Enabling Professional Development for Sessional Colleagues in Law: Reflections from the Smart Casual Online Initiative

Alex Steel, Natalie Skead, Kathrine Galloway, Mary Heath, Anne Hewitt, Mark Israel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

The numbers of sessional staff teaching in law schools continue to grow,
yet little has been done to provide for their professional development. This
is particularly critical because these colleagues are likely to be less able
to attend face-to-face development sessions or to participate in informal
‘corridor’ discussions. This article analyses what amounts to best practice
in professional development of sessional colleagues in an online environment,
including: the need to adopt a peer-to-peer tone; appeal to a range
of teacher experience; draw on contemporary scholarly approaches to
teaching and learning issues; and provide recognition of digital literacy,
internationalisation, diversity, gender and Indigenous issues. These
insights are drawn from the experience of developing modules as part of
the Australian Government funded Smart Casual: Promoting Excellence
in Sessional Teaching in Law project. The article draws on feedback from
sessional staff focus groups and an autoethnography of the authors of the
modules to reflect on the complexity of the task of developing professional development materials that neither patronise nor alienate their target
audiences and the implications this reflection has on the importance of
collegiality in the law school environment.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)65-98
Number of pages34
JournalAdelaide Law Review
Volume39
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Enabling Professional Development for Sessional Colleagues in Law: Reflections from the Smart Casual Online Initiative'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this