The effects of separately budgeted research expenditures on faculty instructional productivity in undergraduate education
AuthorWard, Gary Tripp, 1950-
AdvisorLeslie, Larry L.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractIn the past five to ten years, state financial support for public colleges and universities has been reduced in relative terms. As direct state funding has declined, colleges and universities have sought alternate forms of support to replace the lost funds, mostly through an increased emphasis on securing contracts and grants. This increased grant seeking behavior has been accomplished through individual departments, the main economic and administrative units within higher education. Administrators at all levels actively encourage faculty members to seek out external sources of funding that will support research directly and sustain departmental administrative functions indirectly through overhead charges. Pfeffer & Salancik's (1978) resource dependency theory is the conceptual framework used to examine whether changes in departmental revenue support patterns affect undergraduate education at major public research universities. Specifically, whether faculty undergraduate productivity is reduced in proportion to the amount of external research financing acquired by academic departments. Resource dependency might explain the behavior of faculty in this regard, revealing that external agents of resource supply and rewards have a significant impact on undergraduate instructional production. To test the theory that resource dependency can explain variation in departmental undergraduate instructional productivity, data from the 1994 survey results of the National Study of Instructional Costs and Productivity (NSICP) is examined. This sample data contain information on 27 Research I and II institutions, 93 departments, and 955 data points. Traditional statistical procedures explore the interrelationships between research spending and student credit hours/class sections taught on a per faculty member basis. The primary finding is that the resource dependency framework linking separately budgeted research expenditures (a proxy for external resource provider influence) and faculty undergraduate instructional productivity (a proxy for internal organizational behavior) is not supported. Other factors not evaluated by this study, such as faculty training, faculty and departmental culture within higher education, departmental power and influence, and internal reward structures of departments may hold greater weight in determining faculty undergraduate instructional productivity.
Degree ProgramGraduate College