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Jeff heltasa conf presentation nov 2014


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Jeff Jawitz and Teresa Perez made a presentation at the annual Heltasa Conference at the UFS in November 2014, on professional development in higher education, the issue of time and risk.

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Jeff heltasa conf presentation nov 2014

  1. 1. Learning to Teach at UCT: A risky business? Jeff Jawitz and Teresa Perez Centre for Higher Education Development (CHED)
  2. 2. The UCT case study (Part of multi-institutional NRF study #74003) Senior management interviewed 2 Senior leadership 2 Deans Academics surveyed & interviewed 171 Respondents 75% participated in PD in teaching 25% never participated in PD in teaching 11 interviewees 8 participated in PD in teaching 3 never participated in PD in teaching
  3. 3. Lots of PD opportunities • 74% feel UCT provides lots of opportunities for PD in teaching • 61% agree it is easy to access info about PD opportunities in teaching. NAPP Learning to Teach in Higher Education (LTHE) Teaching with Technology Seminars Teaching Workshops Higher Education Studies (PGDIP/Masters) TSCOT – The short course on teaching Commerce Education Group
  4. 4. High quality of teaching • “[There are] some outstanding teachers in the faculty, enthusiastic, committed and excellent ...evidenced in the nominations that go for the distinguished teacher’s award” [SM3]. • Our teachers are fantastic… a number … have been given distinguished teachers' awards. [Others] have received national education awards and many of them have gone on to do masters and doctoral degrees in education [SM4].
  5. 5. Love of teaching Available: com_content&view=article&id=191&Itemi d=150 [2014, October 16]. • “Colleagues who are able to incorporate their research interests into their teaching love that, … I would say that the majority of staff in fact actually enjoy teaching” (SM) • “I love working with students and I love the idea that I’m actually building skill that’s useful in the workplace” (L10) • “As much as I enjoy the research, I actually really enjoy the teaching” (L5)
  6. 6. Research counts • “All of the implicit and explicit messages favour research and allocating time there” (SM1). • “At the end of the day ... being a researcher is key to your success ... at UCT” (SM2). production-and-sas-development [2014, October 15].
  7. 7. Teaching doesn’t count [There is] no requirement for you to have done courses, … [or] for you to be a particularly good teacher. It doesn’t seem to be rated very highly. (L11) The academic rat race that requires people to publish or perish… has a … detrimental effect on teaching. (L4) University tends to have a laissez-faire approach to the way in which people teach… I don’t think anyone’s ever been fired because they didn’t teach properly. (L5)
  8. 8. Motivation to participate: Senior managements view Uneveness across faculties Changed should be driven from the top SM vs. faculties Mismatch between senior management and academic staff/ mixed messages/ agency
  9. 9. Motivation to participate: Academics view Q18: What may prompt your attendance of PD opportunities for your teaching? Code Response % Intrinsic motivation > 60% If the topic is relevant to my teaching 68 If I have the time 67 If it can help my teaching 63 If I am interested 63 Code Response % Extrinsic motivation < 15% If I want to apply for promotion 15 If required by my institution 13 If I need CPD points 6 If there is an incentive or reward 4 “I find that self-motivation and a desire for self-improvement are prime motivators in attending teaching training” (Survey)
  10. 10. Doesn’t care/neutral/freedom • “The head of department doesn’t really challenge us on [teaching] … Nobody does.…Nobody ever evaluates our lectures” (L2). • “The only time [UCT] requires that you … are OK as a teacher is when you apply for promotion. Otherwise I don’t think the institution could care less” (L6) • “Institutionally … it’s kind of neutral. …We’ve [never] been told not to do something” (L5) • “Nobody really checks what I teach … or how I decide to give my lectures … there’s quite a bit of freedom … which is nice” (L1) Just get on with it – I really don’t care Available: type-business-development-manager/ [2014, October 16].
  11. 11. Balancing act Making Time Risk ? The university is not always clear about how it wants its staff to balance their responsibilities. We’re primarily a research institution, but … within the South African context we are also a very important teaching institution. (L5)
  12. 12. Risk of participation (1): Taking time from research “it is hard to justify spending time on improving my teaching when I know that the main determinant of my getting a permanent position or promotion is my research” (survey) “Teaching (well) is enormously time-consuming. … I am not prepared to sacrifice even more time to further enhance my teaching skills at the expense of my research” (survey) “I happen to be good at teaching, and get consistently good feedback from students even about the courses I would prefer not to teach, but I resent having teaching impact so negatively on my research time” (survey)
  13. 13. Risk of participation (2) Wasting time • “Broad general courses not focused on teaching in a specific set of disciplines can be annoying time-wasters...!”(survey) • “Teaching is fine, but huge dollops of time to deal with theory of education is not” (survey) • “Went to workshops … other people seemed to be quite excited, but I didn’t really get anything out of them” (L6). • “Allocating time to participate in opportunities that seem relatively common sense is not a priority” (survey)
  14. 14. Risk of participation (3) Being seen as needing help • “[PD activities] seem to cater to academics who are grossly under qualified, rather than people who need some advice while learning the ropes for the first time” (survey) • “CHED … seems to mainly … help academics who are out of their depth … to cope with teaching, rather than helping academics who are adequate to good to improve further” (survey) • “Older academics who have been here for a very long time who perhaps are quite set in their ways, … need to go through those processes. (L8)
  15. 15. Risk of participation (4) Being labelled as the teaching person • “the more obliging you are and helpful to other people, with regard to teaching … the less people take you seriously” (L3) • “if you put a lot of time and effort into teaching, people don’t really respect you as much” (L3) • “it’s easy [to develop] … a reputation of being someone who defends teaching over research and people … put you in a box” (L3)
  16. 16. Risk of participation(5) New ideas may not work • “I went to [a session on] .. mind mapping … and I tried to use that in the class but it didn’t work … it was great to hear about a new idea, but I wasn’t well versed in it enough to try” (L2)
  17. 17. Risk of non-participation(1) not keeping up with new thinking about teaching • “I like to… keep up to date with what’s happening and see if I can incorporate that in what I do” (L3) • “By continuing to go to these courses, and by being interactive in the dialogue that’s happening currently, by not … isolating yourself, you keep up ” (L3) • “Just to see what people are doing and see what’s out there because, if you’re not particularly technological, you’re not always aware of what you can bring into the classroom” (L3) ‘I don’t know. I’m something of a technophobe.’ Available: 9/16/all-hail-our-new-robot-overlords/ [2014, October 16].
  18. 18. Risk of non-participation (2) You miss out • “[NAPP] was a nice way to meet people because I was new here..[and helped with] finding out how to navigate UCT” (L1). • “You don’t have to go to them,… [but] you are a fool not to… I go to anything that’s on offer if I can possibly schedule it” (L7) • “It would be useful to be able to go to a workshop like that once every two years and keep thinking through what one does as a teacher” (L4) • “We constantly need to re-evaluate what we are doing, … to get ourselves out of our comfort zones and challenge ourselves and be challenged by other people” (L2) Available: out/ [2014, October 16].