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8 April 2021

Teaching Capability Framework

Enhancing the capabilities of teaching teams is one of the most important ways universities can ensure high-quality student experiences. Deakin University has developed a unique Teaching Capability Framework that includes a range of both academic and professional roles that contribute to teaching and learning in higher education.  

Deakin adopts a team teaching approach and the development of learning experiences is collaborative and multidisciplinary. Recognising this, the framework is organised into four professional domains that recognises a diversity of roles. 

For each of these domains, the framework articulates the central capacities that are important for teaching and learning staff: Areas of Activity, Core Knowledge and Professional Values. By mapping their development against these central capacities staff can use the framework for professional learning, support for career advancement and award submissions or recognition through the DeakinHE Fellowship program. 

While most university capability frameworks focus on academic roles, Deakin understands that it’s not just academics and learning developers that contribute to teaching and learning. The Deakin Teaching Capability Framework recognises that everyone from UX Specialists and librarians to WIL supervisors, career staff and technical support staff have a role to play. 

‘Helping our staff to develop their teaching capabilities will help out students,’ says Professor Helen Partridge, Pro Vice-Chancellor, Teaching and Learning. ‘This simple yet powerful idea is at the heart of the Deakin Teaching Capability Framework. Importantly, the Framework was developed to recognise and support all Deakin staff whose role contributes to teaching and learning.’ 

Development of the framework 

The Deakin Teaching Capability Framework was developed by teaching and learning teams across the University. The typical activities, knowledge and values in each domain were based on the internationally recognised Professional Standards Framework (PSF). Building on this, Deakin’s Curriculum Framework and Premium Principles for Learning and Teaching were incorporated into the framework. The result is a comprehensive framework that articulates the capacities demonstrated by professional teaching teams, contextualised to Deakin University.  

For academic staff, the areas of activity in the framework are aligned with learning and teaching tasks in Deakin’s Minimum Standards for Academic Levels. The level of autonomy, complexity and influence with which these activities are undertaken increase as staff move up through the academic levels (A-E). 

Using the framework 

Anyone who is in a role that contributes to the development of teaching and learning at Deakin can use the Teaching Capability Framework. Individuals can develop knowledge around the central capacities and identify areas for further development. Leaders in teaching and learning can use the framework initiate conversations at a faculty, course and University level and develop professional learning activities to build capacity of staff. 

Beyond mapping and building capability, the framework can also support applications for recognition, promotion and awards. Any Deakin staff whose role contributes to teaching and learning can apply for the DeakinHE Fellowship program. This accredited and internationally recognised peer reviewed, professional recognition program supports staff in gaining recognition through HEA Fellowships. 

Deakin University is proud to be a leader in the development of teaching and learning experiences by collaborative and multidisciplinary teams. 

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