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Talking about Teaching and Learning (TATAL) 2019

Tuesday 2 July: Pre-conference parallel workshop, 9:30am – 3:00pm



Room 206-216



Mr. Robert Kennelly
University of Canberra, Kirinari Street Bruce, 2617 ACT Australia 

Dr. Raj Shekhawat
Auckland University of Technology (AUT), Auckland, 55 Wellesley Street East Auckland City, New Zealand

Dr. Dieter J. Schönwetter
University of Manitoba, 780 Bannatyne Avenue, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

Angela Tsai
University of Auckland, Auckland Central, New Zealand

Rachelle Singleton
University of Auckland, Auckland Central, New Zealand

Mary-Ann Shuker
Griffith University, Southport, Queensland, Australia

Benny Liu
Auckland University of Technology (AUT), Auckland, 55 Wellesley Street East Auckland City, New Zealand


Presentation type

Pre-conference workshop


Overview of workshop

“Talking About Teaching and Learning” (TATAL) workshops develop cohorts of reflective practitioners who meet regularly to enhance their teaching and the learning of their students. Participants reflect on and share their practices using a collaborative model developed by McCormack and Kennelly (2011).  Participants will start their TATAL experience in a virtual class room; continue the TATAL experience after the conference through synchronous online collaborative sessions, with a view to beginning the HERDSA Fellowship process. HERDSA TATAL Auckland will include a Face-to-Face (F to F) three quarter day workshop and finish with a session at breakfast during the conference.

TATAL makes us think about how we teach and also about how we align our teaching with the scholarship of teaching…it makes me aware of how research can underpin and strengthen my teaching. And it’s fun. (TATAL participant 2012)


Target audience

Delegates who have at least two years of teaching experience and want to develop their own understanding and awareness of their teaching philosophy; those with more experience who want time to reflect on their teaching and learning; Associate Deans Education, Academic Developers and teaching and learning champions who seek to use TATALs to foster a serious approach to the challenges, changes and opportunities in teaching and learning in their institution.


Intended participant outcomes

Participants will enhance their awareness and understanding of their beliefs and values that underlie their teaching and learning practice through collaborative reflection on their teaching philosophies and those of their colleagues.


How workshop activities address the conference sub themes of ‘sustainability’ and ‘collaboration’

  • Delegates will engage in rigorous and collaborative activities which include the reflection on teaching, learning and the student experience.
  • The TATAL provides delegates with a community of practice that advances their understanding of how their practice will sustain them for the challenges, changes and opportunities in the next generation of Higher Education.

TATAL activities commence in a virtual class room from Tuesday 18th June:  Delegates will be required to register for the TATAL by the 17th June.  Once registered TATALers will be signed into the AUT Blackboard’s online environment and will commence orientation to TATAL, sharing introductions and expectations with fellow TATALers and facilitators. This will be followed by online facilitator presentations  ‘Theories behind TATAL’ and the ‘Frameworks for Teaching Philosophy Statements’.

Pre-conference workshop (Tuesday 2nd July 9.30am – 3.30pm with a working lunch): To begin, facilitators and TATALers will build on the virtual classroom to establish a safe collaborative environment in which to investigate the challenges and successes of teaching and learning. TATALers will start to construct their teaching philosophy statement by free writing their response to stimulating questions (Kennelly et al., 2013 and Ruge et al., 2019 research). By conference end TATALers will have draft notes on their philosophy statement.

Session during conference (Thursday 4th July, 7.30 – 8.45am.) During this session TATALers will engage in a synchronous/skype session with TATALers from another part of Australasia. Participants will arrange dates for future online and or Face-to-Face meetings where they can finish constructing a teaching portfolio in a safe, collegial and collaborative environment. Following the conference: A synchronous on-line sustained TATAL group for all TATALers will continue collaborative reflection on their teaching philosophy draft notes and begin to prepare teaching portfolios (Schonell et al., 2016 and Schonwetter et al., 2002). There may be a F to F Auckland group, to prepare teaching portfolios.



McCormack, C. and Kennelly, R (2011). “We must get together and really talk….’Connection, engagement and safety sustain learning and teaching conversation communities. Reflective Practice: International and Multidisciplinary Perspectives, 12(4), 515-531.
Kennelly, R., Gilchrist, J., McCormack, C., Partridge, L., Ruge, G., Schonell, S., & Treloar, G. (2013). Why make time at the HERDSA conference in Auckland to TATAL. HERDSA News, 35(1), 13.
Schonell, S., Gilchrist, J., Kennelly, R., McCormack, C., Northcote, M., Ruge, G., & Treloar, G. (2016). TATAL Talking about teaching and learning – Teaching Philosophy Workbook Sydney, Australia: Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia.
Schönwetter, D. J., Sokal, L., Friesen, M., & Taylor, K. L. (2002). Teaching philosophies reconsidered: A conceptual model for the development and evaluation of teaching philosophy statements. International Journal for Academic Development, 7(1), 83-97.
Ruge, G. McCormack, C. Kennelly, R. Schonwetter, D. What’s the value of a teaching philosophy for academics and their institutions in today’s higher education context? Reflections of Australian and Canadian Teaching Fellows (currently under research).    

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