Touching the Untouchables: Transforming University Teaching through Peer Supervision

By Ksenija Napan.

Published by The Diversity Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

In most areas of social practice professional supervision is taught, promoted and required. Conferences on supervision are held and books are written but, when it comes to supervision of teaching academics in the area of social practice, literature is very scarce and practices are left to individual initiatives almost closeted from the public eye. The consumerist approach to education creates an atmosphere of defensiveness where academics are becoming protective over their positions and a context for true collaboration is becoming a rarity. Power issues within academia and a hierarchical nature of most universities, although supportive of collaborative research, are not encouraging sharing and daring to talk about difficulties and possible improvements of teaching methods and practices. As a result, academics are developing their expertise in specific fields of their interest, but rarely in novel teaching methods and ways of reaching students from various cultural backgrounds. This paper examines a simple cost-effective method of supporting academics to share and improve their knowledge and practices through peer-supervision and explores its relevance in creating culturally respectful and sustainable learning organisations.

Keywords: Supervision of Academics, Communities of Practice, Transforming Universities

International Journal of Diversity in Organizations, Communities and Nations, Volume 6, Issue 6, pp.39-44. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 864.408KB).

Dr. Ksenija Napan

Programme Director Masters of Social Practice, Senior Lecturer, School of Community Development, Unitec, New Zealand, Auckland, New Zealand

Dr Ksenija Napan teaches at Bachelor and Master of Social Practice programmes within the School of Community Development, Te Pae Whanake at Unitec, New Zealand. She is interested in collaborative learning and believes that quality education is essential in improvement of the quality of life of communities, families and individuals. Her passion is in the integration of seemingly opposing polarities like science and spirituality, order and chaos, internal and external, individual and communal as well as in intercultural communication.

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