With students now holding most of the power and teachers carrying most of the responsibility for delivering outcomes students deem satisfactory, university teaching has become a stressful occupation. Unable to find the support they need within the system, some lecturers seek external, private coaching to improve their teaching.

My job, as the coach who works with them, is to offer practical advice about how to bring the subject to life and present it in such a way that the students understand and are stimulated by it. This, of course, is good teaching and for lecturers to acquire these skills can only benefit all concerned. However, in the current climate, it can take a great deal of courage and determination for university teachers to adopt a style that will truly get their students learning. For this to happen, the grotesque imbalance of power and responsibility needs to be redressed – and a large part of the work I do is discussing the psychology behind such a shift, giving the teacher the clarity of purpose to gird his or her loins and stand firm in the battle ahead.