Professor/Senior Associate Professor in Educational Development

Xi'an Jiaotong - Liverpool University – Educational Development Unit (EDU)

School: Academy of Future Education

Position: Professor/Senior Associate Professor in Educational Development

Contract Type: Fixed-term, renewable. 3rd contract is open-ended 


In 2006 Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University (XJTLU) was created by the University of Liverpool and Xi’an Jiaotong University – a top ten university in China. Offering a unique international education experience, XJTLU brings together excellent research practice and expertise from both institutions and gives students the skills and knowledge they need to secure careers in a global marketplace. XJTLU now has over 25,000 enrolled students in both Suzhou and Liverpool in the UK, with plans to grow to about 28,000 students by 2025. There are currently about 2,000 staff, among which about 1,000 academic staff, with an almost even split between citizens of the People’s Republic of China and international passport holders. XJTLU offers our undergraduates and postgraduates over 100 programmes with a diverse spectrum of courses.

XJTLU is entering a new and exciting phase of its development as part of its strategic priorities for the next ten years. Adopting a new higher education model based on the concept of Syntegrative Education (SE), XJTLU is currently opening a new Entrepreneurial Education site in Taicang, part of wider Suzhou, where the Entrepreneur College (Taicang) is located. The Taicang site will be a pioneer of, and educational model for, the future campus in addressing challenges arising from the 4th Industrial Revolution. Other new initiatives include new working partnerships with Xi’an Jiaotong University, the continued development of the four new Academies, and exploration of further potential locations to develop the SE model.

With a focus on innovative learning and teaching, and research, XJTLU draws on the strengths of its parent universities, and plays a pivotal role in facilitating access to China for UK and other institutional partners. At same time, XJTLU is exploring future education by blending the educational theory, best practice and culture from west and east.

For detailed information about the university, please visit www.xjtlu.edu.cn. 


The Academy of Future Education of Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University is an educational innovation ecosystem that focuses on research, exploration, support, and dissemination of philosophy and best practices for future education. The core mission of the Academy is to impact education innovation and reform in China and beyond through a variety of projects and programmes, based on fundamental approaches in educational innovation and systemic development designed to contribute to the future of education. The Academy supports individuals and institutions at all levels, including all the K-15 schools as well as vocational education and higher education institutions.

Four units make up the Academy, namely the Department of Educational Studies (EDS), Institute of Leadership & Education Advanced Development (ILEAD), and Educational Development Unit (EDU), Learning Institute for Future Excellence (LIFE). Key projects of the Academy include the following programmes:

  • Master’s and doctoral degree programmes in education
  • Research projects on future education
  • Education innovation community
  • Professional development programmes for educational practitioners
  • Student learning excellence support programmes
  • Online-onsite hybrid learning environment and resources.

EDU is a unique and leading institution in China for educational development, innovation, and education of educators (short courses and professional development communities). Its key customers include XJTLU staff as well as educational developers around the world.


The broad mandate of the Faculty roles in EDU are to support the professional development of XJTLU staff as well as the production of publications and artefacts (websites, development materials) associated with educational development. The core mission of the roles in EDU is dual: 1) to support the implementation across XJTLU of learning and teaching; 2) to support and advance XJTLU Learning & Teaching Strategy, with a focus on innovation in learning and teaching. This is mainly achieved through the delivery of institutional academic development programmes; primarily, the PGCert programme, and other Continuing Professional Development (CPD) programmes. Other areas of support include providing assistance and guidance on peer review, and curriculum and assessment design, as well as collaborating with departments to develop specific learning and teaching strategies, events, or activities. A specific focus on XJTLU’s Research-led Learning and Syntegrative Education are also desirable.

As appropriate, the role holder will conduct research on teaching and learning, develop pedagogical resources, and lead workshops and other events for faculty, students and staff. 
Supporting the teaching and learning practices of XJTLU staff are the primary responsibility and this position is open only as a teaching and practice position, not a teaching and research position.  


Applications are invited for Faculty Positions of EDU (Senior Associate Professor/Professor in Education) within the Academy of Future Education at Xi'an Jiaotong-Liverpool University. The role holder reports to the Director of EDU or to the relevant Deputy Director.

  • Lead the development of university level faculty professional development initiatives in specific areas as senior member within the EDU team.
  • Contribute to the policy or institutional development of XJTLU in faculty development or education innovation and transformation.
  • Development and delivery of educational development for XJTLU learning and teaching that reaches and exceeds international standards of educational development.
  • Communication and collaboration with other units at XJTLU/AoFE and external partners;
  • Academic research on personal interested topics in education.
  • Teaching on training programmes within EDU, such as the PGCert.
  • Support the implementation, across the institution, of the University’s vision for Learning and Teaching.
  • Support the development of an institutional CPD framework and ready relevant documentation for approval by the respective committees at XJTLU and the University of Liverpool, as well as accreditation by the Higher Education Academy (HEA).
  • Provide expert and specialist advice and guidance to academic staff in developing excellence in teaching with a primary view of enhancing the student learning experience at XJTLU.
  • Develop collaborative networks to identify and disseminate good practices in teaching and learning and evaluates their effectiveness.
  • Recommend, lead and facilitate the effective sharing of good practices in assessments and other student evaluation.
  • Act as a consultant/coach to academic staff seeking to enhance the quality of their teaching.
  • Maintain and develop resources, including websites and other tools that facilitate national and international good practice in learning and teaching.
  • Work collaboratively with departments, schools and centres, to contribute to achieving the strategic ambitions of the University in relation to academic enhancement and excellence in learning, teaching and research, and to contribute to achieving the University’s ongoing operational objectives.
  • Keep up-to-date with changes and developments in related policies and procedures.
  • Reflect on personal professional practice and keep abreast of current developments in learning and teaching through engagement with the wider community via subject associations, attendance and presentations at conferences, colloquiums and personal development days.
  • Willing to engage in personal development and training and change the focus of the role, where appropriate, to meet the changing needs of the University.
  • Engage with relevant university and departmental committees, working groups and forums to raise awareness of pedagogic principles, share examples of best practice and highlight developments in the field.
  • Develop and maintain expertise in learning and teaching associated with one or more academic disciplines of XJTLU.
  • Carry out any other duties as required, commensurate with the role position. 


