Educational Leadership Faculty Research and Publications

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  • ItemOpen Access
    The murky waters of neoliberal marketization and commodification on the education of adults in the United States
    (2016-10-10) Zacharakis, Jeffrey; Holloway-Libell, Jessica; jzachara; jhollow; Zacharakis, Jeffrey; Holloway-Libell, Jessica
    We approach marketization and commodification of adult education from multiple lenses including our personal narratives and neoliberalism juxtaposed against the educational philosophy of the Progressive Period. We argue that adult education occurs in many arenas including the public spaces found in social movements, community-based organizations, and government sponsored programs designed to engage and give voice to all citizens toward building a stronger civil society. We conclude that only when adult education is viewed from the university lens, where it focuses on the individual and not the public good, does it succumb to neoliberal forces.
  • ItemOpen Access
    A Snapshot of 126 CPAE Members’ Social Media Habitus for Professional Networking and Collaborations Online
    (2017-03-21) Kang, Haijun; hjkang
    This online survey was developed to help the Commission of Professors of Adult Education (CPAE) Executive Committee better understand current CPAE community members’ social media habitus for professional networking and collaborations online. 126 CPAE community members completed the survey during the two-week window in February 2017. The major findings are: -97% of the survey respondents are on various social media platforms for professional networking and collaboration purposes. -Facebook (FB) and LinkedIn are the two most popular social media platforms used by the survey respondents with the popularity scores of 28% and 29% respectively. -63% of the survey respondents self-identified as FB users and 67% self-identified as LinkedIn users. -Among the survey respondents, 78% of the FB users and 40% LinkedIn users are on the corresponding social media platforms more than 3 times a week. -Based on the survey responses, a list of social media selection criteria is developed with 11 things to consider when selecting a social media platform(s) for professional networking and collaboration use.
  • ItemOpen Access
    The Righteous Among the Nations of the World: An Exploration of Free-Choice Learning
    (2016-07-14) Yelich Biniecki, Susan; Donley, S.; susanyb; Yelich Biniecki, Susan
    The purpose of this study was to explore how learners make meaning of their experiences at exhibits depicting narratives of the Polish Righteous Among the Nations of the World, free-choice learning contexts. The study focused on two exhibits at a university in the mid-Western United States. The conceptual framework of the study integrates free-choice learning, the role of narratives, reflection, and Holocaust education. Three main mechanisms emerged from the qualitative analysis and interpretation of data of how participants made meaning of their experiences: through emotions, being challenged, and broadening awareness. This study further informs our understanding of meaning making and learning in free-choice learning contexts, suggesting ways in which we might provide additional prompts to bridge historical distance and integrate connectors to learners’ personal contexts in international education exhibits. © 2016, © The Author(s) 2016.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Exercising autonomous learning approaches through interactive notebooks: A qualitative case study
    (2014-05-18) Jaladanki, Vani S.; Bhattacharya, Kakali; kakalibh
    Grounded in the theoretical framework of interpretivism, the purpose of this qualitative case study was to explore the experiences of a teacher from an inner city high school in South Texas when using interactive notebooks to inform students’ understanding of physics concepts. The participant for the study was purposefully selected with an intention to gain an in-depth understanding of the experiences. Data collection incorporated multiple methods such as interviews, participant observations, and document analysis. Descriptive, In-vivo, process, and Labovian six-part model of narrative coding were used to reduce and manage data. The codes were grouped into eight categories. Two major themes were identified from the data analysis: Interactive Notebook - A Testimony of Constructive Learning and Interactive Notebook- A Pioneering Approach to Instruction. The findings of this study intersect science education and qualitative inquiry and create space for open-ended, autonomous, constructivist learning of scientific principles. Additionally, the findings raise implications for transferable aspects of individualized learning processes for any areas of education where concepts are challenging for students to grasp.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Revisioning information and communication technology for development (ICT4D) at the Comparative & International Education Society (CIES): a five-year account (2009 - 2013)
    (2015-03-04) Kang, Haijun; hjkang
    The purpose of this paper is to provide an account of how Information and Communication Technology (ICT) has evolved as a key topic and research area at the Comparative and International Education Society (CIES) conference. The past five years’ CIES conference papers with an ICT component are reviewed for common development trends, opportunities, and challenges. The findings include: 1) ICT has a strong presence at CIES; 2) Countries from Asia, Africa and Northern America regions have been the major contributors to CIES; 3) Educational institutions, private and professional organizations and companies have been the key ICT4D players at CIES; 4) The interaction between ICT and other areas has been established; 5) ICT4D SIG is suggested to further claim its role of connecting, building, and strengthening ICT4D community of practice at CIES. Recommendations are also made for the development of a broad research agenda for the field to grow and mature in this connected global ICT context.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Understanding online learning across cultures: The encounter between Confucius culture and Western culture
    (2014-06-04) Kang, Haijun; hjkang; Sun, Qi
    The purpose of this study is to understand how much the field knows about the role culture plays in online learning. Further, the question is situated in the interplay between online learning behaviors influenced by Confucius culture and Western teaching pedagogy. The shared understandings of Confucius culture and Western culture presented in current literature are reviewed and compared. The impact on online learning beliefs and behaviors of international student sojourners from Confucius culture is discussed from the following three dimensions: teacher-student relationship, curriculum development, and teaching and learning pedagogy. This study cautions that culture matters in online learning but its influence should neither be underestimated nor overestimated/stereotyped.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Understanding online reading through the eyes of first and second language readers: an exploratory study
    (2014-11-04) Kang, Haijun; hjkang
    Utilizing eye-tracking technology and focusing on the “rapid”, “purposeful” and “comprehending” attributes of fluent reading, this study investigated first language (L1) and second language (L2) readers’ online reading patterns and comprehension. Eye movement data from nine L1 readers and nine L2 readers were collected, analyzed and compared. Post-experiment interviews were conducted to obtain demographic and background information. The results indicate that L1 and L2 readers are heterogeneous when language proficiency is considered but they are homogeneous in many other aspects when the focus is on their online reading patterns and comprehension. While L1 readers read much faster than L2 readers, their attention distribution and performance on reading comprehension test are similar to L2 readers’. This study concludes that the essential online reading competency factors are similar in L1 and L2’s online reading when the “rapid”, “purposeful” and “comprehending” attributes of fluent reading are under investigation. When the core vocabulary of a language is mastered, it is metacognitive reading skills that play a major role in fluent reading in the context of new literacy.
