Professor Paul Ashwin, University of Lancaster

Higher Education Close-Up (HECU) is a virtual network for in-depth research into higher education. It aims to provide a forum for discussion about, and the enhancement of, this kind of research via a twitter account  ( which provides a space to discuss ideas about theory and method in HE research, to share ideas and to build collaborations.

Prior to the creation of this twitter account, forum discussions took place via a JISCMAIL list, and the archive is still available via

The most recent HECU conference took place at Lancaster University from the 4th to 6th July 2022.

The conference theme was Critical approaches to close-up higher education research

Keynote speakers

Dr Amanda Hllengwa, Rhodes University (who will give the Inaugural Suellen Shay HECU Keynote)

Dr Janja Komlijenovic, Lancaster University

Professor Alison Phipps, University of Glasgow

Professor Bruce Macfarlane, The Education University of Hong Kong

For info  please visit

The next HECU conference will be at Rhodes University in South Africa in 2024

Enquiries are welcome – please email Jan McArthur, Lancaster University

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