Teaching@Sydney

Welcome to Teaching@Sydney. Stay informed about teaching and learning news and events with this monthly bulletin produced by the Institute for Teaching and Learning.

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OLT Grants and Fellowships close in February

Information on 2013 OLT Fellowships, Grants, Citations, and Awards is being released progressively on their website. The first opportunity is the 2013 Fellowships, for which applications close 1 February.

There are a number of changes to the applications for Grants in 2013. Round 1 closes on 25 February. Both full proposals and Expressions of Interest are being called for in Round 1. You will need to consider carefully whether you want to submit a full proposal or an EOI for this round. For Round 2, due 2 August, only full proposals from successful Round 1 EOIs will be considered. From the ‘programs and how to apply’ page you will find the information about Innovation and Development, Leadership for Excellence, and Seed Projects. The priorities for the grants have not yet been announced so keep checking their site over summer if you are considering applying.

There will be a workshop for grant applicants on Wednesday 30 January from 10am – 12pm in New Law Annex 444. Click here to register. It will include a summary of feedback received from the OLT about what’s required for a successful application. There will be an opportunity for peer review for those who would like to take this up. Obtaining feedback from successful grant applicants, whether for OLT or other external grants, is generally very helpful, so identifying a mentor to help you evaluate your application may be a useful strategy.

Additional information, including an overview of internal support available for applicants, is available on the ITL website. This will be updated as further information comes to hand.[close]

Information on 2013 OLT Fellowships, Grants, Citations, and Awards is being released progressively on their website. The first opportunity is the 2013 Fellowships, for which...[more]

New OLT-funded project will support writing in Engineering

A/Prof Rafael Calvo and Professor David Lowe (Engineering and IT) and Helen Drury (Learning Centre) are part of a multi-institutional team which has won $219,000 in  funding from the Office for Learning and Teaching (OLT) in the recently announced Round 2 grants. Their project is entitled 'Driving curriculum and technological change to support writing in the engineering disciplines'. In the project they will make use of online writing tools in supporting the integration of written tasks in undergraduate engineering curricula.

Dr Olivera Marjanovic from the School of Business and  Dr Pietro Celi of Veterinary Science will also contribute to two other recently funded projects led by other universities - 'Enhancing collaborative learning in information systems business analytics using data visualisation and manipulation techniques' and 'Development of 4D farms to improve student learning and safety', respectively.

Professor Rick Benitez was one of only ten winners this year of a national  Excellence in Teaching Award. The recipients for 2012 were celebrated with a dinner at the National Gallery in Canberra on November 19th, when the Awards were presented by the Minister for Tertiary Education, Senator Chris Evans. Professor Benitez's citation states:

His approach to learning and teaching is grounded in a model of a learning community, in which mutual respect and common purpose drive learning and teaching practices. By modelling the values of learning, including respect, good judgment, intellectual courage and curiosity, Rick has inspired students to adopt habits of learning that change their lives. More recently, in his role as a faculty director of teaching and learning, Rick has inspired staff at all levels to reflect on and improve their understanding of good teaching practices, and to take part in collegial and scholarly programs for the advancement of good teaching.[close]

A/Prof Rafael Calvo and Professor David Lowe (Engineering and IT) and Helen Drury (Learning Centre) are part of a multi-institutional team which has won $219,000 in  funding...[more]

Planning your 2013 teaching - new policies to keep in mind

Are you teaching or coordinating a unit of study in first semester? If yes, then it might be time to start preparing aspects of your teaching next year to comply with new university policies.

The standards-based Assessment Policy and Procedures are due to be fully implemented across all courses and programs by the end of 2013. A key aspect of the Procedures is that the differences between work at different achievement levels (i.e., standards) should be described in information given to students.

If you haven't already articulated the differences between work at different grade levels in your unit, then a useful way to begin is by choosing 1 or 2 examples of students' work from this year that are high quality (e.g., at high distinction level), and 1 or 2 examples of work that are a pass (i.e., a minimum level). Start writing your descriptions of the standards at different levels based on these pieces of work.

You could also check the Academic Dishonesty Policy guidelines for ideas on educating your students about academic honesty, and add links in your Blackboard site to referencing tools like Quick©ite to help your students avoid incorrect acknowledgement of sources.

For more information and resources to help you implement the new Assessment Procedures click here, and for more resources to help you implement the new Academic Dishonesty Policy click here.

If you would like to chat about either of these policies, the ITL contact person for both is Dr Graham Hendry.

All the best for your teaching in 2013![close]

Are you teaching or coordinating a unit of study in first semester? If yes, then it might be time to start preparing aspects of your teaching next year to comply with new univers...[more]

Widening Participation Showcase highlights

The Widening Participation Scholars Network (WPSN) celebrated a great year for the group at a showcase on Wednesday 28th November. Project leaders shared outcomes from their Widening Participation grants in poster format. Highlights included successful student-led mentoring programs at the Conservatorium of Music and Health Sciences, and a financial assistance package which enabled teachers from schools in low socio-economic status areas to attend a Science Teachers workshop.

