Julie Rattray

Associate Professor

Julie Rattray is Associate Professor in Higher Education at Durham University. Her research interests include the threshold concept framework, liminality, affective dimensions of learning as well as other aspects of policy and pedagogy in Higher Education. In particular she is interested in the ways that learners deal with troublesome knowledge and the extent to which affective characteristics and attributes might influence this.

In recent years Julie has been involved in research projects and conference organisation in the area of Higher Education. She was a member of the UK team of project IBAR working with 6 European partners to explore the potential barriers to the implementation of pan-European standards and guidelines for higher education the findings of which are described in Eggins, H. (Ed). (2014) Drivers and Barriers to Achieving Quality in Higher Education, published by Sense). Julie has had an ongoing involvement in the biennial Threshold Concepts conference which started with the 5th conference held in Durham in 2014. Since then she has contributed as a paper reviewer (6th and 7th) and invited workshop facilitator at the most recent conference held at Miami University, Ohio, in June 2018. In 2016 she was the chair of the Improving University Teaching (IUT) conference held in Durham. Her most recent project is DASCHE (Developing, Assessing and Validating Social Competences in Higher Education. http://www.dasche.eu/about-project) which focuses on the identification of practice in relation to the development of social Competence in Higher Education. This project includes 5 European partners along with the UK and is funded by Erasmus +.

Julie joined the University of Durham in 2001 having completed a Ph.D in Developmental Psychology at the University of Dundee. Julie currently holds the role of Director of Education in her department which means she has strategic oversight of its teaching and learning strategy. Over the years Julie has contributed to a range of undergraduate and postgraduate modules that take a psychological approach to teaching and learning or which have a specific higher education focus. As a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy she contributes to the postgraduate Certificate in Academic Practice.

Julie has a broad range of supervisory experience and is currently working with students on a range of projects that use threshold concepts theory as a framework to explore aspects of teaching, learning and policy issues in Higher Education, metacognitive awareness and psychological and affective dimensions of learning.