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Job Satisfaction in Teaching: An Examination of Personal and Environmental Influences on Faculty. AIR 2002 Forum Paper.

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An ongoing tension among faculty roles has generated discussions questioning the amount of teaching faculty members actually do. Before assessing this issue, it is important to investigate satisfaction levels of teaching faculty. Using the model of L. Hagedorn (2000), this study examined how personal and environmental factors combined to influence faculty feelings of satisfaction in their teaching experience. Data came from the Higher Education Research Institute (HERI) faculty survey in 1992. Rates of faculty response were judged to be of sufficient quality at 289 institutions, generating responses from 37,417 faculty members. The analysis is restricted to full-time faculty whose primary role was teaching. The strongest individual predictor found within the environmental domain for all three models considered is faculty perception of a caring and supportive environment, followed by themes of student learning, collegial respect, and trust. Fostering an environment in which faculty can spend their time teaching students with support and without the need to spend energy on "defensive" tactics may explain increased levels of satisfaction. (Contains 12 tables and 25 references.) (Author/SLD)

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Author:Zabriskie, Michael S.; Dey, Eric L.; Riegle, Stephanie G.
Publication:ERIC: Reports
Date:Jun 1, 2002
Words:246
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