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ERIC Number: EJ838031
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 6
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0009-1383
Taming the Publishing Beast: The College of St. Catherine Scholars' Retreat
Farr, Cecilia Konchar; Cavallaro, Joanne; Civil, Gabrielle; Cochrane, Susan
Change: The Magazine of Higher Learning, v41 n3 p14-19 May-Jun 2009
Publishing is the sleeping beast that faculty at college like the College of St. Catherine, a 5,000-student women's college in Minnesota's Twin Cities, have tiptoed around for years. Here, as in many institutions devoted to undergraduate teaching, professors could once amble undisturbed along the promotion path equipped only with pedagogical excellence. While some produced excellent scholarship, most didn't worry much about producing articles or books to earn tenure. But now when a school chooses to underplay scholarship, it undermines its own reputation for academic rigor. Fewer publishing scholars mean less prestige and lower national rankings--which, in this competitive marketplace, leads to worries about fewer students. So publishing has become increasingly central in the evaluation systems of even the most student-centered colleges, and faculty and administrators hunt for ways to encourage scholarly production without being punitive or shifting the institutional focus away from teaching. In this article, the authors offer an account of how their college began to transform its community--how they overcame a Midwestern institutional culture of reticence about scholarship and got people talking about it. Now in its ninth year, the College of St. Catherine's Scholars' Retreat has been the primary stimulus for change in their college's culture. A five-day hiatus during which about twenty faculty and staff members work intensively on scholarly writing at a conference center, Scholars' Retreat is where the college's faculty members blend hard work with recreation and collegiality. It is more writers' retreat than boot camp, but it has elements of both. The success of the College of St. Catherine Scholars' Retreat is the result of strategic choices that enacted the faculty members' values and reflected their community. A brief list of how-to's that might offer help to other institutions on a quest for a more productive scholarly environment, especially one based on community-building rather than fear or competitiveness, is presented.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Minnesota