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Abstracts, Volume 34

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Volume 34 / Issue 1

An Innovative Program for Success: The National College Advising Corps - Editor's Page

Libby V. Morris

What's Yours is Mine: An Investigation of Current Copyright Policies of Education Journals

Katrina A. Meyer

Abstract: This research investigated the current copyright policies of 21 education journals published by academic societies, universities and university presses, and commercial publishers. For the sample I chose only journals with a copyright policy on the journal or publisher web site, and I then analyzed the content of the policies in order to answer three research questions. (1) What is the nature of copyright for education journals? (2) What evidence exists for the adoption of various copyright innovations (e.g., use of Creative Commons, shared copyright)? (3) Is innovation widespread or limited to certain types of journals? The findings indicate that 16 journals (76%) had traditional “transfer of copyright” policies. However, five journals (24%) offered a range of innovations, including shared copyright, author-retained copyright, first publication rights, and use of Creative Commons licensing.

Joint Appointments and the Professoriate: Two Houses but no Home?

Jeni Hart and Matthew M. Mars

Abstract: Interdisciplinary work within higher education has increased significantly over past decades (Amey 2004; Creamer and Lattuca 2005). However, the professional implications of interdisciplinary research and instruction for the faculty members who engage in such academic work remain unclear. This study of science educators who hold appointments in two academic departments begins to address this empirical gap. The outcomes provide insight into the factors that influence the professional lives of these faculty members. The knowledge gained from the study will provide mentors, colleagues, and administrators insight into the challenges facing academics undertaking this work. Further, this research seeks to inform policy makers in regard to how tenure and promotion is determined for jointly appointed faculty in science education and other interdisciplinary fields.

Cultivating Voice: First-Generation Students Seek Full Academic Citizenship in Multicultural Learning Communities

Rashné R. Jehangir

Abstract: Research has shown that first-generation, low-income college students experience both isolation and marginalization, especially during their first-year of college, which impacts their long-term persistence in higher education. In this article, I argue that learning community pedagogy designed with attention to multicultural curricula is one vehicle to address the challenges faced by these college students. Organized around the themes of identity, community, and agency, an interdisciplinary Multicultural Learning Voices Community (MLVC) was created at a large, public midwestern research university to provide TRiO students with challenging academic coursework that would connect with their lived experience and help them build bridges of social and academic integration during their critical first-year of college. This article presents qualitative data from a multiple case study of seven cohorts of the MLVC, which captures students’ perceptions of their experience.

A Model for Curricular Revision: The Case of Engineering

Michael Harris and Roxanne Cullen

Abstract: The ability to teach one’s self is a critical skill for workers in the 21st century because of the rapidity of change and innovation. To educate students to meet this challenge, we need to re-envision curriculum with the goal of producing graduates who have the ability to complete the transition from novice to expert after graduation and continue to deepen their expertise throughout their careers. Using engineering education as a model of current efforts in curricular revision, we present a method for curricular review based on learning types in order to design an undergraduate experience that is transformative and congruent with a learner-centered approach.

Volume 34 / Issue 2

Little Lectures - Editor's Page

Libby V. Morris

Democracy Plaza: A Campus Space for Civic Engagement

Johnny Goldfinger

Abstract: This article examines “Democracy Plaza,” a campus space dedicated to written and spoken communication about issues of public concern. The Plaza gives students opportunities to become civically engaged through self-expression and the exchange of ideas. A series of chalkboards on the Plaza allows them to write their thoughts and read the comments of others, and events where students can speak and deliberate about important civic matters are hosted in this space. This article discusses the concept of Democracy Plaza and its development, maintenance, and utilization as a campus space for civic engagement.

Interpreting a Community of Practice Perspective I Discipline-Specific Professional Development in Higher Education

Maria L. Blanton and Despina A. Stylianou

Abstract: Through this study we explored a community of practice framework applied to faculty professional development at a mid-size state university in order to examine the issues unique to discipline-specific professional development in higher education. Through content-focused professional development activities conducted by the authors, several key areas were identified that point to challenges in building a faculty community of teaching practice: (a) the need for a culture of professional development, (b) developing old-timers and recruiting newcomers, (c) the need for teaching scholars to coordinate professional development, (d) challenging the “culture of service”, and (e) the need for a language to mediate thinking about practice.

