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The Digital Scholar: Reward and tenure (Martin Weller)

If it isn’t recognised then it isn’t recognised when it comes to getting promotion.

  • Research (more equal than the others)
  • Teaching
  • Service or management
  • Contribution to society
  • Academic esteem

A conservative value and reward system

‘Assessing quality in a reliable and transparent manner is a significant problem in the recognition of digital scholarship, and its intangibility and complexity are enough to make many give up and fall back on the practices they know and trust’. (Weller, 2011)

• Recreating the existing model

• Finding digital equivalents

• Generating guidelines that include digital scholarship

• Using metrics (500 views, 4 embeds and a keynote too simplistic)

• Peer review

• Micro-credit

• Developing alternative methods

Keynote speech and reputation

Metrics can be cheated (Hirsh 2005) and gamed (Ealagas and Alexiou 2008)

REF Research Excellence Framework

‘A digital scholar is likely to have a distributed online identity, all of which can be seen to represent factors such as reputation, impact, influence and productivity’.

‘We continually make the error of subjugating technology to our present practice rather than allowing it to free us from the tyranny of past mistakes’. Stephen Heppell (2001)

‘Many if the characteristics which would be frowned upon in scholarly articles, such as subjectivity, humour, and personal opinion, are vital elements in developing a dialogue in blogs’.

Towards the portfolio approach:

• A range of digital outputs demonstrating impact

• Commendations from the community

• Recognised experts

• Overarching narrative making the case for the work as a whole.

• Peer review = reliability and authority.

• Which could also strangle innovation. (Fitzpatrick 2009)

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