The Preparation of University Teachers Internationally
International Consortium for Educational Development
Draft for consideration, Council 2014
To mark twenty years since its foundation ICED surveyed member networks in 2013 to identify current policies and practices related to the preparation of teachers in higher education internationally. There is little systematic gathering of national data on the preparation of university teachers. The responses provided a rich source of qualitative data which were summarised in a draft report discussed and revised at the 2013 ICED Council meeting in Kyoto. This report presents key findings from the survey, supplemented by information from Network annual reports to ICED Council.
1 National and regional and sector policy
Some nations and regions have developed, or are developing and implementing, policies to improve standards of teaching in higher education principally, but not exclusively, requiring newly appointed staff to undergo training.
In some countries the national or regional policy is a legal requirement. An example is Sri Lanka which has implemented a policy since 1997 requiring newly recruited university lecturers to successfully complete a teaching qualification accredited by the national University Grants Commission. Norway has a longstanding national legal requirement that teachers in universities be qualified to teach. Ethiopia has had a national policy since 1994, the Education and Training Policy, requiring teachers at all levels (school to university) to possess the required training qualification to secure teaching employment. In Denmark it has been mandatory for all assistant professors to follow a teacher training in higher education programme after a 2007 Memorandum on academic posts. In Finland engagement in pedagogical studies is required in the polytechnics. In Switzerland the national framework requiring university teachers to be trained applies to the Universities of Applied Sciences.
In other cases national or regional policies are not legally mandated. In the UK, for instance, a national framework for professional standards has been introduced, but is not legally enforceable, rather it is ‘owned’ by the higher education sector. In 2008 research universities in the Netherlands signed the Mutual Agreement of University Teaching Qualification guaranteeing that each university will provide a University Teaching Quality (UTQ) regulation, though not the quality of its application; the Dutch UTQ is mandatory but not enforceable by law. The mandate is agreed by self-regulation and signed by all Vice Chancellors. Each university describes its own standard for the UTQ, although there is widespread use of a profile containing five competencies.The Dutch association of universities of applied sciences (Vereniging van Hogescholen) has recently agreed on introducing a system of teaching qualification in 2016. A law in Sweden between 2005 and 2010 required compulsory teacher training for HE teachers, but now the universities have autonomy. The Rectors’ association approved guidelines that were proposed by SWEDNET which became the national standard. In Japan, in 2007, the University Establishment Standards for Graduate Schools required graduate schools to conduct training, though the ordinance does not have legal power to mandate the participation of all academic staff in teacher training so that in many organisations the decision whether to participate in training is made by individual faculty members. A ministerial ordinance of the MEXT that specifies the minimum standard required to establish a university based on the School Education Law. MEXT is the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology in Japan. http://www.mext.go.jp/english/. In Thailand teacher training in higher education is not mandatory but there are national standards for courses. There is no national mandate for higher education teacher training in the USA except that graduate teaching staff must receive a minimum of one day’s training. Regional accreditation bodies accredit institutional provision. In 2014 the Irish National Forum for Teaching and Learning began developing a national framework for the professional development of teachers in higher education. The forthcoming framework will allow for continuous professional development pathways for working in higher education in a variety of roles: lecturer, post-graduate tutor, technology support, teaching and learning support.
In Australia there is the Higher Education Standards Framework (Threshold Standards) 2011. Stringent national standards apply to graduate certificates in teaching and learning. See http://www.aqf.edu.au/Portals/0/Documents/2013%20docs/AQF%202nd%20Edition%20January%202013.pdf pages 53 – 57.
In Germany the ‘Framework Law for Universities’ requires that pedagogical ability should be assessed in the appointment process of professors. Each federal state interprets the Framework law which results in differential implementation.
Some responses to the survey indicated that national or regional policies, whether or not they were legally mandated, were not necessarily being implemented. In one case this was put down to the ‘massification’ of student numbers and related pressures on resourcing and time to engage in teacher preparation.
2 Institutional policy and provision
Universities in many countries have implemented their own teacher training policies and provision (sometimes prior to – or in the absence of – a national, regional or sectoral policy or framework). In some countries faculties, or ‘types’ of university (e.g. medical faculties and universities of Applied Sciences in Germany) make a teaching qualification mandatory.
