Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.
1
ICED 2014 SWEDEN
Voices of academics on conditions enabling and
constraining their uptake of professional
development oppo...
The Study
Study sought to find out from academics what they considered as
the enablements and constraints in their uptake ...
METHODOLOGY
• Qualitative paradigm
• Semi structured interview schedule
• Ten academics who indicated willingness to be in...
Social Realism
Structure: relates to material resources and to the recurring
patterns of social behaviour or to the interr...
Social Realism
Culture: ideas, beliefs, values, ideologies (What ideas, values,
beliefs are held in relation to profession...
Constraints -Structure
Huge workloads-little time for issues such as professional
development
People are extremely busy. E...
Constraints -Structure
Lack of administrative support in schools was said to affect
academics ability to get time to engag...
Constraints: Culture
Privileging of research over teaching-
•In most cases it seems that to have a post graduate qualifica...
Constraints: Culture
• So I think what constrains the development of academics as
teachers is the emphasis on research, an...
Enablements- Structure
• The establishment of the Centre for Higher Education Teaching
and Learning (CHETL)
-since CHETL s...
Enablements- Structure
• Funding readily available for staff development from the
Teaching Development Grant and the staff...
Enablements- Culture
• Valuing of teaching The recently introduced VC Teaching
Excellence awards (alongside the well estab...
Enablements : Agency
• Supportive key agents in the university-the support of key
agents in executive management in the un...
Recommendations from
academics
• A special category of leave, for example, special leave would be
more appropriate rather ...
Recommendations of this
study
• Evidence of competence in teaching and learning should form an
integral part of policy on ...
THANK YOU
Ndo livhuwa
17
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in …5
×

Clever Ndebele's presentation at ICED, Stockholm, June 2014

651 views

Published on

Clever Ndebele made a presentation on the Structure, Culture and Agency project at ICED, Stockholm, in June 2014. The data focuses on the voices of academics at Venda University, South Africa.

Published in: Education, Technology
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

