A systems theory of evaluation provides a framework and
critical indicators for evaluating effectiveness of Web-
mediated faculty work in creating and transferring
A Systems Framework for Evaluation
of Faculty Web-Work
Robert J. Marine
Student, institutional, and faculty involvement in distance higher education is growing. Enrollments for academic credit grew between 1995 and 1999 from 700 institutions and 753,640 students to 1,680 institutions and 1,600,000 students. (National Center for Education Statistics, 1999) A recent State Higher Education Executive Officers (SHEEO) survey found that “faculty use of instructional technology” ranked as the top priority among faculty issues, with a mean ranking of 4.02 out of 5, well ahead of second place “attracting and retaining faculty in state” at 3.88 (Russell, 2000). Similarly, the two most important issues for strategic success identified by 464 institutional respondents to a 2001 EDUCAUSE Current Issues survey were funding information technology (IT) and faculty development (Roche, 2000). The number of faculty engaged in Web-mediated teaching, research, and service remains unclear, though the National Center for Education Statistics reported that 5.9 percent of all postsecondary faculty participated in distance education, teaching an average 1.5 such classes, and 52.4 percent of them were for academic credit (National Center for Education Statistics, 2002). This latest available data leaves us with an incomplete picture of the extent and nature of faculty involvement in Web-work.
Sound evaluation of all faculty work should include the specifics of each faculty member’s institutional relationships with regard to teaching, research, and community service appointments and should consider academic freedom, selection of materials, technical requirements, and proprietary rights and responsibilities (American Association of University