In Croatia, whilst universities implement continuing professional development programmes only one university, Osijek, has a policy requirement that all its teachers complete a programme of pedagogical-psychological education prior to applying for the post of assistant professor. In Japan many institutions offer systematised programmes of teaching and learning. In the USA universities assess how much experience an individual has within a subject area in order to be able to teach it, then they undergo training (workshops on teaching and professional development) within the institution. In South Africa, whilst teacher training for university lecturers is not compulsory across the sector, some institutions have attached it to staff induction and probation. Norwegian universities, and approximately half of the university colleges, have their own framework which normally demands that new staff (for permanent positions) have to achieve the required competence within three years. Universities in Finland have their own frameworks, for example, the University of Jyvaskyla requires a 10 European Credit Transfer points (ECTs) course. Some universities have ‘strong recommendations’ and all universities offer courses. In Estonia some universities offer a programme of 6 ECTs; a programme can form part of a PhD delivered in Faculty of Education by educational developers. Most HE institutions in Sweden have at least 5 weeks of compulsory formal training for HE teachers with some others requiring 10 weeks (15 ECTS credit points). Despite their autonomy, most Swedish universities decided to continue in similar ways though some have introduced alternative activities. The Karolinska Institutet has implemented different ‘tracks’ – where the member of staff is appointed as teacher / researcher / clinician and different value is given to their teaching / scientific / clinical portfolio.
Many universities in the UK have made their postgraduate certificate compulsory for full-time lecturers by including it as a requirement of contractual probation, or for progression beyond probation, through, for example, annual appraisal. Accredited training is strongly recommended in most Higher Education Institutions in Ireland for all academic staff, with a small number running mandatory accredited programmes for new entrants. The programmes range from short or modular courses to Masters Degrees normally with a pathway provided from the former to the latter. In Belgium (Flanders) each higher education institution chooses its own approach, encompassing a spectrum from no teacher training requirement to requiring staff to possess a secondary level teacher degree, then to the requirement to follow a university teacher training programme as a prerequisite for tenure. Even though teacher training courses for assistant professors are mandatory in Danish universities there are no national standards or specific requirements concerning extent, form and content although there is similarity in provision because educational development units at different universities inspired each other and shared practice. In Australia policy varies from university to university ranging from mandatory completion of a Graduate Certificate in Tertiary Teaching (or some similar program) to Foundations of University Teaching programs (some of which would be equivalent to one unit in a Graduate Certificate) to short induction programs. Almost all Universities have/had a Foundations program and these were similar and often were accepted Recognised Prior Learning by another university if the staff member changed institutions. In Israel some institutes have a mandatory policy for teacher training; in others it is made compulsory if required by the rector, dean or head of department, and by making it a condition of their contract extension or tenure; new teachers and teachers who have problems with teaching are required to undergo short course training. Some universities offer discipline-based workshops (3 days). More training takes place in newer universities in Israel than the older established ones. In the USA, universities – teaching centres, departments, schools of education – provide a range of one day programmes and programmes for new staff.
3 Transferability of qualification
Responses varied as to whether a teaching qualification in one university would be transferable to another. A national, regional or sectoral framework clearly promotes transferability. As the examples indicate below ‘transfer’ ranges from being straightforward in one country but more complex in others.
In Sri Lanka a UGC accredited teaching qualification awarded by one university is acceptable by all other Sri Lankan universities. In Switzerland the national framework requiring university teachers to be trained applies only to the Universities of Applied Sciences and is not transferable to the other universities. In the UK, teaching in higher education qualifications are awarded by each university, and accredited by either SEDA or the Higher Education Academy. Whilst the qualification should be transferable, recent SEDA-sponsored research (Matthews & Carkett, 2013) shows there are some difficulties and obstacles in practice inside institutions. Any transferability of qualification is achieved through increasing the qualification’s alignment with the UKPSF rather than – or in addition to – the award of academic credits. In Norway documentation from one university will normally be accepted at the other universities and in the Netherlands the UTQ is transferable between research universities. The German network’s (DGHD) Accreditation Process has led to a standardization and transferability of programmes and qualification.
In Switzerland there is not a transferable qualification. In Belgium (Flanders) courses are being developed which are recognised by Dutch universities (‘Basic Qualification in Education’).The University of Antwerp has introduced a BQE recognised (trainer of teachers in higher education) programme and another university (Brussels) is aiming to apply for the Dutch ‘Basic Qualification in Education’ in 2015. The BQE ‘standards are quite open and are free for interpretation by the institutions’ and the qualification is transferable.
