End of Term Reflection

Teaching is over. It’s the Easter holidays, and the way term has fallen this year, there’s no teaching once we go back – just exams. I’ve absolutely loved teaching this year, and I’m really going to miss my students. It was stressful at times, trying to fit it all in with the PhD, writing papers, and my creative writing, but it’s been brilliant. I’ve had a lot more input with the teaching this year – I’ve created a tonne more lesson plans, written lectures, and had some input in the overall planning. I’ve taught on both literature and creative writing modules, which was lush. I’m a bit gutted that it’s over, but I’m also really looking forward to immersing myself in my research.

I’m applying for a few jobs, too. I’ve realised that I’m not great at bigging myself up – I know that I can absolutely smash these jobs, I know that I can engage the students and really get them involved in their own learning – but I need to get better at letting other people know that. Seeing the student feedback for my modules has given me the boost I need, though. There were some really lovely comments about my seminars and lectures – I even had students saying that they enjoyed critical theory (which, as you may know, is rare at level 4).

Being realistic, however, the job market is tough at the moment. So if I don’t get these posts, then I need a plan for what to do next. I’ll obviously need a job to see me through – I’ll be keeping my eye out for those, too. But I also want to keep on building on my skills – I want to be able to show, without a doubt, that I’d be an asset to any university. My field of research is cutting edge, and I’ve got some ideas for how I can build a module that feeds into that. I also think it’s something I could get the public engaged with. I want to branch out more with my creative writing – maybe work on some collaborative projects. Which is all stuff I’d do even if I did get a job, but thinking CV-wise, these might give it a boost.

Next week I’m heading to Talking Bodies 2017 – you may remember my review of TB15 – I’ll be doing another one for this year’s talks. I’m also presenting a paper (at 9am on the Friday!), which I THINK I now have down to time. But I’ll rehearse it a few more times. Really looking forward to the conference, it’s such an amazing space – there are literally hundreds of absolutely brilliant and interesting people talking about stuff they’re passionate about. The organiser, Emma Rees, is an actual star.

Anyway, for now, I’m getting over the lurg, applying for jobs, and leaping back into my research. I’ve also bought some really great books recently, so I might even take a moment to read something non-research related. Shocking, I know.

 

This is my top academic hack at the moment – thinking of making a series of ‘ac-hacks’.

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