Research-teaching relationships and HE professional practice


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A presentation by Professor Simon Haslett at a Higher Education Aacdemy Wales Research-Teaching Nexus Action Set Meeting held at Aberystwyth University on 10th February 2011. Professor Haslett is Dean of the School of STEM at the University of Wales.

In the presentation, Professor Haslett examines the ways in which research and teaching may be linked in academic practice in Higher Education. He attempts to unravel the various linkages through scholarship, research (both subject-based and pedagogic), and curriculum, and outlines the activity and contribution of the Higher Education Academy Research-Teaching Nexus Action Set in Wales. The presentation draws upon his recent experience as Director of the Centre for Excellence in Learning and Teaching at the University of Wales, Newport, as a case study, and he also provides examples of research-teaching links from his own professional practice.

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Research-teaching relationships and HE professional practice

  1. 1. Research-teaching relationships<br />and HE professional practice<br />Professor Simon Haslett<br />Dean, School of STEM<br />Presented at the Higher Education Academy Wales Research-Teaching Nexus Action Set Meeting<br />Aberystwyth University, 10th February 2011<br />
  2. 2. Contents<br />Context and Resources<br />Scholarship of Learning and Teaching<br />Pedagogic Research<br />Research-informed Teaching<br />Research-Teaching Nexus<br />Undergraduate Research<br />Case study: the Newport CELT<br />Examples from my own practice<br />
  3. 3. The HEA R-T Nexus Action Set<br />Higher Education Academy Welsh Institutional Group set up the Research-Teaching Nexus Action Set in February 2009 at Newport.<br />Representatives from Welsh HEIs at biannual meetings.<br />Gregynog Conference (Sept 2009)<br />Swansea Meeting (March 2010)<br />Publication of book (June 2010)<br />Undergraduate Research Workshop, Carmarthen (15th Sept 2010)<br />Next generation of L&T Strategies in November 2011.<br />Action Set Blog<br /><br />
  4. 4. 2004<br /><br />
  5. 5. 2005<br /><br />
  6. 6. 2007<br /><br />
  7. 7. 2009<br /><br />
  8. 8. 2010<br /><br />
  9. 9. ‘Future shape of the HE sector in Wales’<br /> Each "region [in Wales] should have research intensive (in which we will increasingly focus our QR funding in support of sustainable excellence and relevance to Welsh Assembly Government objectives) and strong community/widening access focused provision“ (HEFCW, Dec 2010).<br />This implies that each region should comprise one research intensive and one access (teaching?) focused institution.<br />
  10. 10. Scholarship of Teaching and Learning<br />individually-focused scholarship for personal use;<br />internally-focused scholarship for local (e.g. departmental, institutional) use;<br />externally-focused scholarship, such as defined by the Research Assessment Exercise (RAE, 2005, p. 34) as “the creation, development and maintenance of the intellectual infrastructure of subjects and disciplines”; and<br />research for external dissemination at conferences and in publications (i.e. pedagogic research).<br />Where does your SoTL sit?<br />(from Haslett, 2009, based on Ashwin and Trigwell, 2004; RAE, 2005)<br />
  11. 11. Scholarship of Teaching & Learning and Pedagogic Research<br />Why do/would you do it?<br />Strategic e.g. research-informed teaching<br />Contractual e.g. teaching-led research<br />Personal professional updating/reflection and career<br />Disseminate examples of practice<br />What do/would you research?<br />Generic issues e.g. student engagement<br />Case studies e.g. examples of teaching<br />How do/would you do it?<br />Individually or collaboratively?<br />Funding for research and publication e.g. grants?<br />Output types e.g. books, articles, conferences?<br />Time and space to undertake research and writing?<br />
  12. 12. Learning and TeachingScholarship and Research<br />Encourage staff to become active members of L&T communities of practice.<br />Participate in internal L&T schemes.<br />Apply for Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) (map against Professional Standards)<br />Membership of the Society for Research into Higher Education (SRHE): Annual Conference at Newport 2009, 2010, and again in 2011?<br />Membership of the International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (ISSoTL):<br />Annual Conference was in Liverpool (October 2010)<br />
  13. 13. Delegate nationality at selected UK HE Conferences<br />(excluding delegates (n = 802) from institutions in England) n = 189<br />Total sample n = 991<br />From: S. K. Haslett (2009) Higher Education conference attendance and engagement with the scholarship of teaching and learning: a Welsh perspective. Journal of Applied Research in Higher Education, 1 (2), 65-73. <br />
  14. 14. Delegate Analysis<br />Welsh academics comprised 5% of all delegates.<br />Proportionally 25% fewer Welsh academics attending than from England.<br />Attendance proportionally dominated by newer universities.<br />Research-intensive universities in the bottom three.<br />Four Welsh institutions had no delegates at the Conferences surveyed (mix of both the above).<br />Limited snapshot survey, criticised because none of the events were in Wales.<br />The 2010 SRHE Conference held in Newport attracted 368 delegates, 26 of which were from Wales = 7%.<br />
  15. 15. Research-informed TeachingSystematic inquiry into the L & T process.<br />Which approaches are you most involved in?<br />Examining how discipline-based research is included in the curriculum …..<br />
  16. 16. Research-Teaching Nexus<br />STUDENTS ARE PARTICIPANTS<br />4. Research-tutored<br />Engaging in research discussions<br />3. Research-based<br />Undertaking research and inquiry<br />EMPHASIS ON RESEARCHPROCESSES AND PROBLEMS<br />EMPHASIS ON RESEARCH CONTENT<br />1. Research-led<br />Learning about current research in the discipline<br />2. Research-oriented<br />Developing research and inquiry skills and techniques<br />STUDENTS FREQUENTLY ARE AN AUDIENCE<br />Source:modified from M. Healey & A. Jenkins (2009) Developing students as researchers. In: S. K. Haslett & H. Rowlands (eds) Linking research and teaching in Higher Education. University of Wales, Newport, pp. 7-11. <br />How does your teaching map within the R-T Nexus?<br />
  17. 17. The Research-Teaching Complex<br />From Haslett (2009)<br />
  18. 18. Undergraduate Research<br />University of Central Lancashire, 19th-20th April 2011<br />
  19. 19. Case study - the Newport CELT<br />Learning and Teaching Strategy 2007-2010<br />“To establish a University-wide research cluster to lead development in pedagogy”.<br /> “It is recognised that the institution needs such initiatives to be driven from a Centre and to this end a University-wide Research Centre for Excellence in Learning and Teaching (CELT) will be established”.<br />
  20. 20. Emphasis on Dissemination<br />“the record of dissemination of good [L&T] practice outside the institution has been relatively low compared to the level of activity”<br />“The University is therefore placing a greater emphasis on encouraging its staff to not only develop, but to disseminate the many examples of good practice in learning and teaching both within and outside the University”<br />
  21. 21. The CELT as a Research Centre with its main function to assist staff in:<br />Devising pedagogic research projects;<br />Presenting papers at conferences; and<br />Writing and disseminating published outcomes.<br />
  22. 22. Umbrella<br />CELT drew together existing PedR activity across the institution.<br />Beacon<br />CELT as a beacon of SoLT and PedR, and teaching excellence in the HE landscape.<br />Early Stats (Dec 08 – June 09)<br />Total CELT contacts: 733<br />Conference delegates: 180 (up 50%)<br />Conference papers: 62<br />Proceedings papers: 20<br />CELT Journal papers: 14<br />CELT Launch & Workshops: 198<br />
  23. 23. CELT NEXUS Activities<br />Alan Jenkins keynote Dec 2008 and workshop on January 2009.<br />HEA-Wales Action Set on R-T Nexus, Chaired by CELT Director (2009-10).<br />Newport NEXUS Conference, 2009 and 2010 (books/resources available on web).<br />Mick Healey visiting professor: Sept 2010 .<br />
  24. 24. Newport NEXUS Conferences<br />Annual Learning and Teaching Conference<br /><br />June 2009 and 2010<br />