Amani Bell, Simon Barrie, Annette Cairnduff and Mary Teague made a presentation about the Network at the joint International Conference of the Australian Association for Research in Education and the Asia Pacific Educational Research Association this week, highlighting evaluation data and considering further enhancements to this network capacity building approach to supporting widening participation. Early results from a survey of WPSN members show that 73% of respondents agree that the Network is useful for their work, and “feel supported and part of a community of colleagues who want to engage and motivate students”.

A new round of projects - two ‘flagship’ and six ‘implementation’ - has recently commenced. In 2013, there will be a further round of project funding available. The new funding round will be announced shortly via Staff News and the WPSN listserv.

If you are interested in hearing about opportunities for funding and professional development you can join the Network here.[close]

The Widening Participation Scholars Network (WPSN) celebrated a great year for the group at a showcase on Wednesday 28th November. Project leaders shared outcomes from their Wide...[more]

Your teaching in 2013... get a head start

Here's a few simple things you could do now to get a headstart on your 2013 teaching planning:

  • Have a cup of tea or coffee and think about what worked well (or didn't) from your perspective this year;
  • Gather feedback from your 2012 teaching team on their teaching experiences, and also what they thought worked well (or didn't);
  • Go through some of those 'notes to self' you've (mentally or physically) scribbled down throughout the year... would any of those teaching and learning ideas work in 2013? Perhaps select one to 'try out' on a colleague or two?
  • Look through student ratings and comments on the unit of study and/or your teaching. Dig up your Semester 1 USE and FFT results, or emails received from students;  and have a look through the new USE and FFT results for Semester 2 that will be released on 10 December;
  • Update your 2013 unit of study outlines before Christmas closedown, or at least a make a draft; and
  • As far as is possible, start gathering your 2013 teaching team now. Think about how you'd like to work with them throughout 2013 to support their career development, and to create the best possible learning environment for your students.

For more ideas on preparing for teaching, see these useful checklists.[close]

Here's a few simple things you could do now to get a headstart on your 2013 teaching planning: Have a cup of tea or coffee and think about what worked well (or didn'...[more]

Get a free qualification in university teaching: Enrolment closing soon!

The Graduate Certificate in Educational Studies (Higher Education) is a formal qualification in tertiary teaching. It is offered through the Faculty of Education and Social Work and taught by academic staff in the Institute for Teaching and Learning.

The Graduate Certificate is a full fee-paying course, but the course fees are waived for University of Sydney staff, provided staff have permanent residency/citizenship status. To avoid paying course fees you will need to provide certified copies of evidence of your employment at the University; this can include a copy of your staff ID card or a copy of your pay slip.

The course work involves practice- and project-based tasks relevant to your teaching context. Participants evaluate the course highly -  91% of participants in 2011 were in agreement or strong agreement that the Graduate Certificate was a quality course. As one participant commented, “the Grad Cert has given me a room of my own, a space to work out what I am doing, how I am doing it and crucially, understand why I am doing it. This has transformed me as a teacher, and perhaps also as a learner”.

Enrolment for the 2013 course is closing soon! To apply click here.

For more information about the Graduate Certificate and answers to FAQs please click here. If you have any queries then please don't hesitate to contact the Program Coordinator, Dr Graham Hendry.[close]

The Graduate Certificate in Educational Studies (Higher Education) is a formal qualification in tertiary teaching. It is offered through the Faculty of Education and Social Work...[more]

First Year Higher Education Conference 2013 - Proposals due 25 January

The FYHE (First Year in Higher Education) 2013 Conference will be held in Wellington, New Zealand in the wonderful Te Papa national museum 8-10 July 2013.

The 2013 Conference focuses attention on institutional cultures, programs and practices that enable all students, and particularly students from diverse backgrounds, to realise their potential in higher education.

The call for submissions is now open, and closes 25 January 2013.[close]

The FYHE (First Year in Higher Education) 2013 Conference will be held in Wellington, New Zealand in the wonderful Te Papa national museum 8-10 July 2013. The 2013 Conference f...[more]

HERDSA Conference 2013 - Proposals due 22 February

The Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia (HERDSA) promotes the development of higher education policy, practice and the study of teaching and learning.

The annual HERDSA conference is an opportunity for you to to disseminate and showcase your scholarly work on teaching and learning. The 2013 conference is being held from 1-4 July, in beautiful Auckland at the Auckland University of Technology.

The call for papers is now open. You are invited to submit proposals about your work for posters and showcase presentations (20 minute presentations with audience discussion), as well as for full refereed papers. Accepted papers will be published in the refereed proceedings of the conference.

If you would like to discuss your proposal before submission then please contact us.

Proposals are due 22 February 2013, and registration opens 3 December 2012. For more information about the conference click here.[close]

The Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia (HERDSA) promotes the development of higher education policy, practice and the study of teaching and learning...[more]

Season's Greetings and Happy New Year

Season's Greetings and a Happy New Year from all the staff at the ITL.

We hope you have enjoyed reading Teaching@Sydney throughout 2012. The readership continues to grow and we are delighted to have been able to highlight some of the fantastic teaching work happening around the Univeristy.

We wish you a refreshing summer, and we look forward to bringing you the first 2013 issue of Teaching@Sydney in February.[close]

Season's Greetings and a Happy New Year from all the staff at the ITL. We hope you have enjoyed reading Teaching@Sydney throughout 2012. The readership continues to grow an...[more]

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Current Events & Registration

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