When Professor Roger Ellis was looking for contributors to the book he was compiling and editing, the Handbook of Quality Assurance for University Teaching, he found me, through this website. He wanted someone who didn’t work at a university, yet who knew about university teaching. Quite a tall order.
Most of the other chapters are written by university teachers and it certainly makes sense to seek an external point of view – though obviously this needed to be an outsider who could offer some insight. My work with university teachers, showing them how to be better teachers, gives me, as Roger put it, a unique perspective.
I was very pleased to be asked to write a chapter for a serious academic publication and much enjoyed the whole process, from first contact to the book launch in London.
It took me five months – in between-times, of course, fitted around my coaching and speaking – to hone my thoughts and get them to sit comfortably on the page (well, screen). Hard work but satisfying; it helped to clarify my ideas and find more succinct ways to express the advice I give my clients.
The book launch was different from others I’ve been to: no razzamatazz, no selfies; deep, thoughtful, lengthy discussion of the issues, followed by a quiet but enjoyable session of socialising. It was great to meet some of the other contributors, admirable people doing a marvellous job, often in adverse circumstances.
Teaching at a university can be a challenging task. Few people apply for a post at a university because they want to teach, and little support is given for those who find themselves floundering. If you’re a university teacher and would like some help to excel in this aspect of the job, please contact me and let’s discuss how I can make your life easier.