Call for Participants – Quality Assurance Short Course on the Basic Higher Education Teaching Skills

Kumasi, Ghana, January 30 – 2 February, 2017

The Association of African Universities (AAU) will be holding a short-term 4-day intensive training course on Basic Higher Education Teaching Skills to equip lecturers with the foundations for effective teaching at tertiary level through content on Educational Psychology, Educational Philosophy and Educational Sociology, Bloom’s Taxonomy, Teaching using ICTs, Quality Assurance in tertiary Education as well as Assessment and Evaluation. University teaching personnel regardless of their areas of specialization are therefore invited to attend the course. The training will be held from Monday the 30th to Thursday the 2nd of February, 2017 from 8:30am to 4: 30pm at a place in Kumasi, Ghana.

The cost of participation is US$400 per participant (AAU Members) and US$450 per person (Non-AAU Member Universities) payable well in advance of the workshop. The money will cover lunch, teas and contribute towards the venue costs.

AAU looks forward to your participation. In order to register please visit this link: https://www.research.net/r/BHETS-Regis

For any queries, please e-mail Dr Violet Makuku on secgen@aau.org & cc vmakuku@aau.org / vmakuku@gmail.com or telephone her on +233 263 129 798 / +233 270 239 439

Preamble and Rationale

Virtually all development players now concur that for any meaningful and sustainable economic growth to be realized and sustained tertiary education must be centrally placed in the development agenda of nations. Countries around the world are striving to build the sector as part of their priority strategic development plan. Indeed, building a tertiary education system is no more a luxury but a national and continental imperative critical for Africa’s development and global competitiveness. Quality and relevance of university education have emerged as serious concerns of the sector for some time now. In addition, worldwide research on teaching in Higher Education revealed that most of the lecturers apply poor teaching practices because they do not have the professional teaching qualification (Deusto University, 2015; Cervini, 2010; Chen, Sok and Sok, 2007). The situation has been further aggravated by poor to no orientation of new lecturers. One of the Tuning Africa II workshops held in Accra, Ghana in October 2016 also had teaching quality as the lowest rated quality attributes in a study involving more than 180 universities and 300 000 students.

The training workshop was also guided by some of the priority areas agreed upon in the Declaration and Action Plan of the 1st Higher Education Summit on Revitalizing Higher Education for Africa’s Future held in Dakar, Senegal (10-12 March, 2015) which are:

  1. Increase investment in higher education to facilitate development, promote stability, enhance access and equity; develop, recruit and retain excellent academic staff and pursue cutting-edge research and provision of high quality teaching.
  2. Pursue excellence in teaching and learning, research and scholarship, public service and provision of solutions to the development challenges and opportunities facing African peoples across the continent.

Still, related to the AAU’s Basic HE Teaching Skills workshop series, an article on lack of induction programmes for early career academics on learning to teach written by Professor Damtew Teferra in the University World News publication of 18 November 2016 Issue No. 437 supports the need for such workshops to improve HE teaching and learning. Below is the article summary and its link:

Early career academics in Africa – The need for induction

For all the debates and dialogues on ‘massification’ and revitalizing higher education in Africa, little attention has been afforded to the state of the teaching skills of academics. Most academics are not trained to teach and are expected to catch up on the job. It is on this premise that a multi-country and multi-institutional research study on early career academics was undertaken and published in Studies in Higher Education as a special issue themed “Early Career Academics in Africa: Policies and experiences in the teaching praxis”. The articles examine the experiences of induction of early career academics in a number of African universities. The 2 year-long research study, review and production was supported by the Carnegie Corporation of New York and led by Professor Damtew Teferra of the University of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa.

The link: http://www.universityworldnews.com/article.php?story=20161117105628304

Under the guidance of the African Union (AU)’s Agenda 2063, the African Union Commission (AUC) developed a comprehensive ten-year Continental Education Strategy for Africa (CESA) which is driven by the desire to set up a quality system of education and training to provide the African continent with efficient human resources adapted to African core values. As a key implementing organization of CESA 16-25 with a mandate to improve the quality of African Higher Education, the Association of African Universities (AAU) is willing to contribute to an efficient, “reorientation of Africa’s education and training systems to meet the knowledge, competencies, skills, innovation and creativity required to nurture African core values and promote sustainable development at national, sub-regional and continental levels”. AAU believes that there are opportunities for us to continue working together to jumpstart and energize good teaching practices in African Higher Education. The training workshop seeks to fulfil three of CESA’s 12 strategic objectives which are:

  1. Revitalizing the teaching profession to ensure quality and relevance at all levels of education (GOAL 1).
  2. Harnessing the capacity of ICT to improve access, quality and management of education and training systems (GOAL 3).
  3. Revitalizing and expanding tertiary education, research and innovation to address continental challenges and promote global competitiveness (GOAL 9).

It is against this background that the AAU is providing the short intensive training course on basic university teaching skills to equip lecturers with the foundations for effective teaching at tertiary level through content on Educational Psychology, Educational Philosophy and Educational Sociology, Bloom’s Taxonomy, ICTs & Instruction, Quality Assurance in Tertiary Education as well as Assessment and Evaluation.

The AAU is therefore pleased to announce its 4 day quality assurance short course entitled: THE BASIC HIGHER EDUCATION TEACHING SKILLS (BHETS) training workshop whose theme is:

21st CENTURY INNOVATIVE AND LEARNER-CENTRED TEACHING METHODS IN HIGHER EDUCATION.

A) COURSE AIM

Impart knowledge and skills related to teaching and learning in higher education to those lecturers who have an interest in updating or upgrading themselves to new modes of teaching and knowledge dissemination in higher education.

B) COURSE OBJECTIVES
  • Share knowledge on the important endowments and characteristics of a good lecturer
  • Equip participants with the background knowledge that informs the teaching and learning practices
  • Impart knowledge and skills of the diverse ways of teaching and learning using various Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs)
  • Make known to participants the recommended new modes of teaching and the various associated activities
  • Impart knowledge and skill on the management of tertiary education classes/classrooms
  • To expose to participants the importance of students’ physical and socio-economic environments in teaching and learning.
C) WORKSHOP METHODOLOGY

The objectives of this course will be achieved through lead lectures, intensive participant interaction over carefully selected cases and other materials in a process facilitated by renowned Resource Persons.

D) PARTICIPATION

To ensure effective interaction and exchange of ideas, a maximum of 50 participants will be strictly observed, basing the selection on the principle of “first come, first served”. Participation is open to all who are teaching in Higher Education/Tertiary institutions regardless of the area of speciality except those who already have a teaching qualification and any other personnel who are involved in teaching activities.

N/B: Further details will be announced in due course