February 9th, 2022 10:00 AM through 11:30 AM
Online event - link will be provided


The purpose of this event is to introduce some key ideas from posthuman, and feminist materialist theory, and to explore how we might engage theoretical perspectives to propose a rethinking of learning, teaching and assessment practices in higher education (HE). In doing so, we also build on and extend current thinking about relational pedagogies. Specifically, we draw on our experiences to map out how ‘pedagogies of mattering’ can suggest a novel theory-practice of meaningful relationships and connections in HE. Using a posthuman, feminist materialist theoretical perspective, grounded in instances of our own practice, we suggest that a renewed focus on the significance of student-teacher relationships and connections can offer a counterview to an uncaring HE system. Current conceptions of staff-student relations continue to rely on cognitivist and humanist traditions that fail to consider how pedagogic relationships are affectively and materially entangled with spaces, places, and environments. Such a conceptual shift towards pedagogies of mattering enables a rethinking of relational pedagogies which helps us account in new ways for three key dimensions of HE pedagogies: curriculum; teaching and learning; and assessment. This session will be appropriate for participants with and without prior knowledge of this area, and will offer an introduction to using posthuman and feminist materialist theory in higher education.

The session will be facilitated by Dr Patrick Baughan, Prof Ian Kinchin and Dr Namrata Rao, the conveners for this network, and managed by colleagues at SRHE.


10.00-10.05        Introduction and Virtual Housekeeping Points

10.10 - 10.35      Posthuman theories in higher education

Carol A. Taylor, Nikki Fairchild and Karen Gravett

10.40– 11.05      Pedagogies of mattering for learning, teaching and assessment

Carol A. Taylor, Nikki Fairchild and Karen Gravett

11.05 – 11.20     Online break out discussion (Speakers and Delegates)

11.20 to 11.30    Q and A and concluding thoughts



Prof Carol A. Taylor is Professor of Higher Education and Gender in the Department of Education at the University of Bath where she is Director of Research and leads the Learning, Pedagogy and Diversity Research cluster. Her research utilises trans- and interdisciplinary feminist, new materialist and posthumanist theories and methodologies and focuses on the entangled relations of knowledge, power, gender, space and ethics in higher education. She is co-editor of the journal Gender and Education. She serves on the Editorial Boards of Teaching in Higher EducationCritical Studies in Teaching and Learning and Journal of Posthumanism. Her research profile with details of publications and projects can be found here https://researchportal.bath.ac.uk/en/persons/carol-taylor

Dr Nikki Fairchild is the Associate Head (Research and Innovation), School of Education and Sociology, University of Portsmouth. Her research has two bifurcations. The first is employing research-creation and creative methodologies to provide different ways to disturb and enact knowledge production, the second focuses on place-spaces in Early Childhood classrooms and gardens and how they impact on bodies. Her work is theoretically informed by critical feminist materialisms and posthumanisms. She is an associate editor for the Journal of Posthumanism and on the Editorial Board of Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood. Her research profile with details of publications and projects are available here: https://researchportal.port.ac.uk/portal/en/persons/nikki-fairchild(564c76d5-b139-4b9e-b7a7-ca421e0b69b1).html

Dr Karen Gravett is Senior Lecturer at the Surrey Institute of Education at the University of Surrey, UK, where her research focuses on understanding learning and teaching in HE and explores the areas of connections, student engagement, belonging, and transition. Karen is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. She is Associate Editor of the Higher Education Research and Development journal, and a member of the editorial board for Teaching in Higher Education. Karen’s research profile with details of her latest publications and projects, including forthcoming books can be found here: https://www.surrey.ac.uk/people/karen-gravett  

Resource 1
Resource 2
Resource 3
Resource 4
Resource 5
Resource 6
Resource 7
Resource 8
Resource 9
Resource 10
Resource 11
Resource 12