Online Espresso Course: Fostering student wellbeing in your teaching practice

Course description

Increasing evidence shows that wellbeing and positive mental health are key factors for student success at university. However, many students struggle with high levels of psychological distress that negatively impacts their ability to participate, concentrate, and succeed.

This online course will examine the range of factors that can support or undermine student mental health in diverse learning environments. It will offer suggestions on how curriculum can be intentionally designed to foster student wellbeing, and explore the role of academic educators in creating supportive learning environments, including for research supervisors to support PhD candidates.

Course Dates

This online course will run from Monday, 22 January to Wednesday, 24 January, 2018. There will be 3 blog posts in total that each take 10-15 minutes to work though.


  • Day 1: Student wellbeing: This module explores conditions in higher education that may contribute to high levels of psychological distress among university students. It also introduces a theoretical understanding of factors that support or undermine student mental health in diverse learning environments.
  • Day 2: Curriculum design: This module explores the ways that decisions in curriculum design might increase or mitigate student anxiety and distress. It also offers good practice strategies and discipline-based case studies of curriculum innovation designed to enhance student wellbeing. 
  • Day 3: Teaching practices: This module reviews evidence-based teaching approaches that have been shown to enhance student wellbeing, engagement and competence in a range of contexts. It provides examples of how the essentials of student mental wellbeing can be supported through diverse teaching practices.


Alexandra Culloden is the Wellbeing Project Coordinator for the Division of Student Life at ANU. With a Bachelor of Psychology and Master of Public Health, Alex also brings over 10 years’ experience in the mental health sector to her role at the university. She is passionate about supporting student wellbeing within the university environment through universal whole systems approaches with an emphasis on prevention and health promotion.

All are welcome

We welcome all staff, including tutors, demonstrators, professional staff, and academics at the Australian National University and beyond to join us for this online course. Professional development recognition is available for all ANU staff through HORUS - access the specific course here. To receive recognition, you will be required to post a comment on every blog.

How does the course work?

All you need to do is Subscribe for Updates by visiting our blog and clicking on the red Subscribe button (scroll down to the bottom of the page). We welcome you to comment and discuss on each post as they are added. Feel free to participate as much or as little as you prefer.


Please feel free to contact with any questions.

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