Friday, September 02, 2011

What is quality teaching?

Dr John Minns, Winner of the 2010 Prime Minister's Award for Australian University Teaching, will speak on "What is quality teaching?", at the Australian National University in Canberra, 7 September 2011 from 6:00 PM.

Recent public debate about educational quality and standards raises questions about which teaching styles are most effective in supporting student learning. Of all forms of teaching, the lecture is the most traditional. It also has the potential to be the most tedious experience for students. This talk makes the argument that it is still possible for the lecture to be an important part of a high-quality learning experience. With creativity and flexibility on the part of the lecturer, the lecture can be stimulating and rewarding. But for this to happen we have to adjust to the different ways that students, especially young students, find and absorb knowledge compared to those from the past. So what exactly is a quality lecture?

Dr John Minns has a passionate commitment to helping students grapple with major problems in International Political Economy(IPE). Hallmarks of his teaching include: presenting students with real world problems in the global economy which require analysis; and research and careful attention to the development of research techniques which are transferable across many disciplines. He poses engaging and challenging questions about the world we live in and emphasises how these questions really matter to the lives of millions of people.

He ensures his teaching engages with young lives by creating exciting visual and auditory experiences, including film, music, graphics and crosswords. His reputation for imaginative presentation of course material and enthusiastic teaching, mean students in arts and social sciences flock to his courses. The infusion of his own research into students’ educational experience also receives positive feedback from both students and colleagues. Dr Minns has been researching and teaching in IPE for more than 12 years and is currently a Senior Lecturer in the Politics and International Relations program at The Australian National University.

Dr Minns won the 2010 Prime Minister’s Award for Australian University Teaching.

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