Source: Mentoring & Tutoring: Partnership in Learning, Volume 18, Issue 1 (February 2010), pages 53 – 59.
Online teaching in higher education is growing at an exponential rate and it will continue to escalate. Powerful tools of technology have been delivering instruction in unprecedented ways, yet these are only as effective as the masters of this craft. Those using technology to teach online in increasing numbers are educational leadership adjunct professors in particular.
Adjunct faculty members can comprise most of or even all of a university department's faculty and they often carry heavier responsibilities than regular faculty for distance education and hybrid instruction. Clearly, the time has come for colleges and universities with online programs to provide mentoring that assures the success of their greatest teaching force, its adjunct faculty.
In this article, the authors describe four primary needs, articulated as cornerstones, comprising effective mentoring programs for educational leadership adjuncts.
Four cornerstones or vitally important elements for the successful online teaching experience of adjuncts faculty members are professional development, effective communication, fostering balance and forming relationships.