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Looking to the Future:Changes, Challenges, and Opportunities for the Professoriate…and Considerations for CIRTL Ann E. Austin Michigan State University CIRTL Network Meeting March 2, 2013
A Time of Change • The changes underway surpass “business as usual.” • “Colleges and universities now live in a sea of changed expectations…”(Newman, Couturier, & Scurry, 2004) • “We are entering a period in which the capacity to nourish and manage change will be one of the most important abilities of all.”(Duderstadt, 2000)
Being a Faculty Member is Important Work • Faculty members: • the “heart” of a college • the intellectual capital • The work of the faculty enables colleges to fulfill their missions. • The quality of the faculty relates directly to institutional effectiveness.
Key Question • What important trends in higher education are impacting the professoriate and classroom teaching now and in the coming years—and may need to be considered in CIRTL programming?
Key Trends affecting the Professoriate • Changing Societal Context • Developments in the Information and Technology Age • The Changing Student Body • Changes in Academic Work Itself
The Changing Societal Context • Role of Market Forces • Emphasis on competition, efficiency, cost-effectiveness, performance • Shift from higher education as public good to private good • Increased institutional accountability coupled with heightened demands • Rising costs but reductions in government funding
The Changing Societal Context • Changing Employment Market • Strong emphasis on job preparation and success • Yet many jobs of the future don’t currently exist • Press for better completion rates • Demands on curriculum: relevance and timeliness of curriculum
The Changing Societal Context • Demands for Accountability • Skepticism from the public • Emphasis on demonstrating and quantifying learning outcomes
The Changing Societal Context • Increasingly Global World • International connectedness of the economic landscape • Major national issues exist in a global context • Skills needed for working in an internationalized workplace
The Changing Societal Context • The Changing Nature of Higher Education’s Covenant with Society • Missions: • Advancing knowledge • Supporting economic health • Preparing citizens • Addressing societal and global problems • Transforming lives
The Changing Societal Context • Implications: Faculty must be… • Entrepreneurial, flexible • Understand assessment • Able to engage effectively with the public • Highly productivity and efficient • Able to move between specialization and “big picture” ideas
Developments in Technology • Changes in traditional classrooms • Flipped classrooms • Clickers, use of Internet, IPads • Online Learning • Rapid expansion of interest and availability • Blended and fully online setting
Developments in Technology • Personalized and Social Learning Contexts • Customized learning • No time and space barriers to learning • Microblogging, Twitter, Wikis and blogs, instant messenging, etc.
Developments in Technology • MOOCs • Harvard, MIT, Berkeley • Courseara • One instructor/ thousands of students
Developments in Technology • New Technologies in Research • New ways to work • Ex: Digital Humanities • Large and cross-distance collaborations
Developments in Technology • Implications for Faculty Work • Keeping up with knowledge • Working across disciplinary and national lines • Learning new technologies • Dealing with changing workloads • Changing relationships between teachers and students • Ability to create new kinds of learning communities • Shifts in teaching skills—guide, resource, facilitator, evaluator
The Changing Student Body • Increasing diversity among students • Increasing demands for relevance, convenience, and efficiency • Facility with technology and connectedness
The Changing Student Body • Implications for faculty work: • Learner-centered teaching • Support for full range of students needs • Skills in feedback and assessment of learning outcomes • Ability to interact with, advise, and understand diverse students
Changes in Academic Work • Changes in Appointments • Shift toward less secure appointment types • Employment at multiple sites—”free agents” • Lower salaries and benefits • Less institutional influence and power
Changes in Academic Work • Changes in Early Career Faculty • Diverse—gender, race/ethnicity • Interested in flexibility, balance, meaning • Concerns about: • Balance in work life • Collegiality and community • Expectations and evaluation
Changes in Academic Work • Changes in the Academic Workplace • Escalating pace and workload • Sense of declining power and autonomy • Need for continuous professional development • Challenge of maintaining sense of community
Changes in Academic Work • Implications for Faculty • Create supportive academic workplaces • Provide ongoing professional development • Create opportunities for bridge across faculty generations and appointment types
Consider… Given these trends, what further implications do we see for the professoriate—and for CIRTL?
Perils for the Professoriate?? • A bifurcated or alienated faculty • Diminished collegiality and community • Personal/ professional tensions • Diminished institutional commitment • Unresponsiveness to societal needs • Diminished academic quality
Possibilities for the Professoriate • Greater creativity and innovative thinking • More collaboration and collegiality • A more diverse workforce • More flexibility in academic careers • Greater responsiveness to societal needs
To Ensure Possibility over Peril, higher education institutions will need … • A culture of respect and support for all staff • Institutional conversations about the nature of the profession and the meaning of academic work • Ongoing opportunities for professional learning • Institutional policies that reflect and respond to the characteristics of today’s faculty • Opportunities for collegiality and community
Consider… • What are the implications of anticipated changes in the academy on the ways CIRTL prepares future faculty?
Resources • Gappa, J. M., Austin, A. E., Trice, A. G. (2007). Rethinking Faculty Work and Workplaces: Higher Education’s Strategic Imperative. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. • Cummings, W.K., & Finkelstein, M.J. (2012). Scholars in the Changing American Academy: New Contexts, New Rules and New Roles. New York: Springer. • Quinn, C.N. (2012). The Mobile Academy: mLearning for Higher Education. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. • Renn, K.A., & Reason, R. D. (2013). College Students in the United States: Characteristics, Experiences, and Outcomes. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
Contact Information Ann E. Austin Professor, Higher, Adult, and Lifelong Education 419A Erickson Hall Michigan State University East Lansing, MI 48824 Tel: 517-355-6757 E-Mail: email@example.com