Skip to content

Kindly supported by the: School of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences

The event was completely FREE – thanks to the generosity of University of Birmingham*

The Invisible College remains one of the highlights of the PESP calendar and colleagues from the world of coaching, physical education, sport, and all related disciplines look forward to this annual event. The event was a chance for scholars, ECRs and professionals in the field to come together the day before the BERA conference to network and discuss contemporary issues/research in the field. The previous year’s event was extremely successful with just under 100 attendees, and we hoped to build on this in 2023.

The event aimed to:

  • nurture a strong and confident research environment by supporting the current and next generation of researchers through developmental workshops/sessions, and foster collaboration amongst attendees.
  • celebrate and recognise excellence in research by offering PESP Journal best paper and best reviewer awards
  • ensure a strong and sustainable future for BERA by actively promoting BERA through the invisible college event, and by expanding our SIG membership.

The event was held at the University of Birmingham on the 11th September the day before the main BERA conference with the following objectives:

  • Foster a sense of belonging among the PESP community and to support the development of excellent researchers and practitioners.
  • Provide opportunities for colleagues to network, and build a community of practice to ensure a strong and sustainable future for the PESP SIG
  • Celebrate and recognise excellent research in physical education through the award of the PESP Journal Best paper awards
  • Provide research related developmental opportunities for attendees (especially those identified as early career researchers).

Draft programme:

09:30 Registration, tea and coffee
10:15 Welcome and Introduction
Scholar lecture – Professor Lisette Burrows, The University of Waikato, New Zealand
10:15 Scholar lecture
Professor Lisette Burrows, The University of Waikato, New Zealand

Parallel Session 1a:
Dr Tom Quarmby

PhD/ECR Workshop
This workshop will allow PhD students and early career researchers the opportunity to identify concerns, challenges or pitfalls of the PhD journey and/or early stages of their career. It will then provide a platform to share these with a panel of senior academics to provide advice, guidance and support. The workshop provides key networking opportunities.

Parallel Session 1b:
Dr Shirley Gray, Dr Rachel Sandford, Dr Oliver Hooper, Dr Anna Bryant, Dr Julie Stirrup

Learning across borders: Uncovering opportunities for change in PE.
In this workshop we will present a series of case studies that describe the contexts and practices of PE teachers from across the four nations of the UK. We will then invite delegates to explore these case studies and identify the opportunities they offer to ‘think’ and ‘do’ PE differently.

12:30 Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy Journal awards
– Best paper
– Best reviewer
Dr Ashley Casey
13:00 Lunch and networking

Parallel Session 2a:
Dr Kyriaki Makopoulou

Conducting research with children and young people inclusively: Reflections on reflexivity.
Disabled children are often likely to be ‘deliberately or accidentally’ (Thompson et al., 2020) excluded from research, with researchers’ positionality about disabled children’s competencies to engage in research, the resources required, and the lack of practical knowledge of how to do research inclusively considered key barriers. In this workshop, we will discuss the results from a scoping review on inclusive research with disabled children with the aim to begin the conversation on how to make PE research more inclusive.

Parallel Session 2b:
Dr Dillon Landi

Paradigmatic Thinking in Health, Wellbeing and Education Research: How to make research more equitable.
This session discusses the role of paradigmatic alignment in the research process. It outlines popular paradigms within health, wellbeing and education research and asks participants to situate their own research within these paradigms. It will challenge the participants to think about which forms of knowledge are privileged and how this affects marginalized persons in our communities. To conclude, it will engage the participants in a reflexive thinking activity that challenges them to think how they can cross ‘paradigms’ to make their research process reflective of the diversity of people within their communities.

15:30 Closure and SIG social activity
16:00 Close of event

*Places are limited and pre-registration is essential.

Keynote speaker

Profile picture of Lisette Burrows
Lisette Burrows, Professor

University of Waikato

Lisette is a Professor in Community Health at Te Huataki Waiora, School of Health, University of Waikato. She is co chief-editor of Sport, Education and Society, associate editor of Health Education Journal and past-President of Physical...


Profile picture of Tom Quarmby
Tom Quarmby, Dr

Reader at Leeds Beckett University

Tom is a Reader in Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy in the Carnegie School of Sport, Leeds Beckett University. Broadly, his research explores the role and value of Physical Education, physical activity and sport for youth from socially...

Profile picture of Julie Stirrup
Julie Stirrup, Dr

Lecturer at Loughborough University

Julie is a lecturer in Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy at Loughborough University. Julie’s research centres on Physical Education, physical development and its role within young people lives from the early years through to secondary...