  • A collaborative and collegial sprit.
  • A flexible approach to working and agile problem solving abilities.
  • Proactivity and the ability to work independently and also as part of a team.
  • A commitment to lifelong learning and development. 


  • Ideally, a minimum of 5 years' experience in post-secondary education, and ideally 3 years’ experience in educational development.
  • A strong track record in teaching in higher education, with a focus on innovative or non-traditional pedagogies;
  • The successful candidate should be able to demonstrate:
  • Excellent knowledge of current theories and practices in education, particularly with respect to post-secondary teaching and learning (e.g. student-centred active learning, large classes, small groups, team-based learning, blended and online learning, flipped classrooms, transnational education etc.), and educational development.
  • The ability to create and deliver programming (informal and formal stand-alone or embedded activities) for teaching development.
  • Collegiality and a willingness to work with others.
  • The ability to effectively lead and collaborate on cross-functional and multi-disciplinary teams, multi-tasking and establishing priorities and meeting deadlines with minimal direction.
  • Knowledge of and experience in Quality Assurance processes including accreditation requirements of professional bodies, and understanding of approaches to quality enhancement.
  • Strong computer skills, including a high degree of facility with the use of all Microsoft applications and the use of Web 2.0 technologies for educational purposes using a VLE (Moodle preferred), and the ability to use and model educational apps and collaborative software.
  • A proven ability to enhance and implement a strategic vision for EDU that aligns with University strategies;
  • A some knowledge of HE management but particularly in the area of people management with an emphasis on building strong teams and processes as well as systems that support career development and enable staff through supportive annual review conversations;
  • An established track record of success in leading or providing consultancy in education innovation, or running education community, or developing and delivering training programmes in higher education, or vocational education, or elementary education;
  • A commitment to innovation in education with special reference to XJTLU education philosophy, research-led teaching, and syntegrative education;
  • Experience managing as well as networking an academic unit internally and externally to build brand and profile;
  • Experience working within a thriving multicultural environment;
  • An ability to lead, uplift and inspire early-career staff from within EDU.
  • Applicants are expected to speak English fluently.
  • PhD or MA/MS degree in Education and related area; 


  • An international educational development profile including publications; student-centred education and educational experience; technology-enhanced education; education management and leadership or related areas with a transnational education perspective and a record of publications and research funding are preferred.
  • Rich experiences in innovative teaching and curriculum development.
  • Rich administrative and leadership experiences at schools or university contexts.
  • A strong track record in designing and delivering education programmes, executive coaching, academic supervision, and management consulting for educational institutions and practitioners.
  • Strong connections with scholars and practitioners in the field and taking a leadership role at professional associations nationally and/or internationally. 


Membership of and engagement with a relevant professional body such as SEDA (Staff and Educational Development Association), Education Development Centre (EDC), or the Professional and Organizational Development Network in Higher Education (POD) is preferred, though not essential.

Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy is preferred, though not essential. Senior and Principal Fellowship are more desirable.  


Employment at Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University is regulated by Chinese Labour Laws, and must comply with the regulations of the provincial government. These regulations stipulate who is eligible for legal employment with regard to obtaining work permits and visas.  Please be advised candidates over 65 may be not eligible for a work visa in the P.R. China.


  1. Clear career development path with annual review.
  2. Professional development trainings are provided.


SALARY: Competitive salary in the market


1. Allowance: XJTLU provide various month/annual/one-off allowances as

    • Housing allowance
    • Travel allowance
    • Education allowance
    • Relocation allowance

2. Commercial insurance: international insurance plans customized for XJTLU staff and family members. (details refer to the University Policy)

3. Paid holidays:

    • Statutory Holidays (11 days)
    • Annual Leave (36 days)
    • Family Matters Leave
    • Paid Sick Leave
    • Marriage Leave
    • Paternity Leave
    • Parental Leave

4. Working visa and residence permit in China: XJTLU sponsors working visa and residence permit in China for the staff.


The university provides every new faculty member with Research Development Fund to encourage them to initiate research projects, and Research Engagement Fund provided to support their continuous research activities. 

The university will also support all faculty members to apply for national, province and city level programs. These programs aim to support excellent scientists, both Chinese and non-Chinese-citizen, to work and carry out research in China. 

Some of the programs are listed in the table below. Successful applications are based on the applicant’s educational background, academic/research field, research achievements, working experience, etc. The university will provide full support on the applications. 

Talent/Research Program/Fund

  • Outstanding Youth Science Foundation Project (Overseas) RMB 1-3 Million
  • Innovation Leading Talent up to RMB 2 Million
  • Outstanding Leading Talent of International Discipline 50% of Annual Package
  • Young Leading Talent of International Discipline 50% of Annual Package


Please submit your application online. Applications must be submitted in a single pdf file that includes 3 parts in the order of:

  • A cover letter
  • A current CV, including country of citizenship, and highest degree level
  • Contact Details for Three References

For specific enquiries relating to the position, please email the Director of EDU Rebecca Wakelin Rebecca.wakelin@xjtlu.edu.cn

Informal enquiries may be addressed to HR at juan.chen@xjtlu.edu.cn.