Grants to change the face of University teaching

Some of Australia’s best tertiary education teachers and research teams have been awarded funding to help change the way universities teach.

Minister for Higher Education and Skills Sharon Bird today announced Office of Learning and Teaching (OLT) Grants for 38 research teams across Australia, and OLT Fellowships for nine outstanding teachers.

The total funding of $6.4 million will support the nine teachers and 38 research teams to develop their techniques for improving teaching and learning across a range of disciplines.

Minister Bird said the funding would ensure the best university minds in teaching could share their knowledge with others in their field.

“University can be incredibly challenging, and excellent teachers and effective approaches to learning can make all the difference,” Ms Bird said.

Research topics include improving honours supervision, the role of volunteering in undergraduate courses, helping veterinarians learn business skills, and using technology to develop motor skills in health students.

“It’s a wonderful thing to have a really good teacher, or a really interesting class that sticks with you. This research will help that happen more often, in more lecture theatres across Australia,” Minister Bird said.

The OLT Fellowships enable teachers – leaders in their fields – to focus on this work for up to a year, while the research teams will use their funding to begin or continue projects on education.

Funding provided for the fellowships is part of the $59 million Promotion of Excellence in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education program, which has supported 69 projects since November 2011.

The Gillard Labor Government has committed $36.8 billion to higher education teaching and learning over the next four financial years.

A complete list of 2013 Fellowships and Round 1 Grants is available at: www.olt.gov.au