Browsing Centre for Higher and Adult Education by Title
Now showing 1 - 20 of 31
Results Per Page
- ItemAcademic literacy as a graduate attribute: implications for thinking about curriculum(AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2011) Leibowitz, BrendaINTRODUCTION: This chapter is set within the current focus on graduate attributes. These are qualities which students require in order to study at university, as well as and more typically, the attributes that students require in order to graduate as competent and meaningfully engaged members of society. The particular subset of attributes on which the chapter focuses covers approaches towards academic literacy, broadly understood as encompassing writing and reading, digital literacy and information literacy. I locate my understanding of academic literacy within what is broadly referred to as a ‘situated literacies’ approach and trace the implications of this approach for curriculum design and for research into the curriculum. In order to substantiate many of the claims in this chapter, I provide examples from various studies conducted while being involved in research and development work on language across the curriculum at the University of the Western Cape (UWC), and from research into language, biography and identity I have conducted while working at Stellenbosch University. I draw from the international literature, as well as from South African literature, which has its own trajectory and concern to respond to the educational, racial and linguistically saturated divisions and inequities of our past. This chapter makes a strong argument for an understanding of graduate attributes in general – and of academic literacy in particular – as practices deeply embedded in the disciplines. For pragmatic reasons, it might be necessary to provide for stand-alone approaches towards the facilitation of academic literacy amongst students. With regard to the broader concept of graduate attributes, I ask whether the kinds of attributes we expect from students, such as criticality or lifelong learning, should not be the subject of attention for educators themselves.
- ItemAligning student and supervisor perspectives of research challenges(SUN MeDIA, 2016) Albertyn, Ruth; Van Coller-Peter, Salome; Morrison, JohnIntroduction: The coursework to me was like riding a mountain bike on a mountain bike trail. It was tough at times, but a great adventure. The more you rode, the more skilful you became, both technically and theoretically. The research process for me was like cycling the same mountain bike trail, but on a road bike. It just never really became easy. (Student) This comment illustrates how a student participant in our study vividly distinguished the research experience from the coursework in completing a postgraduate qualification. The challenges experienced with research, and the natural predisposition towards the theoretical and practical course content, play a role in completion rates at master’s or doctoral level. This phenomenon has become a focus of research and sometimes it is referred to as ‘all but dissertation’ or ABD (Blum 2010; Albertyn, Kapp & Bitzer 2008). In some cases, the research component is seen as the ‘necessary evil’ of obtaining the higher degree. A negative attitude to research at the outset could influence students’ engagement with research, their ability to think creatively, and eventually the quality and completion of the research (Kearns, Gardiner & Marshall 2008).
- ItemArchitects of recovery from alcohol misuse : narrative exploration of coaching employed professionals(Oxford Brookes University, 2020-08) Solheim, Thobias; Albertyn, Ruth M.Recovery coaching is a lesser-recognised support service to individuals who pursue recovery from addiction. This narrative inquiry research explored the experiences of recovery coaches working with employed professionals in recovery from alcohol misuse. Findings indicate that recovery coaches work in the field of recovery, not addiction and that they were credentialed by their skills as a coach. Recovery coaching may be a useful service to professionals in recovery. Insight into perspectives of coaches regarding goals, processes, challenges and outcomes of recovery provides enhanced understanding of how coaching can facilitate employed professionals to become architects of their own recovery.
- ItemBecoming doctorate as an endpoint and a point of departure(SUN MeDIA, 2016) Bitzer, Eli; Leshem, Shosh; Trafford, VernonINTRODUCTION: There are generic features of ‘the doctorate’ that transcend disciplines, universities and doctoral procedures. Perspectives on doctoral outcomes include features of received wisdom, which scholars often refer to as the ‘gold standard’ of the doctorate (Trafford & Leshem 2008: 34–35). When standards at such a scholarly level are met, they constitute ‘doctorateness’, which is what examiners expect to be displayed in doctoral theses (Halse & Malfroy 2010; McAlpine & Ashgar 2010). To achieve generic scholarly standards, doctoral candidates are expected to progress beyond merely reporting facts; levels of knowledge, skills and attitudes that involve intellectualising, conceptualising and contributing to existing knowledge are required. Candidates and supervisors who display this understanding appreciate connections between doing research and writing a doctoral thesis, and for candidates at some institutions, defending their thesis in a doctoral viva. When these criteria for a doctoral degree are met, then ‘doctorateness’ is demonstrated (Trafford & Leshem 2008; 2011).
