TwistedIvy
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Hi guys,

My dream job is to become a Higher Education Lecturer. I've thought about it for a long time, and I would definitely like to pursue this career.

I understand that this career path is extremely competitive, and I tried to do as much as I possibly could during my undergraduate studies to improve my chances at actually achieving this goal.

To help improve my prospects, I've:
  • Achieved First Class Honours in my undergraduate degree.
  • Been a course representative in my 2nd year, then 'promoted' to a faculty representative in my 3rd year.
  • Been an executive of the course's society.
  • Achieved the highest overall mark on my course.
  • Created a LinkedIn account and connected with my former undergraduate lecturers.
  • Enrolled on a Masters course which I start in a few weeks.

Please could you guys help me? During my Masters, I really want to further improve my chances of becoming a Higher Education Lecturer, but I'm struggling to think of more things that I could do.

Of course, I'm going to try my absolute hardest to get the highest mark that I can during my Masters, like I did for my Bachelor's.

Thanks,

Ivy
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EierVonSatan
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(Original post by TwistedIvy)
Hi guys,

My dream job is to become a Higher Education Lecturer. I've thought about it for a long time, and I would definitely like to pursue this career.

I understand that this career path is extremely competitive, and I tried to do as much as I possibly could during my undergraduate studies to improve my chances at actually achieving this goal.

To help improve my prospects, I've:
  • Achieved First Class Honours in my undergraduate degree.
  • Been a course representative in my 2nd year, then 'promoted' to a faculty representative in my 3rd year.
  • Been an executive of the course's society.
  • Achieved the highest overall mark on my course.
  • Created a LinkedIn account and connected with my former undergraduate lecturers.
  • Enrolled on a Masters course which I start in a few weeks.

Please could you guys help me? During my Masters, I really want to further improve my chances of becoming a Higher Education Lecturer, but I'm struggling to think of more things that I could do.

Of course, I'm going to try my absolute hardest to get the highest mark that I can during my Masters, like I did for my Bachelor's.

Thanks,

Ivy
What is your subject?

In mine you need a PhD, which also gives you ample oppurtunity to teach undergraduates to see if it's something you would enjoy doing.
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TwistedIvy
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(Original post by EierVonSatan)
What is your subject?

In mine you need a PhD, which also gives you ample oppurtunity to teach undergraduates to see if it's something you would enjoy doing.
Oh! Sorry, my subject is Biological Sciences.

And yeah I definitely need a PhD, I'm going to start one in Sep/Oct 2020 after I finish my Masters Teaching undergraduates is something that I'm definitely looking forward to. When I was in my third year of my undergraduate degree, I did a lot of workshops for first years and I really enjoyed doing them.
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EierVonSatan
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(Original post by TwistedIvy)
Oh! Sorry, my subject is Biological Sciences.

And yeah I definitely need a PhD, I'm going to start one in Sep/Oct 2020 after I finish my Masters Teaching undergraduates is something that I'm definitely looking forward to. When I was in my third year of my undergraduate degree, I did a lot of workshops for first years and I really enjoyed doing them.
Good stuff

Do you think you would pursue 100% teaching (as a teaching fellow or similar)?

Have a look at this https://jobs.aston.ac.uk/Upload/vaca...%20Science.pdf

If you scroll down you will see the kinds of things that a department is looking for.
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TwistedIvy
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(Original post by EierVonSatan)
Good stuff

Do you think you would pursue 100% teaching (as a teaching fellow or similar)?

Have a look at this https://jobs.aston.ac.uk/Upload/vaca...%20Science.pdf

If you scroll down you will see the kinds of things that a department is looking for.
All of the lecturers that I had during my undergraduate studies were Higher Education Lecturers that also conducted research for the university, and often incorporated their research into teaching sessions, and I think that's what inspired me the most. If I were a lecturer, I'd like to be just like this.

Thank you so much for sending that PDF, it looks like the most important areas for me to develop are teaching experience and understanding of topical areas of biological sciences. And it says it's desirable to be a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, which I can only assume you can get once you actually have a job as a higher education lecturer?
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artful_lounger
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Generally lecturing (or any teaching duties) are additional requirements put upon academic researchers, so broadly speaking the answer is "go into academia". Do a PhD, then a postdoc, and try and get as much teaching stuff done in the process (e.g. marking, demonstrating labs in PhD, running seminars, tutorials, lecturing etc, during postdoc).
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EierVonSatan
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(Original post by TwistedIvy)
And it says it's desirable to be a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, which I can only assume you can get once you actually have a job as a higher education lecturer?

:dontknow: Never heard of it! Must be fairly recent.
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TwistedIvy
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(Original post by artful_lounger)
Generally lecturing (or any teaching duties) are additional requirements put upon academic researchers, so broadly speaking the answer is "go into academia". Do a PhD, then a postdoc, and try and get as much teaching stuff done in the process (e.g. marking, demonstrating labs in PhD, running seminars, tutorials, lecturing etc, during postdoc).
I'm definitely going to focus on that then, get as much teaching and research experience as I possibly can .

