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Pedagogy in Practice: how we teach in Development Studies

Organiser(s): Murdoch University and the RDI Network Topics Education
2018-06-22 09:00:00 2018-06-24 17:00:00 Australia/Perth Pedagogy in Practice: how we teach in Development Studies Academics, teachers, student and industry participants are invited to join a dialogue on how we improve the pedagogy of Development Studies in Australia. Hill Lecture Theatre - Building 512 Murdoch University Murdoch WA Murdoch University and the RDI Network Calendar Register
Child in Laos. Copyright: Fred Hollows Foundation

Building on the success of the inaugural Rethinking Development Symposium at James Cook University in 2017 that focused on ‘what’ we teach in Development Studies, a second symposium convened by Murdoch University will seek to explore ‘how’ we teach Development Studies. Join us in Perth on 22-24 June as we convene teachers, students and industry representatives to explore how we can improve ‘Pedagogy in Practice’ for Development Studies. A call for presentations is now open.


Keynote: Sisonke Msimang – Storytelling and action          

The acts of storytelling and listening are key modalities in the oral history tradition for imparting knowledge. Storytelling is a universal human experience. Sharing stories can ignite possibilities, strengthen connections between people and give voice to the marginalised. Storytelling and listening are power tools for people to work collaboratively and inspire people to take action against social injustice. Sisonke is Program Director at the Centre for Stories.

Planned Panels:

  • Teaching for Practice: Big employers speak. Our students want jobs, but do we know what big employers want? What the implications are for how we teach? What are the pathways into a career in international development?
  • Teaching in Practice: International postgraduate students speak. What have our international students hoped for in their studies? What have been their experiences (honestly) and what did they value most?

Planned Roundtables:

  • Creating a community of teaching practice. For example, how might we share teaching resources and components across institutions, in Australia and into developing countries?
  • Field of Research (FOR) code for development studies, the development of an Antipodean Development Studies Association.
  • Responding to the Teaching for Practice panels: is there a gap between what the development employers are seeking from development studies graduates and what the students are looking for in their degrees?

You can download a draft symposium program here.


You are invited to submit an abstract (word limit 500 words) for a 20-minute presentation that focuses on one or more of the three themes below. We especially encourage presentations that speak to teaching practices and or teaching for practice. Abstract submissions are due by Monday 30 April 2018.

1. Teaching practices in relation to experiential and practice-based learning

2. Alternative paradigms and cross-learnings: voice and knowledges. How do we use alternative or new paradigms in development teaching (planetary boundaries, doughnut economics, Southern theory, decolonising development curricula, etc.)? How do we bring the affective into our development curricula? How can Indigenous and Development Studies learn from each other?

3. The changing development landscape – how do we teach students to be adaptive and flexible practitioners to confront contemporary development challenges?

Presenters will be informed of the outcome of their submission by 9 May.

More details regarding the call for presentations is available here.


The symposium is free to attend, however registration is essential. Please register your attendance via Eventbrite.

An information package for attendees including details of the venue, accomodation and transport options is available to download here.