Newcastle University Medicine Malaysia

Staff Profile

Dr Clare Guilding

Dean of Academic Affairs (Medicine)



I have been the Dean of Academic Affairs at NUMed since 2017. I have an overall responsibility for quality assurance, assessment, student progress and student support for the MBBS programme at NUMed. I manage the delivery of the first two years of this programme, ensuring that the outcomes and standards are the same as those delivered in Newcastle UK.

I have been intimately involved in the design and development of the new MBBS curriculum and lead and manage the implementation of this curriculum in Malaysia. I lead in the development and delivery of NUMed's staff development programme, and oversee the Student Association

I worked as a postdoctoral researcher in neuroscience/neuropharmacology before moving to the School of Medical Education at Newcastle University UK in 2011. I held numerous roles in the School, including MBBS Deputy Degree Programme Director and co-lead for the Clinical Pharmacology, Therapeutics and Prescribing strand.

My medical education research interests lie in curriculum development and innovations in teaching. I played a crucial role in developing The British Pharmacological Society’s new undergraduate pharmacology curriculum and was instrumental in the development of Newcastle University’s new MBBS Clinical Pharmacology, Therapeutics and Prescribing curriculum. I place a high value on interactivity and clinical fidelity in teaching and have a keen interest in simulation and interprofessional education. My innovations in pharmacology education have been recognised nationally and internationally through awards from the Association for the Study of Medical Education (ASME), British Pharmacological Society (BPS) and Australasian Society of Clinical and Experimental Pharmacologists and Toxicologists (ASCEPT).


  • Postgraduate Certificate of Medical Education, Newcastle University (2018)
  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA), Higher Education Academy (2014)
  • Postgraduate Certificate of Advanced Studies in Academic Practice, Newcastle University (2014)
  • ILM Level 5 Award in Leadership and Management, The University of Manchester (2011)
  • Ph.D, College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine, The University of Edinburgh (2004)
  • BSc (Hons) Neuroscience, 1st class & Class Prize, The University of Edinburgh (2000)

Impact and Awards

  • Australasian Visitor Award, British Pharmacological Society and Australasian Society of Clinical and Experimental Pharmacologists and Toxicologists (2017) 
  • Rang Prize, British Pharmacological Society (2017) 
  • Vice-Chancellor's Distinguished Teacher Award, Newcastle University (2016)
  • Educator Innovator Award, Association for the Study of Medical Education - ASME (2016)
  • Education Prize, British Pharmacological Society (2015)
  • Overall Teaching Excellence Award, Newcastle University Student Union. "A special award to a member of staff who has shown outstanding commitment to all aspects of Learning and Teaching" (2015)
  • Teaching Excellence Awards, Nominations for: Outstanding Contribution to Teaching (2017, 2018); Contribution to Pastoral Support (2014, shortlisted 2015, 2018); Innovative Teaching Methods (FMS) (shortlisted 2015, 2016); Outstanding Contribution to Feedback (2015); Innovative Teaching Methods (2014); Support Staff of the Year (2014)  
  • The Education Awards, Nominations for: Outstanding Contribution to Global Campuses (2019) 


I teach a range of pharmacology, physiology and neuroscience subjects to MBBS students.


Areas of research and development within Medical Education include:
1.       Development of a new end-of-year appraisal format for medical students

When appraisals are performed effectively they are highly valued by students. They provide opportunities for feedback on student progress and for reflection and planning for change by the individual. We have been working to evaluate and redesign Newcastle Medical School’s MBBS appraisal. In 2014 we piloted a new appraisal format which was designed based around extensive feedback from students and staff. Using a mixed methods approach we ran an online evaluation and following analysis of the themes which arose from this we conducted a focus group to explore how the appraisal process impacts personal learning and development, in order to inform on-going development of the student appraisal process.

2.       High-fidelity patient simulation (SimMan) in the lecture theatre

In much of preclinical medical education, the basics of science are still taught with little practical clinical application. I have been developing the use of a virtual patient simulator, SimMan, in large preclinical pharmacology lectures (<200 students). Use of SimMan allows students to apply their recently learned knowledge to simulated ‘real-life’ scenarios. Currently, simulation is primarily used in small group settings in clinical undergraduate and postgraduate training. Colleagues in other institutions have used lecture theatre based simulations, with a few students controlling the scenario and the remainder of the class observing. We do not have the capacity to run small group simulations and were concerned about lack of engagement of the whole class if only the tutor or a few students control the scenario. Thus to enable the entire class to engage in clinical decision making, I employ a combination of split screen and interative voting technologies. One screen projects SimMan’s vital signs (e.g. blood pressure, oxygen saturation); the other is linked to a TurningPoint interactive quiz. At key clinical points throughout the scenario, students have to vote individually on the most appropriate course of action (e.g. which drug to use). The option with the most votes is applied to SimMan and the students observe the physiological effects this has in real time. Initial online end of unit evaluation of this innovation has been positive and we are looking to develop the range of scenarios and further assess their educational benefits.

3.       Interprofessional Education Conference

Patient safety is a key priority in the NHS and crucial for this is effective multidisciplinary teamworking. Thus, preparing students for collaborative teamwork in the clinical environment is essential. Interprofessional education (IPE), when two or more professions learn with, from and about each other to improve collaboration and quality of care, is seen as an effective mechanism to prepare professionals for teamwork in the clinical environment. This project aims to utilise this IPE approach to develop and deliver a day-long interprofessional education conference around the theme of infection management and patient safety. Stage 2 Medicine (from Newcastle University) and Pharmacy (from Sunderland University) degree students will be provided with pre-reading materials, lanyards and ‘conference’ packs to replicate as realistically as possible a conference. We will use cutting edge teaching techniques such as use of high-fidelity mannequins to simulate acute medical emergencies and team based learning exercises. We aim to examine the attitude of medical and pharmacy students towards interprofessional learning, the added value of the conference format and the impact of the variety of interactive teaching approaches. 

4.       Assessment of PeerWise as an educational and development tool for medical students

PeerWise is a free online quizzing platform that allows students to author and answer multiple choice questions (MCQs), rate the quality of other students’ contributions as well as discuss content. It provides an opportunity for self- and peer-assessment as well as incorporating aspects of active learning. PeerWise has been introduced and used extensively in a number of universities and across a wide range of courses. There is, however, little research into the benefits of PeerWise for medical students. PeerWise was introduced to Stages 1 through to 4 MBBS students at Newcastle University in the first semester of the 2014/2015 academic year. End of year feedback suggest that at least some students feel that the use of PeerWise has impacted upon their academic performance, however this remains to be explored. We are investigating the value of PeerWise as an educational and development tool. Specifically we are assessing whether PeerWise positively enhances the academic performance of Stage 4 MBBS students and what specific aspects of Peerwise (e.g. authoring, answering questions, commenting) most impacts academic performance and students perceived development.