Progressive Practices

The University of Melbourne offers a great variety of resources and supports to all staff who are involved in teaching and teaching-related activities.

The Faculty supports great teaching in our subjects and courses through discipline and program leadership, resources and events, and the activities of the BEL+T group.

We also celebrate the successes of our great educators for and with our students. If you have suggestions about events that can help in your teaching practice, or issues that might be explored, please email abp-belt@unimelb.edu.au.

For more resources on how you can progress your teaching practices, check out out ABP Teaching Toolbox section here.

  • Online Induction for Sessional Teachers

    The Online Induction for Sessional Teachers (OIST) is a self-guided, interactive online course for sessional teachers at the University of Melbourne. It explores educational theory including principles of small group teaching, strategies for student engagement, feedback, encouraging active learning and self-evaluation techniques, and includes a final task of critiquing a filmed tutorial. On successful completion of OIST participants receive a certificate.  You may also consider taking the Advanced Skills for Sessional Teachers program, or the Melbourne Teaching Certificate.

    Online Induction for Sessional Teachers

  • Foundations of Teaching and Learning

    Foundations of Teaching and Learning for Graduate Researchers is designed for currently enrolled graduate researchers at the University of Melbourne who are new to teaching, and is also suitable for sessional teachers who are not enrolled in graduate research programs. This program consists of three workshops that introduce the fundamentals of effective teaching for learning in higher education settings.  On successful completion of the three workshops participants receive a certificate. The Advanced Skills for Sessional Teachers program offers further extension.

    The three workshops in the Foundations of Teaching and Learning are listed below, and schedules are available via the link:

    • Foundations of good teaching in higher education
    • Strategies for facilitating active learning
    • FAQs: Managing common challenges in the classroom.

    Foundations of Teaching and Learning for Graduate Researchers

  • Melbourne Teaching Certificate

    The Melbourne Teaching Certificate for Graduate Researchers (MTC-GR) is a professional development program for University of Melbourne graduate researchers with teaching-related responsibilities. This program is suitable for graduate researchers of the University of Melbourne with some teaching experience and who have already completed the Foundations of Teaching & Learning seminar series (formerly, Teaching Skills for Graduate Researchers). The program is also suitable for sessional tutors and demonstrators who are not graduate researchers. It is a cohort-based program completed across one semester comprising three face-to-face seminars, two written assignments and a presentation.

    Melbourne Teaching Certificate for Graduate Researchers

  • Advanced Skills for Sessional Teachers

    This one-day program is designed for experienced sessional teachers who wish to enhance their teaching skills, improve student learning and explore the possibilities for developing their careers as university teachers. The program focuses on common teaching challenges in a range of teaching contexts and includes the opportunity to interact with colleagues from various disciplines in the University. On successful completion of Advanced Skills for Sessional Teachers, participants receive a certificate, and may consider enrolling in the Melbourne Teaching Certificate.

    Advanced Skills for Sessional Teachers

  • Melbourne Centre for the Study of Higher Education (Melbourne CSHE)

    The Melbourne Centre for the Study of Higher Education (Melbourne CSHE) conducts research and professional development in the fields of higher education teaching and learning, research, engagement and leadership.

    Melbourne CSHE has a collection of resources covering a number of categories. These resources include practical guides for staff, as well as academic papers, and can be found here.

    Learning Environments and the Melbourne CSHE also jointly offer an extensive range of professional development opportunities. Sessions will provide a diverse range of topics covering the use of LEARNING TECHNOLOGIES in teaching. These include the use of video in teaching, designing online assessment approaches, using blogs for reflective writing, as well as preparation for learning analytics.

    Designing for learning with technology

  • University Teaching Awards

    The Melbourne Centre for the Study of Higher Education "administer(s) a program of University of Melbourne staff AWARDS which recognise excellence in research, teaching, engagement, strategic priorities and professional support and services for students and fellow staff. (CSHE) also assist the University's nominations for national awards, such as the Australian Awards for University Teaching."  Details of the awards and nomination deadlines and processes are available via the link.

    University Awards

  • Faculty of Architecture, Building & Planning Awards for Teaching

    The Faculty of Architecture, Building & Planning recognises outstanding contributions in early career teaching, sessional teaching and teaching excellence through the Annual Teaching Awards. The awards will recognise sustained improvement or impact on the quality of students' learning experiences, and the relevance of subject content and skills. ABP aims to provide outstanding education to enable the next generation of the highest quality built environment professionals and academics. Their learning with us will prepare them to advance into the world and to adapt and design solutions for a future that we cannot yet predict.

