Title

Biology Adjunct Faculty Employment, Support, and Professional Development Across Three Sizes of Rural Community Colleges

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D)

Department

Higher Edu and Learning Technology

Date of Award

Fall 2012

Abstract

The purposes of the study were to identify the employment of biology adjunct faculty, and to determine what support and professional development is provided for them across three sizes of rural community colleges. This study used a mixed-method research design. Nine rural community colleges participated in the study. Quantitative data were obtained from the registrar's office at each participating college. Qualitative data were obtained through interviews with administrators and adjunct faculty at each participating college. Findings showed statistical differences in the proportions of biology courses, biology lecture classes, and afternoon and online classes taught by adjuncts across three sizes of rural community colleges. Rural community colleges provided more support than professional development for their adjunct faculty. Larger rural community colleges were more likely to offer an award or recognition ceremony for their adjunct faculty and to have a laboratory preparation person than smaller rural community colleges. Larger rural community colleges were able to provide financial support to their adjunct faculty to attend conferences and to join professional memberships. Larger rural community colleges were more likely to have formal mentors than smaller rural community colleges. Administrators had more suggestions than adjunct faculty on how to improve the support and professional development offered by their colleges.

Advisor

Jon Travis

Subject Categories

Education | Educational Technology

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