Introduction to Faculty Development Models

by Rohan Jowallah, Linda Futch,

“Waterhouse and Harris (2002) suggest faculty readiness and support are key components for success in any faculty development program.”


There is an emerging body of literature that recognizes the importance of training faculty for teaching online. For example, Waterhouse and Harris (2002) suggest faculty readiness and support are key components for success in any faculty development program. Waterhouse and Harris also suggest that there is the need for faculty to understand the use of technology within a pedagogical framework. For a sound pedagogical approach, it will be important to consider the social and cultural context in which a staff development model will be implemented. In some contexts, it will be necessary to consider whether a centralized or decentralized structure of support will be required. For example, will all training and support be provided in a central location? Will training and support for staff take place within departments? Or, will the training be contracted to an outside organization?

Faculty Development Models

There are several models of faculty development found in the literature reviewed. For example, the Dittmar and McCracken (2012) META Model for developing and implementing faculty development for online faculty (2012 p.  163)  gives consideration to:

  • Organizational structure, which includes the overall structure of support for faculty development;
  • Developing a community of practice for self-reflective practice and continuous professional development with capacity building to accommodate  future technology shifts;
  • Developing communication practices, which would also update faculty about policies and models for effective practices.

In examining the Dittmar and McCracken model, it is also imperative that considerations be given to the program design that includes one or more of the following designs, including:

  • Self-teaching
  • Peer mentoring
  • Collaborative course design
  • Workshops
  • Online training
  • Quality assurance evaluation programs (Herman, 2012, p.93-96)

Furthermore, additional consideration will be needed  for the online training mode selected; mentoring of staff; scope of training; individual faculty needs; quality assurance issues; incentives for training; certification; recognition for excellence; support; audience; community of practice; research; sustainability and program review (Dittmar and McCracken 2012: Golden and Brown, 2016; Behar-Horenstein, 2016; Niehaus and Williams 2016: and Adams, 2014, Jowallah et. al 2016).


Adams, S. R., & Mix, E. K. (2014). Taking the Lead in Faculty Development: Teacher Educators Changing the Culture of University Faculty Development through Collaboration. AILACTE Journal, 11(1), 37-56.

Behar-Horenstein, L. S., Garvan, C. W., Catalanotto, F. A., Yu, S., & Xiaoying, F. (2016). Assessing Faculty Development Needs among Florida’s Allied Dental Faculty. Journal Of Dental Hygiene, 90(1), 52-59 8p.

Dittmar, E., & McCracken, H. (2012). Promoting Continuous Quality Improvement in Online Teaching: The META Model. Journal Of Asynchronous Learning Networks, 16(2), 163-175.

Golden, J. & Brown, V. (Accepted for Publication 2016). A holistic professional development model: A case study to support faculty transition to online teaching. In D. Polly & C. L. Martin (Eds.), Encyclopedia of Teacher Education and Professional Development. IGI Global: Hershey, PA.

Herman, J. H. (2012). Faculty Development Programs: The Frequency and Variety of Professional Development Programs Available to Online Instructors. Journal Of Asynchronous Learning Networks, 16(5), 87-106.

Jowallah, R., Futch L., Barrett-Greenly, T., and Bennett, L. 2016 (November 16-18th).  Quality

Transformation Model for Faculty Development: a new theoretical and piratical model for

developing online faculty. Annual Online Learning Consortium International Conference.

Florida, Orlando

Niehaus, E., & Williams, L. (2016). Faculty Transformation in Curriculum Transformation: The Role of Faculty Development in Campus Internationalization. Innovative Higher Education, 41(1), 59-74.

Waterhouse, S., & Harris, R. (2002). A ten-step guide to establishing instructional technology. Washington, DC: Executive Leadership Foundation