Ghent University Education Support Services
Ghent University’s training offer has evolved considerably over the years. This is due to a confluence of events, such as the implementation of Ghent University’s Quality Assurance Conduct 2.0, the covid-induced transition from on-campus to online and blended teaching, a newly founded collaboration network through the European Enlight Consortium and a review of the Activo Project. In what follows, you will find out more about the new, extensive offer for lecturers and teams of lecturers.
Ghent University Training and Development Platform (in Dutch: UTOP)
Since 15 June 2021, registration for Ghent University’s training offer training is managed by the Ghent University Training and Professional Development Platform (abbreviated to UTOP in Dutch). UTOP replaces the Apollo Training Catalogue and the Education Department’s training offer. Go to SuccessFactors and click the ‘Talent Development’ tile to discover your personalized range of training sessions.
- General FAQ
- FAQ for supervisors/heads of office
- UTOP manuals
- My Portfolio
- No show policy – cancelling my training session
Basic Training Sessions for Lecturers
These training sessions aim to strengthen lecturers’ education competencies.
- the education track for newly appointed lecturers: this blended track is mandatory for all newly appointed lecturers, to be completed within the first two years of their appointment. The track is offered both in Dutch and English;
- basic learning track: an elective blended professional development track for Ghent University lecturers with a wish to brush up their teaching competencies;
- an online and modular education track for academic assistants, PhD-students and teaching assistants involved in teaching practice, in which they can strengthen a number of teaching competencies through independent work in combination with elective peer-to-peer sessions.
In-depth Training Sessions for Lecturers
In addition to the basic course offer mentioned above, we also have an in-depth course offer with thematic workshops for lecturers (e.g. how to lecture to large groups, how to coach writing assignments, how to use lecture recordings, etc…), for lecturers and education support staff to choose from according to their own needs and interests. This thematic offer is continuously adjusted and complemented based on specific education-related needs we uncover, such as specific teaching methods, feedback, assessment, etc…
Training Sessions for Study Programmes and Faculties
This specific offer is aligned with content-related questions in the context of education policy (e.g. curriculum design, assessment policy, etc…), quality assurance and Ghent University’s strategic education objectives in the Education Monitor. We mostly use the train the trainer model for these sessions.
This means that programme committees or faculty managements use the monitor (self-reflection) to determine which objective(s), topic or monitor chapter needs improvement or extra focus, and which staff members are most suited to be delegated to the chosen session(s). This delegation of staff members can consist of lecturers as well as support staff. The aim is to train and coach groups of staff members with complementary profiles (content experts, process experts, policy experts) and enable them to implement and follow up sustainable processes of change and/or improvement. The train the trainer sessions offer participating study programmes and faculties useful frameworks, and they facilitate mutual learning.
Networking and Events
One of the goals is to learn from each other through cross-faculty networks and events. Ghent University’s annual Education Day, for example, is open to all lecturers. Ghent University also participates in the annual Educational Science Seminars organized by the Ghent University Association. Finally, we offer an online community for lecturers to exchange good practices on specific teaching methods or themes beyond their own faculty.
The Education Tips platform (Onderwijstips.ugent.be) was launched in 2013 as a result of a central innovation project. The platform was revamped in June 2020, resulting in the following improvements:
- the existing search function has been complemented with a clear table of contents;
- the existing tips for lecturers were rewritten;
- new tips for study programmes have been added;
- all tips have been translated into English.
In no time, Education Tips has become the go-to platform for more information on high-quality education at Ghent University.
Education Innovation Projects
On an annual basis since 1997, faculties have been awarded funds for setting up education innovation projects. An overview of the realizations can be found here. At the institutional level, the Activo Project aims at promoting and implementing active teaching (methods) in our study programmes.
Plans for the Future
optimizing the website www.Onderwijstips.ugent.be: in addition to the existing theoretical tips, there will be room for good practices or practical examples. These good practices, often originating in study programmes and faculties, are an important source of inspiration for lecturers and other study programmes. By making the new good practice database searchable, we hope to maximize the transfer between theory and practice;
expanding the English-language training offer for lecturers and teams of lecturers;
developing policy frameworks and support services on future-proof curricula.