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Dr Rob Wass

Rob Wass Photo 2MSc (Zoology), PGDipArts (Education), PhD (Otago)

Lecturer

Email: rob.wass@otago.ac.nz
Phone: +64 3 479 7091

About Rob

I currently research questions related to the first year experience in higher education. Specifically, I am interested in; supporting the academic development of tutors using video stimulated recall, effective assessment, and peer learning. From a student focus, I am also interested in student conceptions of good teaching, and effective learning. Previously published research is in the areas of scaffolding for critical thinking, assessment, and academic writing.

I am attracted to research questions that require different methodologies and approaches. However, my research is primarily qualitative and situated within sociocultural and interpretive paradigms.

Supervision

I am particularly keen to supervise students interested in projects with a focus on the 'first-year experience' or ‘peer learning’. Prospective candidates should be comfortable utilising qualitative methodologies. I am happy to co-supervise students with staff from other departments.

Current students

  • Lakshmi Chellapan (PhD) - The pedagogical reasoning underpinning adoption and non-adoption of the Flipped Classroom Model in the context of Higher Education
  • Krishneel Krishna Reddy (PhD) - Using student peer review to enhance student's learning experience in higher education
  • Charmaine Kwan (PhD) - What transpired in Fiji's Higher Education sector? A strategic development outlook from 2007 - 2017

Teaching

Workshops for the tutor and demonstrating programme
Introduction to tutoring, Introduction to demonstrating, Tutor training for residential colleges, Facilitating small groups, Support for tutor co-ordinators

Workshops for Student Learning Development
Preparing and revising for exams, critical reflection and writing an argument, oral presentation skills

Staff workshops and consultations
Large class teaching, Assessment, Peer review of teaching

Projects

Ako Aotearoa National funded project: Embedding employability in the curriculum
http://www.futurereadygrads.ac.nz/

Project team
Professor Susan Geertshuis, University of Auckland (Principal Investigator)
Dr Rob Wass, University of Otago
Tim Watts, NZAGE
Associate Professor Helena Cooper-Thomas, University of Auckland
Associate Professor Jennifer Curtin, University of Auckland
Bernadette Knewstubb, Victoria University of Wellington
Brendon Potter, University of Auckland
Dr Annette Dunham, University of Auckland
Dr Barbara Kensington-Miller, University of Auckland
Dr Sean Strum, University of Auckland
Narissa Lewis, University of Auckland
Peta Moberley, University of Auckland
Professor Gavin Brown, University of Auckland
Professor Rachel Spronken-Smith, University of Otago

About the project
The need for universities to equip their students for successful lives and careers in an uncertain and rapidly changing world is unarguable. In a collaborative effort between the University of Auckland, University of Otago and the New Zealand Association of Graduate Employers (NZAGE), this project aims to discover and disseminate pedagogies for embedding employability capabilities in advanced and research informed curricula.

 

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Publications

Wass, R., & Moskal, A. C. M. (2017). What can Interpersonal Process Recall (IPR) offer academic development? International Journal for Academic Development. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1080/1360144X.2017.1340295

Wass, R., Anderson, V., Rangi, A., Eteuati, E., Golding, C., & Rabello, R. (2017). How do we foreground students’ voices to inform good practice (or curriculum change)? Proceedings of the Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia (HERDSA) Conference: Curriculum Transformation. Retrieved from http://herdsa2017.org

Geertshuis, S., Lewis, N., Sturm, S., Wass, R., & Hubbard, P. (2017). Pedagogies for employability. Proceedings of the Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia (HERDSA) Conference: Curriculum Transformation. Retrieved from http://herdsa2017.org

Anderson, V., Wass, R., Rangi, A., Eteuati, E., Golding, C., & Rabello, R. (2017). Reframing ‘curriculum transformation’ through attention to university students’ conceptions of good teaching. Proceedings of the Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia (HERDSA) Conference: Curriculum Transformation. Retrieved from http://herdsa2017.org

Geertshuis, S., Wass, R., & Lewis, N. (2016). Embedding employability in the curriculum. Proceedings of the Tertiary Education Research in New Zealand (TERNZ) Conference. Retrieved from http://herdsa.org.nz/ternz/2016

Chapter in Book - Research

Wass, R. T., & Mitchell, S. F. (1998). What do herbivore exclusion experiments tell us? An investigation using Black Swans and filamentous algae in a shallow lake. In E. Jeppesen, M. Sondergaard & K. Christoffersen (Eds.), Ecological Studies 13: The Structuring Role of Submerged Macrophytes in Lakes. (pp. 282-289). New York: Springer.

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Chapter in Book - Other

Walker, M., & Wass, R. (2006). He kimihanga tūrangawaewae: Finding our place. In S. Parsons (Ed.), Biology Aotearoa: Unique flora, fauna and fungi. (pp. 100-112). Auckland, New Zealand: Pearson Education.

