Self reflection and self assessment
Macquarie University encourages critically reflective practice in all areas of academic work, including teaching and curriculum development. The following methods, strategies, techniques and tools to assist you in reflecting on your teaching and units do not by any means constitute an exhaustive list - they are merely some suggestions to get you started.
Note that for summative purposes such as promotion, it's important for you to be able to demonstrate, through examples and accounts of practice, that you have reflected on, and acted constructively in response to, formative feedback and evaluation. Suggestions about documentation are included below, along with links to useful resources.
Please review the information below before completing your reflection.
Method: make use of technology
Have your lectures recorded (e.g. using Echo 360) and listen to them online. This can be a real eye-opener about your presentation techniques! Reflect on the differences for students between the recording listening experience and the face-to-face classroom experience. Combine this method with peer observation to gain complementary perspectives.
Keep a record of your use of Lecture Recordings, your reflections on your technique and presentation skills, and how you have developed your teaching techniques in response to the insights gained from this process. Include these in your teaching portfolio.
Method: make use of TEDS self-evaluation and reflection sheets
If you are using TEDS surveys (LEU or LET) in face-to-face (paper survey) mode, TEDS will include, with your questionnaires for distribution, a survey form for you to fill out, as a form of self-evaluation. Take the time to do this while your class completes their questionnaires. If you are using online delivery of your TEDS surveys, you can print out the survey preview sent to you by TEDS, and use that instead. When you receive the report of student responses, reflect on any differences between your self-evaluation and those of your students, and think about why student perceptions might vary from your own.
TEDS also supply self-reflection sheets with your LEU and LET reports. Use them to reflect on aspects of your teaching and/or features of your curriculum design, and to identify any curriculum enhancement needed, and, if appropriate, your professional development needs. You can also use TEDS self-reflection sheets as a guide for material to place in your Unit Guide, to demonstrate to new students that you have responded to feedback from previous students.
Completed TEDS reflection sheets also act as documentary evidence of your reflective approach. Include them, and an account of any action taken in response to insights gained from this process, in your teaching portfolio.
- TEDS reports and reflection sheets
- Interpreting your Learner Experience of Unit (LEU) results
- Interpreting your Learner Experience of Teaching (LET) results
Learning and Teaching Centre workshops
Method: build a scholarly approach to teaching
- Engage with the learning and teaching literature, both in general and within your discipline. Many disciplines have one or more journals specifically devoted to teaching in that area. Use the Library to access and read them regularly, and think about how you might adapt and use any good ideas you find in them. Request an electronic subscription if the Library doesn't already have one.
- Participate in professional learning opportunities offered within and beyond the University, for example, you might choose to enrol in the Foundations in Learning and Teaching program offered by the Learning and Teaching Centre, and/or the Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education. Both are provided free to Macquarie University staff, and completion attracts Faculty funding in accordance with the Macquarie University Teaching Index policy. In addition, many discipline-based research conferences have learning and teaching workshops attached to them - if you are attending such a conference, why not take in the extra workshop as well?
- In your teaching portfolio, note any interesting ideas that you have read about in journals, with your reflections on how they might be adapted to your teaching context. Consider their strengths and weaknesses as they might apply to your teaching and curriculum design. If you have incorporated any such adaptations into your academic practice, provide an account of how you did this and how you evaluated their impact on student learning and experience.
- Keep a record of workshops and seminars you have attended and any completion certificates you have obtained. List these, with your own reflections and any actions undertaken as a result, in your teaching portfolio.
Internal professional learning programs
- LTC Workshop information and bookings
- LTC Foundations in Learning and Teaching (FILT)
- Postgraduate Program in Higher Education