Faculty Adoption of Emerging Technologies in Higher Education Online Environments

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Marianne Justus, Ph.D.

Marianne Justus
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Marianne Justus


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My most recent presentation was based on my ongoing interest in working with and mentoring doctoral students to ensure they achieve success in completing their degree.The title of my paper was Scaffolding Knowledge from Research to Writing: The Role of Reflection in Turning Doctoral Candidates into Graduates. Other areas of ongoing interest are E-learning implementation and the diffusion of innovative practice in teaching and learning; qualitative data analysis; cultural diversity and the influence of cultural and social contexts in education; the impact of culture on interaction and engagement with social media; web-based resources that support knowledge construction and the emergence of community; pedagogical beliefs surrounding the integration of emerging technology.

The Role of Pedagogical Beliefs in Emerging Technology Integration: An Exploratory Case Study of Faculty Perspectives
Scaffolding Knowledge from Research to Writing: The Role of Reflection in Turning Doctoral Candidates into Graduates
Internationalization of Higher Education Institutions Using Advanced Technology Integration
Transformative Virtual Learning Teams in Doctoral Education: The Role of Interdependence
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Dr. Justus has been a faculty member at the University of Phoenix since 2001. After completing her first degree, she began her career in telecommunications; then moved to Hawaii and worked with a large public relations firm that specialized in hospitality and tourism. She completed an M.A. in Educational Administration, and began her thirty five year career in higher education as a full-time faculty member, coordinator of cooperative education and as a senior administrator. During her career, she had the opportunity to travel extensively and participate in cross cultural curriculum projects as well as program evaluation. She assumed leadership positions in higher education in Maryland and Virginia and managed corporate training in the private sector. Dr. Justus received her Ph.D. from George Mason University and is now actively involved in doctoral education at the University of Phoenix. She chairs doctoral committees, mentoring students from the inception of their research to the final approval of their dissertation, a highlight of her current role as chair and mentor. She facilitates all levels of doctoral residencies, and teaches EDD, EDT and RES courses. Dr. Justus was an early adopter of technology and has been an advocate for distance learning since the early years of her career. Her papers and presentations have focused on advanced technology integration in teaching and learning, social media and its impact on cultural competency, the impact of language and culture in virtual learning communities, fostering online learning communities of practice, social presence as a retention factor in global environments, virtual learning teams in doctoral education and Web 2.0 technology as a tool for internationalizing the curriculum. Dr. Justus was honored to be appointed as a Research Fellow in 2014. Her paper was published in The Qualitative Journal in February 2017. She participated in a major multi-tiered project in 2016 as part of the CEITR based on her interests related to how culture impacts interaction and engagement with social media. Having been a Dissertation Chair and mentor for doctoral students for 10 years, with three graduates just within the past year and fifteen graduates in total, her interest in the role of reflection in doctoral studies resulted in her most recent 2018 presentation on the role reflection can play in turning doctoral candidates into graduates.
Degrees Completed: 
Doctoral Degree
Educational Technology/Language and Culture
George Mason University
Masters Degree
Educational Administration
Simon Fraser University
Bachelors Degree
Honors English with a Minor in French
University of British Columbia
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Doctoral Faculty and Dissertation Chair
University of Phoenix
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Technology plays a major role in online learning beyond the delivery of virtual content. Emerging technologies (often referred to as advanced technologies or Web 2.0 technologies) have the capacity to connect and communicate, to create content and to construct new knowledge.  Making use of instructional strategies and technological tools to encourage interaction and enhance motivation support a student centered, student directed, interactive learning environment and may increase retention and student engagement. Providing emergent learning paths for students through innovative pedagogies facilitates preferred learning and communication styles and is an expressed goal of educational institutions seeking to increase enrolment and enhance retention. The problem is that faculty remain unconvinced of the pedagogical value of Web 2.0 technologies despite research demonstrating its impact on student engagement, motivation and retention. Without faculty champions, the benefits of collaborative and socially connected technologies will remain unrealized. The purpose of this qualitative case study will be to investigate faculty attitudes related to technology implementation and the conditions most likely to promote technology integration with a focus on a) pedagogical models based on the integration of learning theory related to technology acceptance; b) learning strategies and Web 2.0 tools based on actual practice or on behavioral intent, and c) conditions that support implementation. Participants will include a purposeful sample of 10 to 15 faculty members from a population of higher education faculty who are implementing or intend to implement advanced technologies. This study will contribute to the current gap in research related to the complexity of instructor views and beliefs in higher education regarding the extent that advanced technologies can make a positive contribution to transforming pedagogical practices and impact student success.

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