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SU Teaching Fellowships 2024
Author: Karin Cattell-Holden
Published: 27/03/2024

The SU Teaching Fellowships offer eminent academics with a track record of involvement with teaching-learning-assessment (TLA) and the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning support and opportunities over one to three years to enhance and share their TLA expertise at the departmental, faculty and institutional level. 

The University has awarded 22 fellowships since the inception of the project in 2009. In 2024 another new Fellow, Dr Mariette Volschenk, has joined the current cohort of Prof. Deborah Blaine (Faculty of Engineering), Dr Taryn Bernard (Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences), Dr Marnel Mouton (Faculty of Science) and Prof. Nicola Plastow (Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences). 

Dr Mariette Volschenk 

Dr Volschenk is a Senior Lecturer in the Centre for Health Professions Education (CHPE) in the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences. She was appointed programme leader of the MPhil in HPE (MHPE) in 2023. Her doctoral studies indicated that many students may be unprepared for the challenges posed by master’s-level studies in HPE. The design of the SU MHPE as a hybrid learning interprofessional coursework programme deepens these challenges. Dr Volschenk realised the necessity for a more profound understanding of mastersness within the MHPE programme context, including strategies for professional socialization, innovative pedagogical and supervisory approaches, and virtual student support structures aimed at advancing the mastersness trajectories of MHPE candidates (Volschenk, 2021). 

The overarching aim of Dr Volschenk’s teaching fellowship is to investigate and advance the cultivation of mastersness in the MHPE at SU. The primary focus is to facilitate wider access, enhance readiness for the transition to master’s-level studies, foster academic success among master's candidates, and catalyze their subsequent career trajectories as educational scholars and leaders in HPE. 

The study intends to enhance SU’s responsiveness to national throughput and retention rates for postgraduate taught students. It should provide the university with a nuanced understanding of the dimensions of mastersness and the requisite skills for achieving academic success at this postgraduate level within HE. It is envisaged that some of the findings and ensuing interventions may potentially be transferable to other coursework master’s programmes offered in hybrid learning mode at SU as well as comparable MHPE programmes globally. Furthermore, this teaching fellowship will explore avenues for acquiring, strengthening, and sustaining the competencies of academic staff to facilitate the cultivation of mastersness in MHPE candidates. 

We wish Dr Volschenk every success with her fellowship.

For more information about the Teaching Fellowships, please contact Dr Karin Cattell-Holden at