We have now completed all eight institutional case studies. We have started compiling a full report on the basis of the eight studies, and hope to have the report complete well before the end of this year. Our recommendations at this stage include the following:
- that research be conducted into the ways in which history, resources, conditions of employment and geography impact on teaching;
- the discourse, science and art of teaching needs to be uplifted nationally;
- the status of teaching and learning should be recognized;
- time and resources need to be made available for professional development;
- the findings indicate a binary between research and teaching which should be addressed;
- communities of practice should be supported as the data indicates that academics seek assistance from colleagues for teaching;
- the capacity, image and status of professional developers is variable across institutions, and should receive attention.
Our two most recent publications are:
- Leibowitz, B. 2014. Conducive Environments for the Promotion of Quality Teaching in Higher Education in South Africa. Cristal, 2 (1) 47 - 73.
- Ndebele, C. and Maphosa, C. 2014. Voices of Educational Developers on the Enabling and Constraining Conditions in the Uptake of Professional Development Opportunities by Academics at a South African University. International Journal of Educational Science, 7 (1) 169 - 182.
Writing Retreat and Future Plans
18 members of the project participated in a very productive writing retreat at Montefleur, near Stellenbosch. We wrote, we walked and we formulated plans for the future. The plans include: a panel and several papers for the 2014 annual Heltasa conference; a colloquium on professional development, including on the findings from our project, which will be held the Cape in the last week of July 2015; and an edited volume on quality teaching and professional development with a focus on the social and relational aspects.