Research and/or learning and teaching: A study of Australian professors' priorities, beliefs and behaviours

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Journal Article
Higher Education Research and Development, 2014, 33 (4), pp. 649 - 669
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This paper presents findings from an empirical study of key aspects of the teaching and research priorities, beliefs and behaviours of 72 professorial and associate professorial academics in Science, Information Technology and Engineering across four faculties in three Australian universities. The academics ranked 16 research activities and 16 matched learning and teaching (L&T) activities from three perspectives: job satisfaction, role model behaviour and perceptions of professional importance. The findings were unequivocally in favour of research in all three areas and remarkably consistent across the universities. The only L&T activity that was ranked consistently well was 'improving student satisfaction ratings for teaching', an area in which academics are increasingly held accountable. Respondents also indicated that their seniors encourage research efforts more than L&T efforts. Recommendations include that higher education rewards for quality L&T are maintained or improved and that recognition of L&T research domains is further strengthened. © 2013 HERDSA.
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