Intrinsic and Extrinsic Motivators that Attract and Retain Part-time Online Teaching Faculty at Penn State

Open Access
Author:
Taylor, Ann Hamilton
Graduate Program:
Workforce Education and Development
Degree:
Doctor of Philosophy
Document Type:
Dissertation
Date of Defense:
February 06, 2017
Committee Members:
  • David Passmore, Dissertation Advisor
  • David Passmore, Committee Chair
  • Kyle Peck, Committee Member
  • Wesley Donahue, Committee Member
  • Lawrence Boggess, Outside Member
Keywords:
  • higher education
  • adjunct faculty
  • distance learning
  • online
  • faculty motivation
  • online faculty
  • part time faculty
  • online teaching
  • incentives
  • online instruction
  • faculty retention
  • hiring practices
Abstract:
The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between the attraction of a given type of adjunct faculty to teach online via Penn State World Campus and extrinsic and intrinsic motivators, as well as the relationship between a given type of adjunct faculty’s decision to continue teaching online via Penn State World Campus and extrinsic and intrinsic motivators. Do the incentives that attract and retain adjunct faculty to teach online via Penn State World Campus vary depending on that faculty member’s adjunct career typology? A survey was sent to all individuals who have taught at least one online course for Penn State World Campus in the last three years. The survey included demographic questions that enabled respondents to self-identify as full-time faculty and staff or one of five adjunct career type populations: Graduate Students, Aspiring Academics, Freelancers, Practitioners, and Loaners. Respondents were asked to indicate which of 25 extrinsic and intrinsic motivators attracted them begin to teach online via Penn State World Campus. They were also asked to indicate which of the same 25 extrinsic and intrinsic motivators influenced them to continue teaching online via Penn State World Campus. An analysis of the survey responses indicates that 13 of the 25 incentives appear to differently impact various adjunct career types decision to begin to teach via Penn State World Campus. With regard to the incentives that impact one's decision to continue to teach via Penn State World Campus, an analysis of the survey responses indicates that there 14 of the 25 incentives appear to differently impact various adjunct career types decision. Finally, a list of the top five incentives that attract each adjunct career type to begin to teach via Penn State World Campus was developed based on the data collected, as well as a list of the top five incentives that attract each adjunct career type to continue to do so.