Spanish higher education teachers are recruited primarily on both their research portfolio and evidence of some generic reflection on teaching, according to an overall framework, mandatory for all universities (the official tenure process). Nevertheless, universities may promote a specific teaching certificate qualification, according to their own policy, which can differ significantly from one to another. After a period of six years teaching, a professor can apply to have this period officially recognised, with every period of teaching recognition resulting in a small salary supplement. However, this process is based on the specific criteria of each university. Universities define their own criteria for such recognition and decide those who are to be promoted for having the teaching period approved (which is most of them). The universities with a specific teaching qualification establish their own criteria for it, when promoting teachers for their six-year teaching period, or for internal promotion purposes.
Most Australian universities have created their own Graduate Certificates in Higher Education for Teaching and Learning which are transferable. These courses (some are available online) are run by experts in the university and staff are able to study for the qualification free of charge. These qualifications are also available to external candidates. Like the induction courses for new staff in most countries the Foundation Course (1-3 days) mandatory in most Australian universities is not transferable.
4 External Quality Assurance
As well as the work of educational development networks in advocating and promoting the quality of teaching and learning, quality assurance may be seen as a key driver for the introduction of teacher preparation programmes; other drivers are student demand for high quality learning, and national and international competitiveness between institutions.
South African institutions undergo quality assurance audits by the Council for Higher Education and have to provide evidence on staff development policies and strategies which promote the professional competence of academic staff and pay particular attention to the development needs of new personnel. Japanese universities undergoing quality assurance inspections have to publish data about their staff. Although this promotes such faculty development as KAIZEN (improvement in English) activities in institutions, training for the enhancement of teaching skills is not a priority. Ethiopia’s Higher Education Proclamation requires universities to put in place a staff development programme as one means of assuring quality; it states that the teaching and learning process in any institution shall be, whatever the methods of delivery employed, interactively student centred and promote active learning. In Switzerland quality assurance monitoring by a government agency (every four years) addresses the subject discipline, not the quality of teaching; there are no published teacher data on teaching quality. Institutional Reviews and Quality Assurance in Sri Lanka look into the effectiveness of the teacher training at university level, and the Staff Development Centre, University of Colombo has commissioned international experts to review its work on a regular basis. In Spain quality assurance monitoring is supervised by National Quality Agencies, and is developing towards becoming a formal process, akin to a “black box model” of input and output. In Israel there are plans in the near future to develop government-based quality assurance. In the Netherlands an external audit procedure to assure the quality of implementation of the University Teaching Qualification has been developed. Six universities piloted this procedure which should help to evaluate and improve the quality of their teaching qualification scheme and provide the starting point for a national audit system. The external UTQ audit is conducted on the basis of a framework containing the items of the 2008 mutual recognition of the UTQ, supplemented with internal quality assurance items. In the Netherlands, in 2012 the Dutch universities (research universities as well as universities of applied sciences) and the Ministry agreed on performance indicators in education and research. If the institution does not meet its targets in four years, it will receive less funding in the following years. Universities had to use four indicators with one being lecturer quality – the percentage of staff with a University Teaching Qualification. In Spain the main external driver for quality is the national educational development network.
5 Students’ views
In addition to the influence of quality assurance, the survey asked whether universities are motivated by student opinion to encourage the training of their teachers. On reflection the survey should have asked more about students in the light of current moves towards student involvement in educational development and the ‘students as partners’ perspective.
Switzerland indicated that student opinion is getting stronger as a factor. In Spain student opinions are considered but only in terms of formal “satisfaction” and there is no competition among universities with respect to published data about teaching quality. In the UK universities are required to publish annual data on how many of their teachers possess a higher education teaching qualification. Students are expected to use these data (amongst others) to decide where to study. Further external pressure emanates from results of the UK annual National Student Survey, which includes questions on teaching, learning and assessment. Senior managers place courses (programmes), departments, faculties and even whole universities which do badly in this exercise under great pressure to improve. Norwegian student unions are concerned about teachers’ qualifications and, from time to time, comment on the largest universities’ frameworks.
6 Engaging experienced staff
The majority of policies (ranging from national to institutional) focus on the training and development of newly appointed staff. More work needs to be conducted on investigating how experienced staff are being encouraged to engage in continuing professional development.
