Title: Transforming Professional Development in a Post-COVID World
Presenter(s): Kellie Smyth and Michelle Wilkinson
Division of Learning and Teaching
Session Type: Interactive Discussion
When: Thursday, November 19th 2020 @ 11:30am – 12:30pm
Abstract: Professional Development (PD) is currently high on the agenda for Australian Higher Education institutions due to new TEQSA requirements that academics evidence engagement with professional development, and how they implement it into teaching and learning practice. (TEQSA 2020). Post COVID, universities across the higher education sector have been significantly impacted by a decrease in funding and revenue. We need to acknowledge that limited financial resources and a decrease in staffing numbers, will have an impact on the ability of staff to meet required demands, yet still provide quality student outcomes. In order to continue to provide quality support and resources to develop academic skills in learning and teaching, universities will need to rationalise the way in which they provide academic professional development.
This discussion aims to establish which method and type of PD academics prefer to engage with and why. By establishing preferences, decisions can be made regarding the delivery of academic professional development, which ensures programs focus on PD that is more likely to entice academics to participate and support the development of skills in the area of learning and teaching amidst busy competing workloads. The findings of this discussion will provide data, the results of which will be analysed in order to recommend key strategies that will assist higher education institutions to focus programs and resources on those which will be best utilised. By tailoring PD, Higher Education institutions can support the development of skills and knowledge in the area of teaching and learning.
This discussion supports the conference theme of “Reimagining Learning”. The events of 2020 have had a huge impact on the Higher education sector, and we need to utilise the lessons learned to move forward productively in order to thrive in a post COVID environment.