  • ItemOpen Access
    The political economy of growing a rural university in the United States using online education: an examination of incentives for educational imperialism and academic capitalism
    (2014-11-03) Zacharakis, Jeffrey T.; Tolar, Mary H.; Collins, Royce A.; jzachara; mtolar; racollin
    Rural colleges and universities in the USA struggle to recruit new students as their geographic region is depopulating and cost to attend classes on campus are increasing. Online education using the Internet is rapidly expanding as an effective growth strategy to reach new groups of students. In this paper we take the position that online education is a form of cultural imperialism and academic capitalism where curriculum developers and professors are motivated to enroll new students in order to maintain the credibility and strength of their programmes and host institutions. We argue that it is not our intent to be educational imperialists or capitalists. Rather these are unintended consequences of our actions. This argument is supported by political economy theory in that we are marketing a technical rational form of online education without awareness of its long‐term cultural, economic, or political ramifications. Even though we pride ourselves on developing a high quality programme that in our eyes meet the needs of our students, understanding the political economy of online education is essential if our programme that has access to the global market is to go beyond the individual needs of students and address social, cultural and political needs. We conclude that one way out of this malaise is to understand our role as instructors and course designers as a first step toward understanding the intended and unintended consequences of online education.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Educational leadership in an online world: connecting students to technology responsibly, safely, and ethically
    (2013-03-01) Ribble, Mike; Miller, Teresa N.; tmiller
    The current gap in technology knowledge and lack of leadership preparation related to digital literacy for school environments can cause serious problems, as school leaders, parents, and broader social communities are currently realizing. The authors describe strategies for educational leaders to prepare their stakeholder groups for a digital future, as well as take actions to reduce technology misuse or abuse. Educational institutions should consider this Digital Citizenship model as a potential new tool to for students, faculty and staff—both on-site and online.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Students’ perceptions of long-functioning cooperative teams in accelerated adult degree programs
    (2013-02-26) Favor, Judy K.; jfavor
    This study examined 718 adult students’ perceptions of long-functioning cooperative study teams in accelerated associate’s, bachelors, and master’s business degree programs. Six factors were examined: attraction toward team, alignment of performance expectations, intra-team conflict, workload sharing, preference for teamwork, and impact on learning. Across degree programs, 66 - 71% of students reported equal work load sharing in their teams; 51 - 61% preferred teamwork; and 56 - 62% believed being on a team enhanced their learning. Significant statistical differences were found between associate degree and master’s degree students in performance expectation alignment, intra-team conflict, and teamwork preference.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Training online faculty: a phenomenology study
    (2011-11-07) Kang, Haijun; hjkang
    Literature on training faculty to teach online still dwells on the issues explored a decade ago. To make a substantial move in this area, it is necessary to re-evaluate the essence of training in the context of producing qualified online faculty to teach quality online courses. Employing a phenomenological approach, this study examines seven online faculty’s lived training experiences and observed that there existed incidental factors that could affect the quality of training. Further data analysis indicated that it was the different levels of understandings of “training” between different parties that led to variations in the quality of training. “There is a whole [training] world that’s going on out there … I’m just not interested… because that’s not my world,” said one research participant. Therefore, different parties involved in training online faculty should look at training from a systems approach and view training as an opportunity (1) to transfer knowledge and skills necessary for conducting quality online instruction; (2) to remove barriers preventing faculty from teaching online; and (3) to transform traditional faculty members into highly qualified online faculty.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Women in economics: Making connections and forging ahead.
    (2011-10-26) Neymotin, Florence; neymotin
  • ItemOpen Access
    The relationship between school funding and student achievement in Kansas public schools.
    (2011-10-25) Neymotin, Florence; neymotin
    Recent changes in public school educational finance in the state of Kansas are shown to have had little positive effect on student educational achievement. A differences structure is used to determine the effect of changes in revenue per student at the district level on changes in measures of student achievement. Measures of achievement employed in the analysis are student test scores in math and reading, as well as various measures of student persistence in schooling.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Rethinking distance learning activities: a comparison of transactional distance theory and activity theory
    (2011-10-18) Kang, Haijun; Gyorke, Allan S.; hjkang
    Despite its invaluable guidance to distance education development, transactional distance (TD) theory is not seamlessly synchronised with current field practice and lacks a social component. After it has provided over 30 years of guidance, there is now a need to re-appraise TD’s propositions about distance learning activities. The social–cultural aspects of the distance learner need to be highlighted because social learning is prominent in today’s practice. To address this concern, we compared TD with a social science theory – cultural–historical activity theory. This cultural–historical activity theory provides a different lens for us to explore distance learning activities – a social lens. We compare the major concepts of the two theories and illustrate some areas of compatibility. We explore the contradictions that arise from the collision of these two theories and recommend future directions for research.