Reflecting on Two Case Studies to Evaluate the Development of Embedded Academic and Digital Literacies Curricula

Linda THIES
Deakin University, Australia
linda.thies@deakin.edu.au

Christine OUGHTRED
Deakin University, Australia
christine.oughtred@deakin.edu.au

Viola ROSARIO
Deakin University, Australia
viola.rosario@deakin.edu.au

Abstract

Australian universities now articulate some policy around the integration of graduate attributes in courses, and these policies have the potential to support curricula renewal, which includes better embedding of academic literacies development in course curricula. [author's institution] has a set of eight core graduate attributes, which includes communication, digital literacy and critical thinking, and as part of a university-wide curriculum renewal process course teams are required to document how students' achievement of course learning outcomes supports their acquisition of these graduate attributes. The two case studies presented here include one which focused on the development of digital literacies in the curriculum, and a second project which aimed to develop embedded academic literacies curricula in three core health units. Evaluation was based on an action research model using a framework of planning, acting, observing and reflecting and a case study approach. While the case studies were unique it is possible to make some generalisations. Both case studies suggest that collaboration between course team members and professional staff, to achieve curriculum renewal results in staff capacity building and student learning, in particular students' understanding of how the curriculum contributes to their literacies development and how to record their acquisition of graduate attributes. A reflection on the two case studies confirms that a curriculum renewal process needs to ensure that members of course teams have time to fully engage in the processes, and that university-wide policy which supports curriculum development values and genuinely encourages bottom-up input and involvement from both academic and professional staff.

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