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 undergraduates? Exploring your views This session is about linking teaching and research What do you mean by „linking teaching and research‟ 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 relations 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 http://www.heacademy.ac.uk/rtnexus.htm www.heacademy.ac.uk/assets/York/documents/resources/publicati ons/DevelopingUndergraduate_Final.pdf 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 added). 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 research • 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 methods • Learning in research mode – enquiry based • Pedagogic research – enquiring and reflecting on learning STUDENTS AS PARTICIPANTS Research-tutored Research-based EMPHASIS EMPHASIS ON ON RESEARCH RESEARCH CONTENT PROCESSES AND PROBLEMS 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 departments 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(http://www.hampshire.edu/) Developing pedagogy and curricula to support the nexus Massachusetts Institute of Technology: Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (http://mit.edu/urop/) –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 research 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?