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The three remaining meetings in Plymouth, Bolton and Brighton would still like offers from prospective contributors.

It’s a very supportive atmosphere to share your research and ideas whatever field you are researching, or at whatever level. There is no theme or topic which will be irrelevant. It is even possible to contribute to more than one meeting, subject to the overall amount of offers received.

Just email me at with your proposed contribution.

LONDON – TELL network meeting – Tuesday 27th February 2018 Lewisham Southwark College

“Perspectives on the Pedagogy of Teacher Education”

TELL_Logo_winner_final.jpgThis was one of the best attended TELL events for some time (despite the threat of snow – which never quite arrived), and was another excellent day, with TELL gaining a good number of new members. Grateful thanks to Jo-Ann Delaney, Lewisham Southwark College, and Christ Church Canterbury University for organising and supporting the event so well.

Final papers from the day are below with a their abstracts

Keynote – Professor Kevin Orr, University of Huddersfield

Government agencies with responsibility for England’s further education sector have actively promoted and even required subject-specialist elements within teacher education programmes. What constitutes subject-specialism has, however, never been adequately defined even as it is being extolled. Nevertheless, identifying and better understanding the relative value of specialist and generic approaches to pedagogy remains important because those approaches relate the context of teacher education courses and they also determine the content. Drawing on findings from an intervention study of teacher education for vocational science, engineering and technology, I suggest that teacher educators should engage with subject-specialist pedagogy, but critically.

Kevin is Professor of Work and Learning at the University of Huddersfield and visiting professor at Canterbury Christ Church University. He taught in colleges for 16 years before taking up a post at Huddersfield and he retains a strong interest in further education. His latest book is The Principal: Power and Professionalism, which he edited with Maire Daley and Joel Petrie.

Tina Bullen, Colchester Institute: “Making the grade – trainee thoughts on lesson observations

Graded Observations: Beneficial or Harmful? In this research project, the effects of graded and ungraded observations on trainee teachers are investigated and compared. The trainee teachers at the organisation experience both graded and ungraded observations from a variety of observers; the first four are just given a simple pass or fail; the last four are given an Ofsted style grade. The research used both quantitative and qualitative research methods to address issues such as confidence, resilience and perceived value, and this presentation will focus mainly on the insights gained from the qualitative research.

Tina Bullen has been working in post-16 education since 2002. Her career to date has seen her working in a variety of settings, starting in a private training provider, then working for a large mixed-economy college. In her time, she has worked in 14-16 alternative education, and with work-based learners, ESOL learners, adults improving their basic skills, and 16-18 year olds retaking their GCSEs. As well as this, she became involved in Staff Development programmes and initiatives to standardise practices and drive up quality. In 2015, she moved into Higher Education, fulfilling a long-held ambition to become a teacher trainer.

Jim Crawley, Bath Spa University – ‘building models and connecting teachers’ – key characteristics of TEd pedagogy.

Surprisingly the word ‘pedagogy’ does not appear at all in the Professional Standards for Teachers and Trainers in Education and Training – England from 2014. Does this mean pedagogy is not relevant to teachers in the Further Education and Skills sector?

I carried out research into the professional situation of teacher educators in the sector between 2009 and 2014 and I felt it was essential to consider teacher education pedagogy as perceived and experienced by teacher educators (TEds), as it is impossible to teach others how to teach without at least considering aspects of the method and practice, or pedagogy of education. This session will discuss that research and the five ‘key pedagogical principles’ of teacher education pedagogy which emerged.

Dr. Jim Crawley is a writer and speaker on teaching and learning in the post compulsory sector. Jim has been teaching and training teachers in FE for more than 35 years.

His PhD research was into the professional situation, pedagogy and values of Teacher Educators in the FE and Skills sector, and he has researched and written extensively in the field and in Further Education generally.

Jo-Ann Delaney, Canterbury Christ Church University: “Heroes one and all – The Use of Peer Observation in Teacher Education”

Peer observation is used widely on teacher education programmes. Trainee teachers are sent out, usually armed with an observation task, to observe other practitioners. The hope is that trainees will notice elements of good practice which they will then magically incorporate into their own teaching. This research looks at the complexities of what observers notice and the ways in which they learn from watching others. It also suggests that we may wish to question some of the given practices around whom we ask our trainees to observe and what we ask them to “notice”.

Jo-Ann works in Post-Compulsory teacher education at Canterbury Christ Church University. She was an ESOL teacher in FE and has taught English as a foreign language abroad. Her research interests include subject specialist pedagogy for English and teacher learning and development.

