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EDI Colloquium 2024: Pedagogies of Liberation: Challenge, change, compassion, collaboration

Novotel Sheffield Centre Hotel, Sheffield
County / Region
United Kingdom
Position on the Pathway
Excellence in practice
Fellowship Category
All Fellowship Categories
Event Type
Face to Face Colloquia
Start Date
End Date
1 day
Institution Type
Higher Education and Further Education
Price From


The legacy of educators such as bell hooks, Paulo Freire, Ron Scapp and Henry Giroux is, among other things, the notion of education as a liberatory and healing practice, and an opportunity for individuals to make sense of their lives. This practice positions the classroom as a collaborative space to enable learning to be a joyful experience. This Colloquium aims to provide an open and supportive environment within which to share, discuss and learn from contemporary practice-based interventions and initiatives that explore ways in which educators create spaces of joy and excitement not only in classrooms and lecture theatres – but also within their practice and social action outside the classroom.

To educate as a practice of freedom then refers to teaching in a way that anyone can learn; to “teach in a manner that respects and cares for the souls of our students ... to provide the necessary conditions where learning can most deeply and intimately begin…” (hooks, 1994). Core to this act of education as an act of freedom is the education of students to think critically, particularly against racial, sexual and class boundaries to achieve the gift of freedom so that it becomes the “practice of freedom, [to] deal critically and creatively with reality and discover how to participate in the transformation of their world" (Freire, 2014) which is increasingly important in our current global social and political climate.

“Education as a Practice of Freedom: Nurturing Inclusive Learning”

In the University’s realm of possibility, educators and EDI practitioners alike, we labour in hope for the type freedom that inspired by bell hooks and Paulo Freire. They create collaborative spaces, navigate difficult topics with resilience and embed hope. By dismantling boundaries, they increase student belonging, transforming education into a liberatory force—one that empowers minds and heals souls.

Join us in shaping an inclusive educational landscape!

The Colloquium will include a keynote session (Prof Manny Madriaga), guest provocations, participant-led workshops/ presentations, and a closing plenary. 

The idea of education as an act of freedom is not new – and it persists. It persists because ‘education’ as a construct has a pivotal role in how ‘the norm’ evolves into becoming knowledge and a part of a canon. Education is therefore not politically neutral, and neither are educational institutions nor educators. Therefore, our methods of teaching as educators must be living examples of our politics – how we would like the world to be.

Call for submissions

We invite potential participants to share their pedagogies of hope and submit work that addresses the following themes: 

Cultivating Engaged pedagogy(ies?) for holistic wellbeing – How can we teach to go beyond the limits of our current educational context? ‘Engaged pedagogy’ emphasizes the importance of the overall wellbeing of both the student and the teacher. Core to this is notions of active student voice – in a way that connects to the academic material, and teacher actualisation: self-care, mindfulness to empower students to achieve the same. 

The promise of change – How do we enact the values and beliefs that reflect our commitment to freedom as described previously, within the traditional educational models? What are the practical approaches to teaching in a way that promotes freedom? How can we foster a sense of community in teaching spaces, nurturing positive relations while navigating student expectations and resistance?

Building resilient teaching communities – Change is both empowering and exhausting. Students may resist innovative pedagogies, while teachers challenge diverse learning approaches. How do we create teaching communities that champion change? Educational leaders play a crucial role in supporting liberatory practices and providing essential respite.

Ecstasy - teaching and learning without limits – what are the necessary ingredients for growth and change within our teaching and learning spaces?

Beyond Classroom Walls - Beyond lecture theatres, how do EDI practitioners engage in social action, advocating for justice, equity, and inclusion. How can ‘paradises’ be created not only within classrooms but also through community engagement, policy advocacy, and systemic change. 

Abstracts can be submitted for the following session types:

Oral presentation – Presentations are to be structured to include 15 minutes of presentation time, leaving 5 minutes for audience questions. Colleagues are asked to submit an abstract of up to 100 words outlining the focus of the presentation and potential benefits to participants of attending. Presentations should relate to one of the symposium themes (see above). 

Workshop – At least half of this 60-minute session should be used for participant-centred activities. Colleagues are asked to submit an abstract of up to 250 words, outlining the focus of the workshop,  activities to be included and participant  ‘takeaways’ (i.e. what participants will gain from attending the workshop). Workshops should relate to one of the symposium themes (see above). 

DIY – using either of the timings above, we invite participants to suggest a format of their choosing. (this is subject to discussion with the venue and requirements).

Submissions should be made using the link below.

Reviewing criteria:

All submissions (both presentations and workshops) will be reviewed according to the following criteria: 

  • Relevance to colloquium focus and themes; 
  • Innovative ideas (including research literature); 
  • Reference to evidence-informed frameworks or principles for engaged pedagogies 

Deadline for submissions is 5pm, 15 April 2024.

Submit your abstract here

Who is the colloquium for?

Drawing on research and/or evidence-informed practice, we anticipate the event will appeal to academic and professional service, leaders with responsibility for staff and their development, the Staff Development community, and EDI professionals within higher education.


Dr Lindy-Ann Blaize Alfred

Lead Consultant, EDI
Advance HE
Dr Lindy-Ann Blaize Alfred
Dr Lindy-Ann Blaize Alfred is a Lead Consultant, EDI at Advance HE. A Senior Fellow, Lindy-Ann brings over three decades of experience in a range of education sectors both nationally and internationally.

Dr Manny Madriaga

Associate Professor in Education
University of Nottingham
Dr Manny Madriaga
Dr Manny Madriaga is Associate Professor in Education at the University of Nottingham. His research interest is aligned with inclusion in higher education, specifically related to disability and race.