Training and development workshops for experienced lecturers are well attended at the University of Colombo, Sri Lanka, because of the culture created by those who have completed the Teaching Certificate in Higher Education course which is mandatory for new staff. The workshops are also attended by experienced lecturers from other universities, on a voluntary basis. In the UK the recently introduced UK professional standards framework (UKPSF) aims to recognise staff at various stages in their career against its set of standards Other encouragement is through introducing university policies requiring evidence of expertise in teaching and learning to support claims for promotion. Many UK universities use awards (e.g. University Teaching Fellowships and nomination for National Teaching fellowships). In Spain there is a modest economic incentive to increase the salary for those who, at the end of every six years, can evidence engagement in training or a relevant initiative with respect to their teaching activity, furthermore, once in work, staff are encouraged to gain qualifications by the National quality Agencies. In South Africa engagement in teacher training can count towards promotion. In Croatia the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of Rijeka runs an accredited 30 hour continuing professional development programme for established staff focusing on teachers’ competences in higher education. Criteria for promotion in Croatian universities depend mostly on evidencing subject or research experience. Where there is no job requirement to undertake a programme, motivation is intrinsic coming from the awareness of individual teachers that they need to constantly improve and participate in the lifelong learning process.
In common with many responses, the Danish network stated ‘the incentive structures for involvement in competence enhancement activities are generally weak or non-existent.’ Examples of incentives in Denmark are: compensation in the form of working hours for course participation, supervision, department seminars etc.; pay supplement; teacher awards; Professorship/chair with special responsibilities. In the School of Business and Social Science, Aarhus University, Denmark, heads of department are given strong economic incentives to ensure that their senior staff (associate and full professors) attend the courses offered by CTL. In the Netherlands, one of the major consequences of the formalized UTQ agreement was that not only newly appointed staff but also lecturers who were already tenured should obtain a UTQ certificate which is achieved by portfolio assessment. In Israel there are extrinsic motivators, such as: appeals by the dean, or head of department; awarding excellence compensation for teaching; publishing the names of outstanding lecturers on a website for students. In Australia staff are encouraged to do the courses and are recognised for promotion and performance review purposes.
7 Approaches to teacher preparation
Timescales, ‘levels’ of study and whether there is formal assessment vary within and between nations. Most provision is face to face and incorporates a range of participative approaches (workshops, projects, portfolio, teaching observation) individualised consultation and, increasingly, blended online provision. In Australia the themes covered in the Graduate Certificate programs (and generally Foundations programs) were explored by Kandlbinder & Peseta (2009).
Three examples of approaches reported by Networks are presented here.
At the University of Colombo, Sri Lanka, an extensive range of approaches is deployed including workshops, seminars, peer review, small group teaching, projects, mentoring, and portfolios; a strong focus is on promoting the scholarship of teaching and learning through a series of ‘learning agreements’ requiring participants to implement and evaluate evidence informed changed practice in their teaching.
In Canada educational developers interact with several audiences working on course and curriculum design, policy development and research on teaching, with the objective of improving the quality of teaching and learning.
In Denmark the practice tends to become more heterogeneous at the level of senior staff. Here subjects vary from Doctoral/Research supervision to E-learning and Course leadership. Also the formats vary including: courses, development projects, department seminars, cross-disciplinary mirroring processes of studies/education; collegial supervision and mentoring.
8 Institutional location of courses/programmes and leaders/facilitators
Course/programme leaders are mainly located institutionally in either ‘central units’ or faculties of education. Some other faculties have their own centres.
The courses for university staff in The Netherlands are usually led by teacher trainers who work in the educational development unit of the universities. Recently a number of these units were reorganised and teacher trainers became members of the Faculty of Education staff, or other organisational parts of the university. In Finland teaching development initiatives began in university central administration about 20 years ago; now there is a trend towards moving training to Faculties of Education (if the university has one). In Ireland, the accredited training programmes are mostly provided by an institutional centre for teaching and learning. In Sri Lanka only the University of Colombo has permanent academic staff members to lead teacher development programmes, staff in other university centres are part-time. Senior academics and professors from the Colombo contribute voluntarily as members of a teaching panel and are not necessarily academics attached to the Faculty of Education or in fields of education. The programmes in Ethiopia are hosted by education related colleges or institutes. In Japan, in the late 1990s, educational development centres were established mainly at former national universities. In most centres, there are only one or two full-time staff and for some staff the work is additional to their substantive post, or they are staff on a fixed-term contract without a well established their career path.
