Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The emerging academician: The rise of the online adjunct faculty
by Shiffman, Carolyn J., Ph.D., Capella University, 2009, 124; 3344730
Abstract (Summary)

The use of adjunct faculty has become a mainstay for community colleges and nontraditional programs serving the adult community in both on-campus and online settings. Yet, little is known about online adjunct faculty members—who they are, why they teach, what motivates them and how satisfied they are with their positions. The existing literature compares and contrasts part-time adjuncts to their counterparts—full-time faculty. However, limited information is available regarding those who teach in virtual environments. This dissertation seeks to fill this gap by providing the results of a study of online adjuncts. The data gathered from this study reveals the demographic profile of this group of faculty members and their overall job satisfaction and motivations to teach within the virtual environment. The results are then compared to findings in the literature of adjuncts who teach in traditional settings. In addition, this study explores the perceptions of adjuncts with respect to an often used label of second-class citizens. The results of this study reveal new strategies to strengthen the commitment of adjunct faculty to virtual institutions, as the data are used to recommend recruitment and retention strategies for attracting qualified individuals based on their self-selected classification types. By cultivating motivated and satisfied adjuncts, educational institutions will strengthen the commitment and dedication of faculty, thereby increasing the length and quality of faculty members' tenures with their institutions.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Klocinski, John
Commitee: Orem, Sara, Schultz, William
School: Capella University
Department: School of Business
School Location: United States -- Minnesota
Source: DAI-A 70/02, Dissertation Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: School administration, Adult education, Higher education
Keywords: Adjunct faculty, Online faculty, Part-time faculty
Publication Number: 3344730
ISBN: 9781109036435
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