Maximizing Learning Through Course Alignment and Experience with Different Types of Knowledge

Phyllis Blumberg

Abstract: Consistency among the objectives, learning activities, and assessment exercises results in aligned courses, which give students direction and clarity and yield increased learning. However, instructors may not check for course alignment. This article describes a concrete way to determine course alignment by plotting the course components on a table using the cognitive process levels from a revised taxonomy of learning objectives. Once instructors realize that courses are misaligned, they can make adjustments. By giving students experience with varied types of knowledge, which is the other part of this taxonomy, they also learn more. The types of knowledge include factual, conceptual, procedural, and meta-cognitive knowledge.

Does Educational preparation Match Professional Practice: The Case of Higher Education Policy Analysts

Eduardo C. Arellano and Mario C. Martinez

Abstract: This study compares the extent to which higher education policy analysts and master’s and doctoral faculty of higher education and public affairs programs match on a set of competencies thought to be important to higher education policy analysis. Analysts matched master’s faculty in three competencies while analysts and doctoral faculty matched in five competencies. The findings suggest possible reasons why analysts and graduate faculty agree or differ on various competencies. Also, the findings raise important questions regarding the preparation of higher education policy analysts and the graduate programs that educate them. This study is an addition to the body of competency literature.

Faculty Productivity Barriers and Supports at a School of Education

Susan A. Santo, Mary E. Engstrom, Linda Reetz, William E. Schweinle, and Kristine Reed

Abstract: All programs in a midwestern university recently embarked on a path to help increase the scholarly productivity of faculty. The effort to develop a research emphasis within the School of Education required determining the needs of tenure-track faculty regarding meeting the new requirements. The purposes of our study were to investigate these needs and identify the individual, environmental, and leadership factors that affect faculty productivity. Findings revealed a need to transform the School’s service and teaching culture to a culture of research and scholarship. Recommendations for helping other schools of education to become more research-oriented are provided. While the study focuses on data from a particular School of Education, the implications may generalize to faculty productivity within other institutions, particularly within professional schools.

Volume 34 / Issue 3

Faculty Redefined - Editor's Page

Libby V. Morris

Protest Reconsidered: Identifying Democratic and Civic Engagement Learning Outcomes

J. Patrick Biddix, Patricia A. Somers, and Joseph L. Polman

Abstract: Using a case study approach, the authors examine the democratic and civic engagement learning outcomes of a campus protest. The conceptual framework is built on the ideas outlined in Learning Reconsidered (Keeling 2004) and modeled in its pragmatic follow-up, Learning Reconsidered 2 (Keeling 2006). Results suggest student and campus administrator actions during a campus protest support democratic aims, student development, and digital age democracy. Recommendations for campus educators are included. This study extends previous discussion on activism’s journey from detrimental to developmental (Astin 1999; Chambers & Phelps 1993; Hamrick 1998; Hunter 1988) by mapping the learning environment through the interaction of protestor and university and by incorporating new forms of activism.

Faculty Hiring at Top-Ranked Higher Education Administration Programs: An Examination Using Social Network Analysis

David DiRamio, Ryan Theroux, and Anthony J. Guarino

Abstract: Using network analysis we investigated faculty hiring at 21 U. S. News top-ranked programs in higher education administration. Our research questions were as follows. Do top programs hire from each other? Are faculty from the “outside” finding positions at top programs? Mixed results hint at implications for the “health” of the hiring network. Closed systems in higher education may produce unintended consequences as graduate programs look to expand into new global markets.

Factors Contributing to Improved Teaching Performance

Whitney Ransom McGowan and Charles R. Graham

Abstract: This article focuses upon the quality and scholarship of teaching as it pertains to educational and faculty development. We outline what more than 200 faculty members at one institution have done over a 3-year period to make significant and sustained improvements in their teaching, surprisingly with minimal effort. The top three factors leading to improvement were active/practical learning, teacher/student interactions, and clear expectations/learning outcomes. We provide practical applications for change and suggestions for future research.

