SFDN Conference 2023: Going further together

When? 24th November 2023 from 9h30 to 16h30

Where? University of Bern

This conference is inspired by the proverb: “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.”

Higher Education is anchored in time-honoured structures, rituals, and boundaries. Recent political, economic, and social events have resulted in rapid and profound challenges to the established status quo providing opportunities to generate new relationships and bridge traditional boundaries. Therefore, the overarching theme of this conference is to explore the potential and the value of the full range of professional partnerships that occur in higher education. This could be between educational developers and faculty, between faculty and policy makers and of course between students and any of the above. 

Check out the PROGRAM!

This conference is FREE for SFDN members. If you would like to become a member, click here.

Please register your attendance in this form !

The program

Download the program in pdf.

Program of the day and abstracts of all the presentations:

9:30 – 10:00 Coffee and registration   |   Posters*

10:00 – 10:15 Welcome by the SFDN President, Ruth Puhr, Room S003

10:15 – 11:15 Keynote by Professor Klara Bolander Laksov, Stockholm University Room S003

11:15 – 12:15 Parallel sessions 1

Room A 015 : Quick talks

Room A 017 : Scholarly discussions

Room A 019 : Scholarly discussions

12:15 – 13:15 Lunch   |   Posters*

13:15 – 14:45 Workshop session

14:45 – 15:15 Coffee Break   |   Posters*

15:15 – 16:15 Parallel sessions 2

Room A 015 : Scholarly discussions

Room A 017 : Scholarly discussions

Room A 019 : Scholarly discussions

16:15 – 16:30 Closing ceremony – Room S003

* Posters:

  • Developing Digital (and) Teaching Skills André Klostermann et al.
  • Platform ”Sustainability in Academia” Simon Zysset et al.
  • European Universities – Movetia, Swiss national agency for mobility and exchange

The organisers

The SFDN is a professional association of faculty developers interested in building up the teaching and learning capacity in higher education institutions in Switzerland. The network comprises the public and private institutions of higher education of Switzerland (universities, institutes of technology, applied universities, universities of teacher education).

Our main objective is to provide a supportive environment for individuals working in higher educational development in Switzerland to network, exchange knowledge of our discipline, and share practice.  Our activities include an annual conference, campus site visits, webinars, workshops, and an annual members meeting.

Types of contributions

Quick talks

QuickTalks last 10 minutes. Multiple QuickTalks will be grouped together, followed by chaired time for discussion.

They can be about research, initiatives, projects or other educational development activities.

Scholarly discussions

Presenters have 15 minutes to introduce their work, followed by 15 minutes for structured discussion with the audience. Work should be scholarly (based on literature, significant research or other empirical work) and be methodologically sound. The structured discussion must be planned and facilitated by the presenters.


Workshops last 90 minutes and are opportunities to facilitate a conversation, or to demonstrate effective educational development practices. Workshop proposals should include both an abstract and a workshop facilitation plan. Creative and engaging workshops are encouraged, and diverse formats are welcome.


Presenters may be invited to do a short “pitch” that summarises the key points of their poster. Posters usually feature emerging or completed research. Posters presenters are invited to be creative in their presentation.

Submission process

Submissions must be made using the secure SelectSurvey form. Only submissions made via this online form will be considered. 

Abstract length should not exceed 400 words, excluding references (please include only your main references). Do not include images, graphs or tables.

Workshop proposals should include an additional facilitation plan of 300 words with desired participant outcomes.

Submissions will then enter a blind review process.

To submit your abstract please click here. The deadline for submissions is midnight on September 10th (Extended).

You will be informed of acceptance or rejection no later than October 18th

Presenters must confirm acceptance via email by November 1st.

Criteria for all submission types

  • The submission contributes to the understanding or practice of educational development.
  • The submission will make a clear contribution to the conference theme; the potential and value of professional partnerships in educational development.
  • The submission demonstrates an understanding of current issues in educational development and/or existing scholarship.

Additional criteria for Scholarly Discussions

  • The theoretical/empirical/methodological frameworks used in the work are visible in the submission and sound.
  • The structured discussion is considered in the submission. 

Additional criteria for Posters

  • The theoretical/empirical/methodological frameworks used in the work are visible in the submission and sound.
  • The poster format is creative and/or visually appealing.

Hosting institution

University of Bern – UniS Room S 003

Schanzeneckstrasse 1

3012 Bern