(Original post by EierVonSatan)
:dontknow: Never heard of it! Must be fairly recent.
I'll read into that then, I remember seeing a lot of my lecturers having a certificate saying they were a Fellow of something in their offices, so it might have been that
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gjd800
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HEA fellowship is useful but not essential (though more and more places want you to have some sort of teaching qual, and this is the shortcut to satisfying that criterion)

Basically get a PhD, do as much teaching as you can, be prepared to have crap fixed term or zero-hour contracts for a few years and ride your luck. Publish stuff as early as is feasible for you to do so
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gjd800
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(Original post by EierVonSatan)
:dontknow: Never heard of it! Must be fairly recent.
Been around since about 2003/4, gathered steam since about 2012
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EierVonSatan
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(Original post by gjd800)
Been around since about 2003/4, gathered steam since about 2012
Ah, so pretty much when I left academia
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gjd800
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I should add, you don't need to be a 'lecturer' to go in for associate membership of the HEA, but you do need teaching experience of maybe a year or two
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Notoriety
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Look at job spec of any lecturing gig and focus on ones which are in your area. They say in detail what they require. Experience of teaching, some publications, experience of getting funding, etc etc.
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Notoriety
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(Original post by gjd800)
HEA fellowship is useful but not essential (though more and more places want you to have some sort of teaching qual, and this is the shortcut to satisfying that criterion)

Basically get a PhD, do as much teaching as you can, be prepared to have crap fixed term or zero-hour contracts for a few years and ride your luck. Publish stuff as early as is feasible for you to do so
Aye seen some PhDs with associate fellowships. I thought it looked a bit daft, like a kid wearing his dad's jacket.
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gjd800
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(Original post by Notoriety)
Aye seen some PhDs with associate fellowships. I thought it looked a bit daft, like a kid wearing his dad's jacket.
To a point, yeah, and I think the same. Gives them a leg up in early career job apps though. I didn't do one (mostly the uni's fault, a little bit my own) but I'm gonna do it this year.
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TwistedIvy
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(Original post by gjd800)
Basically get a PhD, do as much teaching as you can, be prepared to have crap fixed term or zero-hour contracts for a few years and ride your luck. Publish stuff as early as is feasible for you to do so
I'm going to try my hardest to get as much teaching experience as I can. I was told by my old lecturers that at the start it can be really hard to find permanent work, but once you get the experience and start building a publishing portfolio it gets easier and eventually, after a lot of work, you can find a permanent position.
(Original post by gjd800)
I should add, you don't need to be a 'lecturer' to go in for associate membership of the HEA, but you do need teaching experience of maybe a year or two
That's really interesting, so if I were to teach undergraduates during a PhD, I would be eligible to join the HEA? I'll definitely look into that.
(Original post by Notoriety)
Look at job spec of any lecturing gig and focus on ones which are in your area. They say in detail what they require. Experience of teaching, some publications, experience of getting funding, etc etc.
When I was applying for my Masters, I noticed that it said that it may be possible to publish the work that we do during our research project. I'm definitely going to take up this opportunity then, so I can start building up my reputation early
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Notoriety
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(Original post by TwistedIvy)
When I was applying for my Masters, I noticed that it said that it may be possible to publish the work that we do during our research project. I'm definitely going to take up this opportunity then, so I can start building up my reputation early
It's heavily dependent upon your research area. People in psych and STEM (from afar) seem to have publications earlier compared to people in law (which is basically zero and people only usually start publishing around the time they're finishing their PhD). So it depends; just have a look at what your peers are getting up to and don't stress. Plenty of time to get everything in order.
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gjd800
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(Original post by TwistedIvy)
I'm going to try my hardest to get as much teaching experience as I can. I was told by my old lecturers that at the start it can be really hard to find permanent work, but once you get the experience and start building a publishing portfolio it gets easier and eventually, after a lot of work, you can find a permanent position.

That's really interesting, so if I were to teach undergraduates during a PhD, I would be eligible to join the HEA? I'll definitely look into that.

When I was applying for my Masters, I noticed that it said that it may be possible to publish the work that we do during our research project. I'm definitely going to take up this opportunity then, so I can start building up my reputation early
your institution might have an internal process by which you qualify for Associate HEA membership. usually you'd go to a couple of workshops and write an essay of some sort. Saves you 200 quid and is easier than doing the questionnaire and forms yourself
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TwistedIvy
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(Original post by gjd800)
Gives them a leg up in early career job apps though.
I think this is mainly what I need to focus on, finding ways to make myself stand out just that little bit more. The competition is obviously going to be fierce, and I don't think that just having a First Class in my undergrad and (hopefully) a Distinction in my Masters is going to cut it on its own.
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gjd800
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(Original post by TwistedIvy)
I think this is mainly what I need to focus on, finding ways to make myself stand out just that little bit more. The competition is obviously going to be fierce, and I don't think that just having a First Class in my undergrad and (hopefully) a Distinction in my Masters is going to cut it on its own.
I have a first, distinction, ARHC-funded PhD and several publications and I'm still struggling. it is hard, but if you have the grit for it then you might be ok!
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