Centre for Teaching and Learning
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CTL research

​​​​​​​​​​​​Teaching & Learning in Higher Education: Projects & Publications


CTL members participated in various research conferences during the year. 

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At the Heltasa 2019 Conference in November in ​Ma​khanda,  Dr Karin Cattel-Holden (photo above) leads the panel discussion on Teaching Excellence Awards. 

Her research presentation was titled: ​An ‘excellence turn’? Rethinking teaching excellence awards for the public good.

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CTL Advisor Jean Farmer in discussion with Heltasa members at the Heltasa conference (photos above). 

Jean presented a research paper on research writing retreats as “third spaces". Such spaces allow conversations which open up ways to potentially enhance participants’ learning experiences and contribute to the transformation of the institution. ​


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Dr Melanie Skead, CTL Director (photo above)  during her and co-author ​Joni van Heerden's research presentation titled: "Sitting with discomfort”: Who are we as academic developers in a time of crisis? ​ at the Heltasa 2019 conference.​ 

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Dr Gert Young (photo above)​ presenting his research on "The intergroup nature of educational professional development practices" at Heltasa 2019.


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Photo above: Stellenbosch team at the Third International Legitimation Code Theory Conference (LCT3) in July 2019 at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg.

From left to right: Dr Margaret Blackie, Prof Ingrid Rewitzky, Dr Karin Wolff (Engineering), Prof Cecilia Jacobs (CHSE), Dr Robert Pott (Engineering), Dr Hanelie Adendorff, Dr Marnel Mouton, Dr Christine Steenkamp, Dr Ilse Rootman-Le Grange, Dr JP Bosman (CLT)​. ​

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Photo above: CTL Advisor Dr Hanelie Adendorff participating in the Decolonization panel at LCT 3 in July 2019.

From left to right: Paul Maluleka, Mlamuli Hlatshwayo, Hanelie Adendorff, Aslam Fataar.


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Photo above: CTL Advisor Dr Anthea Jacobs at EDULEARN19, the 11th annual International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies, held in Palma de Mallorca (Spain) in July, 2019.



A list of research projects related to Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, undertaken by the CTL and Faculties at SU as well as CTL advisors in collaboration with national and/or international partners.

CTL Teaching and Learning Research Projects

  • Council on Higher Education. 2017.  Learning to teach in Higher Education in South Africa.  An investigation into the influences of institutional context on the  professional learning of academics in their roles as teachers.  Pretoria:  CHE [Online]. Available:  http://www.che.ac.za/sites/default/files/publications/PUB_HE%20Monitor%2014_20170401.pdf (2017, Jun 2]

  • Herman, N. 2015. The role of context in the decision-making of lecturers for participating in professional learning for teaching at a research-led university. PhD. [linked to Structure, Culture and Agency project.]

  • Jacobs, C. & Strydom, S. 2013-2014. Signature pedagogies. Please refer to Journal Articles, 2014. [linked to Signature Learning Experience project.]
    National Collaborative Postgraduate Diploma in Higher Education in Teaching and Learning. Teaching Development Grant Collaboration 2014/15 - 2016/17.

  • Van Schalkwyk, S.C., Burgoyne, M., Ruiters, J.M. & Young, G. 2012. The First-Year Experience. [linked to Signature Learning Experience project.]

  • Van Schalkwyk, S.C., Farmer, J.L., Ruiters, J.M. & Young, G. Early Assessment. Please refer to Journal Articles, 2012. [linked to First Year Academy project.]

Faculty-Specific Teaching and Learning Research Projects

  • Adendorff, H.J. & Rewitzky, I.R. 2016. Outcome evaluation of Teaching Development Grant Project in Science at SU.
  • Adendorff, H.J. & Rewitzky, I.R. 2017. Project aimed at unpacking student perceptions of academic support in Science.
  • Cattell, K. 2010-2014. Writing Skills Strategy, Faculty of Law. Monitoring and evaluation of project.

National Teaching and Learning Research Projects

  • Leibowitz, B., Herman, N. & Farmer, J.L. 2011-2015. Structure, culture, agency. NRF project in collaboration with other SA universities.


