1st Edition

Understanding Contemporary Issues in Higher Education Contradictions, Complexities and Challenges

Edited By Brendan Bartram Copyright 2021
    182 Pages 6 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    182 Pages 6 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This insightful book offers a wide-ranging collection of lively discussions on contemporary issues, policies and practices in higher education. Bartram integrates contributions from experienced academics, teachers and students in a unique approach and structure, designed to enable students with both specific and wide-ranging interests in higher education to extend their understanding.

    Including discussion points, research tasks and suggestions on further reading in each chapter, Understanding Contemporary Issues in Higher Education discusses a range of topics, such as:

    • universities and the mental health ‘crisis’;
    • knowledge, the state and the market;
    • the role of technology in teaching and academic celebrification;
    • disability, diversity and inclusive placement learning.

    Written specifically for Education Studies students, this book constitutes a timely addition to student-focused themed studies looking at aspects of higher education.

    Chapter 1 Higher Education: Change, churn and challenges

    Brendan Bartram

    Chapter 2 Changing Notions of Risk: The realities of studying in a post-92 university

    Bethany Sumner

    Chapter 3 Transitioning from Higher Education Stories from students in a STEM discipline

    Sinead D’Silva and Samantha Pugh

    Chapter 4 ‘Academics online’: Self-promotion, competition and celebrification

    Brendan Bartram

    Chapter 5 Higher standards and better-informed students or false promises and ‘gaming’ the system? Competition, metrics and the consumerism of students in UK higher education

    Mark Elliot

    Chapter 6 Weaving through the Web: How students navigate information online in the twenty-first century

    Carol Bailey, Hazel Bowley and Jodi Withers

    Chapter 7 Academic Diversity and its Implications for Teaching and Learning

    Anesa Hosein and Namrata Rao

    Chapter 8 Let’s keep it casual? Rising precarity and acts of resistance in UK universities

    Esther Muddiman, Rowan Campbell and Grace Krause

    Chapter 9 Meanings, Models and Muddles: Two tales of the pursuit of teaching excellence

    Tanya Hathaway and Namrata Rao

    Chapter 10 Mental Health and Wellbeing in Higher Education

    Clare Dickens

    Chapter 11 The Development of Knowledge in the Modern and Postmodern Universities

    Stephen Ward

    Chapter 12 Disability, Diversity and Inclusive Placement Learning

    Stephanie Brewster and David Thompson

    Chapter 13 How to Promote Real Equality in Higher Education

    Ruth Mieschbuehler

    Chapter 14 Higher Education: Contemplating the contradictions, complexities and challenges

    Brendan Bartram


    Brendan Bartram is Reader in Education at the University of Wolverhampton, UK.

    'At the time of writing my endorsement of this fascinating book, the 2020 global Covid-19 pandemic is creating profound uncertainty about which universities will survive and new questions about who they are for and what, and how, to teach in them. The timely publication of this thought-provoking and wide-ranging book will enable readers to locate the fallout from the pandemic in a longer history of constant change, growing government regulation, risk, precariousness and fluctuating educational and social tensions around diversity, well-being and participation in the British higher education system.' - Kathryn Ecclestone, retired professor of education and co-author of The Dangerous Rise of Therapeutic Education, published in 2008 and reissued in 2018 as part of Routledge’s Classics in Education series


    'This book provides a thorough overview and analysis of contemporary trends and issues in higher education, focusing on many of the tensions and contradictions that are embedded in universities today. It will inspire and motivate further discussion and debate on key issues in the field. As higher education continues to adapt to new challenges and opportunities, Understanding Contemporary Issues in Higher Education is essential reading for students and researchers alike.' - Professor Robin Shields, School of Education, University of Bristol, UK