Undergraduate Research-Teaching Nexus

DRILL Fellows, Drs Velisha Perumal-Pillay and Varsha Bangalee, in collaboration with the Durban University of Technology, had the privilege of hosting Helen Walkington, a Professor of Higher Education at Oxford Brookes University in Oxford, UK. The first workshop, which took place on the 18th of July, provoked discussions around strengthening the undergraduate research and teaching links, as well as ways in which students can benefit from engaging in research dissemination activities linked to the curriculum. In this regard Prof Walkington was able to impart innovative strategies and ideas to strengthen the research-teaching nexus by increasing participation of students in all aspects of the research process from problem identification to public dissemination. In a follow-up workshop, on the 23rd of July, Prof Walkington presented international research on the ten salient practices for becoming an effective undergraduate research mentor. The attendees of both workshops, who were predominantly academics across the College of Health Sciences, commended Prof Walkington for presenting relevant, much sought-after content in an interactive, engaging manner, particularly in light of the increasing awareness of the need to develop researchers as a core graduate attribute across the College of Health Sciences, UKZN.

L to R: Dr Anisa Vahed, Prof Helen Walkington, Dr Varsha Bangalee and Dr Velisha Perumal-Pillay

Workshop attendees in conversation with Prof Walkington