Publications (20​​11 - )

The following journal articles, books and chapters in books on Teaching and Learning were published by CTL advisors and colleagues from other universities as from 2011:

Journal Articles


  • Adendorff, H.J. 2011. Strangers in a strange land – on becoming scholars of teaching. London Review of Education, 9(3): 305-315.
  • Bezuidenhout, J., Cilliers, F.J., Van Heusden, M., Wasserman, E. & Burch, V.C. 2011. Alienation and engagement in postgraduate training at a South African medical school. Medical Teacher, 33: 145-153.
  • Burch, V.C., McKinley, D., Van Wyk, J., Kiguli-Walube, S., Cameron, D., Cilliers, F.J., Longombe, A.O., Mkony, C., Okoromah, C., Otteno-Nyunya, B. & Morahan, P.S. 2011. Career intentions of medical students trained in six Sub-Saharan African countries. Education for Health, 24(3): 1-16.
  • Carolissen, R., Bozalek, V., Nicholls, L., Leibowitz, B., Rohleder, P. & Swartz, L. 2011. bell hooks and the enactment of emotion in teaching and learning across boundaries: A pedagogy of hope?. South African Journal of Higher Education, 25(1): 157-167.
  • Leibowitz, B., Cilliers, F., Kafaar, Z., Viljoen, S. & Young, G. 2011. Orientations to academic development: Lessons from a collaborative study at a research-led university. International Journal for Academic Development, 16(1): 19-32.
  • Leibowitz, B.L., Bozalek, V., Carolissen, R.L., Nicholls, L., Rohleder, P. & Smolders, T. 2011. Learning together: Lessons from a collaborative curriculum design project. Across the Disciplines: Collaborating for Content and Language Integrated Learning, 8(3).
  • Van der Walt, C. & Ruiters, J.M. 2011. Every teacher a language teacher? Developing awareness of multilingualism in teacher education. Journal for Language Teaching (SAALT Journal for Language Teaching), 45(2): 84-99.


  • Cattell, K. & Van der Westhuizen, G. 2012. Karin Cattell in gesprek met Gert van der Westhuizen oor die leerwaarde van klaskamergesprekke in hoër onderwys. LitNet Akademies, Januarie.
  • Cilliers, F.J., Schuwirth, L.W.T., Herman, N., Adendorff, H.J. & Van der Vleuten, C.P.M. 2012. A model of the pre-assessment learning effects of summative assessment in medical education. Advances in Health Sciences Education, 17(1): 39-53.
  • Cilliers, F.J., Schuwirth, L.W.T. & Van der Vleuten, C.P.M. 2012. A model of the pre-assessment learning effects of assessment is operational in an undergraduate clinical context. BMC Medical Education, 12(9).
  • Cilliers, F.J., Schuwirth, L.W.T. & Van der Vleuten, C.P.M. 2012. Modelling the pre-assessment learning effects of assessment: Evidence in the vitality chain. Medical Education, 46(11): 1087-1098.
  • De Villiers, M.R., Cilliers, F., Herman, N., Coetzee, J.F., Von Pressentin, K. & Van Heusden, M.H.P. 2012. The need and value of teaching knowledge and skills among family medicine registrars. African Journal of Health Professions Education, Fifth National Conference of the South African Association of Health Educationalists (SAAHE): abstracts, 4(1): 46.
  • Leibowitz, B.L., Van Schalkwyk, S.C., Ruiters, J.M., Farmer, J.L. & Adendorff, H.J. 2012. "It's been a wonderful life": Accounts of the interplay between structure and agency by "good" university teachers. Higher Education, 63: 353-365. 
  • Van Schalkwyk, S.C., Farmer, J., Ruiters, J.M. & Young, G. 2012. Early assessment: Part of a bigger plan?. South African Journal of Higher Education, 26(1): 36-50.


  • Cattell, K. 2013. 'Fit for change': A preliminary exploration of the relationship between academic literacy practitioners and disciplinary specialists as a complex system. Perspectives in Education, 31(4): 5-14.
  • Jacobs, C. 2013. Academic Literacies and the question of knowledge. Journal for Language Teaching, 47(2): 127-140.
  • Keiller, L. & Hanekom, S.D. 2013. Strategies to increase clinical reasoning and critical thinking in physiotherapy education. South African Journal of Physiotherapy, 70(1): 8-12.
  • Leibowitz, B.L. 2013. Attention to student writing in postgraduate health science education: Whose task is it or rather, how? Journal of Academic Writing, 3(1): 30-41.
  • Mubuuke, A.G. & Leibowitz, B.L. 2013. Participatory action research: The key to successful implementation of innovations in health professions education. African Journal of Health Professions Education, 5(1): 30-33.
  • Strydom, S.C. & Van Eeden, R. 2013. Dimensions of job satisfaction identified among South African black middle-level managers: A qualitative investigation. Journal of Psychology in Africa, 23(4): 37-42.
  • Van Schalkwyk, S.C., Cilliers, F., Adendorff, H.J., Cattell, K. & Herman, N. 2013. Journeys of growth towards the professional learning of academics: Understanding the role of educational development. International Journal for Academic Development, 18(2): 139-151.
  • Winberg, C., Jacobs, C., Wright, J.L. & Wyrley-Birch, B.D. 2013. Conceptualising linguistic access to knowledge as interdisciplinary collaboration. Journal for Language Teaching, 47(2): 89-108.


  • De Villiers, M.R., Cilliers, F., Coetzee, J. F., Herman, N., Van Heusden, M. & Von Pressentin, K.B. 2014. Equipping family physician trainees as teachers: A qualitative evaluation of a twelve-week module on teaching and learning. BMC Medical Education, 14(228): biomedcntral.com/1472-6920/14/228.
  • Jacobs, C. & Strydom, S. 2014. From 'Matie' to citizen – graduate attributes as signature learning at Stellenbosch University. The Independent Journal of Teaching and Learning, 9: 63-75.
  • Mubuuke, A.G. & Leibowitz, B.L. 2014. The use of a structured formative feedback form for students' assignments in an African health sciences institution: An action research study. The South African Radiographer, 52(1): 13-17.


  • Van Schalkwyk, S.C., Leibowitz, B.L., Herman, N. & Farmer, J.L. 2015. Reflections on professional learning: Choices, context and culture. Studies in Educational Evaluation, 46: 4-10.


  • Jacobs, A.H.M. 2016. Using a theoretical framework of institutional culture to analyse an institutional strategy document. Education as Change, 20(2): 204-220.
  • Leibowitz, B.L., Bozalek, V., Farmer, J.L., Garraway, J.W., Herman, N., Jawitz, J., McMillan, W., Mistri, G., Ndebele, C., Nkoki, V., Quinn, L. & Van Schalkwyk, S.C. 2016. Collaborative research in contexts of inequality: The role of social reflexivity. Higher Education, 2016: 1-16.
  • Tan Phoay Lay, C., Van Schalkwyk, S.C., Bezuidenhout, J. & Cilliers, F.J. 2016. Mapping undergraduate exit-level assessment in a medical programme: A blueprint for clinical competence? African Journal of Health Professions Education, 8(1): 45-49.
  • Winberg, C., Bozalek, V. & Cattell, K. 2016. An inter-institutional postgraduate diploma for university teachers: Exploring formative feedback data from the position of socially just pedagogies. Journal for New Generation Sciences, 14(3): 144-161.

Jacobs, A.H.M. 2018.  Values, institutional culture and recognition of prior learning.  South African Journal of Higher Education, 32(4):  96-108.

Books and Chapters in Books


  • Leibowitz, B.L. 2011. Academic literacy as a graduate attribute – implications for thinking about 'curriculum'. In Curriculum Inquiry in South African Higher Education – Some Scholarly Affirmations and Challenges. Stellenbosch: SUN Media. Pp. 213-227.
  • Leibowitz, B.L. & Parkerson, A. 2011. A conversation about the UWC Writing Centre project. In Changing Spaces: Writing Centres and Access to Higher Education. Stellenbosch: SUN Media. Pp. 75-89.


  • Bozalek, V. & Leibowitz, B.L. 2012. An evaluative framework for a socially just institution. In Higher Education for the Public Good: Views from the South. Stellenbosch: SUN Media in association with Trentham Books. Pp. 59-72.
  • Dawes, D., Henderson, N., Nair, S. & Petersen, M. 2012. Facilitating deep understanding: Perspectives from four facilitators. In Community, Self and Identity: Educating South African University Students for Citizenship. Cape Town: HSRC Press. Pp. 130-140.
  • Leibowitz, B.L., Bozalek, V., Carolissen, R., Nicholls, L., Rohleder, P. & Swartz, L. 2012. Educating the educators: Creating a powerful learning environment. In Community, Self and Identity: Educating South African University Students for Citizenship. Cape Town: HSRC Press. Pp. 117-129.
  • Leibowitz, B.L. & Holgate, D.B. 2012. Critical professionalism: a lecturer attribute for troubled times. In Higher Education for the Public Good: Views from the South. Stellenbosch: SUN Media in association with Trentham Books. Pp. 165-178.
  • Leibowitz, B.L. 2012. Understanding the challenges of the South African Higher Education landscape. In Community, Self and Identity: Educating South African University Students for Citizenship. Cape Town: HSRC Press. Pp. 3-18.
  • Nicholls, L., Rohleder, P., Bozalek, V., Carolissen, R.L., Leibowitz, B.L. & Swartz, L. 2012. Apartheid was your past, not mine. In Community, Self and Identity: Educating South African University Students for Citizenship. Cape Town: HSRC Press. Pp. 73-86.
  • Van Schalkwyk, S.C., Herman, N. & Muller, A. 2012. Graduate attributes for the public good: A case from a research-led university in South Africa. In Higher Education for the Public Good: Views from the South. Stellenbosch: Trentham Books in association with SUN Media. Pp. 87-100.


  • Winberg, C., Engel-Hills, P.C., Garraway, J.W. & Jacobs, C. 2013. Professionally-oriented knowledge and the purpose of professionally-oriented higher education. In Kagisano Number 9, Council on Higher Education, South Africa. Pp. 98-119.


  • Bozalek, V., Carolissen, R. & Leibowitz, B.L. 2014. A pedagogy of critical hope in South African higher education. In Discerning Critical hope in Educational Practices. New York: Routledge. Pp. 40-54.
  • Jacobs, C. 2014. Methodological meditations on producing rich narrative data. In Theory and Method in Higher Education Research II. Bingley: Emerald. Pp. 63-81.


  • Costandius, E., Blackie, M.A.L., Leibowitz, B.L., Nell, I.A., Malgas, R.R., Rosochacki, S.O. & Young, G. 2015. Stumbling over the first hurdle? Exploring notions of critical citizenship at Stellenbosch University. In Davies, M. & Barnett, R. (eds.) The Palgrave Handbook of Critical Thinking in Higher Education. London: Palgrave MacMillan. Pp. 545-558.
  • Jacobs, C. 2015. Mapping the terrains of ICLHE: A view from the South. In Wilkinson, R. & Walsh, M.L. (eds.) Integrating Content in Language in Higher Education: From Theory to Practice. Selected papers from the 2013 ICLHE Conference. Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang. Pp. 21-38.  
  • Jacobs, C. 2015. Opening up the curriculum: Moving from the normative to the transformative in teachers' understandings of disciplinary literacy practices. In Lillis, T., Harrington, K., Lea, M.R. & Mitchell, S. (eds.) Working with Academic Literacies – Case Studies Towards Transformative Practice. Colorado: Parlour Press and WAC Clearinghouse. Pp. 131-141.


  • Herman, N. 2016. Counting and countering the opportunity cost of professional learning: A 'care-full' approach. In Being Scholarly – Festschrift in Honour of the Work of Eli M Bitzer. Stellenbosch: SUN Media. Pp. 53-61.