- ItemBringing the community into higher education(AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2016) Albertyn, Ruth M.Introduction: The third core function of community interaction in higher education is often viewed as the peripheral activity in the triad of academic tasks. Community interaction is seen as an imperative which often results in reluctant compliance rather than enthusiastic engagement. Notional value of community initiatives has been well articulated both internationally and nationally and calls on the sense of social justice, making a meaningful contribution to society, mutual benefits and reciprocity (Boyer 1990; Kolawole 2005; Waghid 2009; Hall 2010; Lange 2012). Community initiatives can contribute to transformation that is so vital in the historical context of South African higher education (Albertyn and Daniels 2009; Bitzer and Albertyn 2012; Leibowitz 2012; Petersen and Osman 2013). Despite cognition of the well-documented benefits of engaged activity, it is widely felt that many academics pay lip-service to community interaction and try to get away with the bare minimum. Undoubtedly, the reason for this could be ascribed to the innate tensions currently faced by universities and academics. This situation may be due to on the one hand, the reality of the globalised economy with the competitive, individualised focus of knowledge economies (James, Guile and Unwin 2013), and on the other hand, the social agenda which encourages engaged citizenship.
- ItemCandidates, supervisors and institutions: pushing postgraduate boundaries: an overview(SUN PRESS, 2014) Frick, Liezel; Bitzer, Eli; Albertyn, RuthINTRODUCTION: Academic boundaries are in some ways similar to national boundaries – they are set up to colonise and govern, but at the same time are constantly challenged to reaffirm their authority and meaning. The postgraduate environment has been and is still colonised and governed by a variety of boundaries: inter/national, geographical, cultural, institutional, disciplinary and paradigmatic; also those of knowledge and relationships, and many more. The contributions to this book set out to explore and challenge such boundaries as they exist within the postgraduate environment. The work of Thomas Kuhn (1962) and others on paradigms set the scene for establishing boundaries both within and between academic disciplines in terms of research. The earlier work of Becher and Trowler (2001) on academic tribes and their territories may also be useful to explain academics’ search for a scholarly identity in the higher education environment. An academic tribe provides its members with an identity and a particular frame of reference. The characteristic identity of a particular academic tribe is developed from an early age – usually already at the undergraduate level, where patterns of thought are imprinted. These ‘tribal’ associations are often solidified at the postgraduate level.
- ItemComplex legacies and future prospects: Conceptualising changes in South African doctoral education(Taylor and Francis, 2023-08-21) Tshuma Nompilo; Bitzer EliA number of key drivers are responsible for the major shifts taking place in doctoral education globally, including massification, globalisation, digitalisation and the knowledge economy. While each of these drivers permeates the South African higher education context to some extent, we argue that the country’s complex historical legacies provide a unique background and lens through which key drivers of doctoral education can be framed. Thus, our focus is firstly to outline the complex legacy of apartheid and its implications for the country’s transformation agenda and resulting shifts taking place in the South African higher and doctoral education landscape. Secondly, to account for some future prospects, we draw on the outcomes of the recent (2020/21) national review of doctoral programmes in South Africa. We highlight some recommendations that universities need to attend to via their respective doctoral improvement plans as a possible future agenda for driving and improving doctoral education.