    Faculty of Architecture, Building & Planning Awards for Teaching (2018 citations)

    Crystal Legacy – Students’ Choice award (2018)

    "Crystal always impresses with the knowledge she is able to draw upon, and how she puts the issues in a current context. She encourages students to ask critical questions, and leaves us wanting to learn more. I left each of Crystal’s classes engrossed in a discussion with my classmates. She encourages students to engage in networks outside of the university, to better understand who we will work alongside, and work for. The subject was very clear and well-structured, and we received clear feedback quickly that helped us to progress from smaller to larger assignments. Crystal organised weekly reading groups to unpack the readings so we would be able speak more confidently in class, and tries to connect with each student regardless of their nationality or capacities. Crystal is one of the best (if not the best) lecturer I've ever had!"

    Michael Mack – Students’ Choice award (2018)

    "Michael was super clear, very helpful and really encouraged us to push ourselves. We were given a fantastic subject guide that outlined all the requirements for the semester and demonstrated there was clear plan for the subject. Still, Michael was flexible enough to bring on a new program to make sure we were learning the most current technologies. He creates a great environment within the studio and fosters group discussion. He was so approachable. He related to each student individually and helped everyone in the class equally. Michael communicated so well with prompt feedback and regular emails including helpful tips, precedents, and encouraging messages. He even included FUN FACTS at the end of every email to keep us laughing. He always made us feel like we could do everything and gave us confidence and self-belief."

    Adrian Chu - Sessional Teaching Excellence Award (2018)

    Adrian has made significant contributions as senior tutor of Environmental Building Systems since 2014, and additional contributions to other subjects, workshops and research activities that relate sustainable design approaches to high impact communication media.  His investigation of a semi-flipped approach to teaching includes a clear understanding and application of both abstract and concrete learner engagement. Strategic use of delivery modes that align with these forms of engagement further supports student learning. Successful application for Learning and Teaching Initiative funding, and the subsequent delivery of online video content for the subject, has led to enthusiastic student engagement with its content. This forms part of a strategic approach to assessment design that considers students’ varied learning needs.  Adrian’s thoughtful and innovative student-centred approach, and its extension to the development of supporting materials and processes for tutors, is recognised through this Award.

    Alberto Pugnale – Teaching Excellence Award (open award)

    This Award relates to extended and innovative development of a studio and related subjects and workshop activities. Alberto’s concerted efforts to ground these learning experiences in pedagogic theory and practice, including emerging approaches, has informed a program that includes intensives and blended learning modes. Alberto has worked with a number of collaborators to develop “How virtual becomes real”, one of the activities recognised through the Award, seeking to position it at the intersection of theory and practice, historical precedent and projective design. He has engaged with colleagues within and beyond the faculty, including industry, to share the approach developed through this work. The thorough grounding of his approach to teaching, and his creative extension of this approach for the benefit of student learning, are recognised through this Award.

    Hing-Wah Chau - Teaching Excellence Award (New Staff Award)

    This award recognises the contributions of a new staff member to the development and delivery of teaching at ABP. It is awarded to Hing-wah Chau in recognition of his development of studios that connect students’ architectural studio experiences with broader contexts and experiences. This has been achieved by engaging with multicultural perspectives and travel (eg Deliberation in Guangzhou), and with multiple disciplines including architecture and property (Design for Aging – Clayton South) and also architecture and planning (Home @ Atherton Gardens).  Support for collaborative investigations through early group work, and strategic engagement with professionals and stakeholders relevant to each project assists students to situate their learning, and the development of design proposals, within a broader set of concerns.  Presentations of some of these outcomes has opened opportunities for students to strongly connect the disciplines of ABP with the potential impact of our graduates.


"One of the most popular lecturers I've learned from during my time at the University of Melbourne. Students from all backgrounds find (x) approachable, engaging, and supportive. A separate mid-semester survey was used to measure students' progress and satisfaction in the subject. We know that (x) took our feedback seriously and considered our needs because following the survey, he made a few changes to make the subject even more enjoyable and educational. One example was a weekly 'reading digest' that supported us by providing a quick run down of each reading for the week, why we were reading it, and what we should hope to learn from it."