SOTL in the South

University of Johannesburg

24 – 27 July 2017         |         University of Johannesburg, Bunting Campus

Pre-conference workshops will be held on 24 July

Cost: R400/workshop




9.30 am – 12.30 pm

Workshop Facilitator: Professor Susan van Schalkwyk, Stellenbosch University, South Africa


Health professions education is a field that is currently characterised by innovation and considerable energy. At the same time, there has been significant growth in research conducted in this area and thus an increase in scholarship and scholarly outputs. SoTL in the health sciences can, therefore, be regarded as being in a ‘good’ space. Leading journals in health professions or medical education are well-established with impact factors that are often higher than that of their counterparts in higher education generally. International conferences bear testimony to a growing number of academics who have adopted a more reflective and scholarly approach to their teaching. Nevertheless, for many of these academics, moving into the realm of the scholarship of teaching and learning can be an unsettling experience as many long-held beliefs about what science is and how it is practiced, are challenged. Some years ago, Regehr (2010) suggested that to move beyond this seeming impasse would require a shift from an ‘imperative of proof’ to one of understanding, as well as from an ‘imperative of generalizable simplicity’ to one that recognises complexity.

In this workshop participants will engage in conversations about what SoTL is and how it manifests in the health professions, specifically drawing on their own contexts. Using Regehr’s argument as a point of departure, we will reflect on the extent to which research in health professions education has embraced notions of understanding and complexity, and how this manifests in our scholarly work.  On a practical level, and through sharing of good practice amongst the group, we will jointly explore ways in which we can contribute to the growing body of scholarship, and consider what this could mean for our work going forward.

Regehr, G. (2010). It’s NOT rocket science: rethinking our metaphors for research in health professions education. Medical education, 44(1), 31-39.




10.00 – 12.30 pm

Workshop Facilitators: Nickey Janse van Rensburg and Zach Simpson

Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment, University of Johannesburg, South Africa


This workshop will introduce an integrated approach to co-creating systems that encourage responsible research and innovation.  This involves project-based learning in which the needs of communities frame research into teaching and learning.  Such projects are essentially community engagement initiatives where research (including SOTL) supports the goals of the initiative.  

During project initiation, the objectives of the project are identified and aligned with research and teaching and learning outcomes.  This allows for themes relating to community engagement to be integrated into the curriculum, enhancing student learning experiences and improving lecturers’ ability to meet expected educational outcomes (and undertake SOTL research).  Furthermore, projects of this nature, in order to support communities, rely on knowledge that moves beyond the engineering disciplines and thus requires interdisciplinary collaboration across faculties and institutions.  Within these projects, students form part of collaborative, multi-disciplinary project teams and take responsibility for the project and, in so doing, for their own learning and development. 

As part of the workshop, participants will be introduced to the latest projects upon which the facilitators are embarking and will be asked to assist in identifying the teaching and learning and SOTL research opportunities inherent in these projects.  As such, the workshop will be highly interactive: we hope that it will be a dynamic and creative space in which facilitators and participants co-create SOTL for engineering impact. 




12.30 – 15.00 pm

Workshop Facilitator: Professor Catherine Manathunga, Victoria University, Australia


In order to develop innovative, transcultural supervision pedagogies that privilege Southern, Eastern and Indigenous epistemologies, supervisors and students need to locate time, place and diverse cultural knowleges at the centre of their work together. This involves the careful and sensitive navigation of contested notions of history, geography and epistemology. In this workshop, I will outline a range of Southern, postcolonial, Indigenous, feminist, social and cultural geography theories about time, place and knowledge to interrogate transcultural approaches to supervision pedagogy. These Southern theories suggest ways in which culturally diverse students can incorporate their rich personal, cultural, geographical, linguistic and epistemological histories into their creation of new knowledge. However, translating these theories into workable supervision strategies is challenging. Therefore, my colleagues and I have been experimenting with an innovative methodology to critically reflect upon the macro and micro histories of students and supervisors working across and between cultures. This time mapping methodology draws upon the work of Zerubavel. Zerubavel’s ‘time-maps’ seek to trace collective historical memories of both individuals and cultural groups. Time maps allow us to depict the ebbs, flows, ruptures and varied intensity of historical narratives. Participants will be invited to make their own time map to chart their multiple histories and geographies and the ways these embodied resources shape their creation of new knowledge. They will be able to use a range of textual, visual and creative forms.




