Conference, April 2000
Managing Change in Teaching and Learning
Jane Longmore, University of Greenwich
Patrick Salmon, University of Newcastle
Malcolm Wanklyn, University of Wolverhampton
|This three-part session addressed
the theoretical and practical aspects of managing change in teaching and learning in a
Jane Longmore began the session by summarising the findings of Harold Silver and Andrew Hannan's ESRC study of the problems of supporting and embedding teaching innovations in university environments. Positive factors which encourage teaching innovations include: support from authority; a strong teaching culture and a policy of comparability between teaching and research; interest in the dissemination of teaching innovation from colleagues and authority figures; the availability of resources to support innovation. Negative factors which discourage innovation include: low esteem of teaching versus research; lack of recognition and interest by colleagues and authorities; an institutional framework which discourages innovation in teaching and learning; Quality Assurances procedures which inhibit risk taking.
Malcolm Wanklyn developed this theoretical framework by examining the factors which encouraged or restricted teaching and learning at Wolverhampton, and innovations which had taken place. Positive aspects included a strong teaching culture and the modular system which encouraged variety in teaching and learning. This had led to variety in course structures and assessment processes, a clear progression in the history programme within the modular system, and the review of the programme in response to the history benchmarking document. Obstacles to innovation were identified as: the university, due to time constraints in the academic cycle; the staff themselves; students; and the region.
Patrick Salmon presented a review of the changes that had taken place in the history department at Newcastle in response to a change in the staff profile and increases in student numbers. All the factors identified above were seen to have had an impact on the process of innovation and change. The outcome was a new programme with a strong World History component in the first year. A guarded but positive conclusion on the impact of the changes was presented it had revitalised the department and given it a clear identity despite high levels of recent staff turnover, as well as benefiting student learning although it is clear that the process of change is ongoing and will require continued management.
Bill Philpott, London Guildhall University
This page was last updated on 5 June 2000