ERIC Number: ED305866
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1989-Mar
Using Culture To Understand Conflict within a University: Professional versus Academic Values in University Professional Schools in Australia.
Harman, Kay M.
The idea that professional schools represent a sector where two particular sets of conflicting norms are clearly apparent is discussed. Teaching staff in university professional schools inhabit an ambivalent cultural world. Their dual mandate requires commitment to traditional academic norms and scholarship through the disciplines along with commitment to the transmission of distinctly vocational skills and attitudes. Conflicts commonly experienced by teaching staff in the schools of medicine, law, social studies, music, education, and environmental planning at the University of Melbourne are examined. Three sections look at the following: (1) tensions between teaching and research (balancing theory and practice, conflicting ideologies); (2) tensions induced by the influence of the practicing professions on professional schools (courses, divided loyalties involving professional association activity); and (3) tensions between professional schools and nonprofessional fields (involvement in university matters, university ignorance of professional school activity). Findings suggest that university leaders who are mindful of the cultural origins of and are sensitive to the tensions between the conflicting roles are more likely to develop strategies that minimize symbolic separation and ensure the survival and growth of both the academic-scholarly and practice-oriented cultures. Contains 11 references. (Author/SM)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A