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ERIC Number: EJ1126485
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2004-Nov
Pages: 21
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1477-9714
University Continuing Education as Teamwork--Three Case Studies
Sandberg, Håkan
Journal of Adult and Continuing Education, v10 n2 p114-134 Nov 2004
Previous work has identified a lack of focused research in the field of team working in university continuing education (UCE). However, teamwork could be seen as self-evident in UCE, in part because UCE is of interest to employees, employers, universities and society. The aim of this study is to "describe" teamwork in UCE at three universities in the UK. The main research question asks: "How can the organisation of UCE be described as 'teamwork'?" A case study strategy is applied for two reasons: first, this is an empirical study involving the examination of objects in their natural environment; and second, it describes a limited but complex situation entailing many relevant factors and hence multiple sources of information. There is a built-in expectation of divergence across cases, since the cases are selected to expose and analyse variation. The chosen research methods are a document study and an interview, based on the nature of the object in question, the research question being raised and the descriptive purpose of the study. The methodological frame of reference used in this study, the "Organisational Context", deals with conditions as prerequisites, team processes, results of teamwork and feedback. The model is reciprocal and basic to the contextual analysis. It has been used in earlier work by Sandberg (e.g., 1997b), and could be discussed in terms of the "ecological" frame of reference (Sundstrom "et al", 1990). The result shows that teamwork is present in many cases in UCE, but many common conditions function as obstacles to teamwork. For example, in many teams members are not permanent, furthermore, the academic system rewards individual achievement more than teamwork. The three cases in the study have significant similarities. The discussion points out that the actors in UCE have different perspectives beyond a common UCE-perspective. The difficulty in establishing the genuine teamwork necessary in UCE could be viewed as rooted in universities not having been originally created to meet the expectations of lifelong learning and continuing education.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Adult Education; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A