Teaching excellence: Recognising the many as well as the few

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Research and Development in Higher Education Vol. 39: The Shape of Higher Education

July, 2016, 391 pages
Published by
Melissa Davis & Allan Goody

Australian higher education institutions actively pursue strategies to recognise and reward teachers with an apparent goal of improving overall institutional teaching quality. However, most of these strategies involve competitive recognition of “teaching excellence”, and reward relatively few staff. In 2014, an Australian university tried a new strategy, introducing an international scheme with the potential to recognise all staff who can demonstrate appropriate professional experience and effective engagement in university teaching and support of learners. Within 30 months, more than 400 academic and professional staff—from that university and from other Australasian institutions that sought involvement—had made successful applications for recognition under this scheme. With more institutions now adopting this international scheme within Australasia, the four attributes of this scheme that are contributing to its success—inclusiveness; an experiential, reflective and developmental focus; peer review, peer feedback and peer engagement; and the international perspective—are considered.

Keywords: professional recognition, university teaching, teaching excellence