Professor Sarojini Nadar


6. Scholarship and Publication in the Area of Teaching and Learning

I have 3 chapters in internationally published books and 10 peer-reviewed journal articles related to teaching and learning. The publications are detailed in my CV (APPENDIX A2). I have been involved in reflective practice of teaching through conference presentation, research and publication for a number of years now. I will detail these below.

Firstly, as the international coordinator of the International Network in Advanced Theological Education (INATE) for four years, one of my job requirements was to develop contextual theological curricula in the 8 institutions which belonged to the network. In 2005, I coordinated and organised a conference with the theme: “Contextual Theology in ‘Gendered Colour’: Doing Theology in the Global Village” in Budapest, Hungary. I presented a paper on a key-note panel entitled: “Contextual Theology in ‘Gendered Colour’: International Theological Institutions Doing Theology in the Global Village”. The reflections from this were published as a chapter in a book entitled: “Contextuality and Inter-Contextuality in Theological Education: an African Perspective” in Handbook of Theological Education in World Christianity: Theological Perspectives--Regional Surveys--Ecumenical trends. Edited by Dietrich Werner, David Esterline, Namsoon Kang, Joshva Raja (eds.), 2010, Regnum Books: Great Britain.

Secondly, I am invited to give papers at international conferences on my experience of theological education in Africa. For example, I was invited as a theological educator to participate in the “Theological Education in Africa and the Middle East section” of the 9th Assembly of the World Council of Churches held in Porto Alagre, Brazil. There I presented a paper entitled “Theological Education in Africa and the Challenge of Globalisation.” This paper was subsequently published as “Contextual Theological Education in Africa and the Challenge of Globalization” in an ISI accredited journal, Ecumenical Review Vol. 59, no.2-3, April/July: 235-241.

“Prof Nadar coordinated an interdisciplinary course for Honours and Masters students called “Theory and Method in Religion and Theology… [She] developed a format which we still use today… This methodology is described in a special issue of the Journal of Constructive Theology edited by Prof Nadar.”

Thirdly, I am committed to developing feminist theological pedagogy in Africa. In this regard, I was the lead-editor of a special double volume of essays in the Journal of Constructive Theology: Gender, Religion and Theology in Africa (2009 14.2/15.) with the theme: “Feminist Theological Pedagogy in Africa.” This special issue documented the experiences of lecturers who taught on the module, Theory and Method using a gendered narrative as a case study. What emerged in the course of teaching this module was that both the gendered nature of the case study and the method of using a narrative to teach resulted in each lecturer using principles of feminist pedagogy in their teaching, whether wittingly or unwittingly. This volume of essays is still used as a key resource in developing the current module (See Appendices L1 for the editorial and L2 for the full issue of the journal).

“ It is fair to say that Professor Nadar is the driving force behind this expanded initiative. But her contribution has not only encompassed organizational and managerial expertise (the whole process runs like clockwork) but extends to the teaching/supervision itself. She is the cohort leader in teaching as well as in organization. She is the linchpin of the plenary discussion sessions, giving short and penetrating insight to the various student presentations..”
Prof. Donal McCracken
Peer Evaluation

Much of my current scholarship on teaching and learning is based on action research – a cycle of planning, acting, observing and reflecting) where the process involves “both ‘engineering’ particular forms of learning and systematically studying those forms of learning within the context defined by the means of supporting them…” (Cobb et al 2003:9). I was able to “engineer” a trans-disciplinary model of cohort supervision together with Dr Saras Reddy, in the College of Humanities during my tenure as College of Humanities: Dean of Research, and I have been subsequently studying these forms of learning. The “engineering” required a great deal of conceptualising and organising as it was for the first time that such an initiative was being organised across the College in a trans-disciplinary context. These workshops were so highly acclaimed that in 2013 we introduced the 2nd year PhD Cohort as well as a new Masters Cohort. A paper detailing this process was presented at the 2013 Annual UKZN Teaching and Learning Conference and is currently being prepared for publication – See APPENDIX M.

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