Re-conceptualising and Rewarding Teaching Excellence in Higher Education: perceptions, practices and possibilities

Re-conceptualising and Rewarding Teaching Excellence in Higher Education: perceptions, practices and possibilities,
Sue Robson & Steve McHanwell, Newcastle University - Download slides here

The academic role has changed significantly in the last two decades. Drivers for change including internationalisation and technologisation have generated a shift towards a managerial or enterprise-based competitive culture in higher education (HE). These pressures have been acutely felt in HE teaching. The economic imperatives, in addition to, and perhaps in tension with, academic imperatives driving the quest for excellence in teaching,  have never been more compelling. Despite the highly skilled nature of this work, teaching continues to be regarded as the poor relation to research in many HE institutions. This paper investigates whether teaching is appropriately conceptualised and rewarded in HE today. The discussion draws on an institutional case study to explore conceptualisations of teaching and the professional learning and support needs of academics in that institution. It addresses the questions: How do academic staff negotiate the tensions and competing demands of their role? What supports their development and assists them to evidence excellence in their academic work and teaching in particular?