University Of Tasmania

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Fit for purpose: Designing a faculty-based community of (teaching) practice

conference contribution
posted on 2023-05-23, 12:51 authored by Wendy GreenWendy Green, Ruutz, A
Based essentially on a social constructivist understanding of situated learning, the concept of ‘communities of practice’ (CoPs) has been taken up enthusiastically in the corporate sector as a model for managing organisational knowledge. However, the formulaic, top-down approaches associated with this trend are particularly inappropriate in a higher education context, where the complexities of the organisational environment and the inextricable link between disciplinary knowledge and identity call for a more critical approach. We engage here with current thinking about CoPs in higher education in the light of our participation in an embryonic faculty-based community of (teaching) practice. We take the view, with Wenger, that while any learning, including learning to teach (better) cannot be designed, or predicted in advance, it can, and should be designed for. Here, we outline four considerations – language/meaning, identity, access/inclusion, and agency – that have both informed the design of our CoP, and proved crucial to its development.


Publication title

Proceedings of the 31st HERDSA Annual Conference




0 908557 73 6


DVC - Education


Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia, Inc

Place of publication


Event title

31st HERDSA Annual Conference

Event Venue

Rotorua, New Zealand

Date of Event (Start Date)


Date of Event (End Date)


Rights statement

Copyright 2008 HERDSA and the authors

Repository Status

  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Other education and training not elsewhere classified