Launch of new open acess journal

The Hub for Education Research at Edinurgh Napier is very excited to announce the launch of a new open access peer-reviewed journal in academic practice. The Journal of Perspective in Applied Academic Practice is very unique, as it is not just another open access journal, it specifically aims to support early career academics in all aspects of publishing, through supporting new reviewers and providing editorial internships. This journal is a collaborative venture between Edinburgh Napier University, University of Dundee and Aston University. You can follow the journal on twitter @JofPAAP.

With a focus on developing early career academics, Journal of Perspectives in Applied Academic Practice aims to provide a supportive publishing outlet to allow established and particularly new authors to contribute to the scholarly discourse of academic practice (both generally and in their discipline area) through the publication of papers that are theory-based and supported by evidence, as well as through the publication of Opinion Pieces and ‘On the Horizon’ papers on emerging work.

This developmental ethos manifests itself in a range of activities and opportunities that currently include the following:

  • Direct support for authors who are seeking to publish their first paper in one or more of the thematic areas of the journal, through assigning ‘critical friends’ from within the editorial team who will be happy to advise on the development of initial ideas for the formats of paper we publish. Prospective authors wishing to discuss an idea should in the first instance e-mail .
  • Peer support for those new to reviewing The Journal of Perspectives in Applied Academic Practice welcomes academics with experience in the thematic areas of the journal, but who are new to the journal submission reviewing process, to become involved as reviewers for the journal. This will include an opportunity to work for an initial period of reviewing with a colleague who is already experienced as a reviewer.
  • Editorial internships The journal will soon be offering editorial internships, normally two a year, for academics who are experienced in the thematic areas of the journal, have some publications of their own and experience as a reviewer, and who wish to develop knowledge and experience on the editorial side of journal publishing. Further information on our first round of editorial internships will be forthcoming.
  • Special issues The Journal of Perspectives in Applied Academic Practice welcomes the opportunity to work alongside colleagues in the field to develop Special Issues of the journal dedicated to particular themes or emerging areas of work. Having a good idea for a special issue, and being willing to take on Guest Editor responsibilities for the special issue (with support provided from the regular Editorial Team for the journal), is much more important than prior editing experience.

To find out more about the journal please visit the journal website and follow the journal on twitter for regular news and annoucements.


Reflections on ECEL 2012

slide1_ecelIn this week’s guest blog, Elaine Mowat, Academic Developer, within the Professional Academic Development team in Human Resources and Development at Edinburgh Napier reflects on her recent conference attendance, the European Conference on e-Learning, which was held in Groningen. 

With participants from Japan, Jordan, Iran, the United States, Canada and New Zealand, along with just about every country within Europe, the European Conference on e-learning (ECEL) 2012 was a lively and cosmopolitan gathering. The focus of the conference was on looking ‘Beyond the Gadget’ to find the value in e-learning and the wide spectrum of contributions provided a snapshot of current practice and research across many different educational contexts. For example, we could hear about the experience of using blogs as an assessment tool in Catalan Higher Education and the mobile dissemination of computer based learning in rural India, as well as approaches to elearning evaluation and ideas about how Web 2.0 technologies are affecting academic roles in higher education.

Julia Fotheringham in the Academy Building at the University of Groningen

Julia Fotheringham in the Academy Building at the University of Groningen

From Edinburgh Napier, Julia Fotheringham and I shared our experience of action research into online peer assessment in our presentation Peer to Peer – The Full Cycle: Investigating Online Peer Assessment through Action Research and Keith Smyth reported on Sharing and Shaping Effective Institutional Practice in TEL through the 3E Framework. The buzz and interest generated by Keith’s session underlines the value we have in our benchmark for the use of technology in modules. Colleagues Aileen Sibbald and Mammed Bagher from the Business School were also at the conference to contribute their views and catch up on developments.

The highlight for me was the chance to hear Eric Mazur from Harvard University talk about his rigorous and influential research into peer instruction, as this has greatly informed our use at Edinburgh Napier of the TurningPoint ‘clicker’ student response system.  His keynote lecture ‘Confessions of a Converted Lecturer’ provided an honest and uplifting account of his development as a teacher and underlined the importance of taking the effort to investigate your own practice and to adjust your approach accordingly. As Mazur demonstrates, the impact on the student experience can be tangible and significant.

The Academy Building at the University of Groningen provided a handsome and dignified backdrop for our discussions and the conference was extremely well administered by Academic Conferences International. The destination for ECEL 2013 – Sophia-Antipolis in the south of France – sounds most congenial – I recommend that you consider the call for papers!

You can find out more about the call for papers for this year’s ECEL conference  at: