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Talking Back To Office Gossip

Surveys of academics (for example, McKay et al., 2008) often identify gossip as a major factor in workplace problems, one that can affect job satisfaction and staff retention, as well as contributing to bullying. What can you do to stop...

Co-authoring With Students - What Do You Need To Know?

It’s an academic convention that supervisors are credited as co-authors when students’ work is published. How can you make sure your credit is justified, and what else do you need to know about co-authoring research outputs with your...

Writing Meeting Minutes

So you have been asked to take the minutes of a meeting? Here are some tips and techniques to do this effectively. If the meeting is one of a series, check the previous minutes for the format expected. Most professional minutes are now...

Dealing With Disappointment

Into every academic’s life a little rain must fall—a promotion denied, a research bid rejected. It can leave you feeling more than a little down. What can you do to get yourself back on track following a door closing?

Using The REF In Your Research Planning

REF2020?! But the REF 2014 results were only just released yesterday! For those new to the game, it can be hard to digest the fact that no sooner than one round of assessment is completed then the next is underway. And like it or not,...

5 Things to Remember at Conferences

In academia today much is made of the importance of conferences for advancing a research career. But it is also important to acknowledge that conferences can be daunting occasions – not only for those starting off, but just as much for...

Consortia: A Guide for Senior Academics

The landscape of UK higher education is changing. The most recent, major change – the cut of 80% of the block grant for teaching, alongside the contraction of research funding – has meant a complete overhaul of the income funding model...

In At The Deep End: New Module, No Preparation

It’s every lecturer’s nightmare: Due to a colleague’s sudden departure or illness, you’re handed an unwritten module to teach, starting in just one or two weeks. What can you do to avoid letting students down?

Non Academic Job Search Tips For PhDs

As a PhD supervisor, it’s likely that your role is as much about pastoral advice and guidance as it is about academic development, innovation and excellence. You may find it a difficult challenge: if your background is in mechanical...

Improving Your Effectiveness As A PhD Supervisor

UK PhD supervision has traditionally been a rather hands-off affair, but in a tight academic job market students are now expecting, and demanding, much more than the occasional tutorial. What are the most important things lecturers can...

Classroom Control: Five Top Tips

Classroom control is crucial to make the right environment for teaching and learning. But while a few lucky individuals seem to be “naturals” at keeping a group of students on task, for most of us it’s something you have to learn.

Starting A Journal Article Critique Group

Building a strong research culture can be difficult if your department is some way from that goal, especially if there isn't a budget for research activity. One of the best ways to get started is also one with no cost other than time:...

What to Expect as an External Examiner

The role of external examiner is essential for all UK HE programmes (as stipulated by the QAA’s UK Quality Code for Higher Education). External examiners are approved by the University, but are nominated at Department- or School-level in...

Post-Academic Skills in the Humanities

As cuts take hold, budgets contract and job openings shrink in academia as elsewhere, the question of what opportunities there are for postgraduate students in the humanities needs to be more widely debated in the UK. It is true that...

Open-Access Publishing: The Way Forward?

In the last few years a revolution has taken place in academic publishing, with the emergence of Open Access (OA) research. Open Access publishing in academia consists of the deposit, usually by the author, of peer-reviewed journal...

Continuing Professional Education

How Can Setting Up A CPD Programme Help Your Career?Student numbers down? Funding issues in your department? Providing Continuing Professional Development courses or seminars can be a good secondary income stream, saving jobs and...

Getting Published In The Humanities: Top Tips

Many articles targeted at academics about publishing are written from the perspective of the scientific disciplines but getting published in the humanities sector has its own specific challenges.

Peer Review, and How to Survive It

If you are an early career lecturer you may not have been prepared for the prominence given to peer review in the modern UK university. Of course, your experience as a postgraduate student will have prepared you to some degree for the...

Improving Student Retention and Progression: Ideas For FE and HE Lecturers

At the start of the academic year, there is always a focus on admissions—but holding on to and progressing existing students is just as important. What does research say about best practices to improve student retention and outcomes?

5 Ways to Keep Your Teaching Fresh

It is often that case that the pressures of the teaching timetable itself, as well as research and run-of-the-mill admin, mean that it can be very hard to find the time to review your teaching material. Ideally, we would all be coming up...

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