Journal of PGR Pedagogic Practice
JPPP: Background, aims, scope
Postgraduate researchers (PGRs) often play essential roles providing tuition to students. However, PGRs occupy a liminal space between ‘staff’ and ‘student’. They often lack access and connections to wider institutional, professional, and collegiate opportunities. Conversely, many PGRs who teach who do take up such opportunities develop sophisticated and innovative pedagogies and educational philosophies. Others reflect thoughtfully on the successes and failures of their teaching practice at the coalface. There are few opportunities for PGRs to share these experiences with each other, especially across disciplines, or the wider community of practice.
Academic research has noted that the self-efficacy of PGRs who teach declines after initial training has concluded. Other research has stressed the importance of peer-learning, and of the importance of social support and networks of trust to facilitating learning in higher education. With this first edition of the journal, we plan to construct the fundamental architecture so that PGRs can begin to share their practice and evidence their ongoing commitment to their continuous professional development. We will initiate a constructive, cross-disciplinary dialogue to collectively raise the quality of teaching and enhance the outcomes of PGR experiences.
The pilot issue of the JPPPLink opens in a new window launched last autumn, and featured articles which reflected primarily on teaching during the pandemic, and the particular challenges (or opportunities) presented when teaching virtually. The second issueLink opens in a new window, launched in October 2022, featured articles on the themes of PG teacher identity, innovative teaching methods and technology enhanced learning, and GTAs beyond the classroom. View the (now closed) Call for Papers for the second issue of the Journal of PGR Pedagogic Practice (JPPP)Link opens in a new window, centred around the theme of ‘Virtual, physical or somewhere in between: Postgraduate Pedagogies in the wake of the pandemic'
We invite both short critical reflections, and more substantial research led pieces from all PGRs and ECRs who teach in any capacity and in any discipline at Warwick and beyond. We also welcome pieces from those who support the professional development of PGRs, and those involved with pedagogy outside of the typical university teaching structure, such as student-led research projects, continued professional development. It will invite contributions covering the role of PGRs in traditional seminar teaching and lecturing but also practical laboratories demonstrations and analytical teaching roles. Whilst demonstrators may feel they are just ‘guiding’ students, often innovative pedagogies are at play and their contributions to a wider interdisciplinary discussion are invaluable. Additionally, the journal welcomes entries from those involved in managing innovative pedagogies such as student-led research projects, new teaching interventions, or the experience of continuous professional development as a PGR who teaches. It will welcome stories of success but perhaps more so stories of failure or adaptation.
The journal seeks to consider issues such as (but not limited to):
- Is there a unique PGR pedagogy? What is distinctive about the contributions that PGRs who teach make to university communities and to student learning?
- How have PGRs adapted following the move back to face-to-face teaching and learning, as well as the introduction of hybrid learning? How can PGRs best make use of technology?
- What challenges do PGRs face in preparing, designing, and delivering their teaching?
- What does it mean for PGRs to foster diverse and inclusive learning environments? What role can PGRs play in removing academic barriers for students with learning difficulties, or addressing issues such as unconscious biases?
- What can PGRs from different disciplines and pedagogic traditions learn from one another?
- How are the work and wellbeing of PGRs best supported by their institutions and more widely?
The Journal of PGR Pedagogy Practice is organised by a multidisciplinary team of postgraduates for all postgraduates, and anyone interested in supporting their practice. While the journal’s scope in the short-term is anticipated to be semi-formal, there is scope in future to develop a formal peer-review process. We are therefore also interested through this call for papers in ascertaining whether or not there is support for this sort of initiative in the future.
If you or a peer might be interested in becoming a part of the PGR Teaching Community and supporting PGRs who teach through the journal by joining our editorial team, please contact us at: PGRteachercommunity@warwick.ac.uk
Imogen Knox, History
Shakira Abd Rahman, Education
Sophie Pain, Engineering