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Learning and Teaching Quality and Standards - Professional Development of Academic Staff Procedure

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Section 1 - Summary

(1) This Procedure establishes a framework for the Learning and Teaching induction and professional development of teaching staff.

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Section 2 - HESF/ ASQA/ ESOS Alignment

(2) HESF: Standards 3 Teaching (specifically 3.2 Staffing); 4 Research and Research Training (specifically 4.1 Research and 4.2 Research Training).

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Section 3 - Scope

(3) This Procedure applies to the teaching-related professional development of all academic staff (ongoing, fixed term and casual/sessional) delivering Higher Education (HE) and VE staff teaching into VU Block Model at or on behalf of Victoria University, other than those excluded below.

(4) This Procedure does not apply to:

  1. Teaching staff, however employed, delivering vocational education courses.
  2. Guest educators (delivering a single or very limited number of specialised sessions).
  3. Adjunct or visiting teaching fellows.
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Section 4 - Definitions

(5) VU Block Model Professional Learning Program (VUBMPLP)

(6) Graduate Certificate in Block Teaching

(7) VU Block Model Academic Induction Program

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Section 5 - Policy/Regulation

(8) Learning and Teaching Quality and Standards Policy

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Section 6 - Procedures

Part A - Summary of Roles and Responsibilities

Roles Responsibilities
Academic staff Complete required induction programs.
Identify professional development needs and undertake further activities to fulfil them.
Keep up to date with learning and teaching-related policies and procedures.
Keep up to date with opportunities to engage in relevant learning and teaching professional development.
Colleges Executive Deans Advise all academic staff of the requirements for their induction and in accord with clauses 15 – 19 requirements for the completion of the Graduate Certificate of Block Teaching.
Communicate the role and importance of learning and teaching professional development in relation to required and expected teaching skills.
Promote professional development opportunities relevant for teaching staff.
Work with the VU Block Model Professional Learning Program to design and support ongoing learning and teaching professional development.
Partnerships (TNE) Advise all Transnational Education (TNE) academic staff of the requirements for their induction where applicable.
Communicate the role and importance of learning and teaching professional development in relation to required and expected TNE teaching skills.
Promote teaching professional development opportunities relevant for TNE academic staff.
Work with TNE staff to support ongoing learning and teaching professional development.
VU Block Model Professional Learning Program Provide initial Learning and Teaching induction for all Victoria University academic staff.
Provide opportunities for academic staff to engage in continuing central and College-level learning and teaching professional development.
Provide the Graduate Certificate in Block Teaching free of charge to all eligible academic staff.
Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Tertiary Education Determine requests to waive the requirement of the Graduate Certificate of Block Teaching completion for new staff.
Determine discounted fees for staff employed by TNE and other partners where agreed upon.

Part B - Procedures

(9) Victoria University situates teacher development within a "whole of career" approach that includes early induction, credentialed courses, and ongoing professional development activities, both formal and informal.

(10) Where possible, the professional development of academic staff involves quality focused and contextualised learning, relevant to the needs of participants in their day to day teaching practice.

(11) Participation in the University's program of professional development activities for academic staff, including initial induction sessions and support, is required, encouraged and supported by the University and its Colleges and Partnerships (TNE) where VU Block Model is delivered.

(12) All offers of employment to prospective HE academic staff (ongoing, fixed term, or casual/sessional) must include a contractual requirement for the staff member to register into the VU Block Model Academic Induction Program. 

(13) All offers of employment to prospective HE academic staff (ongoing) must include a requirement for the staff member to enrol in the Graduate Certificate of Block Teaching.

(14) All offers of employment to prospective academic staff (contract) who are employed for 3 years or greater must include a contractual requirement for the staff member to enrol in the Gradual Certificate of Block Teaching. 

Part C - Graduate Certificate

(15) All commencing Victoria University HE academic staff with ongoing or a minimum of 3 years contract are required to satisfactorily complete the Graduate Certificate in Block Teaching within the first three years of their employment.

(16) Satisfactory completion of the Graduate Certificate is a requirement of the probationary period, excepting as described in Exemptions from the Graduate Certificate in Block Teaching below.

(17) The Graduate Certificate in Block Teaching will be provided free of course and amenities fees to all ongoing academic staff. Sessional, Fixed Term or external participants can apply for CSP or AFP enrolment. 

(18) Ongoing Academic staff who leave the University’s employ prior to completion of the Graduate Certificate will need to apply for CSP or AFP enrolment to complete the course.

(19) Whilst this procedure does not apply to VE teaching staff, except for VE teaching staff who deliver HE Diplomas in VU Block Model, if VE teaching staff wish to enrol in the Graduate Certificate in Block Teaching they can with the same conditions that apply to HE academic staff.

Matrix for Graduate Certificate in Block Teaching

  Complete Fee Free CSP/AFP
Ongoing HE and VE Yes Yes No
≥ 3 year contract Yes Yes No
< 3 year contract No No Yes
Sessional No No Yes
TNE (VU Block Model partners*) No No Yes
Other No No Yes

(20) * Partners, such as VU Online, may be eligible for discounted fees as specified in partner agreements or as determined by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Tertiary Education.  

Exemptions from the Graduate Certificate in Block Teaching

(21) Requests for exemption from the Graduate Certificate in Block teaching, with supporting evidence of attainment of an equivalent qualification provided, may be made to the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Tertiary Education.

Part D - VU Block Model Academic Induction Program

(22) The following staff delivering higher education courses, at or on behalf of Victoria University are required to complete the VU Block Model Academic Induction Program:

  1. Commencing academic staff with an ongoing academic position;
  2. Commencing academic staff on contract;
  3. Commencing sessional academic staff (paid at the ‘other duties’ rate);
  4. Commencing VE Diploma teaching staff (teaching into VU Block Model).

Part E - Continuing Professional Development for Academic Staff

(23) In addition to the VU Block Model Academic Induction Program and Graduate Certificate in Block Teaching, the University will offer a range of programs and services for the continuing professional development of its academic staff through, but not limited to, the VU Block Model Professional Learning Program.

(24) Professional development in teaching should form part of academic staff members’ VU Develop, and may include but is not limited to:

  1. Opportunities for academic staff to engage in peer review and other collegial learning activities;
  2. Presentations, seminars, workshops, forums and conferences facilitated by the University;
  3. Support for academic staff to engage in ongoing learning to build their learning and teaching skills;
  4. Support for academic staff to attend seminars, symposia and conferences at other institutions;
  5. Support for staff to complete the Graduate Diploma of Block Teaching.

(25) Funding support, where offered, may include any combination of time release, payment of attendance fees, and travel costs, as determined by the Executive Dean and the College’s overall professional development plan.