Prof Alan Robson, Chair of the Higher Education Standards Panel will give the opening address at the ACDS Workshop “Advancing the Science TLOs” , Feb 22 in Melbourne. This workshop brings together Faculties of Science, the science discipline networks, our Science discipline scholars and TL leaders to discuss how the Science Threshold Learning Outcomes will be used in science degrees.
The Threshold Learning Outcomes (TLOs) for Science (see ACDS Projects page) are commonly regarded as a response to the threat of imposed standards under the TEQSA/HESP quality regime. However, the establishment of national benchmarks for science graduates serves much higher purposes. The TLOs respond to the long and unyielding pressure of an expanded higher education system to deliver science that engages students beyond frontier research and can truly address general scientific literacy. The TLOs also create a basis for the recognition of quality in teaching and organisational innovation related to it. Implementation of the TLOs in undergraduate curricula will, in the course of time, lead to promotion protocols and international rankings that value teaching as much as research.
Participants in this workshop will review current work towards implementation of the science TLOs in Australian universities. The workshop will consider the interpretations of science learning outcomes for chemistry, physics, biology, mathematics and biomedical science developed by their various discipline networks. It will compare the work of Business and its subdisciplines in developing and implementing their TLO’s, and consider issues in assessment and curriculum development.
Prof Christine Ewan, leader of the ALTC’s Learning and Teaching Academic Standards project will lead discussion on the role of the TLOs. The workshop and its discussion will form the basis for a roadmap for use of the Science TLOs in Faculties of Science which will be reported via the ACDS TL website.