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 Academy.
My main interests lie 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 two PhD students (draft titles):
Home Focus Evaluation (2015-17)
With Josie Teteley (MMU), Caroline Holland (OU), Emma Kouvunen (MMU) and Jenny Fisher (MMU). An evalaution of a dementia service conducted in partnership with Manchester Metroplitan University.
Understanding support worker learning (2012-2014)
‘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.
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.
I am currently the Associate Head of School (Learning, Teaching and Innovation) and hold strategic responsibility for the School's learning and teaching strategy. Past teaching roles include:
- 2015-16: K242 'Ageing Societies and Global Health' (course team author)
- 2015-16: K240 'Mental Health and Community' (course team author)
- 2013-14: K101 'Introduction to 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 programme.
- 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.
Carers and higher education: Where next? (2021-10-20)
Larkin, Mary and Kubiak, Christopher
Widening Participation and Lifelong Learning, 23(2) (pp. 130-151)
‘They come with their own ideas of what they want’: Healthcare educator, advanced practice student and manager perspectives on learning outcomes (2020)
Kubiak, Chris; Walker, Susan; Draper, Jan; Acton, Faye; Clark, Elisabeth; Rogers, Jill; Rogers, Melanie and Dearnley, Christine
Journal of Education and Work, 33(4) (pp. 312-325)
Surveillance, intervention and the politics of care (2019-05-01)
Kubiak, Christopher; Tomkins, Leah and Larkin, Mary
International Journal of Care and Caring, 3(2) (pp. 165-181)
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)
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)
Working the interface: brokerage and learning networks (2009-03)
Educational Management Administration and Leadership, 37(2) (pp. 239-256)
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)
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
Understanding support worker learning : practice, participation and identity (2012)
PhD thesis The Open University