Improving Teaching and Learning Skills in College of Law and Management Studies
As part of a strategy to ensure its Development Lecturers are well rounded academics, the Teaching and Learning Office at the College of Law and Management Studies recently introduced a communication for professionals module aimed at improving lecturing and presenting skills.
The module, delivered by Dr Lorraine Singh, formerly of UKZN’s School of Education, involved Development Lecturers being taught how to communicate more effectively in the classroom through improving vocal clarity and using various techniques to present effectively, especially to big classes.
At the end of the module, the lecturers participated in a competition in which they had to deliver a 10-minute presentation judged by Durban actor and retired Drama Lecturer, Mr Robin Singh, and the College’s Dean of Teaching and Learning, Professor Kriben Pillay, who initiated the development of the module.
Lecturers who took part were:
· Mr Maropeng Mpya and Ms Phumla Mbuqe of the School of Law
· Ms Vuyokazi Mtembu, Mr Njabulo Khumalo and Ms Nomfundo Kakaza of the Graduate School of Business and Leadership
· Mr Eric Ncube, Mr Benson Plaatjies and Ms Zamanguni Kubeka of the School of Management, Information Technology and Governance.
· Mr Sanele Gumede of the School of Accounting, Economics and Finance.
Mpya’s presentation, titled: “Where are the Africans in Africa?”, earned him first place. He spoke about what it means to be African in this day and age and the values of struggle hero Steve Biko. This is what he had to say about the experience.
‘The Communication for professionals module is indispensable to any academic starting out in teaching and presenting conference papers. The knowledge and skill acquired through this module has greatly enriched the way I communicate with my students and also how I present journal articles at conferences. This course has shaped the way I think about communication and has also helped me in shedding off incorrect habitual traits that were not in line with being an excellent presenter. I really thank Professor Kriben Pillay for his vision and our facilitator Dr Lorraine Singh for her patience, support and expertise. I wish most academics, young and old, can shape and reshape the way that they communicate through this communication for professionals module.’
Second was Kakaza who spoke on “Macroeconomic Performance and the Importance of Measuring an Economy’s Performance”, while third place went to Ms Vuyokazi Mtembu, who presented on: “Performance Evaluation”, which focused on human resources principles that measure performance in relation to an employee.
Mbuqe presented on “Shopping Addiction”, Ncube and Gumede on “Government Excise Tax on Suppliers”, Plaatjies on the “Macro Environment” and Kubeka on the “Sustainability of NPOs through the Social Enterprise Model”.
Commenting on the presentations, Singh said: ‘I have seen significant improvement and progress, but this learning process must not stop today. It is important for lecturers to know how to engage with students, especially in large classes, hence this is an important Teaching and Learning initiative.’
Pillay applauded the lecturers for their outstanding performance and encouraged them to engage with him if they had any ideas on how their teaching and learning skills could be further enhanced.