RMIT hosted a panel of eminent speakers on "Leading the Academy" at the 12th annual conference of the International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (ISSoTL).
The theme of the ISSoTL Conference, organised jointly by RMIT and Monash University, was Leading Learning and the Scholarship of Change.
Professor Sandra Jones from the School of Management said leading the academy requires a shared leadership approach.
“The academy needs to extend its focus from the individual ‘leader’ to engage the many who contribute to the success of the ‘ship’,” she said.
“Universities have much to teach industry, community and government bodies as they implement more inclusive approaches to leadership that encourage knowledge sharing in a digital age.”
Lively discussion following the panel presentation evidenced that while shared leadership is not unique to higher education, supporting professional development and resources for a more systematic implementation are much needed.
The panel, facilitated by Dr Heather Davis, L.H. Martin Institute, included:
- Mr Himasha Foneska, President of the RMIT Student Union
- Professor Leo Goedegebuure, Director L.H Martin Institute
- Professor Sandra Jones, Director, Centre of Business Education Research, RMIT
- Dr Katarina Martensson, Lund University
- Ms Di Weddell, Manager Office for Learning and Teaching
Looking to the global and national future for the Academy, Goedegebuure warned against too heavy a reliance on metrics, instead emphasising the opportunities for creating closer links with industry.
Adding to this Weddell spoke of the positive opportunities created by government funding and support for innovative approaches to learning and teaching.
Martensson provided examples from Sweden regarding the importance of professional development support at the institutional level.
Presenting the student view Foneska spoke of the value for students from quick responses from Institutional leaders, particularly ones that understood the many pressures upon students.
Story: Rita Truong