Clever Ndebele's presentation at ICED, Stockholm, June 2014

  1. 1. 1
  2. 2. ICED 2014 SWEDEN Voices of academics on conditions enabling and constraining their uptake of professional development opportunities as teachers at a south African university Dr Clever Ndebele Director Centre for Higher Education Teaching and Learning University of Venda, South Africa 2
  3. 3. The Study Study sought to find out from academics what they considered as the enablements and constraints in their uptake of professional development opportunities in their role as teachers 3
  4. 4. METHODOLOGY • Qualitative paradigm • Semi structured interview schedule • Ten academics who indicated willingness to be interviewed in a preliminary questionnaire • The study used Margaret Archer’s Social realist analytical framework (specifically the concepts Structure , Culture and Agency) • Archer sees the social world as consisting of two components, parts(structure and culture) and agency (people) 4
  5. 5. Social Realism Structure: relates to material resources and to the recurring patterns of social behaviour or to the interrelationship between different elements of society around the distribution of these (e.g. social class, gender, race, marriage, education, systems, committees –Staff Development Committee, Senate Teaching and Learning Committee) • What mechanisms have been put in place to support academics wishing to develop themselves as teachers? 5
  6. 6. Social Realism Culture: ideas, beliefs, values, ideologies (What ideas, values, beliefs are held in relation to professional development of academics as teachers by the academics , by management , by ED practitioners? Does one have to receive training or is disciplinary expertise enough on its own to make one a good teacher? Agency: personal and psychological make up of individuals, their social roles and relates to the capacity of people to act in voluntary ways .(Boughey 2010). How does structure and culture(e.g. how do huge workloads and the valuing of research over teaching affect the way academics respond to professional development opportunities offered? 6
  7. 7. Constraints -Structure Huge workloads-little time for issues such as professional development People are extremely busy. Everyone has got more than enough and then there is also pressure on new academics to be finishing their masters, or doing PhD because that’s what’s more valuable to the department The workload might affect how you embrace a lot of things, because if you are teaching a huge number, it tends to affect how you avail yourself to such opportunities, and I think there's a need to look into that, the large classes 7
  8. 8. Constraints -Structure Lack of administrative support in schools was said to affect academics ability to get time to engage in professional development opportunities as shown in the responses below; •-You don't get a secretary or somebody who can assist you to be doing 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. And you are responsible for teaching; you are responsible for marking; you are responsible for entering marks; you are responsible for everything •-If they can employ more staff, or if they can employ supportive staff for lecturers. Because as lecturers we also work as academics and we do all the other administrative things for ourselves, and we don't have time to do that •-as academics, whether you are a professor, whether you are a doctor or a senior lecturer, you do all the administrative stuff by yourself. 8
  9. 9. Constraints: Culture Privileging of research over teaching- •In most cases it seems that to have a post graduate qualification in your own field is valued much higher than working with your teaching and learning so the research is often given far higher priority. •I really think teaching and learning does not enjoy the priority that it should by default, simply because of this huge emphasis on us jacking up our research output and our research endeavours. You know, what happened was that suddenly the university put resources into research. 9
  10. 10. Constraints: Culture • So I think what constrains the development of academics as teachers is the emphasis on research, and the perceived benefits...well, not only the perceived but the real benefits in terms of financial reward, and the perceived benefits for their academic careers. • -Even the one now (teaching development workshop held recently) , I was supposed to be there, but I had to go to a paper-writing retreat. So I was writing papers for publication and all that. You know, at the university they always demand papers out of researchers 10
  11. 11. Enablements- Structure • The establishment of the Centre for Higher Education Teaching and Learning (CHETL) -since CHETL started, they now have induction for academics. I think it runs for three days, and they will actually take them through what is expected of a teacher, which I think is important. So after they've attended the university-wide induction, we have our own induction for the staff members in the faculty. • Deliberate identification of courses/formal qualifications on academic development and funding staff members to enrol for these 11
  12. 12. Enablements- Structure • Funding readily available for staff development from the Teaching Development Grant and the staff development and training section in the human resources department • The structures that have been put in place; School Based Teaching and Learning Committees and the Senate Teaching and Learning Committee have been established • A policy on staff development exists which provides guidance on staff development issues 12
  13. 13. Enablements- Culture • Valuing of teaching The recently introduced VC Teaching Excellence awards (alongside the well established research incentives) was seen as helping to enhance the status of teaching as shown in this response; The award system, in terms of teaching and learning , I was very impressed with that. • The recent classification of Teaching and Learning as a research niche area now attracting similar funding from the university as disciplinary research (this was achieved after extensive lobbying by CHETL(funding for research on teaching and learning was previously half of that of disciplinary research) 13
  14. 14. Enablements : Agency • Supportive key agents in the university-the support of key agents in executive management in the university was said to create a conducive environment for academic staff development There is higher management support especially from the DVC academic • The strategic positioning of the post of director as member of decision making committees means he can push the staff development agenda at those meetings 14
  15. 15. Recommendations from academics • A special category of leave, for example, special leave would be more appropriate rather than using their current study leave entitlement • More incentives for teaching • Provision of administrative support to free up lecturer time so they engage in professional development opportunities 15
  16. 16. Recommendations of this study • Evidence of competence in teaching and learning should form an integral part of policy on promotion and tenure in universities. This will ensure that the three tier issue of teaching and learning, research and community engagement is taken seriously with equity in universities. • Professional development courses offered by teaching and learning centres in universities should be varied and tailor-made to ensure relevance to different faculties and departments in universities as this can encourage uptake. • Equitable distribution of teaching load to ensure that staff members have teaching loads that allow them to participate in other professionally relevant activities. • Teaching and learning centres should devise ways of constantly engaging staff to motivate them to make it a priority to undertake professional development courses in teaching and learning. • Compulsory HE teaching qualification 16
  17. 17. THANK YOU Ndo livhuwa 17

×