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ERIC Number: EJ1043305
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 11
The Engaged Community College: Supporting the Institutionalization of Engagement through Collaborative Action Inquiry
Purcell, Jennifer W.
Journal of Higher Education Outreach and Engagement, v18 n3 p105-112 2014
The purpose of this action research study was to explore how community colleges increase their capacity for community engagement. Faculty and staff members who were identified as community engagement leaders within a public community college participated in a series of interventions to improve community engagement practices within the college. The study produced 4 significant findings for community engagement practices. First, distributed leadership to advance community engagement is derived from college employees' and community partners' boundary-spanning behaviors. Second, the creation and extension of communication channels among multiple stakeholder groups for community engagement parallels the advancement of an institution's community engagement agenda. Third, authentic engagement exists in various degrees throughout distinct stages of institutionalization, reflecting the unique contexts and stakeholder interests involved. Fourth, collaborative action inquiry as a method of professional and organizational development utilizes existing expertise among college employees, strengthens internal networks, and supports the institutionalization of engagement. These findings substantiate the necessary integration of theory and practice in community engagement in higher education.
Descriptors: Community Colleges, School Community Relationship, Community Involvement, Action Research, Leadership, Decision Making, Organizational Change, Theory Practice Relationship, Interviews
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Two Year Colleges; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A