 Anne McKeown, UCL Institute of Education: On Becoming a Teacher – the Transition from Trainee to Teacher in FE.

This workshop draws on findings from interviews with recently qualified teachers from a generic Post-compulsory PGCE programme, relating to their experiences of entering the workforce and of their first year or two in teaching. Participants related difficulties arising from conflict between their values and aspirations as teachers and the reality of the FE context, particularly the emphasis on recruitment, retention and achievement. There were also instances of new teachers finding ‘spaces’ in which to practise autonomy in relation to curriculum and pedagogic practice, which led to greater job satisfaction. The workshop aims to open up discussion of what could ITE programmes do to further prepare trainee teachers for their transition into working in the sector.

Anne has worked at the ICL Institute of Education since 2006 in a number of capacities, including research and development activities relating to teacher education and professional development. She has also taught on the generic post-compulsory PGCE programme. She is currently Pathway leader for the Post Compulsory PGCE English (Literacy and ESOL). Prior to joining the Institute she taught ESOL and on teacher education programmes in FE.

Peter Wolstencroft, University of Coventry: “The Naked Lesson – Breaking the Powerpoint Dependency Cycle”

“Send me the PowerPoint!” The plaintive cry from the absent student echoes throughout the world of education, yet evidence to show that having a fixed set of slides improves the learning of the class is difficult to come by. Indeed, the reverse may be true, with students using the PowerPoint slides in the same way that a child might use a comfort blanket….. finding reassurance and familiarity, yet not being able to articulate exactly why they are needed. This research looks at the consequences of removing this comfort blanket and charts the progress of a class of adult learners from dismay at the lack of slides to acceptance through to illumination about the impact on their own teaching.

Peter Wolstencroft

See my story: “The Naked Lesson – Breaking the Powerpoint Dependency Cycle”

Made with Adobe Spark –


MARJON PLYMOUTH – TELL Network Meeting – FREE as always

Wed, May 16, 2018, 11:00 pm – 3:00 pm

LOCATION Plymouth Marjon University

Derriford Road, Devon PL6 8BH

More details and booking via Eventbrite on

BOLTON – TELL Network meeting – FREE as always

Thursday 21st June 2018 11.00 am to 3.00 pm

University of Bolton, Bolton

To book a place and/ or offer a contribution email Jim Crawley on


FE ResearchMeet – Bristol – Wednesday 21st March 2018 – FREE

Are you a lecturer/assessor in the post 16 sector wanting to improve your practice? Have you been doing research you want to share in an informal environment? Join us on 21st March!

Reimagining FE Conference – 27th June 2018

Tickets have been released tickets for the 2018 Reimagining FE Conference, to be held on 27 June 2018 at BCU’s Curzon building in the centre of Birmingham. The ETF and UCU are both sponsoring this event. An Eventbrite page has been set up where you can book your tickets now. Here is a link to the page

The theme for this year’s conference is Making teaching and learning the first priority and we are pleased to welcome Professor Emeritus Frank Coffield to open the event. The conference organisation has evolved to create stronger Working Groups centred around key areas of FE provision, with group outputs being published in the Open Access CSPACE Journal.

To find out more about the conference, visit our website at:

This conference relies on professional networks and word-of-mouth for promotion, so we would be grateful if you could share conference details with your colleagues.


ETF subsidised Training for Further Education Teacher Trainers programme in Berkshire.

A four-day programme aimed at those teaching the DET, CET or Award or planning to soon, and keen to progress in teacher education is being held in Reading. It costs £325, or £276.25 for SET members, and is relevant for people working across all sectors. It can be booked via the ETF booking system

There is one hour which must be completed online before March 29, then four full days, Thursdays April 19, 26, May 3 and 10.

The programme has been designed and will be run by the West Midlands Centre for Excellence in Teacher Training and the initial teacher training team in the Centre for Lifelong Learning at the University of Warwick.

If you have any queries or questions about the programme, please contact WMCETT project manager Julie Chamberlain on 024 7615 0661, or


Further Education Trust for Leadership Research Project

BCU’s CSPACE education research centre has recently won funding from the Further Education Trust for Leadership (FETL) to undertake a project exploring the role of leadership in prioritising and improving the quality of teaching and learning in further education. The project will run from February 2018 to February 2019 and be undertaken by a team from CSPACE that includes: Dr Matt O’Leary (Project Lead), Dr Rob Smith, Dr Vanessa Cui and Dr Fadia Dakka. If any FE providers are interested in taking part in the project or would like to know more about it, then email Matt directly: matthew.o’

UCU commissioned project on the Teaching Excellence Framework

BCU’s CSPACE education research centre has been commissioned by the University and Colleges’ Union (UCU) to undertake a research project on the Teaching Excellence Framework. The project Understanding, recognising and rewarding teaching quality in higher education: an exploration of the impact and implications of the Teaching Excellence Framework will be undertaken by a team from CSPACE that includes: Dr Matt O’Leary (Project Lead), Dr Amanda French and Dr Vanessa Cui.


A high proportion of the authors in the just out latest special ‘re-imagining FE’ edition of Research in Post Compulsory Education has boosted the publications list for this update to probably the most we have ever had in one update. Who says there is no research in FE?!!


Crawley, J. (2018) Just Teach! in FE – A people-centered approach. London: Learning Matters

Just Teach! in FE is a straightforward, helpful, engaging and reliable read for all beginning teachers. It focuses on the needs of the teacher and the learner and outlines this people-centered approach. This focus on the principles of good teaching, and the theory behind them, frees the reader from ever-changing structures and provides truly practical strategies to use from their first lesson.

The text supports beginning teachers to Be organised; Be resourceful; Be resilient and to Just keep teaching. It is an engaging exploration of real teaching in FE and of the pressures and challenges that FE teachers face.

more at

Crawley, J., 2018. ‘Mapping backward’ and ‘looking forward’ by the ‘invisible educators’ – reimagining research seeking ‘common features of effective teacher preparation.’ Research in Post-Compulsory Education 23, 23–34.

Hadawi, A., Crabbe, M.J.C., 2018. Developing a mission for further education: changing culture using non-financial and intangible value. Research in Post-Compulsory Education 23, 118–137.

Hobley, J., 2018. ‘Practice architectures’, ‘scholarship’ and ‘middle leaders’ within an established community of HE practitioners in FE. Research in Post-Compulsory Education 23, 57–74.

Iredale, I. (2018) Teacher Education in Lifelong Learning – Developing Professionalism as a Democratic Endeavour. London: Palgrave Macmillan

This book promotes the idea that professionalism among teachers should be marked by democratic relations, rather than by managerialism and performance management. It provides a thorough investigation of issues around the participation of trainee teachers in the Lifelong Learning Sector, by reflecting on their experiences and questioning how well initial teacher education prepares teachers as professional practitioners in the sector. The reflexive nature of the book promotes a deep discussion of the nature of professionalism, drawing upon the works of John Dewey, Michel Foucault and Pierre Bourdieu, and places initial teacher education in the Lifelong Learning Sector firmly within the policy and ideological context of regulation, audit and control. It also illuminates pertinent discussions around teacher agency through a consideration of confidence, excellence, and routinised practices. Finally, the book takes us ‘through the looking glass’ to reveal the tensions within the teacher education curriculum as it prepares trainee teachers for a ready-made world, whilst at the same time attempting to encourage principles of social justice, inclusive practice and education as a democratic endeavour. It will be compelling reading for students and researchers working in Education and Sociology, particularly those with an interest in lifelong learning and teacher training.

More at:

Kendall, A., Kempson, M., French, A., 2018. ‘How will i know when i’m ready?’ re-imagining FE/HE ‘transitions’ as collaborative identity work. Research in Post-Compulsory Education 23, 41–56.

Lloyd, C., Jones, S., 2018. Researching the sector from within: the experience of establishing a research group within an FE college. Research in Post-Compulsory Education 23, 75–93.

Longden, A., Monaghan, T., Mycroft, L., Kelly, C., 2018. Opening the arms: the FAB projects and digital resilience. Research in Post-Compulsory Education 23, 35–40.

Mycroft, L., 2018. Unwritten: (re)imagining FE as social purpose education. Research in Post-Compulsory Education 23, 94–99.

O’Leary, M and Rami, J. (2017) The impact of austerity in Further Education: Cross-cultural perspectives from England and Ireland. in Bartram, B. (Ed) (2017) International and Comparative Education. Abingdon: Routledge, 74-86. Colleagues can access a copy of this chapter for free via this link

Thompson, C. and Wolstencroft, P.(2018) The Trainee Teacher’s Handbook

A companion for initial teacher training. London:Sage – Learning Matters

The link is

This book helps trainees to build skills and focus on developing their professional practice through understanding, reflection and experimentation. Its practical structure and learning features help readers to recognise their own learning needs and set their own targets. The book covers

  • planning
  • creating teaching resources
  • inclusive practice
  • assessment and progress
  • classroom management
  • pastoral care

Wright, V., Loughlin, T., Hall, V., 2018. Exploring transitions in notions of identity as perceived by beginning post-compulsory teachers. Research in Post-Compulsory Education 23, 4–22.

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