Postsecondary Teaching and Learning Development Needs: Motivators and Barriers Associated With Participation in Educational Development
This study investigated instructor perceptions of motivators and barriers that exist with respect to participation in educational development in the postsecondary context. Eight instructors from a mid-size, research intensive university in south-western Ontario participated in semistructured interviews to explore this particular issue. Data were analyzed using a qualitative approach. Motivation theory was used as a conceptual framework in this study, referring primarily to the work of Ryan and Deci (2000), Deci and Ryan (1985), and Pink (2009). The identified motivators and barriers spanned all 3 levels of postsecondary institutions: the micro (i.e., the individual), the meso (i.e., the department or Faculty), and the macro (i.e., the institution). Significant motivators to participation in educational development included desire to improve one’s teaching (micro), feedback from students (meso), and tenure and promotion (macro). Significant barriers to participation included lack of time (micro), the perception that an investment towards one’s research was more important than an investment to enhancing teaching (meso), and the impression that quality teaching was not valued by the institution (macro). The study identifies connections between the micro, meso, macro framework and motivation theory, and offers recommendations for practice.