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Make it Awkward – Registration Open

Registration is open for Make it Awkward, a workshop on practical strategies for reducing bias in our classrooms and communities, by Siara Isaac & Vivek Ramachandran.

Friday December 6th, 13h-16h30 @ EPFL

SFDN members can register free of charge. Register here, before December 2nd: register link

Among the goals of the workshop are to:

  • recognise classroom situations where implicit bias is likely to have an impact
    foster learning environments which are inclusive and respectful of all people
  • choose words that communicate that biased comments are not acceptable
  • employ non-verbal communication modes to build trust and diffuse tension

Siara is an academic developer and Vivek is a doctoral student in Robotics, both at the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne.

Invitation to Workshop for Faculty Developers (20 June): Writing case study vignettes for educator training

SFDN Members are invited to the following workshop which will take place in EPFL from 10h00 – 13h00 on 20 June 2019.

Writing case study vignettes for educator training

Register here:

The training of educators – whether they are school teachers, university professors or pedagogical developers – is intended to increase knowledge and skills but also to ensure that these knowledge and skills are used when the educators return to teach in their classroom.  This transfer from training to practice is extremely difficult to achieve, but techniques like role play, microteaching, and practice portfolios in educator training have all been found to have a positive impact.  One other technique that has been identified as particularly important in helping educators transfer from training to practice is the use of vignettes or short case studies.  This workshop will address the issues involved in writing vignettes for educator training purposes and how to integrate the use of vignettes into training workshops.

Joanne O’Flaherty is a teacher educator at the University of Limerick, where she runs the microteaching programme for initial teacher education students.  Her research work on initial teacher education, moral reasoning development and social and emotional learning has been published in leading journals such as Educational Research, Teachers and Teaching: Theory and Practice, European Journal of Teacher Education, the British Journal of Educational Psychology, Cambridge Journal of Education, and Teaching and Teacher Education

Six new positions advertised in ETHZ Learning Sciences and Higher Education

Six new positions have been advertised by the ETHZ Chair of Learning Sciences and Higher Education, Manu Kapur.

Postdoctoral Position in Ethics Education

Postdoctoral Position in Neuro-Embodied Basis of Physics Learning

Doctoral Position in Life Sciences Education

Doctoral Position in Neuro-Embodied Basis of Physics Learning

Doctoral position in Developing Visual Expertise for Differential Diagnosis

Doctoral position in Gender Stereotypes and Mathematics Learning

SFDN 2019 conference – call for papers

How research on learning contributes to university teaching practice

Friday 22 February 2019, ETH Zurich

Call for Papers

Educational development at universities focuses primarily on the professional development of university educators. The positive effects of educational developers’ work are mostly discernible in the revision of degree programmes and courses, in changes made to learning activities and forms of performance assessment, and in the introduction of new teaching and learning forms. The aim of all of these is to improve the learning processes and learning success of students. To judge the effectiveness of organisational and pedagogical change, however, it is necessary to collect and present evidence on their actual impact on and sustainability with regard to student learning. Here the approaches and concepts of “learning science” may very usefully broaden research into teaching and learning.

The SFDN Conference 2019 is an opportunity for educational developers and university teachers to come together, exchange experiences and – deploying the results of their own practice-oriented investigations – to draw conclusions which will benefit current developments in university teaching. The 2019 conference will target both conceptual and didactic changes in higher education, and their consequences for student learning processes.

The Swiss Faculty Development Network therefore welcomes paper and poster submissions on topics which include the following:

  • The connection between teaching strategies and learning outcomes
  • The integration of transferable skills into university courses and study programmes
  • The challenges of organising group and project work, and how to address them
  • Forms of assessing student skills in classes, seminars and workshops
  • The integration of cross-disciplinary competences into teaching
  • The impact of formative assessment and feedback on student learning
  • Didactic concepts and methods for teaching in different disciplines
  • Teaching evaluation as research data

Papers on other themes related to improving teaching and learning at universities may be
accepted, but priority will be given to papers that explicitly address one of the above topics.
Conceptual, theoretical and descriptive papers are definitely potential candidates, but note
that we are primarily looking for submissions which are based on quantitative or qualitative
research data.

Submissions should take the form of a 300-word abstract outlining (a) submission title; (b) nature of the submission (i.e., paper or poster); (c) the above topic(s) addressed by the submission (if any); (d) a brief note on the relevant literature; (e) the research methodology; and (f) key findings. A bibliography should be included (this is not part of the 300-word limit).

Deadline for submissions: 30 November 2018
Please send your submissions to: Katherine Hahn Halbheer (LET)

GA Workshop: Pedagogical Advisor 4.0

The details for the workshop in the morning of the SFDN GA in EPFL on 27 April 2018 have been announced.  Please register here (To register):

GA Morning Workshop: Pedagogical Advisor 4.0

10h00 – 12h00

Facilitated by Ingrid LeDuc, Cécile Hardebolle and Roland Tormey

The fourth industrial revolution (i4.0) is changing the way in which people live, work and interact with each other and with technology.  The iPhone, for example, was launched only ten years ago but today mobile connectivity is the pervasive norm throughout much of the world, with an estimated 2.32 billion smartphone users worldwide.

How should the practice of pedagogical advisors change in response to this changing context?  How do we:

  • manage pedagogical training in a world where MOOCs and on-line tools allow new ways of linking training workshops to real-world teaching?
  • manage feedback to teachers (such as course evaluations) in a world of Learning Analytics?
  • support good pedagogical practice in a world of learning games?
  • support teachers to teach in a world where students are always connected to potentially distracting but information-rich electronic devices?

This workshop will explore the issues and opportunities for Pedagogical Advisors in a world of i4.0.

The GA will follow after lunch.  Further details are on the website here:


SFDN Conference 14th February 2017: Registration Now Open

SFDN 2017 Conference: “Helping University Students Learn How to Learn”

14th February 2017

Ecole polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne


Registration is now open! To register click here


Self-regulation of learning by students has been found to be strongly associated with academic attainment. This self-regulation can be aided by using assessment rubrics, formative assessment, encouraging students to “think out loud”, or by explicitly teaching students problem-solving and study skills strategies.  This one-day conference will host presentations from teachers, faculty developers and researchers, addressing a range of strategies currently being developed to help university students learn how to learn. Presentations will include: examples of university-level study skills programmes using both on-site and on-line approaches, strategies to develop students’ ability to think within their disciplines, and examples of teacher development workshops, courses and programmes aimed at student self-regulation.

Further details are available on the SFDN website:


Call for Papers for the SFDN 2017 Conference

Swiss Faculty Development Network 2017 Conference

“Helping university students learn how to learn”

 EPFL, February 14th 2017

Call for Papers

The Swiss Faculty Development Network (SFDN) would welcome papers and poster submissions related to the conference theme of supporting self-regulated learning in higher education.

Submission deadline: 5th December 2016

Further details of the conference and the submission process: