Special Interest Groups

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A HERDSA Special Interest Group (SIG) provides HERDSA members with a network of like-minded colleagues with whom you can talk about shared research interests as well as potentially undertake some collaborative research.

At each HERDSA conference a session is run in which you can learn more about SIGs. If you are interested in joining a SIG or starting up a new one, you can register your interest by emailing your name, institution and research interest/SIG to Jennie Billot:  jbillot@aut.ac.nz

The inaugural HERDSA SIG is the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Education Special Interest Group. This SIG was created as a vehicle to promote teaching, learning and research in integrated STEM education. By “integrated” we mean the deliberate full or partial integration of any or all of the key components of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics with or without other areas such as The Arts.

We have the following aims:

  • To build a network researchers interested in integrated STEM education and stimulate debate and discussion;
  • To pursue opportunities for advancing STEM education;
  • To encourage and support postgraduates and early career researchers STEM education; and
  • To develop collaborations leading to research in STEM education.

The STEM Education SIG will investigate means of integrating STEM in the tertiary setting as well as reaching out to schools and pre- and in-service teachers. The STEM SIG will use the data and findings to inform public and government action.

Australia’s Chief Scientist Professor Ian Chubb launched the 2013 position paper STEM in the national interest: A strategic approach pointed out that it is imperative for Australian education that we attend to our STEM enterprise - education, research and innovation. As teachers in higher education, we need to focus the spotlight on STEM, illuminate it and prepare STEM students for future challenges.

Join the STEM SIG. Email: susan.blackley@curtin.edu.au  or visit the HERDSA SIG Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/HerdsaSIGs/

HERDSA Special Interest Group: Assessment Quality

The aim of the Assessment Quality SIG is to create a HERDSA network to support those within Higher Education directly involved in designing, marking and reviewing assessment and feedback practices to enhance quality.

This it is particularly pertinent to those that lead subjects/units and course/program directors and ADE’s, in light of the changes and new requirements with respect to Assessment Quality as laid down in the revised HESF (higher education standards) that is has come into effect on 1st January 2017 and for the basis of TEQSA re-registration of HE providers. This SIG spans academics, professional staff, part-time teaching staff, casuals and students. It also aims to support HERDSA's aims and wider membership in a better understanding and application of meaningful assessment, and effective quality improvement of assessment.

Contact SIG Leader: sbedford@uow.edu.au