development across the Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health. I have set up strategic partnerships with the Medical Research Council developing and delivering researcher capacity building programmes across Africa. I have moved to become the inaugural Director of the Institute of Teaching and Learning for the university. Developing effective teaching enhancement programmes to create a development continuum from undergraduate peer support leader to change leadership that builds a culture of continual enhancement. I am also the Associate Vice President for Teaching Learning and Students, with a portfolio of inclusivity and engagement, covering student access, success and progression.

Memberships of committees and professional bodies

National Teaching Fellowship

Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy

Deputy Chair of Advance HE Fellowship and Accreditation Panel

Chartered Insititue of Personnel and Development (CIPD)

Vitae National Training Programme



PhD Molecular Microbiology

BSc Hons Biochemistry

CIPD certificate in Training and Development

ILM Level 5 Certificate in Coaching and Mentoring in Management

ILM Level 7 Certificate in Executive Coaching and Mentoring 

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 17 - Partnerships for the Goals

External positions

External Examiner, University of Birmingham

1 Sept 2022 → …

External Examiner , The University of Sheffield

1 Sept 2014 → …

Areas of expertise

  • L Education (General)
  • QR355 Virology


Dive into the research topics where Judith Williams is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
  • 1 Similar Profiles