13.00 – 15.00 pm

Workshop Facilitators: Thea de Wet, Director of Centre for Academic Technologies (CAT), Maria Frahm-Arp, Vice-dean, Teaching, Faculty of Humanities, Phuleng Motshoane, Instructional Designer (CAT), Carina van Rooyen, Senior Lecturer, Anthropology and Development Studies, University of Johannesburg, South Africa

DeWetFrahm ArpMotshoaneVanRooyen

If you are involved in teaching and learning in higher education, you would have noticed the increased use of ideas such as blended learning, digital literacies and fluencies, flipping the classroom, adaptive and personalised learning, open educational resources, learning analytics, gaming, augmented and virtual realities, artificial intelligence, cultures of innovation, to name just a few. You have likely promoted and implemented some of these ideas in teaching practices. And would have been confronted with various challenges in how to teach with technology. In this workshop we will share with one another how we deal with the challenges of teaching with technology in such a manner that we ensure and enhance social justice in our teaching. Whether you’re a novice or an expert (or somewhere in-between) in teaching with technology, we will learn with one another about pedagogical approaches, learning designs, and assessment activities that enrich socially-just, learner-centred, authentic, collaborative learning.

As part of planning for the workshop, we request participants to complete a pre-workshop questionnaire to help us better design for your needs and interest; find this here.



15.00 pm – 17.00 pm

Workshop Facilitators: Professor Maitseo Bolaane, Director, San Research Center and Head, History Department, University of Botswana and Dr Dudu Jankie, University of Botswana

 Bolaane 001

In the past few years through the San Youth Capacity Building programme the University of Botswana (UB) has attempted to address inclusive development by interacting with the marginalized communities in the remote areas of Botswana. Part of the mandate of the San Research Centre is to address the question on whether research on indigenous issues should move from research on to research with and ultimately be research by indigenous peoples. The aim of this workshop is to examine the relationships between marginalised indigenous peoples and the encompassing community/state, including the academic community, as a global phenomenon, and to provide opportunities for conference goers to reflect on the ethical issues that are presented in their teaching and learning contexts.

The workshop will take the following form:

  1. Introductions
  2. Presentation on ethical research issues involving research with the San in Botswana
  3. In small groups, participants share their SOTL research, what the ethical issues are, and share
        advice with each other
  4. Report backs and wrap up.



15.00 – 17.00 pm

Workshop Facilitator: Farieda Nazier, Head of Department, Jewellery Design and Manufacture, Faculty of Design and Art, University of Johannesburg, South Africa


 This workshop, to be held in a roundtable format, will cover the following;

1. Introduction to the Emerging Arts Activist programme

2. Unpacking the structure of the programme in relation to my own personal practice

3. Unpacking my pedagogic approach

4. Towards revised methods in the HE classroom


Important Dates

First call for abstracts

22 August 2016

Second call for abstracts

28 October 2016

Abstract submission due (x1)

01 December 2016

Abstract submission due (x2)

15 February 2017

Notification of acceptance (x1)

01 February 2017

Notification of acceptance (x2)

15 March 2017

Full paper for proceedings

01 May 2017

Acceptance of full paper and/or suggestions for revision

01 June 2017

Revised and final paper submission

10 July 2017

Early Bird Registration

15 April 2017

Late Registration

15 June 2017


For further information 

please contact


Tebogo Mokgokong:

+27 11 559 4658


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