Academic Environments in Detail


Lisa R Lattuca, Patrick T Terenzini, Betty J Harper, Alex C Yin. Research in Higher Education. New York: Feb 2010. Vol. 51, Iss. 1; pg. 21

Abstract (Summary)

Studies of change in colleges and universities often consider faculty support a key influence on the success of academic reform efforts. Scholars, however, have given relatively little attention to the role of disciplinary environments (e.g., culture, values, and habits of mind) on educational innovation and change.

Using data from 1,272 faculty members in 203 engineering programs on 39 campuses, this study examined whether engineering faculty from different academic environments (defined by Holland's typology) vary in their responses to changing curricular and pedagogical requirements.

Findings suggest that the broad disciplinary groupings often used in higher education research fail to capture the subtleties of within-field variations in faculty values, customs, and dispositions relating to curricular and pedagogical change and provide moderate support for using Holland's theory for studying organizational change.

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