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ERIC Number: EJ833917
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Reference Count: 41
Are New Faculty Prepared to Teach Diverse Learners?
Lail, Audrey A.
Inquiry, v14 n1 p29-40 Spr 2009
Many of the community-college faculty hired during the 1960s and 1970s had initially embarked on K-12 teaching but moved into community-college instruction after discovering they preferred adult education and college schedules. While these former K-12 teachers had little to no instruction in how adults learn, their formative teaching years were amply filled with fundamental educational philosophies and pre-service teaching internships. Other instructors who intended to become university professors found the tenure process and its research and publishing requirements unappealing; therefore, they too opted for community-college careers. Although graduate schools seldom offered them formal pedagogy, many graduate assistants had opportunities to gain teaching experience in environments filled with faculty role models and mentors. These two groups--the former K-12 teachers and graduate assistants--have developed into today's core of community-college faculty. Their skills and dedication are largely responsible for the success of today's community colleges. However, beginning in the 1990s, a new group of faculty began to emerge who did not originally envision a career in education. This new group prepared for other non-academic careers and came to the classroom as a second vocational opportunity, either by chance or as a result of self-actualization. Although finding their present teaching experience enjoyable, they are without the early exposure to a formal educational process intended to shape them into teaching professionals. While these new instructors entered community-college instruction with great commitment to the mission and possibly even with great mastery of their disciplines, they still emerged with pedagogical deficiencies. In this article, the author examines the preparation of community-college faculty, especially those recently hired, to teach the varied students institutions enroll.
Descriptors: College Instruction, Role Models, Elementary Secondary Education, Teaching Experience, College Faculty, Student Diversity, Teacher Competencies, Community Colleges, Adult Learning, Teaching Assistants, Teachers, Educational History, Career Change
Virginia Community Colleges Association and Virginia Community College System. 101 North 14th Street, Richmond, VA 23219. Tel: 804-819-4666; Fax: 804-819-4771; Web site: http://www.vccaedu.org/inquiry
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A