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Journal - Research Article

Wass, R., & Moskal, A. C. M. (2017). What can Interpersonal Process Recall (IPR) offer academic development? International Journal for Academic Development. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1080/1360144X.2017.1340295

Wass, R., Harland, T., McLean, A., Miller, E., & Sim, K. N. (2015). ‘Will press lever for food’: Behavioural conditioning of students through frequent high-stakes assessment. Higher Education Research & Development, 34(6), 1324-1326. doi: 10.1080/07294360.2015.1052351

Harland, T., McLean, A., Wass, R., Miller, E., & Sim, K. N. (2015). An assessment arms race and its fallout: High-stakes grading and the case for slow scholarship. Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, 40(4), 528-541. doi: 10.1080/02602938.2014.931927

Nairn, K., Cameron, J., Anakin, M., Juntrasook, A., Wass, R., Sligo, J., & Morrison, C. (2015). Negotiating the challenge of collaborative writing: Learning from one writing group's mutiny. Higher Education Research & Development, 34(3), 596-608. doi: 10.1080/07294360.2014.973383

Rock, J., Sparrow, A., Wass, R., & Moller, H. (2014). Building dialogue on complex conservation issues in a conference setting. Conservation Biology, 28(5), 1428-1433. doi: 10.1111/cobi.12339

Wass, R., & Golding, C. (2014). Sharpening a tool for teaching: The zone of proximal development. Teaching in Higher Education, 19(6), 671-684. doi: 10.1080/13562517.2014.901958

Wass, R., Harland, T., & Mercer, A. (2011). Scaffolding critical thinking in the zone of proximal development. Higher Education Research & Development, 30(3), 317-328. doi: 10.1080/07294360.2010.489237

Lokman, P. M., Wass, R. T., Suter, H. C., Scott, S. G., Judge, K. F., & Young, G. (2001). Changes in steroid hormone profiles and ovarian histology during salmon pituitary-induced vitellogenesis and ovulation in female New Zealand longfinned eels, Anguilla dieffenbachii Gray. Journal of Experimental Zoology, 289, 119-129.

Mitchell, S. F., & Wass, R. T. (1996). Grazing by black swans (Cygnus atratus latham), physical factors, and the growth and loss of aquatic vegetation in a shallow lake. Aquatic Botany, 55(3), 205-215.

Mitchell, S. F., & Wass, R. T. (1996). Quantifying herbivory: grazing consumption and interaction strength. Oikos, 76, 573-576.

Mitchell, S. F., & Wass, R. T. (1995). Food consumption and faecal deposition of plant nutrients by black swans (Cygnus atratus Latham) in a shallow New Zealand lake. Hydrobiologia, 306, 189-197.

Young, G., Wass, R. T., & Crabb, P. L. (1995). Steroid profiles during arrest of oocyte development after capture of wild greenbone, Odax pullus. Aquaculture, 135, 78.

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Conference Contribution - Published proceedings: Full paper

Loke, S.-K., Lokman, M., Winikoff, M., McDonald, J., Wass, R., Purvis, M., Zeng, R., Matthaei, C., & Vlugter, P. (2010). Lessons in designing sustainable mobile learning environments. In C. H. Steel, M. J. Keppell, P. Gerbic & S. Housego (Eds.), Proceedings of the Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education Conference. (pp. 565-569). ascilite. Retrieved from http://www.ascilite.org.au/conferences/sydney10/proceedings.htm

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Conference Contribution - Published proceedings: Abstract

Wass, R., Anderson, V., Rangi, A., Eteuati, E., Golding, C., & Rabello, R. (2017). How do we foreground students’ voices to inform good practice (or curriculum change)? Proceedings of the Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia (HERDSA) Conference: Curriculum Transformation. Retrieved from http://herdsa2017.org

Anderson, V., Wass, R., Rangi, A., Eteuati, E., Golding, C., & Rabello, R. (2017). Reframing ‘curriculum transformation’ through attention to university students’ conceptions of good teaching. Proceedings of the Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia (HERDSA) Conference: Curriculum Transformation. Retrieved from http://herdsa2017.org

Geertshuis, S., Lewis, N., Sturm, S., Wass, R., & Hubbard, P. (2017). Pedagogies for employability. Proceedings of the Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia (HERDSA) Conference: Curriculum Transformation. Retrieved from http://herdsa2017.org

Geertshuis, S., Wass, R., & Lewis, N. (2016). Embedding employability in the curriculum. Proceedings of the Tertiary Education Research in New Zealand (TERNZ) Conference. Retrieved from http://herdsa.org.nz/ternz/2016

Wass, R., Anderson, V., Rangi, A., Eteuati, E., Golding, C., & Rabello, R. (2016). Insights from the Good Teaching Project: 'Photovoice' as a means for letting students speak. Proceedings of the Tertiary Education Research in New Zealand (TERNZ) Conference. Retrieved from http://herdsa.org.nz/ternz/2016

Geertshuis, S., Wass, R., & Lewis, N. (2016). Future ready graduates. Proceedings of the Tertiary Education Research in New Zealand (TERNZ) Conference. Retrieved from http://herdsa.org.nz/ternz/2016

