ECAR Study of Community College Faculty and Information Technology, 2020

Methodology and Acknowledgments


The ECAR faculty technology study is conducted in the same manner as the annual ECAR student technology study. Both rely on respondents recruited from institutions that volunteer to partner with ECAR to conduct technology research in the academic community. ECAR works with an institutional stakeholder (the survey administrator) to secure local approval to participate in the research. Once the institutional review board process is successfully navigated and a sampling plan is submitted, ECAR provides each survey administrator with the survey link for the current year's research project. The survey administrator then uses the survey link to invite participants from that institution to respond to the survey. Data were collected between January 15 and April 5, 2019, and 10,078 faculty from 127 institutional sites responded to the survey. ECAR issued $100 or $200 gift cards to 20 randomly selected faculty respondents who opted into a drawing offered as an incentive to participate in the survey. Colleges and universities use data from the ETRAC student and faculty surveys to develop and support their strategic objectives for educational technology. With ETRAC data, institutions can understand and benchmark what students and faculty need and expect from technology. There is no cost to participate. Campuses will have access to all research publications, the aggregate-level summary/benchmarking report, and the institution's raw (anonymous) response data.

For the purposes of this study, community colleges were defined as institutions that (1) have the Carnegie class of AA and (2) are two-year institutions. In this study, two institutions met one or the other but not both of those criteria; they were included after verifying their community college status. Forty-four ETRAC-participating institutions were classified as community colleges, providing 1,828 community college faculty (19% of US respondents) for our sample.


The EDUCAUSE Center for Analysis and Research would like to first thank the community college faculty who took time from their schedules to participate in the 2019 ETRAC faculty survey, from which these data were derived. Thanks are also in order to the survey administrators at the participating two-year and AA institutions, who planned and deployed the survey to the faculty on their campuses. We also thank our community college subject-matter experts—Stephanie Bulger, Vice Chancellor of Instructional Services, San Diego Community College District; and Richard A. Sebastian, Director, OER Degree Initiative at Achieving the Dream Inc.—who offered their time and expertise in reviewing this study. Their thoughtful feedback and suggestions have greatly improved the quality of the report.

Many thanks go out to the team of EDUCAUSE staff who made significant contributions to this report. Thank you to D. Christopher Brooks for his guidance, leadership, and support of this project from start to finish. A note of appreciation goes to Ben Shulman for his thorough statistical review that ensured the data analysis was accurate and the explanations fitting. Thanks also go to Kate Roesch for designing the engaging figures that helped bring the data to life. We are grateful for Gregory Dobbin and the publications team for their attention to detail and editorial guidance, and for Lisa Gesner for her skilled content management and marketing of this project. Finally, thank you to Susan Grajek and Mark McCormack for their review of the manuscript and suggestions for making it stronger, as well as their enthusiasm and encouragement along the way.