- ItemConceptualising risk in doctoral education: Navigating boundary tensions(SUN PRESS, 2014) Frick, Liezel; Albertyn, Ruth; Bitzer, EliIntroduction: If you are not willing to risk the unusual, you will have to settle for the ordinary. – Jim Rohn Risk-taking is an important form of human behaviour, but can be conceptualised in different ways (Byrnes, Miller & Schafer 1999). Some researchers in higher education point to the association between academic risk and its negative consequences (McWilliam, Lawson, Evans & Taylor 2005; McWilliam, Sanderson, Evans, Lawson & Taylor 2006; McWilliam, Singh & Taylor 2002) and therefore conceptualise risk as something that should be avoided or at least carefully managed. Others highlight risk as an opportunity for achievement (Backhouse 2009; Frick 2011, 2012; Holligan 2005). If innovation is key to the generation of new knowledge, then risk is seen to be an integral part of this process (Brown 2010). Knowledge and innovation are considered to be critical contributors to national wealth and welfare and therefore doctoral education has gained increasing significance within the context of human capital development (Bloland 2005; CHE 2009). In this context, the dynamics of balancing risk and innovation (Brown 2010; Latham & Braun 2009) may provide challenges for the supervisory relationship and the research process. Education – and more specifically doctoral education – seems to be risky given the requirement to produce original knowledge. Students need to have “the courage and confidence to take risks, to make mistakes, to invent and reinvent knowledge, and to pursue critical and lifelong inquiries in the world, with the world, and with each other” (Freire 1970, cited in Lin & Cranton 2005:458). MacKinnon (1970) agrees that the courage to take risks is an important characteristic of creative endeavours – such as doctoral studies. In this chapter we therefore take the position that risk is unavoidable within the context of doctoral education, but in order to extend the boundaries and manage risk constructively, supervisors could gain from understanding the concept of risk within this context.
- ItemThe ‘creative-minded supervisor : gatekeeping and boundary breaking when supervising creative doctorates(SUN MeDIA, 2016) Wisker, Gina; Robinson, GillianINTRODUCTION: Research into what examiners value in a PhD (Kiley & Mullins 2002) identified some characteristics which might surprise supervisors who seek to ensure that, as well as contributing to knowledge, their students undertake manageable research projects, use familiar (enough) methodologies and methods and conform (enough) to acceptable formats in the finished thesis. In their research, both risk-taking and creativity emerged as highly valued in successful PhD theses. Creativity and risktaking might be expected essentials in a PhD which centres on an artistic production, and are very familiar to those taking experimental approaches or challenging fixed ideas. However, for those of us supervising a much broader range of research it could be challenging to find ways to work with students or negotiate routes that are risky and creative, also sound, safe, familiar, and likely to be successful. This raises an exciting set of opportunities, located in supervisors’ roles, and in supervisorstudent interactions, in context. Supervisors are gatekeepers, boundary brokers, and boundary breakers, particularly when working with creative doctorates. Creative postgraduate students engaged in creative doctorates, whether in the creative arts, or taking creative approaches to problems and questions in a range of disciplines, might take us out of our own comfort zones. Yet, we would like to argue that, as supervisors, we need to be – in the words of one of our respondents – ‘creativeminded’ enough (Wisker & Robinson 2014) to encourage and reward the creative approaches and work, while also ensuring that the breaking of boundaries in new knowledge also fulfils expectations of a rigorous research project and wellcommunicated thesis.
- ItemCultivating African academic capital - intersectional narratives of an African graduate and his PhD study supervisor(Taylor & Francis, 2017) Bitzer, Eli; Matimbo, FulgenceThree theoretical axes, namely ‘habitus’, ‘transformational learning’ and ‘doctorateness’ informed two narrative doctoral accounts. One is from a Tanzanian public official who graduated from a research-intensive South African university – mostly away from work, family and country. The other is from his study supervisor who, for the first time, supervised a candidate from another African country. Both accounts depict an unfolding mutual learning journey: Establishing contact, staying in a foreign town and studying at a foreign university, the trials and tribulations of guiding a foreign African candidate, the search for a scholarly voice, thesis writing, preparing for and taking an oral examination, being successful and final reflections. These narrated experiences are interpreted via three vantage points which provide new insights into studying and supervising across borders and cultures in Africa, pointing to implications for advancing academic capital development.
