Fay, Richard (MEd, MusM and PhD alumnus)
I act as the unofficial co-ordinator of the LANTERN Doctoral Community (and this related Blog). I became a Lecturer Education (TESOL and Intercultural Communication) in 1994. Now, I am Senior Lecturer responsible for MA TESOL modules as follows: Language Education as Intercultural Practice; Developing Researcher Competence; and Principled Materials and Course Design. As you can see here, I have been, and remain, involved in quite a number of research projects including those focusing on researching multilingually.
I based my (very) part-time doctoral studies on a project that I co-ordinated for the TESOL team (called CELSE at that time) in the School of Education (now the Manchester Institute of Education). The project involved a 10+ year collaboration between CELSE and the Hellenic Open University (HOU) through which the HOU licensed CELSE’s MA TESOL distance learning materials for the HOU’s first ever programme, a comparable MA TEFL.
My approach initially was ethnographic and involved many periods of short-term project sojourning Greece as a privileged outsider. Over time, the ethnographic shifted however towards the narrative inquiry approach reported in my thesis. During the course of my studies, my focus also shifted from a large culture approach looking at how Greek distance education differed from CELSE’s ‘Anglo’ approach and instead adopted a small culture approach see Adrian Holliday’s work).
My research questions were as follows:
- Q1: What understandings of the factors encouraging and discouraging the development of the CELSE-HOU project are to be found in the narratives of its participants?
- Q2: What underpinnings for understanding the project are to be found in my narratives of conceptual development related to the project?
- Q3: From the insights gathered in response to Questions 1 and 2, what can be learned about the characteristics of the project’s emergent cultures of distance learning and collaboration?
When I began my research into the project as focused by the above questions, I had to develop my researcher competence in relation to narrative research. During the process of developing this competence, an additional focusing Research Question emerged. Although its presentation below disturbs the chronological flow of my research story, I want to present it here so that all four Research Questions are gathered clearly in one place:
- Q4: What insights about narrative research methodology can be gained through examining the participants’ project narratives?
I finished the PhD in 2004 and after the long slog doing it part-time whilst working, I took some time off studying but, glutton for punishment, in Sept 2009, I started a part-time Masters in Musicology (Mus.M) specialising in Ethnomusicology, graduating in 2011. For those of you that don’t know me, I have a strong musical life outside my academic role in TESOL and Intercultural Communication/Education. I founded and play in various ensembles including Hard Times Orkestar (playing my ethno-classical compositions amongst other folk repertoire), Hard Times Kapelye (playing klezmer), and Levvy Metal (playing Balkan-inspired brass and and music), I co-founded an co-direct the Music Department’s klezmer ensemble, the Michael Kahan Kapelye, and have co-developed klezmer-related shows – Amid the Mirk over the Irk: When klezmer Meets Irish, and Vessels of Song: Journeys into the Worlds of Klezmer. In March 2020m, the first CD of my ethno-classical compositions was released – Helix: Music for Hard Times, and during the COVID-10 restrictions, a 2nd CD – Hamosity: Music in Hard Times – was recorded ready for release early in 2021.
Amid the Mirk Over the Irk – Babele/Butterfly (a video for a number in this show)
Amid the Mirk Over the Irk … An Irish Night in the Garden of Eden (a video for a number in this show)
Helix: Music for Hard Times (CD, released March 2020)
In Remembrance of Lost Worlds (from Helix CD)
Levvy Metal … Live at the Kondyke (promotional video for Levvy Metal).
Vessels of Song: Journeys into the Worlds of Klezmer (documentary of the concert, December 7th 2019).