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The Changing Role of Faculty

The Changing Role of Faculty
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Author(s): Graham Shaw (Barry University, USA)
Copyright: 2009
Pages: 7
Source title: Encyclopedia of Distance Learning, Second Edition
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Patricia L. Rogers (Bemidji State University, USA), Gary A. Berg (California State University Channel Islands (Retired), USA), Judith V. Boettcher (Designing for Learning, USA), Caroline Howard (HC Consulting, USA), Lorraine Justice (Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong) and Karen D. Schenk (K. D. Schenk and Associates Consulting, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-198-8.ch038


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The role of faculty within traditional teaching institutions worldwide has always been multidimensional, involving administrative duties, research responsibilities, and a commitment to community service in addition to teaching. In the majority of institutions, this teaching role of faculty has remained unchanged for decades. In fact, most faculty teach the way they themselves were taught using the tried and trusted Socratic transmission paradigm in which sections of academic content are divided into 50 minute lectures and delivered to often large groups of passive recipients. There is simply very little incentive to make alterations to a teaching model that has been in place for hundreds of years (Buckley, 2002). Present day faculty culture often values research, productivity, and quality over high quality teaching and student evaluations tend not to reward faculty prepared to experiment and take risks with models of learning that differ from the students’ previous learning experiences. Things are changing and the use of “chalk and talk” as the primary means of content delivery is being replaced at some institutions by more collaborative, interactive approaches to learning that are supported by course management systems and the numerous recent innovations in e-learning technologies, such as electronic books, text messages, podcasting, wikis and blogs (Kim and Bonk, 2006).

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