In order to bring teaching and research together, a fuller understanding of how academics conceptualise research and scholarship is needed. The paper discusses different ways in which research and scholarship are conceptualised and then provides two alternative models of the relationship between teaching and research based on different conceptions of teaching and different ideas about the nature of knowledge. The paper suggests that if the relationship between teaching and research is to be enhanced it is necessary to move towards a model based on the notion of academic communities of practice. The implications for higher education of doing this are then examined. It is argued that there is a need to reconceptualise the role of higher education and to renegotiate relationships between teachers and students.