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Dr Chris Kubiak

Profile summary

  • Central Academic Staff
  • Associate Head of School, Learning,Teaching & Innovatio
  • Faculty of Wellbeing, Education & Language Studies
  • School of Health, Wellbeing and Social Care
  • Health and Social Care
  • chris.kubiak

Professional biography

I am a senior lecturer in health and social care and Associate Head of School (Learning, Teaching and Innovation) with a particular interest in the construction of practice, practice-based learning, pedagogy and care.  I originally trained in community psychology in New Zealand.  My career has included services for people with intellectual and psychiatric disabilities,  volunteer-run telephone counselling and advice services and lecturing in psychology and communication studies.  I have been a full time researcher researching school-based learning networks and have also run an education and advocacy service.  I am a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academic.

Research interests

My main passion lies in understanding practice-based learning in health and social care and in other settings.  My work focuses on learning in work-based settings, learning networks, non-formal settings and educational institutions.  I'm particularly interested in the learning and practice of groups outside of what has traditionally been referred to as the professions such as care workers and assistants.  I also have interests in pedagogy and brokerage in learning communities or networks. 

Current PhD students

I am currently supervising three PhD students (draft titles):

  • Mauro Amatosi: ‘There’s No Place Like Home.’ An exploration of the impact of interpersonal relationships on hospital discharges for older people.
  • Gosia Iwaniec-Thompson: The investigation of the impact, knowledge building process and professional development stages of academics in HE when engaging with digital open Communities of Practice and the exploration of factors ensuring its sustainability.
  • Jade Levell: Exploring the Intersection of Gang Membership and Childhood Exposure to Domestic Abuse: Finding Themes from Stories of Survival.

Past projects

Understanding support worker learning

‘Understanding Support Worker Learning’ was a PhD project aiming to understand how skilled and caring practice is developed. The project takes a broad view of learning and will investigate how different experiences past and present, in and out of work, personal motivations and organisational needs build support worker practice. An aspect of this project was supported by the Practice-Based Professional Learning Centre at the Open University.

Understanding Student Learning in Practice settings (2006 - 2007)
With Anita Rogers, Anthea Wilson and Annie Turner, This project investigated the practice development of paraprofessional workers in health and social care through the vocational foundation degree (FD). It focused on the way in which practice development is constituted by workplace conditions, home life and student characteristics.  Read the project summary.

ReTool project (2005 - 2006)
With Mary Thorpe (PI), Bob McCormick (PI) and Robin Goodfellow, this project was an evaluation of the the National College of School Leadership's online community Talk2Learn.  The project resulted in the creation of a toolkit to support the work of Facilitators.

Networked Learning Communities (2003 - 2004)
I was employed as a researcher with this development and research project focused on supporting and building an understanding of school-based networked learning communities throughout England.  You can learn more about this project by accessing its comprehensive website.

Other involvements
I am a member of the editorial board for Health and Social Care in the Community.

I was a member of the editorial board for Learning in Health and Social Care.  This journal has since been discontinued. 

Since 2007, I have been the convener of the the Theory to Practice Special Interest Group hosted by the Practice-based Professional Learning CETL. 

Publications

Kubiak, C., and Sandberg, F., (2011) 'Paraprofessionals and caring practice: negotiating the use of self.' Scandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences.

Kubiak, C., Rogers, A., and Turner, A. (2010) 'The learning experiences of health and social care paraprofessionals on a foundation degree,' International Journal of Lifelong Education, 29(3), 369-382.

Kubiak, C. and Bertram, J. (2010) 'Facilitating the development of school-based learning networks,' Journal of Educational Administration, 48(1), 31-47.

Kubiak, C. (2010). 'The ambivalence of paraprofessional development in the UK' in L Henriksson, B Niemeyer & T Seddon (eds) Learning and Work and the Politics of Working Life: Global transformations and collective identities in teaching, nursing and social work, London, Routledge.

Kubiak, C. and Hester, R. (2009) 'Just Deserts? Developing Practice in Youth Justice', Learning in Health and Social Care. 8(1), pp. 47–57. (access full text here).

Kubiak, C. (2009). 'Working the interface: Brokerage and learning networks', Educational Administration, Management and Leadership, 37 (2), 240-257. (access full text here). (CETL PBPL Best Paper 2009 Prize Winner - third place)

Thorpe, M., McCormick, R., Carmichael, P. and Kubiak, C. (2007). Talk in Virtual contexts: reflecting on participation and online learning models, Pedagogy, Culture and Society, 15 (3), 349 - 366

Thorpe, M. & Kubiak, C. (2005). Working at community boundaries: a micro-analysis of the activist’s role in participatory learning networks, Studies in the Education of Adults, 37 (2), pp 151 – 165.

Kubiak, C. and Bertram, J. (2005) 'Network leadership as a balancing act: contrivance or emergence?', Forum: for promoting 3-19 comprehensive education, 47(1), 8-11.

Seden, J., J. Reynolds, J. Henderson and C. Kubiak (2005). "Managing Care and Joined Up Thinking in the Curriculum." Social Work Education, 24 (8): 841 – 856.

Thorpe, M., Kubiak, C. and Thorpe, K. (2002) 'Designing for Reuse and Versioning', in A. Littlejohn (Ed.) Reusing Online Resources: a Sustainable Approach to e-learning, London, Kogan Page.

Research reports
Kubiak, C., 2009. Caring practice: negotiating the intentional use of self. Report for Open University Centre of Excellence Practice-Based and Professional Learning, Milton Keynes: Open University.

Kubiak, C., Rogers, A. and Turner, A. (2008) Support, Time and Recovery Worker Experiences in the Health and Social Care Foundation Degree, report for Milton Keynes Primary Care Trust.

Kubiak, C., Rogers, A. and Turner, A. (2008) A path of crazy paving: tensions of work-based learning in health and social care, report for Open University Centre of Excellence – Practice-Based Professional Learning.

Conference papers
Kubiak, C (2008) A Quiet Revolution? Paraprofessional Development and Learning in Health and Social Care in symposium 'Reconstructing Education and Health as Neo-Liberal Human Service Work: Disturbing Borders of Work, Occupational Politics and Agency" at the European Conference on Educational Research in Gothenburg, Sweden, 8 - 9 September 2008.

Kubiak, C., Rogers, A. and Turner, A. (2007) A path of crazy paving: tensions of work-based learning in health and social care. Paper presented to: European Conference for Education Researchers, Ghent, Belguim, 19-21 September 2007.

Kubiak, A, Rogers, A and Turner, A. (2007). Student Experiences in Health and Social Care Foundation Degree Work Based Learning. Paper presented at the British Association of Occupational Therapists/College of Occupational Therapists Annual Conference, Cardiff, 19th-22nd June 2007.

Harris, A., Kubiak C. and Rogers, A. (2006). Building Firm Foundations: an Evaluation of a Work-Based Foundation Degree Programme for Mental Health Workers. Paper presented at the European Conference for Educational Researchers, Geneva, 13 – 16 September, 2006.

Thorpe, M., McCormick, R., Goodfellow, R., Hughes, R., Jelfs A. and Kubiak C. (2005) Talk in virtual contexts: reflecting on participation and online learning models, TLRP Thematic Seminar Series, October: Institute of Educational Technology, The Open University, Milton Keynes.

Kubiak, C., Rogers, A. and Harris, A. (2005). Boundary Creatures and Boundary Learning: Creating a Foundation Degree in Health and Social Care at the Open University. Paper presented at the European Conference for Educational Researchers, Dublin, 7 – 10 September, 2005.

Case, S. and Kubiak, C. (2004) 'Typologising Networked Learning Communities: a Mixed Methods Approach'. Paper presented at the European Conference for Educational Researchers, Rethymon, 22–25 September, 2004.

Kubiak, C. and Bertram, J. (2004) 'Network Leaders' Perspectives on the growth of Networked Learning Communities'. Paper presented to the British Educational Research Association (BERA) Conference, Manchester, 15–18 September, 2004.

Anderson, M., Kubiak, C., Hadfield, M. and Creasy, J. (2004) 'Building leadership and facilitation capacity in Networked Learning Communities'. Paper presented at the Americal Educational Research Association (AERA) Conference, San Diego, 12–16 April, 2004.

Kubiak, C. and Anderson, M. (2003) 'Facilitation in Action'. Paper presented at the British Educational Research Association (BERA) Conference, Edinburgh, 10–13 September, 2003.

Teaching interests

I am currently Associate Head of School (Learning, Teaching and Innovation) and hold strategic responsibility for the School's learning and teaching.  Past teaching roles include:

- 2015-16: K240 Mental Health and Community (course team author)

- 2013-14: K101 Introduction ot Health and Social Care (production and presentation co-chair)

- 2013: K313 Leadership and management in health and social care (course team author)

- 2012-2013: Academic Lead for Transforming Care courses.

- 2008-2011: K217 'Adult Health, Social Care and Wellbeing' (production and presentation co-chair).

- 2007-2008: K309 'Communication in Health and Social Care' (presentation course team member).

- 2006-2007: The Youth Justice Foundation Degree including K115 'Introduction to Youth Justice (course team author).

- 2004 - 2006: The Foundation Degree in Health and Social Care including K114 'Introduction to Effective Practice (production chair) and programme academic lead.

    Publications

    Analytics4Action Evaluation Framework: A Review of Evidence-Based Learning Analytics Interventions at the Open University UK (2016-01-19)
    Rienties, Bart; Boroowa, Avinash; Cross, Simon; Kubiak, Chris; Mayles, Kevin and Murphy, Sam
    Journal of Interactive Media in Education, Article 2(1)
    Recognition of prior learning, self-realisation and identity within Axel Honneth’s theory of recognition (2013-11)
    Sandberg, Fredrik and Kubiak, Chris
    Studies in Continuing Education, 35(3) (pp. 351-365)
    Paraprofessionals and caring practice: negotiating the use of self (2011-12)
    Kubiak, Christopher and Sandberg, Fredrik
    Scandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences, 25(4) (pp. 653-660)
    Facilitating the development of school-based learning networks (2010)
    Kubiak, Chris and Bertram, Joan
    Journal of Educational Administration, 48(1) (pp. 31-47)
    The learning experiences of health and social care paraprofessionals on a foundation degree (2010)
    Kubiak, Chris; Rogers, Anita M. and Turner, Annie
    International Journal of Lifelong Education, 29(3) (pp. 373-386)
    Working the interface: brokerage and learning networks (2009-03)
    Kubiak, Chris
    Educational Management Administration and Leadership, 37(2) (pp. 239-256)
    Just deserts? Developing practice in youth justice (2009-03)
    Kubiak, Chris and Hester, Richard
    Learning in Health and Social Care, 8(1) (pp. 47-57)
    Talk in virtual contexts: reflecting on participation and online learning models (2007-10)
    Thorpe, Mary; McCormick, Robert; Carmichael, Patrick and Kubiak, Chris
    Pedagogy, Culture and Society, 15(3) (pp. 349-366)
    Working at community boundaries: a micro-analysis of the activist's role in participatory learning networks (2007-01-25)
    Thorpe, Mary and Kubiak, Chris
    Studies in the Education of Adults, 37(2) (pp. 151-165)
    Managing care and joined up thinking in the curriculum (2005-12-01)
    Seden, Janet; Reynolds, Jill; Henderson, Jeanette and Kubiak, Chris
    Social Work Education, 24(8) (pp. 841-856)
    Working at community boundaries: A micro-analysis of the activits's role in participatory learning networks (2005)
    Thorpe, Mary and Kubiak, Christopher
    Studies in the Education of Adults, 37(2) (pp. 151-165)
    Paraprofessional development in the UK: ambivalences and contradictions (2010)
    Kubiak, Christopher
    In: Seddon, Terri; Henriksson, Lea and Niemeyer, Beatrix eds. Learning and Work and the Politics of Working Life: Global Transformations and Collective Identities in Teaching, Nursing and Social Work (pp. 125-141)
    ISBN : 978-0-415-55752-8 | Publisher : Routledge | Published : London
    Designing for reuse and versioning (2003-03-01)
    Thorpe, Mary; Kubiak, Christopher and Thorpe, K. M.
    In: Littlejohn, Allison ed. Reusing online resources: a sustainable approach to E-learning. Open and flexible learning
    ISBN : 749439491 | Publisher : Kogan Page | Published : London, UK
    Learning in Landscapes of Practice: Boundaries, identity, and knowledgeability in practice-based learning (2014-07-23)
    Wenger-Trayner, Etienne; Fenton-O'Creevy, Mark; Kubiak, Christopher; Hutchinson, Steven and Wenger-Trayner, Beverly eds.
    ISBN : 978-1-13-802218-8 | Publisher : Routledge | Published : Abingdon

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