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Senior University Teaching Qualification (SUTQ)

Teacher professionalisation is at the heart of the Centre of Expertise in Learning and Teaching. We offer the UTQ, courses, individual advice, tailor-made support, and the SUTQ. We are proud that we can offer you the SUTQ trajectory and hope that you are interested to join us and the SUTQ community.

The SUTQ is the follow up trajectory of the University Teaching Qualification (UTQ), for teachers who want to develop themselves further into an evidence informed educational innovator. In June 2021, a new round of the SUTQ will start.

The SUTQ offers you the opportunity to work on an educational innovation project of your own choice. Through conducting this project, you will develop competencies in using evidence-informed approaches in education, and in participating in a community of practice where ideas and experiences are shared with peers within and outside the university.

Below you can find more information on the context and contents of the SUTQ. There is also a separate page with an overview of previous SUTQ projects for inspiration. This is the recording of the SUTQ closing session on 1 April 2021 (for UT only).

  • The SUTQ in short

    For one and half year, with a workload of 160 hours, the participant conducts an educational design research project to improve and innovate (the own) educational practice. The project can be conducted individually, or in a small team. This is supported by supervision, peer review, methodology workshops, writing sessions, small group meetings with a coach, and participation in the SUTQ community.

    The following principles characterise the SUTQ:

    • Peer review: during the project the participant involves peers for feedback on the SUTQ project process and output;
    • Evidence informed: for answering the educational question the participant uses scientific literature and data to justify insights, approaches and choices made; 
    • Student driven learning; the participant takes control over his/her own learning process;
    • Community building: The participant participates in the SUTQ community to share findings and learn from others.

    The scholarly teacher, following the Career Framework of University Teaching of Ruth Graham, should be able to conduct educational design research to work evidence informed and to generate new knowledge from research in teaching practice. This methodology forms the basis of the SUTQ approach and will be explained to you in a series of workshops, and be practiced in your own SUTQ project.

    Educational design research

    “Educational design research is a genre of research in which the iterative development of solutions to practical and complex educational problems provides the setting for scientific inquiry. The solutions can be educational products, processes, programs, or policies. Educational design research not only targets solving significant problems facing educational practitioners but at the same time seeks to discover new knowledge that can inform the work of others facing similar problems. Working systematically and simultaneously toward these dual goals is perhaps the most defining feature of educational design research.” McKenney &Reeves, 2014.

    Each SUTQ round, a set of themes is chosen, fitting with the UT policy and educational trends. Participants will be clustered around these themes during the small group meetings with the coach. Project proposals preferably fit within one of these themes.

    The SUTQ is concluded with a report (or other relevant format, optional), elaborating the work that was done. Next to this, a reflection report has to be written. These are assessed by the programme director related to the SUTQ project and an educational expert.

    Because the SUTQ requires a considerable time investment, the participant should seek permission to participate in the SUTQ from his/her supervisor and the programme director related to their work.

  • Is the SUTQ for you?

    The SUTQ is meant for teachers who want to develop themselves further as a teacher, participating in the teacher community of the university and beyond.

    Are you interested in what really works in education, want to try out new things, want to share and learn from others, want to build up a network? Then the SUTQ could be interesting for you.

    Obtaining the SUTQ certificate could help in progressing on the Teaching excellence career path for education from the University of Twente (in Dutch). Having the UTQ is a requirement for entering in the SUTQ. Applicants are asked to show through a narrative that they are a Skilled and collegial teacher, and are ready to move to the next level of Scholarly teacher.

    The skilled and collegial teacher

    “The skilled and collegial teacher takes an evidence-informed approach to their development as a teacher and provides mentorship to their peers to promote a collegial and collaborative educational environment across their school or discipline. Their sphere of impact encompasses their academic colleagues (as well as students).”

    Ruth Graham, https://www.teachingframework.com/framework/spheresofimpact/

    The scholarly teacher

    “The scholarly teacher makes a significant contribution to pedagogical knowledge by engaging with and contributing to scholarly research which, in turn, influences educational practice within and beyond their institution. Their sphere of impact encompasses ‘educational knowledge’, at their institution and within the community in their pedagogical fields of interest (as well academic peers and students).”

    Ruth Graham, https://www.teachingframework.com/framework/spheresofimpact/

  • The SUTQ starting in June 2021

    In 2021, the SUTQ is organized around the following educational themes: 1) Challenge based learning, 2) Assessment for learning, and 3) Blended and online learning. Another theme is also possible, but has to be discussed first. 

    Within the theme you have to describe the educational question/ educational topic you would like to address in your SUTQ project. The results of the project should contribute to improvement of a module/ course, the programme or education at the UT and be of interest for others facing the same problem.

    The execution of the SUTQ project needs to take place between November 2021 and November 2022. Before the execution of the project starts, a project plan worksheet will be evaluated. After the execution of the project, the theme group will reflect on their results of the projects framed within the theme and prepare for the ceremony, which will be in February 2023.

    The figure below shows the time line that will be followed.

    The deadline for submission passed and the group is complete. A new round for the SUTQ will be announced end of 2022.

    For the formal application to the SUTQ trajectory applicants were asked to write a narrative about their educational experience and the plans they have for the SUTQ, using this format. Intake interviews took place in May, with this narrative as an input.  There was a maximum capacity of 12 participants in this round.

    For the application, the applicants sent an e-mail, containing:

    1. The narrative
    2. E-mails of their supervisor and programme director stating that they support them doing the SUTQ
  • What is the university context of the SUTQ?

    The University of Twente has adopted the Career Framework of University Teaching of Ruth Graham, as a guideline for teacher professional development. This framework consists of four levels of professional development, where the SUTQ is situated in between Level 2 (Skilled and collegial teacher) and level 3 (Scholarly teacher). The purpose of the SUTQ is to help teachers make the transition from level 2 to level 3.

    Figure: Spheres of impact. Taken from The Career Framework for University Teaching by Ruth Graham. https://www.teachingframework.com/framework/spheresofimpact/

    Through the SUTQ, the university establishes:

    • More evidence-informed innovative teaching practices;
    • More attention to (-the importance of-) the quality of education within educational programmes;
    • University/Faculty recognition of achievements of experienced teachers;
    • Promotion of the development of educational expertise by experienced teachers;
    • Community building among experienced teachers;
    • Improvement of the quality of peer guidance of beginning teachers and UTQ teachers;
    • Knowledge sharing between educational programmes in the field of education.


For more information on the SUTQ, please contact: