New Senior Tutor to join Clare Hall

The College is thrilled to announce that Dr Holly Hedgeland will join our community as Senior Tutor this summer.

Dr Hedgeland currently works for Robinson College, where she is Admissions Tutor for the Sciences and Fellow in Physics; and at the Open University, where she is a Senior Lecturer and Staff Tutor in Physical Sciences.

She shares:
“I am delighted to be taking up the role of Senior Tutor at Clare Hall and very much look forward to meeting and working with the students, staff, Fellows, Visiting Fellows and Life Members who together make the College’s unique community. When visiting Clare Hall, I’ve always been impressed by the friendly, egalitarian and inclusive atmosphere and I am genuinely excited to be joining you at this time.

Undeniably, the pandemic has brought us many challenges, some new and others significantly accentuated by the uncertainties and isolation of the last year. I’m aware that the support our students need to make the most of their time at the College must anticipate and respond to these circumstances as the pandemic evolves. However, I am also optimistic that the innovation and creativity that we’ve seen in distanced and online community building will allow us to integrate new ideas in support of student experience and welfare, much as we keenly anticipate the return of in person interactions over the coming months.” 

Prior to her current roles, Dr Hedgeland held a Leverhulme Early Career Fellowship at the London Centre for Nanotechnology, University College London. As an undergraduate, she read Natural Sciences at Downing, staying on in Cambridge for a PhD in the Surface Physics group at the Cavendish Laboratory. After finishing her PhD, Dr Hedgeland held a postdoc and teaching fellowship at Robinson College and also spent two years as a secondary teacher of maths and physics before moving to UCL:

“My research background is in surface science with a particular interest in dynamical phenomena at surfaces. I have applied experimental techniques ranging from helium atom scattering and scanning tunnelling microscopy to synchrotron x-ray and neutron scattering to evaluate surface energy landscapes and friction. I am particularly interested in providing the novel data needed for benchmarking the latest developments in theoretical approaches such as density functional theory and molecular dynamics.

I also have an interest in Physics Education Research, stemming from my MA in Online and Distance Education and practitioner studies while teaching in the secondary sector. While at the Open University, I have supervised doctoral work on the automated marking of free text responses and a project funded by the Ogden Trust investigating the use of technology enhanced assessment to reduce demographic gaps in attainment in physics.”

Of her interests beyond work, Dr Hedgeland says:

“Like many of us, my hobbies have been somewhat disrupted over the last year, to be replaced by Zoom German and Pilates classes and a set of dumbbells for home workouts. Happily constant though is my enjoyment of spending time outdoors – whether delighting in the produce of the latest gardening project or exploring new routes to walk, run or ride. I’ve also previously spent a lot of time watching the sunrise from the middle of the river Cam, and at one stage even organised the Bumps, so I’m very much looking forward to seeing Clare Hall Boat Club back on the river next year.”


For media enquiries or to share your own story, please contact Katherine Selby, Communications & Marketing Manager