Two year colleges are often characterized as America’s “democracy colleges” implying a difficult to implement dual mission of democratizing education for all, and advancing the democratic purpose of civic engagement. Although such goals may be explicit in a college’s mission statement, how faculty or their deans receive that mission is not well-documented. Research suggests that for a college to advance a civic mission, those involved must themselves be civically minded. Moreover, for any mission to succeed, faculty and their deans must trust one-another. However, there is scant research specific to two-year colleges in these areas. This research attempted to address these phenomena using an online survey across the 30 two-year colleges across a single state college system. The survey used two qualitative questions; one, to elicit a characterization of faculty and dean attitudes toward an institutional mission of civic responsibility; the other, to characterize the environment of trust between faculty and deans. The survey also employed the 23-item Civic Minded Professional Scale (CMP-23) to measure the civic mindedness of faculty and dean participants. Findings suggested that although most faculty and deans align with their institution’s civic responsibility, such is not universally the case. However, participants who do object to civic responsibility do so for many reasons, only some of which appeared to be politically framed. The survey findings also revealed that mistrust between faculty and deans is common, and that the effect may be toxic to the institution. Scores on the CMP-23 revealed expected trends; females scored higher than males; those with prior experience with civic engagement activities scored higher than those without; and faculty in the liberal arts rated higher than faculty in career and technical education.
Date of Degree
Doctor of Education (EdD)
Kobilka, D. W. (2021). Faculty and dean attitudes toward institutional civic responsibility, mutual trust, and civic mindedness at two year colleges. [Doctoral dissertation, Minnesota State University, Mankato]. Cornerstone: A Collection of Scholarly and Creative Works for Minnesota State University, Mankato. https://cornerstone.lib.mnsu.edu/etds/1145
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