  25. 25. Varied Conference Symposia<br />For example:<br />Undergraduate Research<br />Research-informed Teaching<br />Community Education<br />ESDGC<br />International Scholarship<br />Linking Teaching and KT<br />Professional Development<br />Student Engagement<br />Technology Enhanced Learning<br />Hazard and Geoscience Research<br />Delegates used #nexus2010 when tweeting<br />
  26. 26. Publishes its own journal:<br />Teaching Practice<br />Learning Insights<br />Development and Innovation<br />Pedagogic Research<br />(Re)Views<br />Framework Issues<br />
  27. 27. CELT Writing Retreat<br />The Academic Writing Process<br />Inventing and research<br />Planning<br />Drafting<br />Revising<br />Editing<br />Submission<br />Peer review process<br />Revisions<br />Proof stage and publication<br />Modified from Ganobcsik-Williams (2009)<br />
  28. 28. Coordinators<br />PhD Students<br />CELT Research Programmes<br />Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL);<br />Education for Sustainable Development and Global Citizenship (ESDGC);<br />Flexible Learning in Employer and Community Scenarios (FLECS).<br />
  29. 29. Pedagogic Research Expeditions<br />ExPedR Legs 1 and 2<br />Leg 1 Australia 2009<br />Leg 2 Canada 2010<br />10 expedition members<br />Attend HERDSA 2009<br />Attend STLHE 2010<br />Visit other HEIs<br />Disseminate best practice<br />Develop research links.<br />Using #expedr2010<br />Blog -<br />YouTube – NewportCELT Channel<br />
  30. 30. PGCert Developing Professional Practice in HE<br />60 M-Level credits<br />HEA accredited<br />One year, part-time<br />Distance learning online (from Feb 2010)<br />Covers not only teaching but research<br />Assessment: teaching portfolio and action research project<br />Fee: £1500<br />Developing an MA in HE<br />
  31. 31. University of Wales Activity<br /><ul><li>University of Wales Alliance Thematic Group on Learning and Teaching, and Research
  32. 32. Develop a shared calendar of staff development events
  33. 33. Themed conference on ‘Research-informed Teaching’
  34. 34. Identify themes for workshops
  35. 35. Provide discipline-specific L&T support
  36. 36. Use UW Global Campus website to archive and disseminate materials
  37. 37. UW Teaching Fellows: Problem-based Learning
  38. 38. A UW Academy of L&T Award Winners
  39. 39. New Learning and Teaching Committee</li></li></ul><li>Exploring links in the Curriculuman example from my own practice<br />Bath Spa University Geography Department, set up in 1968-69.<br />1994 started as Lecturer in Physical Geography.<br />Inherited courses, but adapted them and developed new courses.<br />Major contribution to biannual field course to Brittany, France.<br />
  40. 40. Year 1 Field Skills<br />Geographical Skills<br />Training, equipment, numeracy, etc.<br />Campus-based, in lab class timetabled slot.<br />90+ students<br />Collect survey data<br />Calculate and plot<br />Submit answers via Blackboard VLE.<br />Automated marking.<br />
  41. 41. Year 1 Techniques<br />Landform Analysis<br />Geomorphological mapping exercise.<br />Blended learning using topographic maps and Google Earth.<br />Area is a staff research field site with some publications available.<br />Students learn about staff research.<br />
  42. 42. Year 1 Techniques<br />Landform Analysis<br />Sedimentology exercise using microscopy.<br />Samples collected for staff research project.<br />Students can refer to publications.<br />Learn about staff research on ‘live’ samples.<br />
  43. 43. STUDENTS ARE PARTICIPANTS<br />Research-tutored<br />Engaging in research discussions<br />Research-based<br />Undertaking research and inquiry<br />EMPHASIS ON RESEARCHPROCESSES AND PROBLEMS<br />EMPHASIS ON RESEARCH CONTENT<br />Research-led<br />Learning about current research in the discipline<br />Research-oriented<br />Developing research and inquiry skills and techniques<br />STUDENTS FREQUENTLY ARE AN AUDIENCE<br />Year 1 analysis<br />NO<br />SOME<br />YES<br />SOME<br />
