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UBC Theses and Dissertations

The facilitation and hindrance of scholarly activity as reported by The University of British Columbia education faculty members Cochran, Michele Sharon Kells


This study was concerned with developing and exploring a reasonably, comprehensive scheme of categories which describes, from the perspective of The University of British Columbia education faculty members, what facilitates and hinders their scholarly activity. The Critical Incident Technique was used to elicit 547 incidents from forty-one faculty members. These incidents were categorized in three separate ways: according to who facilitated and hindered (the reported responsible agent or agency), to what facilitated and hindered (the reported action of the agent or agency), and to the phase of scholarly activity that was reported facilitated or hindered. Six agent or agency, twenty-three action, and six phase categories were identified. An examination of the action categories themselves revealed that they could be grouped under the superordinate categories: direct, enable, and motivate. An examination of the frequency of reported incidents in categories permitted the identification of relationships among agent or agency, phase, and action categories. Several types of evidence provided support for the reliability and validity of the category schemes. From an examination of the findings as a whole, six conclusions were drawn. First, not all action categoriesare relevant for every person, project or phase. Second, not all agent or agency categories are involved to a noticeable extent with every action category. Third, the action categories are interrelated. Fourth, the action categories are bipolar in the sense that each actually does contain or may plausibly be said to contain both facilitating and hindering events. Fifth, the action categories happen or could happen as part of everyday university life. Sixth, there is evidence to suggest that the action categories are useful. Future studies might: 1) undertake further studies which will more fully explore and validate the action categories; 2) determine to what extent the action category scheme applies to other faculties of education and other faculties; 3) use alternative methods to confirm relationships among action, agent or agency and phase categories; 4) examine how the action category scheme is affected by diverse types of change; and 5) determine how an administrator can best accomplish the task of motivating, enabling, and directing scholarly activity.

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