2021 Annual Report Education Research SIG

Main headlines:

  • We have met twice in 2021. Once remotely on zoom and once as a hybrid meeting. 
  • Both meetings received excellent feedback and had approx 30 attendees ranging all levels from students, through to trainees and HOTs/HODs. masters, doctoral and post-doc researchers included. 
  • We have used a structure of sharing 'work in progress' in the morning (approx 8-10 projects) with informal 'stakeholder' feedback from the group. Presenters are from across the UK and Ireland. Then in the afternoon, we have a short presentation, followed by small group discussion about 'hot topics' of interest in the field in the coming months, research strategies etc. This activity is to stimulate discussion. The aim is not to directly produce 'collaborations', rather to get people's appetite going. But, often collaborations have emerged following meetings, resulting in publications, funding etc. 
  • For the afternoon presentations, we had Prof Gillian Vance in the Summer meeting re: the NIHR clinical education research incubator group. In Dec we had a discussion about journal open access fees. 

On-going discussions / challenges.... the hybrid meeting (due to last minute covid announcements) ended up being chaired remotely, but with a mix of F2F and remote attendance. The venue had set up individual tables for 'covid safety' in advance, so those attending Warwick sat at individual desks, and used their laptops to engage with the meeting. One learning point was to ensure that all attending have suitable headphones / equipment etc., for this. While it inevitably felt different for those attending (and those remote!), it seemed to balance the needs and interactive engagement across both sets of participants. Given the different demographics of those who choose to attend remotely / F2F, we were keen to ensure small groups included BOTH F2F and remote to maximise engagement and diverse discussion. But this did of course mean that all small groups included a screen for those participating remotely. 


We are setting up a teams group, and now have a SIG what's app to enable communication between (and especially for the hybrid within!) meetings. 


Thanks as always to SAPC for the support of the SIG and the enormous value this 'space' provides for nurturing capacity building; development of educational research dialogue and expertise; and ensuring an on-going close connection between practice / policy and research done to best meet the needs of these groups, but the SIG members. The 'feedback' slot from the SIG at the HOTs meeting, is also helpful to strengthen these connections. Many members speak of the importance of the group to inspire their research and sense of identity as a scholar within their work. 

Sophie Park

January 2022

Special interest group: