HR learning and organization

The nexus of work-applied skills and learning: comparative approaches across sectors

Call for papers for: Journal of Work-Applied Management



Special Issue Editors


Associate Prof Dr Steve Lambert, University of Chester, UK (Guest Editor [email protected])

Dr Suzette Dyer, University of Waikato, New Zealand (Guest Editor [email protected])

Dr Fiona Hurd, Auckland University of Technology, New Zealand (Guest Editor [email protected])

Prof Dr Shankar Sankaran, University of Technology Sydney, Australia (Guest Editor [email protected])

Prof Dr Nor Hayati Saad, Universiti Teknologi MARA, Malaysia (Guest Editor [email protected])

Prof Dr Tony Wall, University of Chester, UK (Editor-in-Chief [email protected])

Submission deadline:  before 1st October 2020 at 5pm GMT


Call for papers

This special edition of the Journal of Work-Applied Management considers the juxtaposition and role of skills and knowledge learned in the workplace with that of academic learning (Bravenboer and Lester, 2016). The packaging up of learning into formal structures has arguably been evident for some time, for example, in highly technical knowledge fields and sectors such as information technology. Here, the integration of manufacturer-based training has been common practice for a number of years (Helyer, 2011). Yet such dynamics also appear in systems where work-based or work-place learning is understood through units and modules, especially where the aim of policy reform can deepen such technocratic and instrumental structures (Wall and Perrin, 2015). However, more recently, there has been a growing level of sophistication in the way that work-based learning and academic learning has converged. In part, this is due to the increased emphasis that policy makers have placed on, for example, apprenticeships in the United Kingdom.

This has provided a range of possibilities for developing academic programmes that integrate work-based academic learning. It has also challenged the orthodoxies around the way that work-based learning is being theorised and facilitated in higher education and blurred the boundaries between work-based and academic learning. But do such dynamics act as provocative mechanisms for workplace impact, do they, as Ramsey (2011) and Wall (2016) suggest, constrain and dampen impact and innovation at work, or are we seeing new pathways of learning and impact at work?

The aim of this special issue is to curate cutting edge research and practice that has challenged conventions and considered novel approaches to bridging the gap between these forms of learning. Papers considering practice across the public, private and community sectors, across all academic disciplines, and across countries, are especially encouraged. We welcome creative and unorthodox approaches and are calling for articles which may include, but not limited to, the following:

  • Challenges to conventional pedagogic approaches which reconcile graduateness and work-based learning (Walsh and Kotzee, 2010; Kettle, 2013)
  • Case studies that demonstrate novel approaches to using experiential learning to bridge the gap, including for example, problem based learning, project-based learning, and internships
  • Examples of employer or academic institute responsive case studies and provisions to develop partnership to provide a work-based contextualised and bespoke curriculum
  • The above, across sectoral, cultural and multi-cultural contexts (especially the Global South).

Details of the length of the submission are located within the author guidelines:


Important dates

  • Call for papers:                   February 2020
  • Submission deadline:       Before 1st October 2020 at 5pm GMT
  • Final revisions due:            January 2021
  • Expected publication:      May 2021


Submission procedure

Please discuss your manuscript ideas with any of the Special Issue Editors above, and ensure you follow the author guidelines closely:

Submissions are through the ScholarOne system: (please select the correct Special Issue when submitting).



Bravenboer, D. and Lester, S. (2016) Towards an integrated approach to the recognition of professional competence and academic learning. Education + Training58(4), pp.409-421.

Helyer, R. (2011) Aligning higher education with the world of work. Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning1(2), pp.95-105.

Kettle, J. (2013) Flexible Pedagogies: employer engagement and work-based learning. York, Higher Education Acdemy.

Lester, S. and Costley, C. (2010) Work‐based learning at higher education level: Value, practice and critique. Studies in Higher Education35(5), pp.561-575.

Ramsey, C. (2011) Provocative theory and a scholarship of practice. Management Learning 42(5): 469–483.

Ramsey, C. (2014) Management learning: A scholarship of practice centred on attention? Management Learning 45(1): 6–20.

Rogers-Chapman, M.F. and Darling-Hammond, L. (2013) Preparing 21st century citizens: The role of work-based learning in linked learning. Stanford MA, Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education.

Wall, T. and Perrin, D. (2015) Slavoj Žižek: A Žižekian Gaze at Education, London, Springer.

Wall, T. (2016), “Žižekian ideas in critical reflection: The tricks and traps of mobilising radical management insight”, Journal of Work-Applied Management, Vol. 8 No. 1, pp. 5-16.Walsh

Walsh, A. and Kotzee, B. (2010) Reconciling ‘graduateness’ and work-based learning. Learning and Teaching in Higher Education, (4-1), pp. 36-50.