Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Educational Theory, Policy, and Practice

Document Type



With public criticism of American higher education on the rise, it is prudent for those in the academy to reflect upon their responsibilities to their students. Of particular salience is an examination of what constitutes misconduct within the faculty role. This dissertation reports the results of a study designed to identify what nursing educators believe to be the violation of normative teaching behaviors. A sequential explanatory mixed methods design was utilized to develop an understanding of the actions that constitute academic impropriety. The College Teaching Behaviors Inventory, a survey instrument designed by Braxton and Bayer (1999), was distributed to deans and faculty members of all associate degree nursing programs accredited by the National League for Nursing Accreditation Commission in the United States. Results reveal that nursing educators (n=604) identified nine patterns of normative behavior categorized as either inviolable or admonitory based upon the degree of sanction required if the norm should be violated. A discussion of each of the identified norms with fictional vignettes is provided. This study validates the need for critically reflective teaching that is conscious of the special nature of the teacher-student relationship. The results of this research have implications for higher education relative to issues of student retention, institutional policy regarding ethical faculty conduct, and preparation of graduate students for teaching in the college classroom.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

S. Kim MacGregor



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Education Commons