- ItemDevelopments in the production of economics PhDs at four research-intensive universities in South Africa(Academy of Science of South Africa, 2017) De Jager, Phillip; Frick, Liezel; Van der Spuy, PieterThere is a national drive to increase PhD production, yet we know little about how this imperative takes shape within different disciplines. We therefore set out to explore recent developments and the current status of the PhD in economics at four South African research-intensive universities. A data set of all economics PhDs produced in these commerce faculties during the period 2008–2014 was analysed to determine whether the departments of economics responded to the call for increased doctoral production, and the role the PhD by publication might have played in the process. How an increase in quantity might influence doctoral education in the respective academic departments was also considered by supplementing the quantitative data with perspectives from heads of department at the four institutions. The notable increase in doctoral production over the time period studied shows that national and international trends have influenced doctoral education in economics departments within South African research-intensive universities. Increased usage of the PhD by publication has implications for policy and pedagogical practice within these departments, especially as there seems to be limited available supervisory capacity. Other changes in departmental practices, such as the entrenchment of a research culture and the promotion of collaborative research amongst students and staff, also contributed to maintain quality in doctoral education.
- ItemAn interpretative phenomenological analysis of academic identity development in part-time lecturers at a private higher education institution in South Africa(Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2022-04) Marais, Karel; Frick, Liezel; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Education. Dept. of Curriculum Studies. (Centre for Higher and Adult Education)ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The origins of this study lie in a personal struggle to define my academic identity. My frame of reference is that of part-time lecturer that later moved to a full-time academic manager position in a private higher education institution. The main academic focus of the private higher education institution is on teaching rather than research. The nature of the private higher education institution furthermore entails that there is ever-present spectre of profit. The profit driven nature and the teaching focus led me to doubt if I was in fact an “academic”. This led me to the aim of the study that investigated what the academic identity of part-time lecturers in a private higher education institution is and how this academic identity develops. This initial interest led to reading about identity and I came across Goffman’s theory of dramaturgy, that proposes that daily life could be compared to a theatrical production. When later focussing exclusively on academic identity, I came across Henkel’s work around academic identity in a changing environment. She proposed that three sources of academic identity can be found: discipline, institution and profession. These two scholars’ work formed the theoretical framework for this study. An Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) research approach was followed. IPA was appropriate as it allows one to describe how the respondent experiences the phenomenon given the context in which it takes place. A purposive sample of five part-time lecturers at the Cape Town campus of a large private higher education institution was selected for the study. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with the five respondents. The data gathered was analysed using a six-step process that initially analysed each respondent’s interview to find themes. The themes from each interview were then compared to find commonalities and create overarching themes. These themes were interpreted and analysed to allow for findings to be made. The findings indicated that the respondents exhibited a definite academic identity, although most denied being academics. In addition, a clear professional identity was displayed by all the respondents. Respondents showed how they easily, and with comfort, code switched between these two identities depending on what the situation demanded. In some cases, the academic identity was invoked in the professional setting and vice versa. Lastly, it was shown how identity takes time to develop and that agency plays an important part in the development of this identity showing academic identity development as an ongoing process rather than a static point. The study contributes to the body of knowledge allows for a better understanding of how part-time lecturers function in the private higher education environment. This information may be used to assist in the appointment, training, ongoing development and management of part-time lecturers within these institutions in the future. A large-scale quantitative survey is suggested as a possible future study to determine if similar results are found in the broader population. A second study that may be considered is to compare the academic identities of part-time lecturers in private and public higher education institutions, to discover how this might be similar or different.
- ItemInterrogating patient-centredness in undergraduate medical education using an integrated behaviour model(Taylor & Francis Group, 2017) Archer, E.; Bitzer, E.; Van Heerden, B. B.Background: Patient-centredness, an approach that puts the patient at the centre of the consultation, thus focusing on patients instead of on his/her diseases, has been identified by most medical schools as a desired core competence of their graduates. Despite some curriculum initiatives, medical students often display a lack of patient-centredness upon graduation. This bears reason for concern and it was thus deemed important to explore possible factors that influence the teaching and learning of patient-centredness in an undergraduate medical curriculum. The article suggests a framework that can assist programme developers to conceptualise the teaching and learning of patient-centredness across an undergraduate curriculum. Methods: A qualitative exploratory case study design was used for the study with final-year medical students. Themes of meaning were deduced from the data by employing components of an Integrated Behavior Model (IBM) of Fishbein. Results: The findings of the study revealed that seven factors play a role: background characteristics of students, attitudinal factors, subjective norms (the hidden curriculum), student self-efficacy, acquired skills and knowledge, the environment or context within which patient-centredness is taught and learnt, as well as assessment of learning. Conclusions: Patient-centredness is a complex construct and authors often write about only one of its components. This paper attempts to consider the total undergraduate medical curriculum students are exposed to when they learn about being patient-centred. The teaching and learning of such a multidimensional construct require a comprehensive approach in order to be effective and the IBM seems to be a useful and applicable theoretical model to apply.
- ItemThe invisible support networks of doctoral candidates : what acknowledgement sections of doctoral theses reveal(HESA, 2021) Leshem, S.; Bitzer, E.Although some argue that acknowledgement sections should not form part of doctoral theses, others welcome such sections and are of the opinion that they reflect original and personal contributions, constituting a neglected genre. Previous research on acknowledgement texts have focused more on their linguistic characteristics as related to the academic writing of theses. The present study, however, inquired into acknowledgement sections from a social support perspective. The aim of the study was to bring to light the dimension of the social milieu and its importance in supporting doctoral students in successfully achieving their doctorate. More specifically, the study sought to investigate the role of “significant others” in the academic success of doctoral students as reflected in the genres of acknowledgement in doctoral theses by analysing such texts from 30 completed doctoral theses in South Africa and Israel. Follow-up interviews with graduates assisted to probe deeper into the meaning of the texts. Although limited in nature, the study found that, based on who doctoral graduates acknowledge, several role-players and supporters seem to contribute to doctoral success. This includes family members, friends, colleagues, study supervisors, funders and university administrators. What also became clear was that doctoral candidates rely mainly on psycho-social forms of support and that particular kinds of such support are crucial at different stages of the doctoral journey. Acknowledgement studies confirm the doctoral research process as an activity stream that integrates the personal, the interpersonal and the institutional to reveal the mostly hidden, but very important, influences on the doctorate.
- ItemJourneying with higher education studies and research: A personal perspective(AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2009) Bitzer, EliThis chapter captures different ‘stages’ of the development of my own journey with the field of higher education (HE) studies and research. It reflects change and development of the field from personal experiences covering five ‘developmental stages’ and a period of almost 30 years. Stage one represents a novice position from where I knew absolutely nothing about the field of HE and when the learning curve was exceptionally steep. Questions I try to answer include: What literature was available at the time? What were the seminal works? What were the themes that dominated the field? The second stage covers my own master’s and doctoral studies. In each instance there were dominant influences, forces and literature that guided my postgraduate work. I explore the question of how these studies influence my perspectives concerning higher education and how they impacted on my future work. The third stage deals with projects and post-PhD research and the initial stages of publishing in the field leading onto a fourth stage where I started supervising PhD students. Stage five represents the present with a broader view is taken within the limitations of one person’s perspective to take such a stance. This last section also ties in with the chapter by Bitzer and Wilkinson elsewhere in this book that addresses aspects of higher education as a field of study in South Africa.
- ItemMoving beyond the tools : pre-service teachers' views on what they value in a digital literacy short course(AOSIS, 2021-06) Strydom, Sonja C.; Wessels, Helena; Anley, CaseyBackground: A digital literacies short course, rooted in a pedagogical model of authentic learning and mapped against the TPACK model, was conceptualised and implemented to enhance the existing digital literacies and technological pedagocial content knowledge of student teachers and to promote an awareness of technology-enhanced curriculum practices. Aim: In aiming to inform course improvement, our study interrogates student teachers’ perceptions of the aspects that they valued in the short course. Methods: Guided by social constructivism and situated within a qualitative paradigm, twenty-four 2nd and 3rd year Bachelor of Education (BEd) students who completed the course participated in three semi-structured focus group interviews whereby data was analysed by means of constant comparison analysis. Results: Findings suggest participants found value in authentic tasks and assignments as well as the process of knowledge creation. They did, however, differ in their views of the purpose and aim of such a course. Conclusion: This study contributes to the gap in South African research and the growing South African interest in preparing teachers in adopting technology-enhanced practices and curriculum changes in schools, and argues that standardised theoretical training courses ignoring psycho-socio-cultural factors and individual differences should be reconsidered.
