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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.

Potential research projects

  • Positive emotions that lead to good learning outcomes
  • Experiences of tutors who are also international students
  • Development of metacognition in a peer-learning environment
  • Development of time-management strategies and note-taking strategies in a peer learning environment

Current students

  • Krishneel Krishna Reddy (PhD) - Using student peer review to enhance a 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/


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., & Rogers, T. (2019). Using video-reflection and peer mentoring to enhance tutors’ teaching. Innovations in Education & Teaching International. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1080/14703297.2019.1695646

Anderson, V., Rabello, R., Wass, R., Golding, C., Rangi, A., Eteuati, E., Bristowe, Z., & Waller, A. (2019). Good teaching as care in higher education. Higher Education. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1007/s10734-019-00392-6

Wass, R., Anderson, V., Rabello, R., Golding, C., Rangi, A., & Eteuati, E. (2019). Photovoice as a research method for higher education research. Higher Education Research & Development. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1080/07294360.2019.1692791

Rogers, T., Sutherland, K., Tennant, E., Elgort, I., Golding, C., Wass, R., & Timmermans, J. (2019). Teaching and learning circles: An initiative aimed at enhancing teaching culture and practice. Proceedings of the 42nd Annual Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia (HERDSA) Conference: Next Generation, Higher Education: Challenges, Changes and Opportunities. Retrieved from https://www.herdsa2019.auckland.ac.nz

Rogers, T., Wass, R., Berg, D., Brown, K., Smith-Han, K., Beatson, N., & Tagg, J. (2019). Enhancing PASS through structured metacognitive awareness training. Proceedings of the Australasian PASS and Peer Learning Conference: Excellence and Innovation: The Future of Peer Learning. (pp. 10). Retrieved from https://www.uow.edu.au/engage/pass-centre/conference

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., & Rogers, T. (2019). Using video-reflection and peer mentoring to enhance tutors’ teaching. Innovations in Education & Teaching International. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1080/14703297.2019.1695646

Wass, R., Anderson, V., Rabello, R., Golding, C., Rangi, A., & Eteuati, E. (2019). Photovoice as a research method for higher education research. Higher Education Research & Development. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1080/07294360.2019.1692791

Anderson, V., Rabello, R., Wass, R., Golding, C., Rangi, A., Eteuati, E., Bristowe, Z., & Waller, A. (2019). Good teaching as care in higher education. Higher Education. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1007/s10734-019-00392-6

Moskal, A. C. M., & Wass, R. (2018). Interpersonal process recall: A novel approach to illuminating students’ software development processes. Computer Science Education. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1080/08993408.2018.1542190

Wass, R., Timmermans, J., Harland, T., & McLean, A. (2018). Annoyance and frustration: Emotional responses to being assessed in higher education. Active Learning in Higher Education. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1177/1469787418762462

Wass, R., & Moskal, A. C. M. (2017). What can Interpersonal Process Recall (IPR) offer academic development? International Journal for Academic Development, 22(4), 293-306. doi: 10.1080/1360144X.2017.1340295

van der Meer, J., Wass, R., Scott, S., & Kokaua, J. (2017). Entry characteristics and participation in a peer learning program as predictors of first-year students’ achievement, retention, and degree completion. AERA Open, 3(3), 1-13. doi: 10.1177/2332858417731572

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

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

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

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). Quantifying herbivory: grazing consumption and interaction strength. Oikos, 76, 573-576.

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. (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

Rogers, T., Sutherland, K., Tennant, E., Elgort, I., Golding, C., Wass, R., & Timmermans, J. (2019). Teaching and learning circles: An initiative aimed at enhancing teaching culture and practice. Proceedings of the 42nd Annual Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia (HERDSA) Conference: Next Generation, Higher Education: Challenges, Changes and Opportunities. Retrieved from https://www.herdsa2019.auckland.ac.nz

Rogers, T., Wass, R., Berg, D., Brown, K., Smith-Han, K., Beatson, N., & Tagg, J. (2019). Enhancing PASS through structured metacognitive awareness training. Proceedings of the Australasian PASS and Peer Learning Conference: Excellence and Innovation: The Future of Peer Learning. (pp. 10). Retrieved from https://www.uow.edu.au/engage/pass-centre/conference

Brown, G., Cooper-Thomas, H., Curtin, J., Dunham, A., Geertshuis, S., Kensington-Miller, B., … Liu, Q., … Wass, R. (2019). Teaching for transformation: The four E’s of teaching future-ready graduates. Proceedings of the 42nd Annual Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia (HERDSA) Conference: Next Generation, Higher Education: Challenges, Changes and Opportunities. Retrieved from https://www.herdsa2019.auckland.ac.nz

Mather, D., Parackal, M., McNeill, L., Wass, R., Casey, B., Insch, A., Zaharic, T., & Garry, T. (2018). Non-attendance at lectures: An investigation into the profiling of students by attendance at the University of Otago. Proceedings of the Higher Education Development Centre (HEDC) Symposium: Celebrating Higher Education. (pp. 28). Retrieved from https://www.otago.ac.nz/hedc

Wass, R. (2018). Peer mentoring and observation: Developing institutional support for tutors. Proceedings of the Tertiary Education Research in New Zealand (TERNZ) Conference. Retrieved from http://www.herdsa.org.nz/ternz

Wass, R., Rogers, T., Hartung, C., & McIntyre, G. (2018). Supporting tutors through peer mentoring and video observation. Proceedings of the Higher Education Development Centre (HEDC) Symposium: Celebrating Higher Education. (pp. 17). Retrieved from https://www.otago.ac.nz/hedc

Parackal, M., Mather, D., Insch, A., Casey, B., Wass, R., McNeill, L., Zaharic, T., & Garry, T. (2018). Best-Worst Self-Efficacy Scale: A diagnostic tool for implementing customised interventions to improve the academic performance of students. Proceedings of the Higher Education Development Centre (HEDC) Symposium: Celebrating Higher Education. (pp. 27). Retrieved from https://www.otago.ac.nz/hedc

Wass, R., Rogers, T., McIntyre, G., & Hartung, C. (2018). Mentor and peer observation to improve the practice of casual, short-term teachers. Proceedings of the Ako Aotearoa Southern Hub Projects Colloquium. (pp. 5-6). Wellington, New Zealand: Ako Aotearoa. Retrieved from https://ako.ac.nz/co-funding/regional-hub-project-fund/projects-in-progress-colloquia-2018

Wass, R., Rogers, T., Howell, A., Hartung, C., & Davies, D. (2018). Supporting tutors through peer observation and mentoring. Proceedings of the Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia (HERDSA) Conference: (Re)Valuing Higher Education. (pp. 125-126). Retrieved from http://herdsa2018.aomevents.com.au

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., Rangi, A., Eteuati, E., Wass, R., Golding, C., & Rabello, R. (2017). The 'good teaching' project. Proceedings of the Ako Aotearoa Southern Hub Projects Colloquium. (pp. 2). Wellington, New Zealand: Ako Aotearoa. Retrieved from https://ako.ac.nz/co-funding/regional-hub-project-fund/projects-in-progress-colloquia-2017

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

Anderson, V., Rangi, A., Eteuati, E., Wass, R., Golding, C., & Rabello, R. (2017). "I think they need to realise how influential they really are": What can we learn from university students' conceptions of 'good teaching' and 'effective learning'? Proceedings of the Talking Teaching Conference. Retrieved from https://akoacademy.ac.nz/programme

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

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., 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

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/

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/

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

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]

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., 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., 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]

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., 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

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