ERIC Number: ED453987
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1999-Dec-3
Reference Count: N/A
Swings and Roundabouts: Working as a Rural Academic.
Ellis, Bronwyn; Boxall, Dianne; Dollard, Maureen; Sawyer, Janet
An Australian study explored the implications of being a rural academic; distinguishing features of rural academics' work; perceptions of rural academics held by themselves and others; and contributions rural academics make to their institutions, disciplines, and communities. Interviews were conducted with 24 faculty members from 2 Australian universities that have both metropolitan and rural campuses. Distinguishing features of rural academics included the ability to teach across a wider range of subject areas and to be more flexible in course delivery methods; a workload that was stressful despite smaller classes; a closer relationship with the surrounding community; a better community atmosphere on campus; some limitations on research because of smaller academic staff groups; more cross-discipline links and location-influenced opportunities for research; a perception that the rural lifestyle was more relaxed and safer; and some deprivation from lack of things associated with a metropolitan lifestyle. Academics with no experience at a rural campus focused on perceived negative aspects of rural academics. Advantages and disadvantages are discussed in the areas of research and publishing, professional development and study leave opportunities, promotion prospects, and workload. Contributions of rural academics include educational access for rural residents, identification of rural needs and issues, and the provision of role models. Most metropolitan interviewees had no wish to move to a rural campus, but many of those with rural experience saw it as a potential lifelong career. (TD)
Descriptors: College Faculty, Collegiality, Foreign Countries, Geographic Isolation, Higher Education, Job Satisfaction, Professional Development, Professional Isolation, Quality of Working Life, Rural Areas, Rural Education, Rural Urban Differences, School Community Relationship, Teacher Attitudes, Work Attitudes, Work Environment
For full text: http://www.nexus.edu.au/TeachStud/arera/research/Ellis.htm.
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia