Ethics of Teaching: Beliefs and Behaviors of Community College Faculty Page: 42
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culture) of institutions of higher education. If faculty
perceive that they have volitional control over their actions,
they (their actions) will mirror intentions. If, on the other
hand, faculty perceive that they cannot act at will they may
alter actions in disagreement with what their intentions are.
Added to this explanation of decisions, in this case, about
ethical or unethical behavior, is another about the nature of
the relationship between a person's beliefs and behaviors.
Since the two are relatively independent, it is important to
inquire about each.
Cognitive dissonance theory similarly supports this
approach. Not only are beliefs and behaviors independent, they
may be incongruent. Whether one agrees with Festinger or
Burnes, it has been shown in the Tabachnick study that
respondents will 1) see an action as ethical, yet not perform it
in teaching and 2) see an action as unethical, yet commit it at
some time during their teaching experience.
Again, given the limited data on beliefs and behaviors
about ethical teaching, this investigation yields evidence or
descriptive data that adds value to the existing body of
research on ethics in teaching. We can expect to find, during
the study, some difference in beliefs and behaviors, and fully
acknowledge that variables external to the respondent's
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Scales, Renay Ford. Ethics of Teaching: Beliefs and Behaviors of Community College Faculty, dissertation, August 2002; Denton, Texas. (https://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc3212/m1/48/: accessed May 25, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, https://digital.library.unt.edu; .