Teacher, Historian, Scholar: The Professional Identity of Two-Year Faculty

AHA Session 1
Thursday, January 4, 2018: 1:30 PM-3:00 PM
Marriott Ballroom, Salon 1 (Marriott Wardman Park, Lobby Level)
Mark J. Smith, Valencia College
Tony Acevedo, Hudson County Community College
Elizabeth Bryant, Houston Community College
Nathaniel Green, Northern Virginia Community College
Paul D'Amboise, Community College of Vermont

Session Abstract

Teacher, Historian, Scholar: The Professional Identity of Two-Year Faculty

  As noted in a 2012 report by the AHA, “If we identify community college faculty only with teaching, we misrepresent their professional identity.” In this roundtable, participants will raise questions and offer solutions pertaining to the “professional identity” of two-year faculty. Are history faculty at two-year institutions teachers or scholars or historians or some combination thereof? How are two-year faculty seen in terms of these roles at their institutions? What is the place of two-year faculty within the course of education from K-12 to graduate school? Is “doing history” a necessary and appreciated task of two-year faculty? What is the balance between scholarship and teaching at two-year institutions?

In this round table community college faculty will raise some of the issues that are addressed above. Liz Bryant explores the “many roles” played by community college faculty and suggests the “niche” they play in the educational community. Nathaniel Green calls for two-year faculty to “do history” in some capacity “if we are expected to teach students the skills of our craft.” Tony Acevedo offers some potential solutions for faculty at community colleges to engage in “professional opportunities to refine their own disciplinary skills.” Paul D’Amboise calls for two-year faculty to be a central part of a “community of practitioners” that would help to ensure a balance of “pedagogy and advanced content knowledge” in history education. Mark Smith addresses the role and nature of “mastery” as a construct for faculty at community colleges.

Audience members will bring in their own experiences, concerns, and suggestions on these important issues. Together, the round table aims to help ensure that two-year faculty maintain their status as valued professionals and masters of the discipline.

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