Redefining Academic Identity in an Evolving Higher Education Landscape

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Abstract

During a period of massive upheaval to the higher education sector, the traditional academic role has undergone considerable change. One element of these changes has been the broad introduction of Education-Focused
(EF) or equivalent academic positions, which focus on educational excellence, with a requirement for high quality teaching and associated scholarly research. This paper reports on the reflections of a group of bioscience academics as they transitioned from a traditional teaching and research position to an EF academic position at a research-intensive Australian university. Through analysis of written narratives, the insights of these academics, including their concerns and potential opportunities, were explored. Given the global trend
toward EF and similar positions, this study provides valuable insights into the evolving nature of academic identity, and in particular the role of EF academics in enhancing curricula and in providing educational leadership. Additionally, this study provides perspective for universities to plan optimally for future
introduction of EF positions. Facilitating opportunities for support, mentorship and career progression of EF staff will promote best practice in teaching and learning.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of University Teaching and Learning Practice
Volume14
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Keywords

  • Academic identity
  • Academic staff
  • Education focused positions
  • Higher education
  • Teaching

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