Re-integrating academic development and academic language and learning: a call to reason



Publication Details

Percy, A. (2014). Re-integrating academic development and academic language and learning: a call to reason. Higher Education Research and Development, 33 (6), 1194-1207.


This paper argues for the re-integration of academic development (AD) and a academic language and learning (ALL) practitioners in Australian higher education. This argument is made as universities aim to develop internationally recognised, inter-disciplinary and standards-based curricula against the backdrop of international comparative education (e.g., Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development), the Australian Qualifications Framework and a quality emphasis on English language standards (e.g., Tertiary Education Quality and Assessment Agency). Drawing on Rowland's argument that professional life in the academy has become fragmented across five fault lines ([2002]. Overcoming fragmentation in professional life: The challenge for academic development. Higher Education Quarterly, 56(1), 52-64), I propose a sixth: the pedagogical fault line between language and learning which I argue is institutionally manifest in the historical bifurcation of AD and ALL practitioners in the academy. This paper traces the historical separation of these two fields of practice in Australian higher education in order to disturb the present distinction and show how it is more an accident of history than the result of sound pedagogical decision-making. The paper argues that in the current educational context, it is timely to consider a re-integration of these two aspects of the academic field. It is suggested that such a move will create research and teaching connections that develop synergies in educational development that are able to work with language and learning simultaneously.

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