Development Practitioners some Academic Development Practitioners feel that

Development practitioners some academic development

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Development Practitioners, some Academic Development Practitioners feel that lecturers need to play a vital role in terms of encouraging the students to attend academic development classes. As mentioned in the literature review, Engel and Flemming (2001:1) consider Academic Development Practitioners as mediators of students’ understanding of the varying demands of the academic communication process. If this is the case, then it means that Academic Development Practitioners have a duty to mediate between lecturers and students in terms of the teaching and learning processes so as “to enhance the capacity of students to develop as successful independent learners both within their disciplinary contexts and in transferring core academic language and learning skills outside their disciplines” (Berghout-Vanderwal et al , undated Internet source:3). Most of the literature that is available on the subject stresses the importance of a good working relationship between lecturers - who are subject specialists - and Academic Development Practitioners who - according to Catterall (undated Internet source:40) - can contribute explicit pedagogical knowledge so that, in partnership with the subject specialist, a strong explicit subject knowledge can be formulated. Catterall further observes that in certain cases lecturers may be inexperienced and have insufficient pedagogical knowledge or may be implementing common sense notions that are not supported by current teaching and learning issues. This notion relates to the comments of some lecturers who - possibly because of their own relationship to current teaching and learning trends - may end up believing that academic development is not part of their job. Dison and Rule (1996:85) comment that …AD tutors often develop an institutional identity as ‘skills people’. As such, they play a valuable role in challenging the mainstream emphasis in processes of curriculum development, where mainstream staff assume that they have nothing besides skills to contribute. The above comment indicates that Academic Development Practitioners should be part of the process of curriculum development without, necessarily, acting as “watchdogs” over lecturers. They should to be at the forefront of developing the
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