Tenure-track faculty : motivations, expectations, and experiences Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/cn69m7509

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  • This study explored the motivations, expectations, and experiences of tenure-track faculty members at a public research institution. Through semi-structured interviews with twelve participants, the study utilized a constructivist paradigm to qualitative research to address the individual experiences of faculty members entering the professoriate and pursuing tenure. With this methodology and building on Social Cognitive Career Theory (Lent et al., 1994) as a theoretical framework, the study identified six themes addressing the participants' motivations, expectations, and experiences: (a) academic lifestyle is a significant motivation for entering the professoriate, (b) working within the professoriate has a potential to make a positive impact, which is a desirable and enjoyable aspect of being in the profession, (c) performance within academia contributes to the outlook participants have on their roles as professors, (d) involvement of those within an academic community help shape perception about purpose, expectations, and fulfillment as a professor, (e) choices within the career are influenced by job opportunity, and (f) working as a professor involves reconciling incongruent qualities between one's motivations and expectations of faculty work with the positive and negative aspects experienced in the profession. In conjunction with the methodology, these findings serve to inform institutional awareness and understanding of faculty by exploring the dynamic connection between motivations, expectations, and experiences.
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