Public engagement

This page outlines work I am doing and have done in translating research findings to meaningful outcomes and resources for relevant communities. Please also see other pages, which describe the extensive portfolio of workshop and courses I have developed for research (doctoral and masters) students, and early career academics, all of which build on my research.

Professional practice and learning in parent education

A key focus of my current work is on finding ways to help services that support parents. In particular, I am using some simple but powerful ideas based on concepts of learning, to work with organisations that work in partnership with parents. I have developed three easy to use resources, and am beginning a process of getting feedback, and folding them into improvement processes in a number of services.

I have also been working with UTS and the University of Western Sydney to build my findings into degree courses for future child and family health professionals (see this short video for UWS, for example).

Having spent considerable time observing professionals at work in parenting services, I have come to understand the crucial work they do for our society, but also the controversy that can surround the idea of parent education. So I wrote a piece for The Conversation, which prompted a great set of comments and discussions. I continued this with a contribution to the Australian Association for Research in Education’s blog EduResearch Matters.

With colleagues I was commissioned to write a piece for Governance International, highlighting aspects of effective practice when working in partnership with parents (co-authored with Roger Dunston and Teena Clerke, 2013). An updated version of this was published in February 2016 in the OECD Observatory of Public Sector Innovation.

Enhancing Clinical Simulation

Early findings from the project on simulation in health professional education pointed to a number of challenges relating to large class sizes, and how to ensure that students who observe simulations (ie. not actually acting in roles in a scenario) are scaffolded to get the most out of it as a learning experience. Our collaboration with UTS: Health is now turning to focus on ways to further enhance learning for all students in simulation, beginning with a soft trial in a chosen subject. We hope to work across the broader curriculum, and with other institutions in the future, once we have refined and documented the impact of our new approaches.

Supporting research students and early career academics

I have contributed to a range of web-based resources for research students (see below) based on the findings from the numerous studies I was involved in at Oxford’s Centre for Excellence in Preparing for Academic Practice.

I have also developed a suite of workshops, masterclasses, and courses for research students, and have delivered these (as well as guest lectures, keynotes, panel presentations) in universities around the world, engaging face to face with over 2,000 research students and early career academics. More details of these are provided elsewhere on this website.

Many of my blog posts on this wordpress site offer support and guidance to research students, and I regularly retweet useful links through my twitter handle @NHopUTS.

I have set up a youtube channel, and also have published a number of podcasts that address many issues relating to academic work, research, publishing etc.

Hopwood N (2009) Getting through your PhD. Materials provided for the apprise website, including tools for reflecting on progress made and supportive relationships.

Hopwood N (2008) What am I doing and who am I becoming? The mismatch between doctoral study and doctoral policy in the humanities. Article commissioned by the Centre for Career Management Skills (CCMS), University of Reading, for the Beyond the PhD website.


Secondary school geography teachers

My research on pupils’ learning of geography led me to write two Think Pieces commissioned by the Geographical Association. These are part of the Geography Trainers’ Induction Program, and are designed to assist new teachers and those supporting them to think about key issues in geography education and what their implications are for pedagogical practice.

Hopwood N (2007) ESD: Pupils’ perspectives. Article commissioned by the Geographical Association for GTIP (the Geography Trainer Induction Programme).

Hopwood N (2007) Values and controversial issues. Article commissioned by the Geographical Association for GTIP (the Geography Trainer Induction Programme).

I was also involved in the Young People’s Geographies project, evaluating this innovative national curriculum development initiative.

I published with two geography teachers in ‘Teaching Geography’, providing an accessible account of some of my early findings about pupils’ conceptions of geography. This (and other publications) have been used in many PGCE and other teacher education courses.