Welcome to the BERA Annual Conference 2015 which will be held at Queen’s University, Belfast, Northern Ireland.
We were last here in 1998 and are anticipating the same sun, excitement and quality discussion as we had then. Belfast is one of the most inspiring cities in Europe and we are harnessing that enthusiasm to prepare a programme that will inspire you to develop new research ideas, and new research relationships which will enhance the research education community.
BERA’s 40th anniversary has been an opportunity not only to celebrate the advances made in educational research over that time but also to reflect on how the association has changed in the way it manages its affairs. Using that reflection to develop new ways of working that are more appropriate for the ‘now’ rather than the ‘then’. We take the feedback we receive each year from our delegates very seriously and can now take this opportunity to re-think the conference format taking account of digital technologies that have become so much part of our lives. Our approach is to be evolutionary rather than revolutionary so BERA Conference will still be recognisable.
This year we are offering the opportunity to do things differently. Please read carefully the abstract submission section as there are opportunities for doing things differently at this year’s conference. We are particularly interested in sessions that create more opportunity for audience participation – one of the main reasons delegates attend. BERA Belfast 2015 is the place to be and I hope to see you all there.
Chair of the Conference Committee
Mhairi Beaton University of Aberdeen
Gerry Czerniawski University of East London
Joanne Hughes Queen’s University, Belfast
Vini Lander Edge Hill University
Ian Potter Bay House School and Sixth Form
Liz Todd University of Newcastle
Felicity Wikeley Canterbury Christ Church University
For educational researchers the BERA Annual Conference is an important date in their professional year. It provides the opportunity to:
network with existing colleagues
support new colleagues at the start of their careers
establish the beginnings of new collaborations
exchange ideas with like-minded colleagues; and sometimes more profitably, with non-like-minded colleagues
make new links with potential publishers or funders
learn about research outside your own area and investigate possible connections
indulge in discussions of ‘blue sky’ research that reminds you why you are a researcher
Seasoned BERA delegates could probably add several more reasons of their own as to why they return but for most it is about being part of a community of researchers. A community that is dynamic and changes over time; not just in terms of its members but in the way it does things. Participating in a vibrant conference is one way of making sure that you contribute to that change.
This conference is being supported by Visit Belfast, Belfast City Council and the Northern Ireland Tourist Board
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