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Last updated on 5 October 2023
KnowVU consists of VU teachers who are passionate about education, from all faculties. The members meet to share, on request and otherwise, the teacher's perspective on important educational developments.

The teacher's voice

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is constantly evolving. Many people are working every day to keep VU going and moving forward. This also means that lots of decisions are made. Decisions that also affect teachers. But in making those decisions, teachers are not always involved. As a result, not always the best decisions are made, or the decisions are not properly communicated and, as a result, get misunderstood. This is exactly what KnowVU wants to change. Asked and unasked, KnowVU provides advice on decisions taken at VU that concern teachers. With the aim that the teacher's perspective will no longer be overlooked.

Connecting teachers with 'VU-central' and each other 

KnowVU members are anchored in their courses and faculties. They each have a large network of fellow teachers. Because of this close, informal contact KnowVU has with its fellow teachers, KnowVU is in an excellent position to reach individual teachers and, conversely, to let the voice of these teachers resonate at a central level. In doing so, the information exchange between KnowVU members has always proved valuable. Connecting is therefore one of KnowVU's key roles.

Position of the teacher

A very important item on KnowVU's agenda is the position of the teacher. Recognize and Value, where education is concerned, requires universities to take their role as educational institutions seriously. For that, it is not enough to state the importance of education in policy notes and on websites. It must radiate from our every fibre that education is close to our hearts, and that it goes without saying that education is the core task of universities. KnowVU is committed to changing this. For instance, by advizing on the interpretation of teaching profiles, so that development in education is valued just as much as development in research.

Composition KnowVU think tank

Publication KnowVU think tank

For years, there have been discussions at VU about the teaching duties of academic teachers and the introduction of teaching profiles. Discussions about this keep resurfacing, but they ultimately lead to nothing. How can this be? KnowVU believes that a major reason lies in a number of myths surrounding academic teaching. These myths are repeatedly cited as arguments against strengthening the position of teaching at the university. As a result, our teaching is not improving as much as it could be, and recognition and appreciation of teaching duties is countered. It is about time these myths were debunked. In this manifesto, KnowVU cites five commonly cited myths. We argue why these are untrue, with the aim that we can get back to the conversation about the position of education at the university and that recognition and appreciation of education will gain momentum.

Read (Dutch only): Five myths concerning university teaching debunked

Do you have any questions?

Please contact Charlotte Meijer