The Influences of Faculty on Undergraduate Student Participation in Research and Creative Activities

Shouping Hu, Kathryine Scheuch, and Joy Gaston Gayles

Abstract: Using data collected from surveys of college juniors and seniors and faculty members in related academic departments, this study examined whether faculty teaching and research orientations, as well as faculty external funding, had any impact on undergraduate student participation in research and creative activities. The results of the study indicated that faculty research orientation and external funding were indeed positively related to student participation in research activities. However, faculty members’ teaching orientation was not significant. Further analyses indicated that faculty teaching and research orientations had different impacts on a range of research and creative activities by undergraduate students. The findings from this study provide insight on ways of improving college teaching and learning as well as informing the development of institutional academic policies related to faculty and undergraduate education.

Take the Fifth': Mentoring Students Whose Cultural Communities Were Not Historically Structured Into U.S. Higher Education

Jualynne E. Dodson, Beronda L. Montgomery, and Lesley J. Brown

Abstract: This article presents a description of the African Atlantic Research Team as exemplary of ten years of successful mentoring of undergraduate and graduate university students who are focused on a Ph.D in disciplines traditionally associated with academic research and teaching. The team is distinctive because it is multi-disciplinary in composition, the majority of its members are from communities historically excluded from structures of U.S. higher education, and its activities focus on members working collaboratively and collectively through most areas of their academic learning and socialization. Though the numbers of this case study are small, 95% of team members successfully completed their bachelor’s degree with majors that facilitate their application for graduate study in disciplines linked to academic research, writing, and university instruction. These undergraduate majors differ from those focusing upon social problems or applied or professional majors. Eighty percent of the team members applied for graduate study, and only one did not attend graduate school.

Volume 34 / Issue 4

The Value of Considerate Conduct - Editor's Page

Libby V. Morris

Institutional Efforts to Support Faculty in Online Teaching

Robert Orr, Mitchell R. Williams, and Kevin Pennington

Abstract: Effective processes, practices, and infrastructure are essential components of successful online teaching and learning efforts; and they lead to a sense of faculty ownership of online teaching as well as enhanced support from an institution’s administration. The institution’s recognition of faculty members’ efforts to teach online in relation to the traditional concepts of scholarship, tenure, and promotion is an important motivational factor for sustaining effectiveness in the online learning environment. This study examined institutional efforts to alleviate or overcome challenges faced by faculty members in creating and teaching online courses, and we investigated faculty members’ perceptions regarding these institutional efforts.

Hutchins's University of Utopia: Institutional Independence, Academic Freedom, and Radical Restructuring

Peter Sloat Hoff

Abstract: In a crisis-plagued world looking to higher education for knowledge, wisdom, and solutions, higher education itself is stumbling. Its transformational thinking has frozen up like an overstressed computer program; and we need, in effect, to “push the reset button.” In 1953, the renowned and controversial president of the University of Chicago, Robert M. Hutchins, authored a refreshing and provocative work, The University of Utopia, containing ideas that still challenge today’s paradigms. He argued for institutional independence over “accountability,” “outcomes,” and “stakeholders.” He indicted educational evils he called “industrialization,” “specialization,” “philosophical diversity,” and “social and political conformity” and suggested ways to defeat them. Although his 56-year-old thoughts on reconceptualizing the multiversity are not a panacea, they could help higher education make a fresh start. This essay reintroduces the modern reader to Hutchins’s iconoclastic and stimulating ideas in the hope of restarting the stalled agenda for educational reform.

A Case Study of Relationships between Organizational Culture and Curricular Change in Engineering Education

Prudence Merton, Jeff Froyd, M. Carolyn Clark, and Jim Richardson

Abstract: We examined two curricular change efforts at a small, midwestern engineering and science college in order to explore how organizational culture influences curricular change processes. We found that the failure of one effort (measured by inability to sustain the curriculum over time) and the success of the other (the curriculum continues to be offered by the institution) were directly linked to how well the change strategies aligned with the culture of the institution.

Service Learning Experiences in University Science Degree Courses

Ann Sherman and Leo Mac Donald

Abstract: This article describes a study about a service learning project at a small undergraduate university. We examined how professors and students became involved in service learning through course work and related activities. This study sought to find out why participation in service learning is low in post-secondary education science and mathematics courses. Participants described challenges to participation as well as benefits which, if emphasized, may allow for some growth in participation by science degree students.

