REF 2021 Panel meeting with Heads of Departments of Philosophy

On September 13th, 2018, the BPA hosted a meeting at Bush House, King’s College London, between Heads  / Research Directors of philosophy departments and appointed members of the REF 2021 sub-panel. The BPA wanted to ensure that colleagues in philosophy had an opportunity to discuss and comment on the draft versions of the REF 2021 Guidance on Submissions and Panel Criteria and Working Methods.

Bob Stern, Heather Widdows (Birmingham) and Bill Childs (Oxford), as members of the philosophy-sub panel, were present to take questions from 20 representatives of philosophy departments around the UK.

  • A report from the meeting is available here, along with the slides presented at the meeting [pdf] [pptx]
  • The meeting informed the BPA’s response to the REF 2021 Consultation, which was submitted on 6th October 2018, and is available here.

AHRC Future Priorities Consultation

The Arts and Humanities Research Council contacted the BPA to ask us to take part in a consultation aimed at building on UKRI’s Strategic Prospectus. The AHRC will use this consultation to create Strategic Delivery Plan for the next 5-7 years. The Executive Committee of the BPA submitted the following response.

  • BPA response to  consultation on AHRC Strategic Delivery [pdf]

Reply to BiS consultation: ‘Fulfilling Our Potential’ Green Paper on Teaching Excellence Framework proposals

The UK Government’s Department for Business, Innovation and Skills opened a consultation in November 2015 on their Green Paper ’Fulfilling Our Potential: teaching excellence, social mobility’. The BPA collaborated with colleagues from other subject associations across the humanities through the Arts and Humanities Alliance (AHA), an umbrella group, to put together a forthright response endorsed by over 20 professional associations. You can find that document here.

We also thought about whether there were any issues raised by the green paper which might affect philosophy in particular – that is, ways in which the proposed Teaching Excellence Framework might be in tension with the kinds of things that the BPA think are importantly in need of consideration given the way that philosophy exists in universities, as opposed to just general difficulties thrown up by the proposals. We consulted with Joshua Forstenzer, the Vice-Chancellor’s Fellow in the Public Benefit of Higher Education at the University of Sheffield, who had just completed a very useful (and philosophical) response, and with Jenny Saul from the Society for Women in Philosophy-UK (the SWIP UK response is here), and submitted a BPA response.

Response to OfQual consultation: GCE AS and A Level Philosophy

In October 2015, OfQual had an open consultation about changes to the Subject Content statement and the methods of assessment for GCE Philosophy. The BPA enouraged all of our members to send responses, and to let us know about what they thought needed special attention. We received a lot of replies and submitted this response to OfQual. We have since learned that OfQual were impressed with the way the philosophical community were able to make such a helpful and active engagement with their proposed changes. They’ve since been in touch with the BPA to discuss ways in which the proposed changes can be implemented.

BPA Head of Departments meeting with Alexander Bird, post-REF2014, & Alison Wood, AQA.

In January 2015, the BPA invited  Alexander Bird, Professor of Philosophy at the University of Bristol, to meet with Heads of Departments of philosophy to discuss REF2014. Alexander was the chair of the Philosophy sub-panel on the REF. He gave a presentation which you can download here, and the Q&A/discussion is recorded in the minutes of the meeting. The minutes include a summary of the other BPA business affecting philosophy departments around the UK, in particular: the recent developments in AQA’s A-Level philosophy qualification, presented to the meeting by AQA’s Head of Curriculum and Assessment Practices, Alison Wood.

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 January 16th 2023

Tender for EDI research

The British Philosophical Association (BPA) is inviting tenders to conduct research into the provision and experience of Philosophy in Schools,…

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