Dr Laura Thomas is a postdoctoral researcher and teaching assistant at the Department of Educational Studies, part of the Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences at Ghent University (Belgium). Her PhD work and publications focus on beginning teachers and their collegial support networks. Specifically, Laura studied the relationship between support networks and beginning teachers’ job satisfaction, affective organisational commitment and intrinsic motivation to teach – all precursors of teacher retention. In her research she used mixed-method social network analysis and has become vary passionate for this methodology. She currently works on the ‘Masters of Didactics’ project in which a professionalization course for university teachers to improve their teaching skills is designed, and as a teaching assistant in the teacher training programme.