Degree Date


Document Type

Dissertation - Public Access

Degree Name

Ed.D. Doctor of Education

Academic Discipline

Higher Education Leadership

First Advisor

Nathaniel Cradit

Second Advisor

Janice Nilsen

Third Advisor

Kathleen Gorski


Through a multi-layered review of United States University, a gap in professional development for adjunct faculty was identified. To ensure that students’ are best supported in the online classroom, ensuring that faculty are provided with training around pedagogical and instructional skills aligned with the University mission is essential. The perceived value of the Community of Practice model was assessed to address the gap in faculty development through a mixed-methods convergent design study. The quantitative data and qualitative data were merged under the unidirectional framework for convergent design integration, and presented in a narrative discussion format. Themes which emerged included knowledge sharing, establishment of a community identity, and the preparation for full-time faculty roles. No statistical significant difference was found amongst the three disciplinary groups. The findings support that a Community of Practice model can address the unique professional development needs of an online-based adjunct faculty member.