Saturday, 5 October 2013

!st CAPD research seminar

Educational Research Seminar October 2013

10th October 2013 - Part-time teachers in the 21st century workforce: identifying, supporting and sustaining professional development

The first educational research seminar of the 2013/14 series will take place at 12:30pm on Thursday 10th October in room FB3.11 of the Francis Bancroft building on the Mile End campus of QMUL.

Directions and how to book

For directions to the campus, and how to find Francis Bancroft Building, please go to the college directions page.

To register for this seminar please use this Eventbrite link or email the CAPD at – lunch will be provided for those who book, so please let us know if you have any specific dietary requirements.

About the seminar

The first seminar will be given by Fran Beaton of the Unit for the Enhancement of Learning and Teaching at the University of Kent, and is entitled Part-time teachers in the 21st century workforce: identifying, supporting and sustaining professional development


Higher Education is very different from how it was when academics now on the verge of retirement joined the profession forty years ago (e.g. UUK 2010). One of the main differences is the increased proportion of academic and teaching staff working on non-standard contracts in universities, employed primarily as teachers rather than as researchers. Part-time teachers are, in any case, not a homogenous group. They may include postgraduates leading seminars; sessional staff; practitioners who combine expertise in other spheres such as healthcare, creative/performing arts and law; retired academics. This paper draws on research data and empirical work conducted in the UK and Australasia about the experiences of part-time teachers, their perceived and actual professional development needs. This work includes whole-institution structures and a consideration of strategies to integrate part-timers for those who work with them: fulltime academics, academic developers, students and organisational leaders.

This paper addresses three questions. What characterises effective interventions? Can Higher Education continue to offer high quality learning and teaching alongside research, while using increasing numbers of part-time teachers and if so, how can this be achieved? Finally, what of ethical considerations? Is there a risk that interventions aimed specifically at part-time teachers’ current role make it harder for them to become, if they wish, fulltime teachers and researchers?

About the presenter

Fran Beaton is Senior Lecturer in Higher Education and Academic Practice and Programme Director of the PG Certificate in Higher Education at the University of Kent, Canterbury, UK. Her research interest is on the experiences of early career teachers and academics and the factors which contribute to the shaping of professional identity and practices.

She has been involved in designing and teaching on postgraduate teacher education programmes for nearly 20 years, including professional development for part-time staff in a number of institutions. Fran’s new book, co-edited with Dr Amanda Gilbert (Victoria University Wellington, New Zealand) entitled ‘ Developing Effective Part-time Teachers in Higher Education: new approaches to professional development’ was published by Routledge on 10th October 2012. She is currently researching identity in relation to professional practitioners (e.g. in Health, Performing Arts and Law) whose time is divided between their practice and HE teaching.

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