  44. 44. Year 2 Field Research<br />The Brittany field course began in late 1970’s or early 1980’s, with good links with University of Brest, including some collaborative research.<br />1998-2001: Staff published research to underpin teaching in Brittany.<br />Until 2001 was not an assessed course.<br />2001-2004: part of a Yr 2 Geographical Research Methods module – emphasis on field skills.<br />After 2004: emphasis on preparation for Honours dissertation.<br />
  45. 45. Coastal Geomorphology<br />Survey of gravel shoreline transect at Ru Vein, Baied’Audierne.<br />Set up in 1997 with research in mind, but<br />used for assessed student field techniques, but<br />Later as an assessed student research exercise.<br />
  46. 46. Developing Field Research Skills<br />Beach<br />Surveying<br />
  47. 47. Gravel shoreline sedimentology<br />
  48. 48. An analysis of wave-coast interaction in the Baie d’ Audierne<br />byBecky, Corinne, Holly, Lizzie and Tom<br />Photographs by H. Winlow<br />
  49. 49. Example of Zingg Diagram<br />
  50. 50. Average volume (cm3) of particles along transect of storm beach profile, Ru Vein.<br />Larger rocks at back of profile.<br />“Steps”<br />Large rocks at start of “step”.<br />
  51. 51. Position changes 1997-2007<br />c. 25 m retreat of the toe of the beach;<br />c. 15 m retreat of the crest;<br />Sediment volume loss, due to washover and littoral drift.<br />(Haslett, 2008, Coastal Systems (2nd Ed). Routledge)<br />1996<br />2005<br />
  52. 52. Another similar exercise<br />(photo: Sian Andrews)<br />
  53. 53. STUDENTS ARE PARTICIPANTS<br />Research-tutored<br />Engaging in research discussions<br />Research-based<br />Undertaking research and inquiry<br />EMPHASIS ON RESEARCHPROCESSES AND PROBLEMS<br />EMPHASIS ON RESEARCH CONTENT<br />Research-led<br />Learning about current research in the discipline<br />Research-oriented<br />Developing research and inquiry skills and techniques<br />STUDENTS FREQUENTLY ARE AN AUDIENCE<br />Year 2 analysis<br />YES<br />SOME<br />YES<br />SOME<br />
  54. 54. Year 3 DissertationsHonours-level is learning at the cutting edge of the discipline<br />Individual projects<br />Linked to staff research sometimes<br />Skills, methods, analysis, literature.<br />Present results at Departmental Student Conference.<br />Sometimes publish, usually with staff.<br />
  55. 55. STUDENTS ARE PARTICIPANTS<br />Research-tutored<br />Engaging in research discussions<br />Research-based<br />Undertaking research and inquiry<br />EMPHASIS ON RESEARCHPROCESSES AND PROBLEMS<br />EMPHASIS ON RESEARCH CONTENT<br />Research-led<br />Learning about current research in the discipline<br />Research-oriented<br />Developing research and inquiry skills and techniques<br />STUDENTS FREQUENTLY ARE AN AUDIENCE<br />Year 3 analysis<br />YES<br />YES<br />SOME<br />YES<br />
  56. 56. Research Content Continuum<br />Year 1: students frequently are an audience of research, but are trained in basic skills.<br />Year 2: emphasis on research processes and problems with students as participants and audience (more skills training and methods).<br />Year 3: students are participants, undertaking their own research projects.<br />
  57. 57. Your approach?<br />Do you think this notion of a research content continuum could help you enhance the teaching-research nexus in your curricula?<br />In groups discuss examples where you could at different undergraduate levels:<br />Change/adapt existing courses (give specific examples);<br />Introduce new ideas to strengthen research-teaching links in the curriculum.<br />
  58. 58. Evaluating Curriculum<br />Audit modules annually to ensure they are supported and informed by recent (within last three years) research and scholarship, both in terms of curriculum and teaching.<br />As a course team, to obtain an overview, map all module provision using the R-T Nexus grid and place in the context of the research content continuum.<br />
  59. 59. Thank you<br />For further information, please consult the references cited in the presentation, and:<br />Join the HEA R-T Nexus Blog:<br />Look at and comment on (in the blog) the case studies in:<br />Linking research and teaching in Wales (2010) edited by Simon K Haslett<br />Register for the British Conference for Undergraduate Research:<br />Consider the implications of the HEFCW statement:<br />Strengthen Research-Teaching Links in your institutional strategies.<br />