About the Fellowships

The Teaching and Learning Research Fellowship process is open to all those who teach in Irish higher education.

Applicants must have a doctoral qualification or professional equivalent and must have at least 10 years of experience working in Irish higher education to be eligible to apply for a Fellowship.

All those who apply need to be in a position to fulfil the Fellowship if awarded and therefore must have a contract of employment that covers the period up until December 2021.

There is no maximum number of applications per higher education institution, but all applications will require institutional sign-off, as detailed in the three-stage application process.

Key Dates

Thursday, 23 January 2020 (11am – 12pm) Information webinar
Thursday, 27 February 2020 (12pm) Closing date for Stage 1 of the application process
Tuesday, 10 March 2020 Longlisted applicants for Stage 2 notified
Tuesday, 7 April 2020 (12 noon) Monday, 20 April 2020 (12 noon) Closing date for Stage 2 of the application process
Thursday, 30 April 2020 Shortlisted applicants for Stage 3 notified
Monday, 25 May 2020 (12pm) Closing date for Stage 3 of the application process
Week of 1 June 2020 Interviews for Stage 3 of the application process
Tuesday, 9 June 2020 Fellowship awardees announced
Week of 21 June 2020 Meeting of inaugural Fellows
1 July 2020-31 Dec 2021 Fellowships completed

Fellowship recipients will complete an individual research project which will be directly related to national higher education priorities. The topic of the project will be discussed and agreed with the National Forum once the Fellowship has been awarded. This discussion will take account of national priorities, the experience and expertise of the awarded Fellows, and the project ideas that are suggested at Stage 3 of the selection process.

Each Fellowship will result in at least one publication, in partnership with the National Forum, which will report the achievements, outputs and potential implications of the research. The form of this publication will be negotiated with the Fellows and will be reflective of the work completed; as with all other National Forum publications it will be open access.

The Fellowship funding will support successful applicants in the completion of the agreed project. The funding associated with the Fellowship may be used to support the work involved in the following ways:

  • for research assistance
  • for study visits and/or international mobility
  • for conference fees and costs associated with presenting at conferences and other fora
  • for related domestic and/or international travel
  • to support workshops and seminars associated with the Fellowship
  • for the development and publication of open access outputs associated with the Fellowship
  • for necessary software licenses and equipment (up to an agreed maximum of total project costs)
  • to buy out teaching and/or buy out the administrative and/or assessment workload associated with teaching
  • for other appropriate activity with the prior agreement of the National Forum

The Fellowship is an individual award involving an individual research project. Nevertheless, reflecting the National Forum ethos, recipients will be expected to connect with each other and work collaboratively to identify and leverage synergies across their projects, and to ensure that there is no duplication of effort or output. Recipients will also be expected to share their work within and beyond their community, including through the production of their individual publications and possible co-authored publication(s).

Application process

The Fellowships will use a rigorous and transparent three-stage application and selection process:

Stage 1 is a screening stage. At Stage 1, applications will be long-listed according to their eligibility and the extent to which they fulfil the specific indicators.

Stage 1 closed Thursday, 27 February 2020.

Successful applicants from Stage 1 will be invited to progress to Stage 2 of the selection process. Stage 2 includes two elements:

  1. A short written piece (maximum 750 words) which articulates your perspective on the national and international higher education context, including policy and practice, within which teaching and learning enhancement is currently situated, and the associated challenges and opportunities for the future.
  2. A short video (5–7 minutes) which captures your motivation for applying for the Fellowship, outlines how you fulfil the Fellowship criteria, and describes the impact you anticipate the Fellowship will have for you personally and more broadly for the sector.

Stage 2 closed on Monday, 20 April 2020.

Stage 3 of the selection process involves three elements:

  1. An outline of an individual project idea which is aligned to one of the National Forum strategic priorities and is achievable over the duration of the Fellowship.
  2. An interview with a review panel to discuss the material submitted in Stages 1 and 2 of the process and to consider the project idea in order to evaluate the extent to which the Fellowship criteria are fulfilled.
  3. A short biography (maximum 150 words) and photograph which will be posted with the list of Teaching and Learning Research Fellowship nominees on the National Forum website.

Stage 3 closed on Monday, 25 May 2020.

The review of applications will consider their overall clarity and quality and also the extent to which they evidence the following selection criteria:

  • significant experience and excellence in teaching practice
  • a track record of T&L scholarship and leadership towards T&L enhancement within the discipline, institutionally, or across the higher education sector
  • positive impact, effectiveness, sustained engagement, articulated achievements and high-quality outputs in terms of T&L enhancement
  • significant experience of collaboration and successful management of T&L projects within and between departments and institutions, and a track record of delivering on projects within specified timeframes and agreed budgetary parameters
  • a comprehensive knowledge, understanding and appreciation of the broader higher education landscape including national T&L policies and priorities
  • an ongoing and identifiable commitment to student success and student engagement
  • identifiable and substantial commitment to, and experience of, capacity building and continuing professional development with colleagues institutionally and nationally
  • significant professional motivation and the commitment to work with integrity in an insightful, empathetic, open-minded manner
  • the ability and willingness to balance professional individual interests with the necessity to deliver team requirements in alignment with national priorities and in a facilitative, collaborative, inclusive and reflective manner
  • the capacity and willingness to re-imagine, to transfer learning and to adapt
  • exceptional written and oral communication skills.

Specific review criteria for each stage of the application process will be published on this webpage as each stage is initiated.