Many universities in the UK have a dedicated educational development unit (EDU); these are positioned in different places within the institutional structure in different universities. In some universities course participants regard the educational developers as administrative rather than academic staff depending on the EDU’s location. In most universities the postgraduate certificates were traditionally provided by an Education Department whose main role was training school teachers. In Norway Educational Development Units are, in most cases, located within Faculties of Education, although in some institutions they are units within the central administration under the Rector; teachers have similar status as other staff in a Faculty of Education. In South Africa several institutions have staff development centres for teaching and learning employing people with mainly educational backgrounds, some of whom are engaged in higher education research and development studies. In Spain the location of the courses and educational developers (whether centrally or locally placed) depends on purpose, the subject and the institution. Similarly, In Switzerland courses are normally led by faculty developers who are located centrally or locally depending on the institution. In Croatia programmes are usually implemented by teachers themselves who are actively engaged in teaching and learning at various levels (academic, research, policy development). There are also associations in Croatia that implement their own education programmes. In Denmark locations vary; in Aarhus University the centre for learning and teaching is situated in Business and Social Sciences. In Belgium (Flanders) locations range from being in central units to a Faculty of education. In Israel different institutions use a variety of methods with some maintaining educational development units and others undertaking the activities as an initiative of an institutional department; some of the staff are ‘professional’ whereas others are faculty members. Staff teaching in the Australian Graduate Certificate programs generally come from a mix of School of Education and central/faculty based academic development units with the less formal programs such as Foundations and Sessional Staff workshops being taught by central or faculty based academic developers. Very few academic development units in Australia are housed in HR departments but rather sit within the portfolio of the DVC Education/Academic.
9 Training and recognition of educational/faculty developers
A question which emerged from the responses was: how are those leading and supporting initiatives to prepare higher education teachers, themselves qualified and recognized?
In Ireland staff teaching on the programmes are qualified in pedagogy. In Ethiopia, staff who teach the training courses are usually trained in pedagogy; participants who have completed the course for teaching in higher education and shown outstanding performance are also selected and trained to become trainers/educational developers. In Spain teaching on training programmes is normally undertaken by faculty developers and ‘education experts’. The Netherlands EHON network raised the question whether there should be a formal qualification for teacher trainers and consultants in higher education: ‘One could argue that this should be the next step in the quality chain of university teaching’. An EHON working group drew up a competence profile for university teacher trainers which was discussed at EHON’s annual member meeting in September 2012. Broadly speaking there was consensus on the profile of the teacher trainer. In June 2013 EHON started a pilot assessment procedure for some teacher trainers who voluntarily wanted to have their portfolios assessed.
In the UK SEDA has established a recognition process for educational developers from Associate Fellow, Fellow through to Senior Fellow and provides courses and mentors to support applicants who come from a range of disciplinary backgrounds. The German DGHD Accreditation Commission has adopted standards similar to the SEDA standards for educational developers.
10 Role of the national educational development network
It is clear from the survey responses that national educational development networks have played and continue to play a vital role in advocating, promoting and supporting the preparation of university teachers. The responses to the survey provide details as do the annual reports made to ICED Council. A flavour of the responses is presented below.
