As the HESF and QILT bite deeper through the work of TEQSA, faculties will find themselves subject to stronger demands for evidence of quality assurance in teaching and learning. One high priority example concerns research and scholarly informed teaching.
How will faculties meet the demand for evidence that scholarship and research informs their curriculum, and the teaching practices of their staff? A 2018 guidance note issued by TEQSA states that it is not enough that staff have engaged in research and scholarship in broad discipline areas. One has to provide evidence that the research and scholarship of staff informs the course that they are teaching.
A related issue is the professional development of teaching staff and criteria for their promotion. This becomes more significant with the expansion of teaching focussed staff. What evidence should be required of teaching staff to support claims of scholarly and research informed teaching? What activities would constitute excellence and/or leadership in this area, that would merit promotion to levels D and E?
The inaugural ACDS National Teaching and Learning Fellowship provides an approach to answering these questions. The ACDS believes that it provides a valuable experience for deans, in considering how they might address efficiently, quality assurance demands for a visible influence of scholarship on teaching that is documented and reported. It provides an environment for leadership that can generate exemplars for performance and promotion reviews. It will build capacity to debate the merits of various KPIs that will inevitably be suggested to meet the demands of TEQSA for assuring quality in teaching and learning as set out by the HESF.
Professor John Rice, Executive Director, Australian Council of Deans of Science