Wass, R., & Moskal, A. (2015). The ethics of teaching: Where is the 'bottom line' in a negotiated curriculum? Proceedings of the Tertiary Education Research in New Zealand (TERNZ) Conference. Retrieved from http://www.herdsa.org.nz/ternz/2015/

Cameron, J., Juntrasook, A., Morrison, C., Nairn, K., Renner, S., Sligo, J., Tilson, J., Trevethan, H., Wass, R., & Anakin, M. (2012). Negotiating and sustaining academic writing groups. Proceedings of the Joint International Conference of the Australian Association for Research in Education (AARE) and the Asia Pacific Educational Research Association (APERA). Retrieved from http://aare-apera2012.com.au/

Loke, S.-K., Lokman, M., Winikoff, M., McDonald, J., Wass, R., Purvis, M., Zeng, R., Matthaei, C., & Vlugter, P. (2011). Sustainable mobile learning: Experiences in a Zoology paper. In K. Shephard, T. Harland & A. Cohen (Eds.), Proceedings of the Spotlight on Teaching and Learning Colloquium. (pp. 30). Dunedin, New Zealand: HEDC, University of Otago. [Abstract]

Harland, T., & Wass, R. (2011). Summative assessment in a modular degree: No choice in teaching, no freedom to learn. Proceedings of the Tertiary Education Research in New Zealand (TERNZ) Conference. Retrieved from http://www.herdsa.org.nz/Ternz/2011/programme.html

Anakin, M., Morrison, C., Nairn, K., Tilson, J., Trevethan, H., Cameron, J., Juntrasook, A., Wass, R., & Sligo, J. (2011). Collaborative academic writing group [Panel discussion]. In K. Shephard, T. Harland & A. Cohen (Eds.), Proceedings of the Spotlight on Teaching and Learning Colloquium. (pp. 18). Dunedin, New Zealand: HEDC, University of Otago. [Abstract]

Wass, R., & Harland, T. (2011). Student experiences of critical thinking development. Proceedings of the Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia (HERDSA) Conference: Higher Education on the Edge. Retrieved from http://conference.herdsa.org.au/2011/

Wass, R., Mercer, A., & Harland, T. (2009). The scaffold: A framework to support or suspend learning? Proceedings of the Tertiary Education Research in New Zealand Conference. Retrieved from http://www.herdsa.org.nz/file.php/5/Wass.htm

Wass, R., & Harland, T. (2008). Vygotsky and the development of critical thinking. In C. Bond & R. Spronken-Smith (Eds.), Proceedings of the Spotlight on Teaching at Otago Conference. (pp. 44). Dunedin, New Zealand: HEDC, University of Otago. [Abstract]

Wass, R., & Harland, T. (2007). The Vygotskian puzzles. Proceedings of the Tertiary Education Research in New Zealand Conference. Retrieved from http://www.herdsa.org.nz/Ternz/2007/TERNZprog07_web.htm

Wass, R., Ludwig, K., McDonald, J., & Crawford, M. (2006). Multiple perspectives: A discussion on the eLearning application ″Behaving Scientifically″. In R. Spronken-Smith (Ed.), Proceedings of the Spotlight on Teaching at Otago Conference. (pp. 19-20). Dunedin, New Zealand: HEDC, University of Otago. [Abstract]

Wass, R., Mercer, A., & Harland, T. (2006). Learning in the zone. Proceedings of the Improving University Teaching 31st International Conference. IUT. Retrieved from http://www.iutconference.org/2006/sessionVI.htm

Wass, R., & Harland, T. (2006). Is there any knowledge out there? Painting the perfect student. Proceedings of the Tertiary Education Research in New Zealand Conference. TERNZ. Retrieved from http://www.herdsa.org.nz/Ternz/2006/Rob.pdf

Wass, R., Harland, T., & Mercer, A. (2006). Learning in the zone. In R. Spronken-Smith (Ed.), Proceedings of the Spotlight on Teaching at Otago Conference. (pp. 31). Dunedin, New Zealand: HEDC, University of Otago. [Abstract]

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Conference Contribution - Poster Presentation (not in published proceedings)

Wass, R. (2015, July). Can video be used for successful tutor development? Poster session presented at the Students Transitions Achievement Retention & Success (STARS) Conference, Melbourne, Australia.

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Conference Contribution - Verbal presentation and other Conference outputs

Golding, C., & Wass, R. (2013, November). Sharpening a tool for teaching: The zone of proximal development. Verbal presentation at the New Zealand Association for Research in Education (NZARE) National Conference: Creativity in Research: Generative Inquiries for Educational Futures, Dunedin, New Zealand.

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Working Paper; Discussion Paper; Technical Report

Harland, T., McLean, A., Wass, R., Miller, E., & Sim, K. N. (2014). Contemporary assessment practices in university: Impact on teachers and students. AKO Aotearoa. 29p.

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Awarded Doctoral Degree

Wass, R. T. (2012). Developing critical thinkers in higher education: A Vygotskian perspective (PhD). University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand.

More publications...