What academic language and learning advisers bring to the scholarship of teaching and learning: problems and possibilities for dialogue with the disciplines

Higher education policy is seeking, in the interest of ‘quality assurance’, to reward teaching and the scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL). Academic language and learning (ALL) advisers, who work closely with students to improve their performance in their courses of study, have much to contribute to SoTL. ALL advisers who adopt an ‘academic literacies’ approach share with lecturers in the disciplines an engagement with issues of ‘‐ography’ (i.e. writing in and for a discourse community)—including the relationships between epistemology, form, and language—yet, misconceptions about ALL advisers’ work can prevent discipline lecturers from consulting them when thinking about questions of teaching and learning in their own field. This paper discusses ALL advisers’ access to insights into students’ experiences of learning and of being taught, with relevance both for particular disciplines and for academic culture across the disciplines; their contributions to SoTL; the difficulties they encounter in trying to communicate across the borders of the disciplines; and ways of improving this situation in the context of the new emphasis on encouraging improvement in the quality of teaching.

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Kate Chanock
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Higher Education Research & Development 26 (3), 269-280
0729-4360 0729-4360 z
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