Scholarship of teaching and learning

The Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) focuses on the reciprocal relationship between teaching and learning at a post-secondary level.

The School of Science in Society is committed to innovative, engaging and relevant teaching. As part of this commitment, we carry out research into both our teaching and the contexts within which we teach in order to better serve and support the needs of our students and community. By studying student and staff learning and experiences in our courses and more broadly, we advance our teaching practice and philosophy across the School, the University and the wider academic community.

Examples of SoTL research in the School includes:

  • research into the student experience in our first Massive Open Online Course (MOOC), Ice 101X, led by Rebecca Priestley;
  • research into VicTeach , a staff-led pan-University Professional Learning Community co-founded by Rhian Salmon and for which Hazel Godfrey is a current co-Chair;
  • research into the student learning experience within our undergraduate online programme in Science in Society;
  • exploration of using creative non-fiction writing to inform teaching on subjective experiences like chronic pain, led by Hazel Godfrey;
  • research into novel approaches to teaching core concepts in Science Communication and Public Engagement (for scientists and professional science communicators as well as students), by Rhian Salmon, Sarah-Jane O’Connor and Laura Kranz.

Research Fellow Tara McAllister (Te Aitanga a Māhaki) also leads a programme of research that documents how Māori academics and students are marginalised and excluded within New Zealand’s universities. Her research has sought to address the under-representation of Indigenous scholars in academia and has resulted in changes to policy and practice within the tertiary sector.

We also take certification and professional development seriously in the School: Hazel Godfrey is an approved Higher Education Fellow (FHEA) and several other members of the School are currently undergoing similar accreditation through the new Te Arawai Ako    programme. In addition, Rebecca Priestley and Rhian Salmon were the recipients of a Joint Early Career Teaching Award in 2017, and Laura Kranz and Max Soar were recipients of the Te Rautaki Maruako Tutor Excellence Award in 2018 and 2022, respectively.

For more information, please contact:

Associate Professor

School of Science in Society