12th Annual SEDA Conference 2007

Professional Standards and Continuing Professional Development: ideals and realities

20 November 2007 - 21 November 2007

Location: Birmingham

 Four years ago the Government stated its expectation that there should be an overarching framework to structure professional standards in higher education. This controversial issue was the focus of the November 2005 SEDA conference where key themes of working with Professional Standards and Continuing Professional Development frameworks were explored. What has happened since then? The new national framework for professional standards in teaching and supporting learning was launched by Universities UK (UUK), the Standing Conference of Principals (SCOP) and the Higher Education Academy on 23 February 2006. The framework was developed by the Academy on behalf of UUK, SCOP and the four UK higher education funding councils with the intention of enabling a sector-owned approach to learning and teaching standards. Has this worked? Has the sector welcomed the framework as an opportunity to mesh practises and policies and overtly enhance its status? Or have the standards proved to devalue and limit professionalism? Have they produced any measurable benefits to the students’ experience?

Two years on, the annual SEDA conference revisits this theme and invites you to report on your experiences within the further and higher education arenas or offer sessions which explore the extent to which your institution has adopted the framework. We welcome sessions which problematise the relationship between the standards and continuing professional development and the extent to which the underpinning ideals have translated into reality.

Conference Themes

The conference will seek to address the following themes:

  • Working with others to raise awareness of the professional standards
  • Values, standards, CPD practices and university processes that reward and recognise staff
  • Have professional standards limited notions of professionalism and led to technical rationale approaches to education?
  • Standards-based approaches to learning and teaching and enhancing the student experience
  • Can professional standards in learning and teaching be measured in a sector that values innovation, individuality and professional autonomy and if so what are the methods used?


The SEDA Conference Experience

SEDA prides itself on creating a relaxed, welcoming and positive atmosphere at conferences, which encourages open, constructive and supportive sharing of ideas, experience and practice.

Feedback from participants at recent SEDA conferences:

  • "Discussion and mutual support the best I've ever encountered at a conference "
  • "It was useful to share experiences and to suddenly find the commonalities within our roles"
  • "This is my first SEDA conference and I have found it excellent "


The conference will be of particular interest to all those involved in promoting effective change in HE learning, teaching and educational development. This includes:

  • Educational and staff developers
  • Staff developers and human resources personnel
  • Higher Education Academy staff
  • Lecturers and teachers in further and higher education
  • National and institutional teaching fellows
  • Centre for Excellence and FDTL staff
  • Managers of academic departments
  • Educational technologists
  • Quality assurance and enhancement policy makers
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