- ItemNegotiating co-ownership of learning in higher education : an underexplored practice for adult learning(Taylor & Francis, 2019) Owusu-Agyeman, Yaw; Fourie-Malherbe, MagdaAdults who enrol in higher education institutions (HEIs) often have contributions that could serve in enhancing the planning and implementation of their programmes. Importantly, while terms such as active learner engagement and knowledge co-creation dominate adult learning discussions, there are unanswered questions pertaining to how adult learners negotiate co-ownership of their learning. The current empirical study explores the relevant factors that could enhance adult learners’ involvement in negotiating co-ownership of learning in a higher education setting. A mixed method of gathering and analysing data from adult learners (n = 200) was followed. While structural equation modelling (SEM) served as the quantitative data analysis method, codes, categories and themes developed from the focus group discussions and interviews were used to analyse the qualitative data. The study revealed that negotiating co-ownership of learning among adult learners in HEIs is influenced by the level of engagement and adult learners’ acquisition of relevant core knowledge and skills. The authors discuss the implications of the results by reflecting on the pluses of negotiating co-ownership of learning at the institutional and classroom levels while also showing how the lack of these provisions could hinder effective learning among adult learners.
- ItemPHD by publication : an institutional analysis(SUN MeDIA, 2016) Frick, LiezelINTRODUCTION: PhD1 theses generally follow one of two different formats. Firstly there is the (more traditional) monograph, which is written as a unified and coherent work, and which is most commonly found in non-laboratory areas. Secondly, the PhD by publication2 has evolved, which comprises a number of papers written during a period of postgraduate training, as well as an introduction to and summary of the papers included. The PhD by publication has become established as a form of doctoral knowledge production across disciplines. Increased demands for shorter completion times, lower dropout rates and higher so-called productivity during postgraduate study are instrumental in driving the pressure to publish internationally (Boud & Lee 2009). National funding and subsidy formulas,3 relatively low doctoral production rates and the aging profile of active researchers (ASSAf 2010; Backhouse 2008) may furthermore contribute to the promotion of PhD formats that are thought to address these issues. These trends have (at least in part) led to the two different kinds of doctoral dissertations. Both the national and international drivers of the PhD by publication format seem to originate mostly from calls for accountability and quality assurance, appraisal and excellence, and effectiveness and efficiency. Such drivers are mostly aimed at managerial imperatives and policy adherence, rather than at the scholarly development of students or the advancement of scientific knowledge (see, for instance, Giroux 2014; Altbach 2012, 2013). Scholars warn that students and supervisors alike may not be well prepared for doctoral education in general (Manathunga 2007), or for such an alternative format as such (Paré 2010), as it may demand a different doctoral supervisory pedagogy (Lee 2010).
- ItemThe professional development of academics: In pursuit of scholarship(AFRICAN SUN MeDIA, 2009) Frick, Liezel; Kapp, ChrisIn this chapter we explore the development of academic staff as an area or theme for study and research in the field of higher education – from both a theoretical and a practical stance. We start by providing a broad definition and an overview of a number of theories underlying the concept and continue to discuss the issues and challenges that it faces in higher education. The notion of scholarship forms the basis of the discussion. A brief discussion on how academic professional development is practised ensues and a South African case study of formal education for academic professional development and the scholarship of teaching is explored. We conclude this chapter with a number of ideas on future developments in the field, which may be of interest to scholars who wish to study the professional development of academics within institutions of higher education.
- ItemThe rationale, challenges and benefits of joint degrees as a new form of doctoral education(SUN MeDIA, 2016) Fourie-Malherbe, Magda; Botha, Jan; Stevens, DorothyINTRODUCTION: The phenomenon of international joint doctoral degrees where two (or more) higher education institutions across national borders assume joint responsibility for the offering, examination and award of a doctoral qualification, is a relatively recent trend in higher education worldwide. Little research has been done on this form of doctoral education, and virtually none in South Africa where universities started exploring the offering of joint degrees about 10 years ago. For the purpose of this chapter we examined this new form of doctoral education at Stellenbosch University in South Africa – a medium-sized research-intensive university with approximately 35% postgraduate students. Our investigation was guided by the following research question: What is the rationale for engaging in joint doctorates and what are the challenges and benefits associated with this new form of doctoral education as experienced at Stellenbosch University?