Dangerous ideas: Dare to Share


Dawne Irving-Bell1

1Edge Hill University, UK

Corresponding Author:
Dawne Irving-Bell, Ormskirk Main Campus, The Lodge, Edge Hill University, UK
Email: belld@edgehill.ac.uk



Evidencing the impact of SoTL scholarship can be extremely difficult.

In this article I explore this global phenomena and, sharing an idea, I introduce the National Teaching Repository. The repository is a safe space where SoTL scholars can disseminate their learning and teaching pedagogical research and resources in a way that celebrates their practice.

Sharing scholarship can help build confidence and keep imposter syndrome at bay, and through the repository scholars can help secure evidence of the impact of their practice to use for progression or promotion. Having explored the value of disseminating practice through this global platform, the article closes with tangible support and an invitation to share.     


scholarship, dissemination, National Teaching Repository, open educational practice, open educational resources


In this article I’m going to share an idea.

An idea that might make you feel uncomfortable. An idea that might make you feel nervous or awkward just thinking about it. An idea that I hope by the time you’ve finished reading this article you’ll be open to explore …

Dare to Share?

We all know how difficult it can be to evidence the impact of scholarship, and as modest folk many Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) scholars find it extremely difficult to talk about their learning and teaching practice in a way that posits them as ‘experts’ in their field (Godbold, et al., 2021). 

Another challenge arises when colleagues seek to evidence the impact of their pedagogical practice. The requirement to demonstrate ‘scholarship’ is a common feature of learning and teaching focused promotion criteria (Smith & Walker, 2021). However the ongoing debate around differences between scholarship, SoTL, and pedagogic research makes reaching a consensus of what may be defined as an appropriate scholarship output difficult to reach. 

So, to help address the impact of these common phenomena, both the difficulty in talking about one’s own SoTL practice, and to disseminate it in an academic way, I founded the National Teaching Repository. The repository is a safe space where SoTL scholars can disseminate their learning and teaching pedagogical research and resources in a way that celebrates their practice. The repository offers support to colleagues across the globe by facilitating easy access to the very best Learning and Teaching research and resources, and as I will explain it does this while supporting colleagues to secure evidence of the impact of their practice in a way that helps them to build their learning and teaching scholarship profile.

The repository is a searchable database, an open educational resource that makes sharing SoTL research and resources easy. There is no need to register, and work can be uploaded in a matter of minutes. Work is curated by a team of likeminded colleagues, who are committed to helping SoTL scholars like you to share their pedagogy. When you share you can link your work to your ORCID ID, request a DOI and signpost anything you dare to share to your personal websites or institutional spaces. You choose your own preferred level of Creative Commons (CC) licencing, and your work remains your academic and intellectual property. In this way your work is protected and because the repository generations a citation, colleagues who use your work to inform and inspire their own practice can acknowledge your work in the same way ‘traditional’ research is cited.

The repository is a fabulous way to showcase your scholarship. So, leave your modesty at the door and don’t be afraid to shout about your brilliance! Small, often seemingly ordinary everyday things can have a massive impact and uploading to the repository is a brilliant way to share your practice in a way that measures interactions and builds evidence of the impact of your practice.

It has been designed to enable you to share your scholarship in multiple formats: audio, video, papers, data, reports, and infographics. Through Almertic data, the repository collects evidence of colleagues’ interactions with your work. In less than 15 months the repository attracted over 73,000 global interactions, equating to more than 1,100 scholars each week visiting the repository to access resources to help shape and improve their SoTL practice. In next steps, we plan explore other methods of dissemination, including the publication of an Excellent Resource Series of ‘Proven in Practice’ resources.

Sharing your scholarship helps to build confidence and keep that imposter syndrome at bay! Sharing through the repository can help secure evidence for progression or promotion. So, what are you waiting for? Get courageous and be bold; you have nothing to lose… I dare you to share!

Handy links!

Discover research from the National Teaching Repository https://figshare.edgehill.ac.uk/The_National_Teaching_Repository and visit https://figshare.edgehill.ac.uk/submit to share!

Need more information?

Click here to watch a video presentation: https://doi.org/10.25416/NTR.15152094.v1 or FAQs are answered here: https://doi.org/10.25416/edgehill.12674687.v6

Read our welcome presentation: https://doi.org/10.25416/edgehill.12673016 and meet our curators and critical friends: https://doi.org/10.25416/edgehill.12820727.v13

Follow the NTR on Twitter: @NTRepository


Godbold, N., Irving-Bell, D., McSweeney-Flaherty, J. M., Prusko, P.T., Schlesselman, L.S., & Smith, H. (2021). The courage to SoTL. Teaching and Learning Inquiry9(1), 380–394. https://doi.org/10.20343/TEACHLEARNINQU.9.1.25

Smith, S., & Walker, D. (2021). Scholarship and academic capitals: the boundaried nature of education-focused career tracks. Teaching in Higher Education, 1-15. https://doi.org/10.1080/13562517.2021.1965570