This is just a gentle reminder that we will soon be putting out a Call for Papers for this year’s Annual Education Conference, which will be held on 11th July 2016. This year, CSPACE will be teaming up with CELT to deliver an exciting conference which will encompass a broad range of aspects of research, teaching and learning in education across the university.
Regardless of which Faculty you work in, we’re keen to hear about the work that is being done with regards to education across BCU. You might want to talk about a teaching approach or technique that has worked well for you, or you may some interdisciplinary research that you’d like to share. Whatever you would like to talk about, we’re keen to hear about your work.
Below is an overview of the conference foci:
Pedagogy, Practice, Politics and Policy: Where to next in teaching, learning and research in education?
(a) Professional practices in teaching
(b) Formal and informal lifelong learning pedagogies
(c) Public and popular debates in education policy
(d) Researching education
Each strand will encourage papers from all education sectors;
- Further Education
- Early years
- Higher Education
- Third sector /Voluntary provision
We’ll soon be opening the call for papers, so it’s a good idea to start thinking now about what you might present. For now, if you have any questions you can contact me on Rebecca.Snape@bcu.ac.uk or other members of the organising committee on Victoria.Birmingham@bcu.ac.uk or Edward.Hulbert@mail.bcu.ac.uk.
Name: Matt O’Leary
Role at BCU: Reader in Education
- Classroom observation
- Teacher assessment
- Teacher identity and professionalism
- Teacher improvement
- Teacher as researcher
- Professional learning and development for teachers
- Vocational pedagogy
Research you are currently working on: The impact of the government’s austerity agenda on further education; the politics and pedagogy of peer review in Higher Education; observing teaching in Higher Education
Research methodologies you are using: In terms of my epistemological and methodological positioning, I am a mixed-methods researcher with understanding and experience of both quantitative and qualitative methods of data collection and analysis. The research I am currently working on is predominantly of a qualitative nature (i.e. interviews, focus groups and document analysis)
Current issues, thoughts and reflections on education & research: I am committed to encouraging a collaborative, participatory approach to research, wherever possible and appropriate, as I am mindful of the need to develop research capacity amongst staff in education departments that have traditionally been on the margins of university research activity. One of the priorities for me in developing a research culture in education is the creation of a vibrant and collaborative environment in which staff are encouraged to engage in thinking, discussing and writing about their practice. I have witnessed directly the way in which working collaboratively with and mentoring others can help to develop research and writing skills, along with building the confidence of staff to produce publications. Talking to members of staff on a one-to-one basis to understand their interests, needs and what kind of support is best suited to developing their research and writing capacity, is crucial starting point in creating such a culture.
For me one of the greatest challenges in education research at the moment has to be the issue of IMPACT of educational research. Putting to one side the issue of party politics and the selectivity of successive governments to listen to or ignore the findings of educational research, the research community is still faced with the challenge of making findings more accessible to wider communities.
Most influential research you have read/seen: I’ve always found Stephen Ball’s work incredibly interesting and a big influence on my own work.
Advice for new researchers: Work hard continuously! There are no short cuts to becoming a successful researcher. Intelligence will only get you so far. It’s about putting in the hours and effort on a continuous basis. It’s also worth pointing out that you’re likely to come up against lots of obstacles and challenges as part of any research project, but don’t let this worry you as it’s a natural part of (research) life and the way in which you respond to them is an important part of your development as a successful researcher.
Mini fact about you: Cycling and cooking are my two favourite pastimes when I’m not working or spending time with my family.