Presentation on theme: "Quality Enhancement and Communications The development and delivery of a research active curriculum will be promoted as a core and high quality activity."— Presentation transcript:
Quality Enhancement and Communications The development and delivery of a research active curriculum will be promoted as a core and high quality activity both within and outside of the university. Development and delivery of the research active curriculum will be integral to all quality assurance and enhancement processes. The identification and dissemination of good practice will be actively supported through quality enhancement processes. The University will support effective relationships with external bodies and groups engaged with or impacting upon teaching and learning development. Curriculum In all disciplines the curriculum will be flexible and current, and designed to stimulate learners’ natural curiosity. At Level 1 the curriculum will be designed to introduce students to the skills and processes of active learning and knowledge construction in their discipline area. This means a focus on students as enquirers. The curriculum will be designed to promote progressive development of graduate research attributes fostered through increasing student engagement in enquiry and understanding of research in a structured way through all levels. At level 3 UG all programmes will ensure that students experience a suitable synoptic activity which help them bring together their understanding of their discipline and professional area and prepare them for their subsequent employment and civic engagement. At all levels the curriculum will be structured to allow sufficient space for experimentation, enquiry and reflection, and will support reflection in a systematic way. Programmes will have an assessment regimen that has an appropriate balance of formative and summative assessment that assists learners in developing and evidencing their knowledge, intellectual development, and higher level skills at the appropriate level. In all disciplines the curriculum will promote the integration of teaching and research. Staff Taught UG & PG curricula will be supported through focused use of research activity. The University will provide a means to support and encourage the strategic professional development of staff who teach and support learning, and to ensure that this development is informed and underpinned by current pedagogic research, innovation and professional practice Staff development and recognition processes will be used to support and sustain the research active curriculum Faculties will provide processes for strategic review and scholarly debate around the subject of research active curriculum. Students Pre-entry information and induction processes will be designed to prepare all students, regardless of gender, social, economic, ethnic or educational background, for the experience of active learning. The University will provide a learning environment that supports the development of ‘communities of practice’ within discipline areas that seek to engage students with the curriculum, foster an atmosphere of trust between academics and students, and allow students to become confident users of the specialist language and forms of research and enquiry of their discipline(s) in an academic and professional context. Background: Teaching-intensive post-1992 university in North-East of England High percentage of non-traditional and overseas students Research activity funded under four ‘beacons’ Most teaching provision not included in the beacons No financial support for staff research unless attached to beacon Project: How do we embrace the principles of ‘Research – Informed Teaching’ within the existing constraints? Late 2007 RIT project initiated RIT team set up – project manager plus a co- ordinator for each faculty Project outline agreed £365,000 to support project : £20,000 to support projects in each faculty, plus secondments for co-ordinators 2008 Faculty co-ordinators conduct survey of staff attitudes to RIT using Jenkins & Healey typology Finding provided for individual RIT projects across all disciplines Student experience survey carried out ( using Healey questionnaire) Findings of all aspects of project reported to University Academic Experience Committee 2009 April: Project manager works with Alan Jenkins to review project findings and develop University policy May: Policy considered by Academic Experience Committee September: Policy implemented across university Project highlights: Confusion amongst staff about the meaning of ‘research informed teaching’ Little appreciation of the idea that students engaged in enquiry-based learning came under the banner of RIT Little engagement in pedagogical research Significant evidence that students at all levels appreciated and benefited from engagement in research-based activities Level one students demonstrate as much awareness of tutor research as level three (though puzzling dip at level two) Policy developed to extend the notion of RIT beyond the most commonly accepted RAE definition to include enquiry-based learning, student research development, and pedagogical research. The policy adopted the term RESEARCH ACTIVE CURRICULUM to better enforce the notion of students being equal partners in the process. The University of Sunderland is committed to a curriculum that is research active. We define this as a curriculum that: Engages our learners throughout their programme of study, from first entry, as active participants in enquiry, research and knowledge creation relevant to their discipline(s) and/or professional practice. Equips learners to be confident thinkers who have an understanding of the processes by which knowledge is produced, an ability to identify the current boundaries in their subject field, and are motivated to produce new knowledge and understanding through enquiry, critique and synthesis. Is informed at all levels by current and emerging developments in research and professional practice in the discipline. Is supported by the professional expertise of staff, and by the University’s research and consultancy activities. Is designed to provide a learning experience that ensures that all graduates, by the end of their programme of study, exhibit the core graduate attributes of scholarship, global citizenship and lifelong learning. Jenkins, A. & Healey, M. (2005) Institutional Strategies to Link Teaching and Research (York: The Higher Education Academy). http://www.heacademy.ac.uk/assets/York/documents/ourwork/research/Institutional_strategies.pdf.