Portucalense University (PORTUGAL)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2022 Proceedings
Publication year: 2022
Pages: 2455-2464
ISBN: 978-84-09-45476-1
ISSN: 2340-1095
doi: 10.21125/iceri.2022.0616
Conference name: 15th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 7-9 November, 2022
Location: Seville, Spain
This study aims to analyse the role played by the academic leadership in developing pedagogical practices promoting social responsibility in a private higher education institution in the north of Portugal. Despite the limited research in the area, the interest in this subject has been growing in recent years. In this study, we attempt to understand the pedagogical methodologies that promote social responsibility competencies in the students. Higher education institutions must direct their activities and knowledge to both the internal and external communities, contributing to solving concrete social problems. Academic leaderships are central in this process because they are essential in promoting pedagogical practices aligned with the higher education institutions' social responsibility, like the active teaching/learning methodologies (e.g. project-based learning and service-learning).

In this work, we focused on the qualitative methodology through the case study method. The participants of this study are students, lecturers and academics with leadership roles in a private higher education institution. The authors collected the data used in this study through questionnaires, semi-structured interviews, written narratives, and documental analysis. The study reveals that pedagogical practices implementation aligned with social responsibility leads to an improvement of the students' qualifications and helps in their development as socially responsible citizens, acknowledging, however, some lack of interest by the lecturers in adopting active pedagogical practices. Nevertheless, the academic leaders interviewed (e.g. lecturers who are members of the administrative body) have described the development of personal and professional qualification projects that instil the importance of active citizenship in the students and whose results are analysed to improve the process of continuous learning.

We conclude that promoting social responsibility competencies to students in all higher education courses is essential and that this should be done using active methodologies.

We intend that this work will contribute to the debate about the importance of leadership in higher education institutions, promoting pedagogical innovation, social responsibility, and sustainability practices.
Academic Leadership, Higher Education, Social Responsibility, Pedagogical Practices.