Communities of Practice knowledge exchange and development

<strong>Communities of Practice </strong>knowledge exchange and development

Bringing together expertise

Communities of practice are knowledge exchange and development hubs that bring together people from across the sector both nationally and globally. They develop and support practice, showcase and drive innovation and address sector challenges through collaboration. 

Communities of Practice provide a domain for exchange and collaboration with others across the world

The communities will help individuals keep up to date with what is happening in other institutions, supporting their agility in the ever evolving context of teaching and learning.

By accessing both the face-to-face and virtual spaces that collectively form the wider Higher Education Academy community you can stay up to date with the aspects of teaching and learning research, policy and practice that are of the greatest relevance and interest to you.

  • Resources and 12 years of quality-reviewed evidence on ‘what works’ in teaching for you to access.
  • Access to the HEA’s Virtual Learning Environment (VLE), providing you with a place to go to explore a strategic topic or discipline area relating to your role or personal and professional development goals.
  • This is complemented by webinars about latest research and policy, as well as access to the regular Virtual Reading Group. 

Why join a community of practice

The Communities of Practice provide a coherent environment for sharing innovations and ideas, building on the collective momentum of higher education providers working as thought leaders in the field.

  • Communities of practice are shaped and directed by the individuals within it.
  • Activities of the community can facilitate networking and brokering across institutions and nations.  
  • Each community can grow and flex to meet sector requirements.
  • The communities provide the mechanism for sharing and gathering practice amongst members.
  • The communities host ‘live’ discussions on themes, with activities such as webinars, blogs, network co-ordination, thought platforms and more.
  • Communities are agile, supporting members to work together to consider current developments and their implications as they occur.
  • Current issues can be shared and resolved as a community.
  • Comunities of Practice can stimulate discussion which could ultimately lead to the development of collaborative research projects.
  • Active membership of a Community of Practice can support you on your Fellowship journey.


How you benefit

Those working for higher education providers that are Strategic or Access partners of the Higher Education Academy can benefit from the range of opportunities to share, reflect and engage with colleagues and experts from the global higher education sector. 

Whether you are a senior leader, academic, or support staff the Communities of Practice can benefit you:

  • Quickly access resources which support you in your role;
  • You will become part of the conversation;
  • You can shape how the subject matter is reflected in academic practice;
  • Discover new methods and best practice direct from your peers;
  • You can share and test new ideas around the thematic/discipline area;
  • Communities of Practice represents a Contnual Professional Development (CPD) opportunity


Through the encouragement of an appreciative and collaborative sharing of resources, the aim of each community is to bring groups of individuals together, across boundaries – whether institutional or geographic – connecting people to engage in collective learning through shared examples of cutting edge research, guidance and case studies.

Find a community for you

The communities will host discussions on priority areas, activities such as webinars, blogs, network co-ordination, thought platforms and more. Each Community of Practice is owned by its members, facilitated and hosted by the Higher Education Academy. Now is an exciting time to engage and help develop the communities from their inception, helping to shape development and growth. The flexible learning and employability communities are available now with more communities coming soon.

Flexible learning

The Higher Education Academy Flexible Learning Community of Practice connects its members from across the disciplines and sector, who share a concern and passion for developing and embedding flexible modes of teaching and learning, to innovative best practices and thinking. 

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The Community of Practice for Employability creates a shared domain of interest for the group to advance, maintain and share expertise around employability. By engaging with fellow practitioners you can share and develop resources, knowledge and insights. 

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Access, retention, attainment and progression

The aim of this global community is to enable members to share useful resources on the issues surrounding student retention.

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Assessment and feedback

Empower higher education leaders and practitioners with an interest in innovative, flexible and dynamic practices and pedagogies, and a desire to take steps towards shaping contemporary practice and thinking in transforming assessment and feedback 

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GTEA Finalists'

Open only to all institutions selected as finalists each year in the Global Teaching Excellence Award, this community brings together academic leaders and professionals from across the world that share a commitment to furthering the pursuit of teaching excellence.

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