Principles underpinning career progression

The framework is structured around four progressive levels of teaching achievement, from the threshold for acceptable university teaching – an effective teacher – through to an individual with influence and impact on an international stage – a national and/or global leader in teaching and learning.

For each level, achievement is defined by an academic’s impact in one or more of the following three domains:
  • Impact on student learning: the individual’s direct impact on the learning and engagement of the students whom they teach or tutor
  • Impact on the educational environment: the individual’s direct impact and legacy with respect to teaching and learning across their institution, beyond their teaching duties (e.g., driving systemic curriculum reform, establishing a peer-mentoring system for teaching staff, or establishing cross-institutional educational collaborations)
  • Impact on educational knowledge: the individual’s contribution to educational research that influences both knowledge and practice in teaching and learning
The two initial template levels – effective teacher and skilled and collegial teacher – are primarily concerned with the candidate’s direct impact on student learning. Beyond this point, the template offers two parallel branches for progression – one focused on impact on the educational environment and one focused on impact on educational knowledge – and candidates can opt to focus on one or a combination of these branches. Both branches offer a pathway for progression to the fourth level, as a recognised national and/or global leader in teaching and learning.
Further information
Further information is provided about the framework structure and the evidence that guided its design, such as best practice from universities across the world.
Mapping to university grades
Information and examples are provided about how a university might map the framework grades onto their academic grade profiles.
Case study example
Outlined below is an illustrative example of how the framework might be used in practice, by mapping the levels, promotion criteria and evidence sources onto an existing promotion case, taken from the Uniervsity of Queensland.
Dr Greg Birkett, University of Queensland, Australia
In 2014, Dr Greg Birkett was promoted to a Senior Lectureship on the basis of a balanced portfolio, built around his contributions to research, in the field of molecular modelling and surface chemistry, and to education. He successfully demonstrated his educational contribution in two key domains:
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  • a high quality and evidence-informed approach to teaching that demonstrated clear improvements in approach over time and yielded positive student learning outcomes
  • leadership and legacy at School level in driving curricular reform, improving student engagement and providing educational support and mentorship to academic staff
The information and evidence included in Dr Birkett’s promotion application have been mapped onto the framework structure, and are outlined below:
  • Level of achievement: Dr Birkett’s institutional contribution to education, supported by the quality of his teaching delivery, indicates that his achievements correspond to the ‘institutional leader in teaching and learning’ level defined in the framework.
  • Promotion criteria: Dr Birkett appears to fulfil most criteria for ‘institutional leader in teaching and learning’, particularly those relating to educational and cultural change.
  • Evidence: The evidence included in Dr Birkett’s promotion case can be mapped onto four evidence domains in the framework – with his direct impact on students and his educational leadership considered as two separate themes. He particularly underlined the role played by the Head of School’s reference in his promotion case: “when it comes to teaching, there are so many things that are not easy to measure …but the Head of School is in a position to recognise the difference I have made”.
It should be noted that, although Dr Birkett held the position of Chair of the School’s Teaching and Learning Committee, his promotion case was based upon his impact rather than his managerial responsibilities. As he observed, “the promotion was not about meeting a ‘service’ requirement [by chairing the committee], it was about what I did. It is the change that should be recognised, not the position”.
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