Carina Bossu

Winner of the New Researcher: One to Watch competition

Visit Carina’s personal webpage

Communities involved in
Open and Distance Learning Association of Australia (ODLAA)
Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education (ASCILITE)
New South Wales Institute of Educational Research (NSW IER)
Brazilian Association for Distance Education (ABED)

Publications of interest
Willems, J., & Bossu, C. (2012). Equity considerations for open educational resources in the glocalization of education. Distance Education, 33(2), 185–199.

Bossu, C., & Tynan, B. (2011). OERs: new media on the learning landscape. On the Horizon, 19(4), 259 – 267.

Bossu, C., Brown, M., & Bull, D. (2011). Playing catch-up: Investigating public and institutional policies for OER practices in Australia. The Journal of Open, Flexible and Distance Learning, 15(2), 41 – 54.

Bossu, C., Bull, D., & Brown, M. (2012). Opening up Down Under: the role of open educational resources in promoting social inclusion in Australia. Distance Education, 33(2), 151–164.

Bossu, C (2011). Educação continuada e a EAD (Continuing education in distance learning). In F. M. Litto & M. Formiga (Eds.), Educação a Distância: O Estado da Arte (Distance Education: The State of Art), 2nd Edition. São Paulo: Pearson.

Carina’s top tips for researchers and authors in the field
It is a privilege to be asked to make such a contribution to the Education Arena as I am an early career academic myself. However, there are a few things that I have learned during my short career from more experienced professionals that have worked for me, and that I would like to share with other early career researchers, and perhaps with more experienced ones as well. Here they are:

Find a mentor. Preferably, someone more experienced than you and who you can trust. Someone who is able to answer your questions and provide feedback and guidance on your career. Normally, these researchers/academics are very busy professionals, so be flexible and try to fit into their schedule. A lot of them really enjoy helping early career professionals. This is a great opportunity for you to learn from other peoples’ experiences, make friends and expand your network.
Create opportunities to learn something different when you have a chance. For example, attend professional development workshops, seminars or free courses.
Meet interesting people and keep in contact. When you attend conferences make the effort to go to as many sessions as you can, talk to the keynote speakers and other speakers, introduce yourself and if you promise to contact them, follow through.
Be a reviewer of a journal. It could mean a little bit more work for you now, but it could save you time in the long run, when it is your time to publish. You will be surprised how much you learn from revising other peoples’ work.
Avoid procrastination and keep focused. There is an overwhelming amount of information available on the Internet today, so it is very easy to get distracted and spend hours doing things that are not really related to your work.
Make several backups of your computer files and make sure you put them in a safe place. I have heard some terrible stories of people who lost all their computer files, the only copy of the PhD thesis to be submitted, weeks of work, etc. It can be very stressful. So, make sure this does not happen to you.
Look after yourself. As an early career academic, you have no time to waste and it feels as you are running against the clock to catch up with other people at similar positions or age who seem to be ahead of you professionally. This can be good competition – just make sure you are well, healthy and getting a good night’s sleep. Your health will impact on your productivity and performance, and your overall motivation and satisfaction.
Publish. This is a powerful way to get your work recognised by your peers – and you are probably well aware of this. Be strategic though about where, what and when to publish your work.

Why is the Education Arena a great resource?
The Education Arena is an important instrument for researchers and authors across the diverse field of education. It gives them the chance to keep up-to-date with new releases through alerts, news and the bulletin. It also provides the views of experts across a wide range of topics in education and educational research through interviews, panels and discussions available on the portal. Education Arena is a valuable repository of resources to authors in general, particular early career ones, as it provides information on publishing, careers and even on conferences.