Thursday, 21 August 2014

eResource: Student Transition in Higher Education

Good practice report: Student transition in higher education from Uni. of Southern Queensland on Vimeo.

Student Transition in Higher Education Report

Other Publications:

Gale, T. & Parker, S. (2014). Navigating change: a typology of student transitions in Australian higher education. Studies in Higher Education, 39(5), pp. 734-753

Content and Development of the eResource 

This Good Practice Report reviews 14 completed projects and five fellowships funded by the Australian Learning and Teaching Council (ALTC) between 2006 and 2010, and identified by the ALTC as contributing to an understanding of student transition into HE. Five then-current projects (three projects and two fellowships) are also identified and summarised although, given their in-progress status, they were not analysed in the Report.
The Report includes a one-page summary of each ALTC project and fellowship. These identify and analyse the findings of, and resources for, teaching and learning in HE produced by the ALTC projects and fellowships, particularly in relation to student transition. To enable a reading across these, each project/fellowship is summarised in six sections: (1) overview; (2) design, methodology; (3) findings, resources, outcomes; (4) dissemination; (5) implications for student transition into higher education; and (6) project report online availability. Sections three and five are particularly pertinent to the interests of this Report.


Emerging from this analysis of ALTC projects and of the international literature are three broad conceptions of student transition: as induction (T1), development (T2), and becoming (T3). These categories are not explicitly named in the literature. Rather they represent Gale and Parker’s analysis of existing research and program description.
The following recommendations for further development or work in the field of student transition into HE are informed by the review of the national and international research literature (including work completed as part of the ALTC projects and fellowships). The recommendations largely mirror the review’s conclusions regarding this literature.
Gale and Parker recommend that future research and practice in the field of student transition in higher education should:
  1. Declare how transition is defined. This should be an explicit statement that identifies how transition is defined within the project/program.
  2. Draw on related fields and bodies of knowledge. This should include drawing on the extensive research literature from related fields, particularly in relation to youth and life transitions and education and social theory.
  3. Foreground students’ lived reality.  Institutional and/or systemic interests should not dominate research and practice. 
  4. Broaden the scope of investigation. Adding to the corpus of investigations on the full range of ‘vertical’ and ‘horizontal’ transitions should be an integral part of the research and/or practice.

Report Authors

Professor Trevor Gale 
Professor Trevor Gale is a critical sociologist of education, with research interests in policy and social justice, particularly in the fields of schooling and higher education.
He has an international reputation for his monographs Just Schooling (OUP 2000) and Engaging Teachers (OUP 2003), co-authored with Kathleen Densmore, and for his Foucauldian theorization of policy methodology. His more recent conception of student equity in terms of ‘mobility’, ‘aspiration’ and ‘voice’ (with Sam Sellar) and his typology of student transition (with Stephen Parker), have reframed the problem of social inclusion in higher education.
Prior to taking up his current position at Deakin University, Professor Gale was the founding director of Australia’s National Centre for Student Equity in Higher Education (2008-2011), a research centre established and funded by the Australian Government. While there he led the government-commissioned national review of university outreach programs, reported in Interventions Early in School (2010), which now informs inter/national policy and practice in the field.
Professor Gale is Chief Investigator on two current Australian Research Council (ARC) research projects: one focused on secondary school student aspirations in Melbourne’s western suburbs; the other on the social justice dispositions of teachers in advantaged and disadvantaged secondary schools.
He is a past president of the Australian Association for Research In Education (AARE) and the founding editor of Critical Studies in Education. He is also a co-founding editor of the book series, Education Policy and Social Inequality.

Dr Stephen Parker 
Dr Stephen Parker is Research Fellow at Deakin University with interests in social justice, public policy, social and political theory and sociology. He works closely with Professor Trevor Gale on several research projects related to these interests, in areas of schooling and higher education. His substantive position is as a Research Fellow on the Australian Research Council research project: Social justice dispositions informing teachers’ pedagogy in advantaged and disadvantaged secondary schools.
From 2008-2012, Stephen was a researcher in Australia’s National Centre for Student Equity in Higher Education (NCSEHE) where he contributed to a number of key projects including an ALTC-commissioned report on student transitions to higher education, as well as research on current higher education policy and student aspirations. He is also a co-author of the Australian Government-funded Interventions Early in School report (Gale et al. 2010).
Prior to working at the NCSEHE, he was engaged in research on the inequities of social security policy, housing and homelessness and published in those areas. In 2011 he completed his PhD entitled Theorising Human Rights: Foundations and Their Influence at the University of South Australia. In September 2012, he was a Visiting Scholar at the Centre for Educational Research in Equalities, Policy and Pedagogy, University of Roehampton in London, UK.

Friday, 25 July 2014

eResource: Good Practice in Technology-Enhanced Learning and Teaching

Good practice report: Technology-enhanced learning and teaching from Uni. of Southern Queensland on Vimeo.

Technology-Enhanced Learning and Teaching Report

Link to Report:

Context and Development of the eResource

NATA is excited to announce the launch of the eReources on Good Practice in Technology-Enhanced Learning and Teaching (see above) by Mike Keppell, Gordon Suddaby and Natasha Hard. The eResource was  developed as part of a series that hopes to build awareness of the ALTC/OLT Good Practice Reports and the potential that they offer the sector. The eResources provide a short synthesis of the key elements of the Reports and present them in the more engaging format of video.

This eResource is based on the ALTC Good Practice Report on Technology-Enhanced Learning and Teaching which synthesised 33 ALTC projects and fellowships related to the topic (25 completed, 8 ongoing). The 9 minute long eReources was developed by the report authors in collaboration with Media Services and the University of Southern Queensland.

"Technology-enhanced learning and teaching is becoming a core element of all teaching in tertiary education. This report deconstructs TEL using a range of real-life project experiences to provide some core principles for practitioners to use and consider" (Report Authors).

10 Outcomes for Best Practice in TEL

The report authors developed a set of 10 Outcomes for Best Practice in TEL based on the meta-analysis of the 33 projects.
  1. A focus on learning design allows academics to model and share good practice in learning and teaching
  2. Authentic learning provides a means of engaging students through all aspects of curricula, subjects, activities and assessment
  3. Successful academic development focuses on engaging academics over sustained periods of time through action learning cycles and the provision of leadership development opportunities
  4. Engaging teaching practices are key to student learning
  5. Technology-enabled assessment provides flexible approaches for academics to provide feedback to students
  6. Integrating technology-enhanced learning and teaching strategies across curriculum, subjects, activities and assessment results in major benefits to the discipline
  7. Knowledge and resource sharing are central to a vibrant community of practice
  8. Academics require sophisticated online  teaching strategies to effectively teach in technology-enhanced higher education environments
  9. Academics need a knowledge of multi-literacies to teach effectively in contemporary technology-enhanced higher education
  10. Exemplar projects focused on multiple outcomes across curricula integration, sustainable initiatives, academic development and community engagement. 

 Standout Projects Reviewed

  1. Role-based learning environments (CG6-39)
  2. Educating the net generation (CG6-25)
  3. Learning to teach online (CG9-1091)
  4. Virtual microscopy for enhancing learning and teaching (CG7-398)
  5. Using mobile technologies to develop new ways of teaching and learning (CG6-33)
  6. Promoting the sharing and reuse of technology-supported learning designs (Ron Oliver 2006)
  7. Rethinking assessment in web 2.0 environments (Geoffrey Crisp 2011)
  8. Raising the profile of diagnostic, formative and summative eAssessments (Geoffrey Crisp 2009)
  9. Histology learning and teaching resource for students (Geoffrey Meyer 2009)
  10. Using eSimulations in professional education (CG8-771)

Report Authors

 Professor Mike Keppell
Executive Director of the Australian Digital Futures Institute (ADFI) at the University of Southern Queensland. Mike is also the Director of the Digital Futures Cooperative Partnership (DF-CRN) - a research partnership with the Australian National University (ANU) and University of South Australia (UniSA). Mike has a long professional history in higher education in Australia, Canada and Hong Kong. He is a life member of ascilite and has extensive experience in the areas of flexible learning, educational technology and design based research. His current foci include digital futures, learning spaces, blended learning and network leadership. For more information please visit his blog.

Mr Gordon Suddaby
Higher Education Consultant. Gordon previously held the position of Director of Massey University's Centre for Academic Development and eLearning for 10 years before becoming an Associate Professor: Scholarship of Teaching and Learning with the National Centre for Teaching and Learning. He held this position at Massey University in New Zealand until recently retiring. Gordon has extensive experience with relevant professional associations including HERDSA New Zealand, DEANZ and ACODE with whom he served as President. Gordon continues to work on many funded projects in Higher Education in Australasia.

Ms Natasha Hard
Project Manager and Research Assistant at the University of Southern Queensland's Australian Digital Futures Institute (ADFI). Natasha has worked with ADFI since November 2012 managing the Network of Australasian Tertiary Associations (NATA) project and as part of the conference organising group for the Digital Rural Futures Conference held at USQ in June 2014. Natasha worked at the Flexible Learning Institute at Charles Sturt University previously where she worked on two DEHub funded research projects in partnership with Massey University. Natasha also co-authored an ALTC Good Practice Report with Mike Keppell and Gordon Suddaby on TEL during this time.


Thursday, 10 July 2014

The Social Media Toolkit - Supporting communication through social media

NATA would like to announce that the Council of Australian Directors of Academic Development (CADAD) has completed the online Social Media Toolkit, the main output from their NATA partner project. The toolkit is freely accessible ( and offers  a great range of resources aimed to support the capability development of network members in the use and affordances of social media. It also aims to improve connectivity and networking between Directors of Academic Development as well as with wider higher education stakeholders.

Image captured from the CADAD Social Media Toolkit website

The Social Media Toolkit consists of a range of pages that target certain topics. These include social networking, presentation sharing, video and photo sharing, research sharing, bookmarking, curation tools and podcasts. These pages detail some of the main tools or applications available for each of these functions, explore the different pros and cons of each as well as relating them back to the role of the educator and academic. Other information provided touches upon the importance of security when using social media as well as self-care and managing information overload.

The toolkit provides a valuable resource for those working in educations who are interested in developing their understanding and use of a range of social media related tools. We encourage you to access the website and share the link with colleagues.