Scholarship in administration: Connecting with the university culture
This phenomenological hermeneutic study explored the meaning found in the lived experience of producing scholarship for five higher education administrators from within the major areas of administration in higher education—academic affairs, business affairs, and student affairs—from a single research university. In the historical and recent scholarship about the three fields of higher education, one issue that has not been addressed is the meaning found in producing scholarship as an administrator. Thus, the challenges and rewards of producing scholarship as a practicing administrator, creating the first step toward a possible new era in the practice of scholarship on college campuses, were explored. Individual semistructured interviews were the primary source of data, and the authors used a three-step data analysis process to develop both an understanding of what producing scholarship means for each participant and an interpretation of the meaning of producing scholarship as a higher education administrator. Across all the lived experiences of the various scholarly endeavors, each administrator was more connected to education and contributed more to the educational environment by participating in scholarly activities. The administrators were found to be more connected to the people within the university, to their own field of practice, and to the university itself.
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