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Higher Education Development Centre News and Events

Graduation 17 August 2019

Photo of Raewyn Lesa with her supervisorsIt's always good to celebrate with our lovely postgraduate students when they reach the end of their PhD journey.  This time it was the turn of Belinda Dawson and Raewyn Lesa to don the PhD garb and cross the stage - but first they, their supervisors and other HEDC staff joined them at the University pre-graduation brunch.

Photo of Belinda and Raewyn pre graduation  Photo of Belinda Dawson with her supervisors

Changing the Guard at HEDC

Photo of HoD handover - Tony and BenNeither Christopher Robin nor Alice were there but, nevertheless, on 18 July, we held a little celebratory event to mark the handover of the role of Head of Department. Tony Harland, who took over as HoD in July 2012, shakes hands with new HoD Ben Daniel.

Graduation 18 May 2019

Grad-process-May2019The weather played nice on May 18, so our two distance MHEd students, Anna Wheeler and Jennifer Weavers, were able to enjoy our attractive Dunedin campus and the procession.  They were joined by one of our academic staff members, Russell Butson, who graduated with his PhD.  Another of our postgrads, Naoko Inoue, also graduated with her PhD, but in absentia. 

Dr Vivienne Anderson, Dr Julie Timmermans and Professor Kerry Shephard, along with other members of HEDC staff, joined the graduating group at the Graduation Brunch in the Link.


A PhD first

Rachel Tan first to ring bellOn Monday 25 March, Rachel Tan, became the first postgraduate student to ring the bell in the quadrant to announce her PhD submission.  Rachel admitted that she had to give the bell a hefty thwack with the mallet, but it was an unexpected honour to be the first to do so.  And, of course, she received her chocolate fish to complete the occasion. One might say the day was "sweet as"!  (Photographer: Charmaine Kwan, HEDC)

Photo of Rachel Tan at thesis submission

Graduation December 2018

Two HEDC PhD postgraduate students graduated on December 15th - Farhana Abu Bakar and Kim Brown

.Graduation Dec 18

'Celebrating Higher Education Symposium' Photo Highlights

Conf 14   Conf 13   Conf 15   Conf 12   Conf 11   Conf 10   Conf 9   Conf 8   Conf 7   Conf 6   Conf 5   Conf 4   Conf 3   Conf 2   Conf 1 

Christmas comes early at HEDC

Christmas came early for HEDC's postgraduate students recently when they met for a pre-Christmas celebration lunch at Nandos.  Great fun was had by all by the look of the photos!

Postgrad lunch 1   Postgrad lunch 2a      Postgrad lunch 3

Spring has sprung

HEDC postgraduate students enjoyed an afternoon in the sun on Friday 14 September.  They met outside the Clocktower to watch fellow student, Naoko Inoue, perform in the drumming group O-Taiko.  The group's performance was to celebrate the arrival of cherry blossom at the University.  Thanks to Nick Baker, PhD Student from HEDC, for these stunning photos:

August Graduation

Congratulations to our following five students who graduated on 18th August. We wish you all the very best:

HEDC Students:
Hamid Mahroeian - PhD
Wee Chun Tan - PhD (graduated in absentia)
Verena Tilson-Scoble – MA (Higher Education)

HEDC Co-supervised students:
Lakshmi Chellapan - PhD
Rafaela Rabello - PhD

August 2018 Graduation 1   

From left to right: Professor Tony Harland, Associate Professor Ben Daniel, Hamid Mahroeian, Dr Viv Anderson

August 2018 Graduation 3   

From left to right: Rachel Tan, Raewyn Lesa, Naoko Inoue, Hamid Mahroeian, Dr Tracy Rogers, Dr Viv Anderson

  August 2018 Graduation 2

From Left to right: Raewyn Lesa, Lakshmi Chellapan, Hamid Mahroeian

Winter Pot-luck Dinner

Staff and postgraduate students came together on Friday night to share food from their home countries and to socialise.  HEDC's Seminar Room was transformed into a winter wonderland with fairy lights, bare tree branches and even snow (albeit paper!).

  Winter Dinner 2      Winter Dinner 4    Winter Dinner 3

Supervisor of the Year AwardSarah Stein

The overall winner of the OUSA Supervisor of the Year award is one of our affiliated staff members, Dr Sarah Stein.  Congratulations, Sarah!

Read the Bulletin report about the ceremony here.

Postgrads' Birthday CelebrationPostgrad Birthday Celebration

HEDC's postgraduate students recently met in the Staff Club for a communal birthday celebration for those students who have had a birthday so far this year.  Coffee and chocolate cake was the order of the day and much fun was had by all.  This is to be a regular event in the Postgraduates' event calendar.

Thank you afternoon teaThank you afternoon tea 2

HEDC staff gathered recently for an afternoon tea to thank two academic staff members for looking after HEDC while the Head of Department, Professor Tony Harland was on RSL.  Associate Professor Clinton Golding was thanked for being the Acting Head of Department and Dr Vivienne Anderson was thanked for being Deputy Head of Department.


