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How satisfied are academics with their primary tasks of teaching, research and administration and management?

Titus Oshagbemi (School of Management and Economics, The Queen’s University of Belfast, UK)

International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education

ISSN: 1467-6370

Publication date: 1 August 2000

Abstract

Higher education (HE) is currently undergoing changes and facing challenges in the UK, including coping with growth in the mature student entry, the removal of the binary divide, the reduction of student grants and the likelihood that students will increasingly have to pay more for their education. This article reflects on sustainable development in HE and probes how satisfied academics are with their primary tasks of teaching, research and administration and management. Using a questionnaire survey, the study found that about 65 percent of the university teachers were satisfied, very satisfied or extremely satisfied with research. Similar figures for teaching and administration and management are about 80 and 40 percent respectively. The study further investigated operational aspects of universities and in particular, whether satisfaction with each of their core tasks was related to age, gender or rank. The results show that significant associations exist between age and satisfaction in the core aspects of the university teachers’ job. However the nature of the impact of age on the job satisfaction of academics varies from one aspect of the job to another. The nature of the relationships between age and research, teaching and administration and management is not clear, although the relationships themselves are statistically significant. While it appears that, generally, the older one is, the greater the satisfaction enjoyed with respect to teaching and administration and management, the reverse appears to be true with research satisfaction. The results also reveal, expectedly, that research satisfaction was related to rank – the higher the rank, the greater the level of research satisfaction. It was also found that gender satisfaction is not related to teaching, research or administration and management. The interpretations of these results and their implications to sustainability in higher education institutions are explored.

Keywords

Citation

Oshagbemi, T. (2000), "How satisfied are academics with their primary tasks of teaching, research and administration and management?", International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, Vol. 1 No. 2, pp. 124-136. https://doi.org/10.1108/1467630010371876

Publisher

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MCB UP Ltd

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