Inquiry-based Learning and Undergraduates' Professional Identity Development: Assessment of a Field Research-based Course

Silvia Gilardi and Edoardo Lozza

Abstract: Innovative strategies in inquiry-based learning are recognized as improving the quality of higher education learning, but there is a need to explore whether and how these strategies promote the development of professional identity among undergraduates. In this article we describe an inquiry-based course, situated in a European context, which is designed to support students’ professional identity development through reflective practice; and we present the assessment of students’ learning outcomes. Results highlight the key roles of field research, peer groups, and a narrative approach in promoting positive student attitudes toward reflecting on their production of knowledge and in developing their professional identity.

Value Perceptions as Influences upon Engagement

Lee A. Swanson

Abstract: This study was designed to assess whether changes in stakeholders’ perceptions about the value generated by an institution might influence the nature of their engagement with it. Quantitative and qualitative analysis of research data revealed a positive correlation between stakeholders who believed an institution generated social or economic value and those who had higher levels of involvement with it. The results also indicated that the nature of this stakeholder engagement with the institution would change if their perceptions were altered regarding the value it generated. These important new insights fill a gap in institutional-stakeholder engagement theory and can help inform leaders as they consider engagement strategies.

Volume 34 / Issue 5

Inspiration and Action: Life and Legacy of Jeannette Rankin - Editor's Page

Libby V. Morris

Interdisciplinary Strategies as Transformative Change in Higher Education

Karri A. Holley

Abstract: Using data collected through case studies of 21 research universities in the United States, I reviewed the efforts institutions are undertaking to meet the growing demand for interdisciplinary knowledge. I adopted the framework of transformative change, where change occurs over time and brings important shifts in the way an institution views itself. Findings indicated that implementing interdisciplinary initiatives is accomplished not only through changes in how institutional work is organized and the facilities in which the work is carried out, but also through concurrent shifts in the institutional culture related to interdisciplinary endeavors.

Launching Interdisciplinary Programs as College Signature Areas: An Example

Tammy Stone, Kathleen Bollard, and Jonathan M. Harbor

Abstract: Increasingly administrators are concerned with inspiring and supporting faculty members in the creation of interdisciplinary programs in response to research and funding shifts and public need. This article presents an initative undertaken at the University of Colorado Denver, demonstrating a method for identifying and launching a set of signature interdisciplinary programs for a diverse college environment that overcomes hesitancy and hindrances at the individual, departmental, and institutional levels.

Janusian Leadership: Two Profiles of Power in a Community of Practice

Lisa D. Weaver, Meghan J. Pifer, and Carol L. Colbeck

Abstract: This article investigates how informal positions of power emerge within a community of practice and how positions of power influence communication and understanding about key issues. Findings from a study of one community of practice reveal Janusian leadership within the group and the effects of emergent, informal power roles on group goals, adding to theoretical knowledge about small groups, academic peer groups, and communities of practice.

An Action Research Study of Student Self-Assessment in Higher Education

Tamara M. Walser

Abstract: Although student self-assessment is considered a critical component of assessment for learning, its use and related research are rare in higher education. This article describes an action research study of self-assessment as an instructional strategy in two university courses. Results indicate that self-assessment exercises provided students the opportunity to reflect on the course and their performance, helped them monitor their own progress, motivated them to do well in the course, and provided them the opportunity to give feedback to the instructor. Additionally, from the instructor perspective, the exercises provided useful feedback for course improvement and facilitated interactions and relationships with students.

Mission Statements, Physical Space, and Strategy in Higher Education

Sam J. Fugazzotto

Abstract: The effectiveness of higher education institutions has bases in institutional structures and cultures. However, structure and culture represent abstract concepts while institutions realize high performance in practice. Given their salience in higher education, mission statements and campus space bring structure and culture into the realm of practice. Moving from abstract to concrete, this paper shows how mission statements embody structure and culture and how physical space, in turn, enacts mission in day-to-day institutional life. By harnessing the mission-space linkage, strategy can access structure and culture for the purpose of increasing effectiveness.

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