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Bond launches cross-disciplinary research centre, new book on teaching and learning

A new research centre promoting cutting edge teaching, learning and scholarship through cross-faculty interaction has been launched at Bond University.

Led by Associate Professor Amy L. Kenworthy, the Centre for Applied Research in Learning, Engagement, Andragogy and Pedagogy (LEAP) encourages academics from different disciplines to share ideas, collaboratively investigate and report on new approaches to effective student learning.

Former University of Melbourne Vice-Chancellor Professor Kwong Lee Dow AM and Chairman of the Advisory Board of Australian Capital Equity Group of Companies, The Hon Warwick L. Smith AM, will help guide the new institution’s mission as its respective academic and industry patrons.

Professor Dow, who has 50 years experience in Australia’s education system, said the creation of the centre would ‘broaden the scope and interaction for Bond in both an internal and external sense’.

“Bond is very proud of its calibre of teachers and this will allow them to demonstrate more broadly their claims,” said Professor Dow.

Commemorating today’s launch (October 9), the LEAP Centre also announced the release of a new book, 'Innovations in Teaching & Learning: Approaches to Professional Development from Across the Disciplines'.   The edited volume features a collection of innovative teaching practices from across all faculties at Bond University, including physiotherapy, law, accounting, multimedia and gaming, information technology, international management, biomedical sciences, negotiation, and human resource and sports management. 

“The goal of the book is to unearth cutting edge approaches to teaching that could be applied in any academic discipline,’’ said Dr. Kenworthy, who also edited the inaugural volume.

“For instance, the chapter on professional development techniques currently being used in multimedia and gaming classrooms describes practices that could be readily adapted by business or law academics to improve student learning.

“Historically, the various disciplines within universities have rarely explored the potential for cross-fertilisation of innovative teaching practices.  Even at Bond, with our small, tight-knit community, such collaboration across these traditional functional silos can be a challenge. 

“Consequently, it is our hope that this book is the first in a multi-volume, multi-institution series to facilitate such collaboration. This reflects the overall mission of the LEAP Centre — to support cross-disciplinary and cross-institution research initiatives in the teaching and learning domain.

“In the world of teaching and learning research and scholarship, there’s so much we can learn from each other – in a cross-disciplinary sense. At Bond we pride ourselves on teaching and research, but as yet we’ve had minimal formal intersection between teaching and research from across all of the faculties.

“LEAP is designed to change that in what we hope will be transformational and inspirational ways,’’ said Dr Kenworthy.

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