17th European Conference on Research Methodology for Business and Management Studies (ECRM), Rome 2018

Associate Professor Ben Daniel recently attended the above Conference in Rome and received double recognition for teaching and research within the ARM programme.  Well done Ben!

Ben's Awards from Rome Conference 

Ben's Awards from Rome Conference 2

40th Anniversary Celebration

Staff Photo 2

HEDC Staff and students came together last week for morning tea to celebrate HEDC's 40th Anniversary.  This photo was taken in between showers and wind gusts!

Photo from left to right - back row: Kim Brown, Russell Butson, Nave Wald, Kerry Shephard, Hamid Mahroeian, Nick Baker, Pauline Brook, Rob Wass, Stew Hibbert.
Middle row: Farhana Abu Bakar, Joanne Smith, Naoko Inoue, Joyce Koh, Glory Ndukwe, Carole Scott, Tracy Rogers, Marcia Botafogo, Julie Timmermans, Salmah Kassim, Farah Shawkat,
Carole Acheson, Richard Zeng.  Front row: Vijay Mallan, Ben Daniel, Tony Harland, Clinton Golding, Viv Anderson
(Missing: Candi Young, Charmaine Kwan, Emma Osborne, Krishneel Reddy, Pam Melgren, Rachel Tan, Raewyn Lesa, Senorita John)
Photo by Sharron Bennett Photography.

May GraduationGraduation May 2018

Congratulations to our following five students who graduated on 19th May.  We wish you all the very best:

Rebecca Bird - MHEd
Mary Furnari - PhD
Nadine Hoskins - MHEd
Swee Kin Loke – PhD
Jasbir Singh – MHEd

(Photo from left to right: Associate Professor Clinton Golding, Dr Mary Furnari, Dr Vivienne Anderson)

Celebrating Higher Education Symposium

HEDC will host a 'Celebrating Higher Education Symposium' on 14th and 15th November this year in the St. David's Lecture Theatre Complex.  Themes include: reflection on higher education in the past, interrogation of current higher education policy and practice and imagining higher education futures.  Registration opens soon - check our home page.

Associate Professor joins HEDC

Joyce Koh's Arrival in Dunedin

HEDC warmly welcomes Associate Professor Joyce Koh from Singapore, who has just arrived in Dunedin to join the department as a specialist researcher in educational technology.

(Photo from left to right: Sarah Harland, Associate Professor Joyce Koh, Professor Tony Harland)

HEDC 40th Anniversary

Higher Education Development Centre Celebrates 40 Years

A brief history of the Higher Education Development Centre

From a growing interest in learning about university teaching, the suggestion to set up a research centre to study higher education was made in 1971 by the University’s Lecturers' Association. In 1973 an Audio Visual Learning Centre (AVLC) was formed and Terry Crooks, a lecturer in the Education Department carried out research and provided advice for academics on teaching and learning. In 1976 Senate established a Higher Education Research and Advisory Centre (HERAC) that merged with the AVLC in 1978 to create a new academic department, the Higher Education Development Centre (HEDC).

Throughout the 80s and early 90s there was a strong emphasis on teaching aids and the use of educational technology, alongside research-led academic development to help teachers. However, from the mid-90s, HEDC began a period of transformation. The first change was the introduction in 1996 of a formal course in tertiary teaching which has since grown into a suite of postgraduate qualifications and a strong Masters and PhD programme. The second change came in 1998 with the inclusion of undergraduate support and a new emphasis on student learning development. A few years later, with the expansion of the University’s postgraduate students, the department introduced dedicated programmes for this group. HEDC now has three main constituencies: academic staff and both postgraduate and undergraduate students. As might be expected, the educational technology side of HEDC has gone through some major revolutions, starting with visual aids and video production, then designing and building web applications, and latterly to data analytics and big data. Until 2017, HEDC also assisted the University and staff with teacher and course evaluations but this function now resides with the Quality Advancement Unit.

In 2000, Chris Heath began a process of re-focusing staff on producing high quality research as the foundation for academic development. HEDC is now one of the leading higher education research departments with a worldwide reputation. A more holistic vision for academic development also came into being in the early 2000s. Instead of focusing solely on teaching, the department developed a new model to support academics in their research, teaching and service. In other words, it recognised that all academic tasks are closely linked and that often advice is needed across the complex spectrum of academic work. HEDC staff also have close collaborations with various professional staff groups across the institution and work with senior management to help the University achieve its goals.

Tony Harland
Professor of Higher Education
Head of Department
Higher Education Development Centre


New NZ Scholars with their Senior Mentors

NZ Scholars and mentors 2018In February, the HEDC provided an academic orientation programme for 15 postgraduate NZ Scholars (NZ Aid and ASEAN scholarship recipients) commencing their studies at the University of Otago. The students come from Oceania and South-East Asia, and will be based in departments across the university. We wish them all the very best for their studies!