2022 CAULLT Conference – Leading the Future: Provocations in digital learning, assessment, academic development and engagement

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CAULLT’s annual conference will take place online on Friday, 28 October between 10 am and 4 pm. The theme of this year’s conference is Leading the Future: Provocations in Digital Learning, Assessment & Feedback, Academic Development and Engagement.

Leading for preferred futures in Higher Education

(Prof. Kylie Readmann, Deputy Vice Chancellor and Vice President Education and Students, University of Technology, Sydney)

In a hyper-competitive, ‘superstructed’ and globally-connected environment where change is the only constant, being a responsive leader or leadership team is not enough. The concept of preferred futures allows deliberation of options, articulation of possible changes, determination of choices and focuses on strategising together towards a preferred future. It is cyclic, dialogic and reflective in nature and resists the concept of ‘always forward’ design.

My preferred future for the higher education sector allows it to use its unique position to more fully realise its opportunities for social, cultural, economic and environmental impact. This preferred future reaches into all areas of our University operations and takes account of the macro external factors impacting on the sector. It is driven by changing student perceptions and needs, international and industry connections, digital transformation and should reflect shared values, where they exist. All the actions that follow are unified by three key capabilities needed to achieve outcomes: a focus on wellbeing, culture and leadership at every level.

Professor Kylie Readman is currently the Deputy Vice Chancellor Education and Equity at Murdoch University in Perth, Australia and will shortly transition to the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) as the Deputy Vice Chancellor and Vice President Education and Students.

Her focus is on creating the institutional conditions for building staff and student capacity in learning and teaching in the higher education sector and she is committed to working collaboratively to achieve positive and equitable student outcomes. Kylie’s research interests include development of the University workforce, leadership of learning and teaching in higher education, learning innovation and assessment design.

Leading the Future of Engagement – two and a half provocations

(Prof. Peter Felten, Assistant Provost for Teaching and Learning, Executive Director of the Center for Engaged Learning, Elon University)

Today’s dominant narrative (in the US, at least) explains that the pandemic has produced an unprecedented crisis of student disengagement. While this view has merits, it also obscures as much as it reveals. In this brief talk, I will invite you to consider the implications of a future of engagement that is hybrid, relational, and meaningful.

Peter Felten is professor of history, executive director of the Center for Engaged Learning, and assistant provost for teaching and learning at Elon University (USA). During the 2022-2023 academic year, he is Fulbright Canada Distinguished Chair in the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, at Carleton University. His next book, a student guide to relationship-rich education, is co-authored with Isis Artze-Vega, Leo Lambert, and Oscar Miranda Tapia, will be published by Johns Hopkins University Press in 2023 (with an open access online version free to all readers).

Assessment for Digital Learning: Two Provocations

(Prof. David Carless, Hong Kong University)

This presentation elaborates two propositions. The first argues that digital oral assessment could form a more central part of assessment designs. The second questions the value of conventional end-of-semester written feedback, and suggests some more promising alternatives. Implications and challenges are discussed.

David Carless is a Professor in the Faculty of Education, University of Hong Kong and is just concluding a Humanities and Social Sciences Prestigious Fellowship awarded by the RGC. He was the winner of a University Outstanding Teaching Award in 2016. His most recent book Designing effective feedback processes in higher education: A learning-focused approach, by Winstone and Carless, was published by Routledge in 2019. His current research focuses on feedback seeking and the role of feedback literacy in enhancing the impact of feedback processes. The latest details of his work are on his website: https://davidcarless.edu.hku.hk/.

Curriculum Reform and Systemic Cultural Change: Indigenous education and universities

(Assoc. Prof. Jay Phillips, Head of School, Indigenous Australian Studies, Charles Sturt University)

The UA Indigenous Strategy 2022-2025 has established several focus areas that emphasise the responsibilities of universities to reform and transform its approaches to Indigenous education. The strategy draws explicit attention to the need to address the systemic racism that continues to debilitate the achievement of social justice for Indigenous peoples. This presentation will focus on two key areas of the strategy:

  • “Universities have Indigenous content in curricula that is meaningful, appropriately developed and appropriately resourced; and,
  • “Universities ensure students graduate with an awareness of Indigenous values and knowledges.”

In 1969, the National Union of Australian University Students emphasised their commitment to the education of non-Indigenous students about the experiences of Indigenous peoples. Since then, successive state and national Indigenous Education policies have also included similarly focussed strategic goals for schools and universities. What can we, as academic leaders in universities do now to prevent another 53 years of unsustained achievements?

Associate Professor Jay Phillips is a Wakka Wakka Gooreng Gooreng woman and educator from southeast Queensland. Originally educated as a primary school teacher, she has been teaching, researching, and advocating for Indigenous students and communities in universities for over 20 years. She is particularly interested in the interaction between Indigenous knowledge systems and western colonial traditions with regard to colonial identity construction and intellectual authority, and teaching for optimal learning in contested spaces.