Linking teaching and reasearch

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					Linking teaching and discipline based
research in National, Institutional and
Department strategies: International
perspectives on Vietnam
 Alan Jenkins
 Professor Emeritus , Oxford Brookes University
  (UK) HE Academy and QAA Scotland Consultant
Discuss one or more of these questions

1.   What makes higher education higher ?
2.   In what ways is a university different from a high
     school ?
3.   In what ways is a university different from a high
     school –from the perspective of undergraduates?
4.   What makes your university/college different from
     other universities in Vietnam – from the perspective of
 Exploring your views

This session is about linking teaching and

What do you mean by „linking teaching and

and is it an important issue in Vietnam and or
   your institution – why or why not!?
Aims : …

Help clarify your views on teaching /discipline based research relations
Set out the international debate on teaching /discipline based research
Set out the research evidence
Give an over view of how various national systems handle this issue –and how
      some of them have sought to bring teaching and research together
Set out a range of strategies that institutions and departments can do to bring
      together teaching and research
Explore the relevance of this to Vietnam / your institution
About Alan Jenkins

UK born : 1959-62 Geography undergraduate at University College
     London, UK

1963-66 School teacher British Columbia Canada

Graduate School : 1966-69 University of Madison Wisconsin USA

Long taught human geography and contemporary China studies in
     higher education mainly in UK at Oxford Brookes .

Then moved into educational/faculty development

Now Professor ( Emeritus ) Oxford Brookes University (UK) and
    educational consultant
Available from the HE Academy
     Some international perspectives

The New Zealand Education Amendment Act (1990) defines a university as where “teaching
      and research are closely interdependent and most of their teaching is done by people who
      are active in advancing knowledge.”

“Why does every University…. have to be doing research, teaching and scholarship and struggling
      to do it in so many areas? Why can't we have Universities that make a conscious decision
      to specialise in outstanding teaching and scholarship but do very little research? Why can't
      we have formal affiliations, one specialising in teaching and another research, between our
      domestic Universities?” (Brendan Nelson, Minister for Education, Science and Training,
      Australia, April 2005)

“Our view is that university research often detracts from the quality of teaching. We regret the
      continuing elevation of research and the systematic neglect of the quality of instruction.”
      (Pocklington and Tupper 2002, 7 – about Canada)
What about ‘Research Intensive’
Universities? One perspective

"..The research universities have often failed, and
   continue to fail their undergraduate
   populations, thousands of students graduate
   without seeing the world - famous professors
   or tasting genuine research." (U. S.) Boyer
   Commission on Educating Undergraduates in
   the Research University (2003,3)
   Some ‘difficult’ research evidence

Loosely Coupled
“Based on this review we concluded that the common belief that teaching and research
were inextricably intertwined is an enduring myth. At best teaching and research are
very loosely coupled" (Hattie and Marsh, 1996)

At Arms length
Students at “arms length” from the worlds of university research (Brew, 2006)

Student indifference : Some research in professional disciplines including business and health ….have revealed that some
         /many students and staff /faculty don‟t necessarily value a research focus

Research Active
(One UK study …) Increasing the number or proportions of research-active teaching staff in lower RAE-rated contexts
is unlikely to affect the quality of student learning. However, the results do suggest that more could be
done to help more students to experience the benefits of research-stimulated teaching environments,
not between different types of research context, but within each context” (Trigwell 2007) (emphasis added).
A Vietnamese perspective

“The picture of the nexus of teaching/learning and research at higher education
      systems in the developing countries in Asia and Pacific Region, due to their
      poor research capacity, is totally different than that of developed countries.
      So the focus in the developing world must be first to strengthen and revive
      university system’s research capacities…..

The Vietnamese Government in its “Five Year Socio-Economic Development Plan
      2006-20010” specifies priority to higher education system. With the World
      Bank Loan higher education project, it is designed to strengthen teaching
      and research in Vietnamese universities by building research capacity,
      supporting integration between university teaching and research and
      facilitating and establish closer linkage between universities and the
      industries, national,regional and international cooperation in university
      teaching and research.” Phuong Nga Nguyen, 2007 (emphasis added)
Acting on the Research Evidence

“The aim is to increase the circumstances in which
    teaching and research have occasion to meet….
Increase the skills of staff to teach emphasizing the
    construction of knowledge by students rather than the
    imparting of knowledge by instructors......
    Ensure that students experience the process of artistic
    and scientific productivity."
    (Hattie and Marsh, 1996, emphasis added )
One UK Government perspective

“… we want all students to access the benefits exposure to teaching
     informed by research can bring…. …….We‟re doing this because
     we believe an understanding of the research process – asking the
     right questions in the right way; conducting experiments; and
     collating and evaluating information – must be a key part of any
     undergraduate curriculum; whether or not those involved in
     delivering it are actively engaged in research activity themselves.”
     (Bill Rammell, Minister for Higher Education 2006, 3) ( emphasis
  Linking research and teaching: why is it important?

