Elected to participate in the TAU Fellowship Programme for 2018 and 2019

Posted on October 24, 2017

              Elected to participate in the TAU Fellowship Programme for 2018 and 2019                               

Dr Lizette de Jager from the Department of Humanities Education was elected to participate in the TAU Fellowship Programme for 2018 and 2019. In in terms of the TAU criteria and the number of spaces available, the TAU Selection Panel has accepted Dr Lizette De Jager as participants in the TAU programme.

The name of the programme

Tau is the Sesotho and Setswana word for lion, with all its connotations of strength, courage, leadership and even wisdom and protection. In addition, Tau is the Greek name for the letter T. Symbolically it is associated with life and resurrection / renewal. TAU is also the acronym for Teaching Advancement at University.

Aims of the TAU programme  

  • To contribute towards the enhancement of teaching and learning in higher education in South Africa by supporting the development of a cadre of academics across institutions and disciplines as scholars, leaders and mentors in their fields; 
  • To enhance the status and stature of teaching and popularise the understanding of teaching excellence in varied institutional and disciplinary settings.

Background to the programme

TAU is modelled on the highly successful Philadelphia-based Foundation for the Advancement of International Medical Education Research (FAIMER) programme - see http://www.faimer.org/education/fellows/index.html; and on the work of the South African branch of this programme, SAFRI.

TAU works with experienced academics who are recognised for teaching excellence, in order to build a cadre of teaching and learning leaders who could serve as role models and who could support the professional development of their colleagues within their department or institution. For this purpose, TAU provides an opportunity for high level engagement for approximately 50 participants from across South Africa, from all public universities and from a wide range of disciplines. Participants meet face-to-face in four short residential sessions interspersed across the 19 months of the programme, and between these sessions develop their collaboration further by means of online communication and activities. TAU seeks to maximise participant involvement by regular group engagements with a wide range of topics and issues, and specifically through placing each participant in an enquiry group, which supports their work on individual and group projects.  Each enquiry group is further supported by an advisor with considerable experience of educational development and the higher education system.

Content covered in the programme

The programme is structured in terms of the three TAU golden threads:  deepening the understanding of teaching excellence in local contexts; the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SOTL); and becoming a change agent. The contact sessions combine inputs around current pressing debates, group discussions and creative sessions, with time for participants to get to know each other, to reflect, and to work on their individual projects.


- Author Annalize Brynard
Published by Annalize Brynard

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