Skip to content

Publishing opportunity

Do you work in a school or in further education and have an interest in widening participation?

Professor Colin McCaig (Sheffield Hallam University) and Dr Jon Rainford (Open University) are guest-editing an upcoming special issue of BERA’s Research Intelligence magazine on the theme of ‘widening participation’.

They wish to invite contributions to this issue from teachers and those working in further education (FE) as they feel this is a perspective that is often underrepresented within the literature.

Research Intelligence is BERA’s quarterly magazine. It carries articles and features on a variety of issues about educational research, including articles by researchers, practitioners, policymakers and other stakeholders in educational research that explore a special theme/topic within each issue. These will normally be focussed on educational research and/or theory, but may address other, related issues, and can be more personal, argumentative and/or discursive in character than ‘standard’ academic writing.

McCaig and Rainford’s special issue aims to bring together diverse voices to discuss the practice and operationalisation of widening participation to higher education, in the context of possible changes to the sector post-Augar and the onset of the new access and participation plan (APP) process. By bringing together the voices of researchers, practitioners and teachers (in school, college as well as university settings), the special issue intends to highlight the complexity and plurality of voices within this area. In doing so, it is likely to stimulate a challenging debate and open up dialogue between the existing BERA membership and wider stakeholders in widening participation.

The issue’s guest editors are inviting expressions of interest for articles specifically on two topics.

  1. From the classroom: A teacher’s perspective on widening participation.
  2. The role of FE in widening participation.

The word limit for each article is 500 words, so we are keen to hear from those who have a succinct argument or perspective to bring to the conversation. Initially all the editors require is a 100-word summary of the key argument you wish to make, and an indication of whether this is based on practice, research or both. We would also like you to provide some context about your relationship to widening participation as part of your expression of interest.

We are looking to encourage a diversity of voices, so if you have not written for publication before do not let this put you off: the guest editors, and BERA’s publications manager, will support those authors we take forward to turn their ideas into articles.

We would particularly encourage submissions from those currently working in schools and FE colleges to bring a variety of voices to the contribution.

Please contact Jon Rainford ( ) or Colin McCaig ( to express your initial interest by Monday 9 December 2019. We will then select those articles to be developed for the special issue. The final deadline is likely to be February 2020.