A week ago, the Dean asked if I was interested in posting something to MGSE news from the desk of the Deputy Dean. My first thought was great but what to say?
Actually, there is lots to say. As I have learned the ropes as Deputy Dean, and as I zoom around the rooms of MGSE, I find lots of information to translate and disseminate and, as someone still involved in research, there is always much in this area to highlight.
The last couple of weeks have been busy with introducing the Academic Work Strategy (AWS), planning for next year and working with the MTeach steering committee but, rather than reiterating what you already know, I thought I would take the opportunity to share a couple highlights from the last week that caught my attention.
During the Vice Chancellor’s recent visit to MGSE which you can read about in the Dean’s Report, I asked the VC how MGSE can work with the University to demonstrate that MGSE is one of the University’s greatest ambassadors of the Advancing Melbourne Strategy. Our very diverse, and often applied research activity and engagement, is at the coal face of education and has tremendous impact. It was his first response that struck me when he said, ‘You are the University so how we work together demonstrates our impact’. He acknowledged that is something we need to work on. My question then is how do we demonstrate the merit and worth of our contribution in the face of the need to demonstrate more traditional outcomes?
Take for example MGSE’s recent submission to the Senate enquiry. The House of Representative’s committee has released the final report of its inquiry into Education in remote and complex environments. The MGSE submission to the inquiry is referenced in the report – specifically in the discussion of the importance of digital inclusion with a lengthy direct quote from the submission. A number of the report’s recommendations align with points made in the MGSE response. We had a small but very collaborative team working on our submission including myself, Daniela Acquaro, Natasha Ziebell and John Quay. Similarly, the Vice-Chancellor made mention of the reach of the Propelling Education Series, which is just one of many webinars this year, which attracted viewers from 28 countries with over 1800 attendees, 345 questions asked and 4353 views on YouTube.
I would argue that both these initiatives have had a great impact on our education system and bring great kudos to MGSE and therefore to the University, however understanding the quality and impact of this work seems a challenge. Engagement is something we often take for granted in our academic work - it would be good to understand its actual value. Something to think about so perhaps watch this space!
As a message from the Deputy Dean this segment can also provide another avenue to share information and highlights from our workforce planning, further developments from the MTeach 2022 reaccreditation process and highlights from research and teaching.
There are many things that come past my desk and hopefully some will be valuable to you. If there are updates from your teaching and research that you would like me to highlight going forward please let me know.