• For many it is what distinguishes higher education and
  or what distinguishes strong ‘research universities
• In an age of ‘supercomplexity’ (Barnett 2000), and given
  the increased significance of the knowledge economy)
 ….all students – certainly all graduates – have to be researchers
 (Scott 2002, 13)
• Can help academic staff manage what is often
  experienced as two different jobs –teaching and
• May help build the research capacities of academic staff
My Perspectives

Student „understanding‟ of the complexity of knowledge lies at the centre of
      higher education. (Ron Barnett)

From the level of the academic, the student … and the institution there are
      tensions between teaching and research

We need to maximise the (potential) synergies and minimise the conflicts

This requires actions at a variety of levels :In many institutions the department
      is the key level of analysis and action?

There will be significant variations by disciplines/departments in how they
      conceive and deliver the potential links between teaching and research

The link at undergraduate level is both most problematic and most important ?
     Different ways of linking teaching and research

• Learning about others’ research
• Learning to do research – research
• Learning in research mode – enquiry
• Pedagogic research – enquiring and
  reflecting on learning

              Research-tutored   Research-based

EMPHASIS ON                                          ON
RESEARCH                                             RESEARCH
CONTENT                                              PROCESSES

               Research-led      Research-oriented

                    STUDENTS AS AUDIENCE

     The nature of undergraduate research and inquiry
  Introducing students to staff research: department of
  mechanical engineering, Imperial College, London, UK

This activity was a feature of the first year course in Mechanical Engineering at
      Imperial College London in the l990s
In January of their first year mechanical engineering students were divided into 10-
      15 groups of 4-5 students
Each student group was given an engineering „artefact‟ e.g. a safety razor; the
      bottom frame of a bicycle. In the next few weeks these student groups could
      knock on the doors of any of the department‟s research groups and ask
      questions around the issue of „what research are you doing that might effect
      how this artefact will look like and function in c5 years time?‟
Later all groups presented a poster which provided a summary of their findings
The poster session was held in large public space in the department with some 700
      attending; academic staff, support staff, postgraduates and first year and
      other students
Analysing a case study: department of
mechanical engineering, Imperial College

In groups
Consider the case study and discuss
A Using the concepts in the diagram what forms of
    teaching /research relations do you see there?
B From a head of department‟s perspective what has had
    to be done to set up this project eg what have staff
    been told /encouraged to do ?
Some national strategies to bring teaching and research
together – and perhaps relevant to institutions and

Research Councils – National Science Foundation (USA) grants requiring
     selective undergraduate ….student involvement
Auditing – New Zealand – all institutions were required to demonstrate …
Enhancing – Scottish Quality Assurance Agency – national funded project to
     support institutions and disciplines
Funding – England – Research Informed teaching fund and some „centres of
     excellence‟ in selected institutions
Promoting and Publicising – UK Higher Education Academy –a range of
     publications , conferences and consultancies to institutions
Some institutional strategies to bring teaching and
research together-note these could be done at
departmental …level?

Developing institutional awareness and institutional mission ( eg
     Hampshire College, USA: Linking research and teaching is key element
     of the college‟s mission(

Developing pedagogy and curricula to support the nexus
      Massachusetts Institute of Technology: Undergraduate Research
     Opportunities Program ( –for selected students
     Oxford Brookes University (UK): Building undergraduate
     research into the curriculum From 2007 all Schools / Departments
     required to develop a structured approach to developing all students as
     researchers in all course programmes
Institutional Strategies to Link Teaching
and Research

Developing research policies and strategies
   to support the nexus

Developing staff and university structures to
   support the nexus –key issues are probably
   relationships between research and teaching
   policies and issues of promotion and reward
Strategies for Linking Teaching and Research
within Courses and Programmes

Strategy 1: Develop students’ understanding of the role of
     research in their discipline(s)

Strategy 2: Develop students’ abilities to carry out research

Strategy 3: Progressively develop students’ understanding

Strategy 4: Manage students’ experience of research including
Support students in making clear to them the employability elements of
Your conclusions are

What of this seems very relevant to your
   institution/your role at your institution?
What of this seems irrelevant /
   inappropriate ?
What –if anything –should now be done to
   progress this agenda at your institution?

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