LJMU’s Dr Craig Hammond, a Senior Lecturer in the School of Education, has been recognised for his outstanding impact on student outcomes and the teaching profession in higher education, with a National Teaching Fellowship.
“It is an absolute privilege to receive this 2022 National Teaching Fellowship award,” said Dr Hammond.
“It is even more meaningful being recognised in this way against the backdrop of my working-class childhood and youth. For me, the award is very much a celebration of the distance that I have travelled from a very different and challenging start in life. The award is also testament to the amazing students that I have had the privilege of working with – and continue to work with – at LJMU.”
Dr Hammond was nominated for his creative approach to student engagement, using pedagogic practices to make his learning experiences anything but mundane. He becomes the 14th National Teaching Fellow from LJMU (eight currently serving and six now retired).
Advance HE’s National Teaching Fellowship Scheme (NTFS) celebrates and recognises individual excellence that enhances and transforms both student outcomes and the wider teaching profession. It also acknowledges how the individual supports colleagues and champions student learning beyond their immediate academic or professional role. Dr Hammond is one of 54 people to be given a fellowship in the 2022 awards.
Professor Phil Vickerman, Pro-Vice Chancellor for Student Experience, commented: “This is an outstanding achievement and a significant personal recognition for Craig. The challenging start in life Craig describes will resonate with many of the experiences of our own students, and I am sure will act as an inspiration for their own journeys through education. I look forward to welcoming Craig to the LJMU National Teaching Fellow Network and we will be drawing on his knowledge to enhance the student experience.”
As a self-described non-traditional entrant to higher education, Dr Hammond left school aged 16 with very few qualifications and embarked upon a short career in the Army before returning to his hometown of Blackburn where he started work as a weaver.
“The work was arduous, physical, and isolating, and after several years in this role, I started to experience a deepening sense that something was missing; that I maybe had the potential to achieve more than I had been led to believe,” explained Dr Hammond.
In 1994 he enrolled on an Open University foundation course before studying at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLAN) where a chance conversation introduced him to the work of German philosopher Ernst Bloch. After studying his work, The Principle of Hope, Dr Hammond felt that his history and disappointments began to align with his culture-infused hopes and daydreams, eventually leading him to develop his own unique teaching practice in the form of utopian pedagogy.
Dr Hammond said: “This is in some ways an extension of my own transformative experiences; however, through experimentation, collaboration, error and success – at least in some areas – I have developed a range of curricular and pedagogic tactics that engage learners with cultural moments in powerful and instigative ways. Cracking open and making accessible everyday encounters with popular culture and autobiography, a supportive environment is established that can facilitate the emergence of hidden identities, struggles, and transgressive experiences of previous instances of oppression.”
Alongside his role as a Senior Lecturer at LJMU, Dr Craig Hammond is a managing editor for the education journal PRISM, and Co-Director of LJMU’s Centre for Educational Research (CERES). He is currently completing the PESGB funded project: A Catechism for Oedipus: A Critical Approach to Pedagogic Practice in Higher Education.
Alison Johns, Chief Executive, Advance HE said: “Congratulations to each and every new National Teaching Fellow on this fantastic achievement.
“At Advance HE, we run the prestigious NTF awards for the UK higher education sector with enormous pride. The challenges of offering an outstanding teaching experience in recent years have been very demanding, but the sector has risen to the challenge.”
2022 winners of the National Teaching Fellowship and the 2022 awards ceremony will take place on 29 September in Liverpool.