The Canadian network STLHE strives to be the pre-eminent Canadian voice for enhancing teaching and learning in higher education, through a wide range of activity. It has extended its reach by creating a charitable arm “Teaching Learning Canada” which has a mandate to (1) host events that raise awareness and engage the public about the important issues affecting college and university teaching and (2) to sponsor and disseminate research on effective teaching. The Swiss network SFDN facilitates workshops, provides networking opportunities and mutual advice and disseminates good practice to improve teaching. The German network (DGHD) established an Accreditation Commission and in Sweden SWEDNET proposed the national standards for teaching in higher education. Norway’s network UHPed has succeeded in getting the national authorities to establish a group which will work to develop the national framework for training of teachers in HE institutions. In the UK, SEDA initiated the process of training and accreditation of university teachers in the early nineties and passed it on to new national agencies established to run it (now the Higher Education Academy). SEDA played a role in designing the national standards. SEDA continues to offer accreditation for its own awards, two of which are aligned with the UKPSF, and continues to provide a full range of activity to support teacher training and development such as conferences, publications and promoting pedagogic research. The Spanish network RED-U work includes facilitating workshops and networking, disseminating good practice, providing reflection on key issues and publishing RED-U’s journal. In South Africa a HELTASA Special Interest Group is focussing on Foundation Courses and another on Professional Development. The HELTASA SIG held a workshop in July 1012; thirty-three participants from across fifteen institutions attended an interactive review of how professional development of academic staff is currently being offered and where resources can be shared in the future. Sessions included theorizing academic staff development and developing an institutional framework that supports academic staff development. Members of the Indian network NetSED offer workshops. The national network in Ethiopia had been active but is currently inactive, since the EQUIP project terminated. EQUIP was a project based intervention and what is left now is the resources, such as training manuals, books, equipment in the nine universities that were involved. Most of the training manuals are used to supplement the sessions under the Higher Diploma Program or the short induction programs. The Sri Lankan educational development network, SLAIHEE, engages in teaching improvement dialogues and in promoting Scholarship of Teaching and Learning among university academics through a range of activities including national conferences. In Japan, the educational development network JAED developed “The Professional Development Framework for Teaching and Learning in Japan”. This framework supports higher education institutions and educational developers while individually developing training programmes. The consortium of Universities in Kyoto, and the Kyoto centre for Faculty Development, use the framework to develop their programmes for new staff and offer and share the programme with partnered institutions (http://www.consortium.or.jp/). In Croatia, Universitas has played a key role in providing support for university teachers for example, in 2001, organising a cycle of Croatian-British workshops, ‘Quality Management in Higher Education’ and working on the project, ‘Improving the Quality of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education’ in conjunction with the Open Society institute-Croatia which led to a key publication (Ledic undated) and introduction in 2003 of the Programme for Initial Training for teachers in Higher Education. In Israel the network has organised two workshops a year and communicates by email with members. In Belgium (Flanders) the network has organised a Special Interest Group whose members are representatives of universities or university colleges engaged in educational development in higher education. Every year the Special Interest Group presents to the FNED conference (Flemish Network for Educational Developers). In Thailand Thaipod supports universities to achieve the national standards delivery and also runs its own courses. In Ireland the All Ireland Society for Higher Education (AISHE) founded in 2000, provides a platform for critical dialogue and sustainable engagement related to core concepts underpinning the fabric of the Higher Education community throughout the island of Ireland. The work of the Australian network, HERDSA includes organising conferences, promoting research and offering an extensive range of publications. In the Netherlands, a working group of teacher trainers from centres for staff and educational development from several universities developed a competence profile for university teachers, a framework for staff development and a teaching qualification programme.
11. Evaluation and Research
Networks provided examples of research and evaluation. Much of it addresses the teachers’ experiences of courses and other educational development activities. In terms evaluating impact on the student learning experience the 2013 ICED council meeting acknowledged it is ‘very difficult to find evidence’. The bibliography or research and evaluation, presented in this report, will be further developed by ICED Council. Examples of networks’ responses are presented below.
Extensive work has been conducted in Australia for example, the Foundations Colloquium, “PATHE” project and, “Measuring the effectiveness of academic professional development”. In Canada research by Britnell et al (2010) surveyed professors in six universities in Ontario on their engagement with teaching development activities; responses indicated a desire for a better and broader culture of teaching, including a variety of means for supporting the development of teaching Although impressive examples that prepare faculty for a career in teaching are mentioned, Knapper (2013) regards these as exceptions with the majority of training programs, ‘piecemeal, largely un-assessed, and often comprise a single course or an assembly of workshops that teachers select according to their interests, supplemented in some cases by completion of a teaching portfolio….Canadian practice more closely reflects the situation in the U.S., where formal preparation for teaching is limited.”
In Switzerland Dumont et al (2012) conducted research based on two case studies, and a website (http://bsqf2011.univ-lyon1.fr/) provides information about other research and evaluation in the country (see also http://spiral.univ-lyon1.fr/files_m/M10731/Files/900016_7476.pdf) In the UK Bamber (2013) conducted research on evidencing the value of educational development and Parsons et al (2012) have researched the impact of teaching development programmes in higher education as part of the Higher Education Academy’s Research Series. In Spain the educational network RED-U has conducted and published research online. South African studies have focussed on support provided for teachers on ‘Foundation Courses’ – rather than on higher education more broadly. The evaluation associated with ‘Foundation Courses’ was enabled because of special funding, allowing the gathering of national data about issues such as staff training. In Norway a study (unpublished) at the University of Oslo indicates that participants think differently about teaching after completing the programme. In Sweden the measurement of effectiveness is by the students’ results (i.e. that better teaching will produce better results) and by student feedback. Research in Japan showed that participants in most programmes experienced a high level of satisfaction. Research groups, including members of JAED, have carried out a national questionnaire survey about faculty development.
