An associate deans' community of practice: rising to the local leadership challenge to enhance learning and teaching quality

Noble, Karen and Lawrence, Jill and Burton, Lorelle J. and Summers, Jane and Gibbings, Peter (2011) An associate deans' community of practice: rising to the local leadership challenge to enhance learning and teaching quality. DE Quarterly, 7.


Associate Deans (Teaching and Learning) face a number of challenges in successfully retaining and progressing students in their faculties. The authors, all Associate Deans (Teaching and Learning) across the five faculties at USQ identify a number of challenges to be overcome in order to enhance teaching and learning in the higher education context. The first challenge involves identifying strategies to assist students to actively engage with their studies. This challenge escalates if the primary mode of delivery involves distance learning. The second challenge stems from the need for Associate Deans to empower their staff to design, develop and deliver curricular that achieves student retention.

ADs LT at USQ primarily oversee courses (rather than programs or degrees) and are responsible for the implementation within each of their faculties of the institution’s strategic learning and teaching plans. Most aspects of design and delivery fall into the ADs’ portfolios. This includes promoting teaching best practice, encouraging effective course design and managing innovation in delivery technologies. Management of these issues has, in the past, been undertaken quite independently by each Associate Dean within his or her faculty. At USQ, an Associate Dean’s Community of Practice (AD CoP) was formed to facilitate an institutional approach to student engagement, both in terms of supporting students and supporting staff. This paper outlines the success of this initiative in building the learning and teaching capacities of both students and staff at USQ.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: No
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: c DEHub. Non-refereed article. Faculty of Arts; Faculty of Sciences; Faculty of Business & Law; Faculty of Engineering & Surveying.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Education
Date Deposited: 25 Sep 2011 05:24
Last Modified: 07 Jul 2014 04:50
Uncontrolled Keywords: course design; teaching best practice; Community of Practice
Fields of Research : 13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130313 Teacher Education and Professional Development of Educators
13 Education > 1399 Other Education > 139999 Education not elsewhere classified
15 Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services > 1503 Business and Management > 150313 Quality Management
Socio-Economic Objective: C Society > 93 Education and Training > 9302 Teaching and Instruction > 930202 Teacher and Instructor Development

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