Seminar for the Teaching & Learning Breakfast Series at the University of South Australia

Thursday 5 July, 2018


The Scholarly Teaching Fellow (STF) role was introduced into Australian universities in 2013. As of February 2018, almost 700 new positions had been created. The positions were aimed at creating a more stable teaching workforce, while also addressing growing concerns about the injustices of academic casualisation. In an academic workforce where non-secure forms of employment have reached 46% of full-time equivalence (Department of Education and Training, 2018) and role specialisation has seen a growth in teaching-intensive roles, the STF positions have had an important impact on the sector-wide debate about the relationship between teaching, scholarship and research.

This session presents the initial findings of an Office of Learning and Teaching-funded strategic project on Scholarly Teaching Fellows comprising 80 in-depth interviews conducted across several universities with STFs, managers and stakeholders. The presentation will discuss the challenge posed by the levels of non-secure employment in the sector and the disaggregation of the academic role, before considering the industrial and institutional responses. The implementation and experience of the new STF positions will be presented as part of a collective narrative analysis of the interview data. The impact of the changes on workloads, job security, professional identity and personal life will be discussed in relation to the purpose of the positions, the varied experience of academics in the roles, and the opportunities and challenges they pose to the composition of academic work more broadly.

This presentation is based on the project funded by the Commonwealth Department of Education and Training Office of Learning and Teaching: SP16-5285 ‘Scholarly teaching fellows as a new category of employment in Australian universities: impacts and prospects for teaching and learning’. We acknowledge our project team members James Goodman, Kaye Broadbent, Anne Junor, and Glenda Strachan whose intellectual contributions have informed this research.



View the webinar recording of the UniSA presentation (54:53) (may require Adobe Connect).


UniSA presentation slides (PDF, 2.2 MiB)