With reference to Sri Lanka, Graham Gibbs included the Colombo University training course in the study he undertook on the effectiveness of staff training of 22 universities in 8 countries (several publications by Gibbs & Coffey). The Staff Development Centre, University of Colombo Sri Lanka, has also conducted research on the effectiveness of various aspects of its courses (see Macdonald 2013). In Ethiopia, whilst country wide research and evaluation has not been conducted, work has been undertaken based on university specific data. In the UK SEDA has conducted a survey on behalf of the Higher Education Academy on the impact of the UKPSF. There has been no systematic gathering of data nationally situation in Switzerland, Spain Norway. Until now there have been no comprehensive studies in Denmark into the effectiveness of teacher training but a number of studies are currently being conducted. In the Netherlands Utrecht University surveyed 65 recently graduated UTQ staff on the effectiveness of the UTQ system, and a PhD thesis is focusing on the effectiveness of teacher training in higher education. In Israel several studies have been conducted on student ratings of teachers and courses.
12 Involvement of other agencies in the preparation of university teachers
Networks were asked about the role of other agencies in the preparation of university teachers. In some cases there has been partnership working between the network and other agency.
The Finnish Higher Education Evaluation Council provides money for small benchmarking projects. Recently the University of Turku proposed to benchmark its pedagogical training curriculum with the University of Lund from Sweden. Japan has formed two academic societies to discuss teacher training or faculty development in Japanese higher education, the Liberal and General Education Society of Japan and the Japan Association of Higher Education Research. Most members of JAED are members of these academic societies. They make presentations about their research outcomes at academic conferences and publish papers in academic journals. There are three quality assurance agencies of higher education in Japan; so far, JAED has not been involved with them. In Germany recommendations for the training of higher education teachers are made by the “Presidents of Universities Conference” (Hochschulrektorenkonferenz HRK) and the “Science Council” (Wissenschaftsrat). Beyond the work of SFDN in Switzerland there is little involvement by other agencies except, to a certain extent, the Conference of the universities’ rectors. In South Africa there is little engagement of other agencies beyond HELTASA. Norway’s national quality assurance agency checks, to some extent, whether higher education institutions follow up on government policy. As previously indicated, Norwegian student unions are concerned about teachers’ qualifications and, from time to time, comment on the largest universities’ frameworks. In Canada the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario has commissioned over ninety studies on key issues in accessibility, quality and accountability and teacher development (http://www.heqco.ca/en-CA/Research/Pages/Home.aspx). In Ethiopia a national agency has been actively involved in evaluating the universities. A consortium of Ethiopian public universities (CEPU) has begun planning to conduct quality assessment of public universities based on institutional self assessment reports. Universities in a given cluster will evaluate one another using the guidelines designed by the CEPU. Still in its infancy, the process requires a considerable amount preparation and trialling. In the UK, in the past, the academics’ trade union the Association of University Teachers was closely engaged, but is less so now although the National Union of Students is very engaged and continues to enthusiastically support teacher training for teaching in higher education. The mission of the UK Higher Education Academy is ‘to support the higher education community in order to enhance the quality and impact of learning and teaching’. In Ireland In 2011, the Irish Department of Education and Skills released the “National Strategy for Higher Education to 2030” in which it recommends that “All higher education institutions must ensure that all teaching staff are both qualified and competent in teaching and learning, and should support ongoing development and improvement of their skills”. Furthermore, in response to a policy context putting teaching and learning at the centre of higher education, The National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching & Learning in Higher Education was established in 2013 by the Minister for Education and Skills to enhance the quality of the learning experience for students at third level, be they full-time, part-time or flexible learners. The National Forum is a national agency aiming to draw on the examples of good practice in Ireland and internationally in order to help shape the delivery of an outstanding Higher education teaching and learning experience. In Australia the Council of Australian Directors of Academic Development (CADAD) members undertake projects such as, ‘The development of academics in higher education futures’; work is also undertaken through the Australian Government Office for Learning and Teaching. In the Netherlands key organisations involved are: the Ministry of Education, the Association of Dutch Research Universities, the Association of Dutch Universities for Applied Sciences and also the student unions.
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Kristine Mason O’Connor