Influence on practice

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Considering the following definition of strategy - “A strategy helps an organization realize its mission and brings its vision to life” [1] it would follow that that staff within an organisation are essential to enabling that strategy to come to life.

There are many ways in which strategies could impact on your work practice depending upon the focus of the strategy. If the strategy included a particular approach to teaching and learning, eg. experiential learning, then if you were using an expert led lecture approach you may need to consider ways in which you could move to a more experiential learning approach.

If the strategy included an increased focus on blended learning this might involve you learning more about online learning and ways to incorporate technology into your teaching.

If there was a strong emphasis on specific groups of learners who were under performing or lacked confidence you might need to explore ways in which you can support and boost student confidence or ways in which you can connect more meaningfully with those students.

The values of an organisation have an impact, as you would be expected to uphold those values in your practice.

The following are examples of expectations for educators arising from strategic priorities or themes:

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Undergraduate Education at MIT - Massachusetts Institute of Technology have six strategic themes [2]. One theme is Transforming Learning through Research, Best Practices, and Innovations in Pedagogy, Curricular Materials, and Assessment and an initiative within that is:

  • "Improve training in teaching and learning.

In order to maximize the advantages of these innovations, faculty, instructors, and teaching assistants (TAs) need training in how students learn and how to teach for learning. It is our goal that all new faculty and doctoral students will gain knowledge and experience in teaching and learning.” [3].

Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology

In the CPIT Strategic Plan 2011-2013 for Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology, two of the focus areas for successful graduate outcomes are:

  • "Deliver relevant programmes with flexible, customised, work-integrated,work-based and technology-enhanced learning opportunities
  • Improve student engagement, reputation and graduate satisfaction and destination ratings" [4].

Otago Polytechnic Otago Polytechnic currently have 4 strategic goals and also have 4 strategic frameworks to enable those goals. The frameworks outline how the institution will attain the strategic goals.

An objective within the sustainability framework is ‘to develop sustainable practitioners’ and an intended action is that:

  • “Teaching staff will model sustainable practice in their teaching and daily work practices” [5].

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Consider what your actions would be for these strategies if you worked for those institutions?


  1. McKee, A. (2012). Management: A focus on leadership. New Jersey: Prentice Hall. p 150
  2. Office of the Dean for Undergraduate Education. (n.d.). Strategic Plan. Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Retrieved from
  3. Office of the Dean for Undergraduate Education. (n.d.). Transforming Learning. Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Retrieved from
  4. CPIT(2013, February.)CPIT Strategic Plan 2011-2013, CPIT Retrieved from
  5. Otago Polytechnic. (2013). Sustainable Practice Strategic Framework 2013-2015. Dunedin: Otago Polytechnic. p.7