Learning within Communities of Scholars: Academic Career as an Educational Process

By Ismi Arif Ismail, Nor Wahiza Abdul Wahat, Zoharah Omar, Steven Eric Krauss and Norhasni Zainal Abiddin.

Published by The Learner Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This paper is based on a study of the lived experiences of academics moving in different stages of their careers. It explores the career experiences of new and senior academics moving on in academia via juggling their various tasks in academic work practice. The study documented and analysed the academics’ career histories through a series of interviews, document analysis and a literature review. This study is specifically an investigation of a situated lifelong learning process undertaken within academia. We wanted to understand how communities of practice in academia provide an educational process for academics. Their biographies are valuable in revealing the learning experiences of academics surviving the academia. Academics and people working in academic career development can learn a great deal about what individuals and institutions need to do to develop academics, personally and professionally.

Keywords: Lifelong Learning, Situated Learning, Professional Development, Academic Career

The International Journal of Learning, Volume 15, Issue 11, pp.185-202. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 673.828KB).

Dr. Ismi Arif Ismail

Lecturer, Department of Professional Development and Continuing Education, Faculty of Educational Studies, UPM, Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia

Dr. Ismi Arif Ismail, has dedicated himself in the area of continuing education and joined UPM in 2000. His significant and scholarly contributions and involvements in building the capacity of people in the community, especially in the field of continuing education, human resource development and leadership are highly acknowledged nationally and internationally. Dr. Ismi Arif Ismail completed his high school at Sekolah Menengah Sultan Abdul Halim, Jitra, Kedah. He obtained his honours degree in TESL from UKM in 1993. Due to his strong interest in continuing education, he decided to pursue his higher education in the area of extension education at the master’s levels. He was appointed as a lecturer with University Putra Malaysia in 2000. Since then, his contribution in teaching, research and services has been focused on continuing education covering the areas of extension education, youth development and leadership. Dr. Ismi Arif Ismail obtained his doctoral degree in 2005 in Continuing Education from the University of Warwick, UK. Currently he serves as the Advisor of the Human Resource Development Student Association at Department of Professional Development and Continuing Education, Faculty of Educational Studies. He has been involved in research and consultancy work, both nationally and internationally in the area of continuing education, extension education, human resource development and youth development. He has also been involved in advisory and community services both national and internationally.

Nor Wahiza Abdul Wahat

Tutor, Department of Professional Development and Continuing Education, Faculty of Educational Studies, UPM, Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia

Mrs. Nor Wahiza Abdul Wahat completed her high school at Al-Mashoor Religious Secondary School, Penang. She pursued her first degree of Human Sciences in the International Islamic University Malaysia, specializing in Political Science. After holding a Master of Science in Human Resource Development from Universiti Putra Malaysia in 2001, she was service with Amica Technologies Malaysia Sdn. Bhd. as a Human Resource Manager. In 2003, she joined the Department of Professional Development and Continuing Education as a tutor. Currently, she is pursuing her doctorate study in Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia focusing on Career Development within the field of Organizational Psychology. Since 2003, she has been involved in several researches and paper presentation activities at both national as well as international level.

Dr. Zoharah Omar

Lecturer, Department of Professional Development and Continuing Education, Faculty of Educational Studies, UPM, Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia

Dr. Zoharah Omar completed her high school at the High School, Kluang, Johor. She obtained her Bachelor’s Degree in Laws at the International Islamic University and her Master’s degree in Human Resource Development at University Putra Malaysia. She is currently pursuing her doctorate degree in Psychology, specializing in Industrial and Organizational Psychology at University Kebangsaan Malaysia. She has worked as the Legal and Human Resource Manager in a multinational manufacturing company for seven years. She was responsible for the strategic human resource planning and development as well as handling industrial relations matters. She was also actively involved in assisting the Ministry of Human Resource to promote in-house sexual harassment policy to industries. She was also the Industrial Court Panel representing employers. She has been involved in several researches and paper presentation activities at both national as well as international level. Beside that, she is actively involved in community survives such as delivering public speech to graduates on resume writing, job interview and preparation for employment. She is also involved in consultancy work, and she is currently a consultant and a resource person to a multinational company.

Dr. Steven Eric Krauss

Lecturer, Department of Professional Development and Continuing Education, Faculty of Educational Studies, UPM, Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia

Dr. Steven Eric Krauss (@Abdul-Lateef Abdullah) completed his high school studies at Ramsey High School in Ramsey, New Jersey, USA. He obtained his Bachelor’s degree in Political Science & Economics at the University of Delaware (USA), his Master’s degree in Social Work from Columbia University (USA), and his Ph.D. from the Institute for Community & Peace Studies (PEKKA), University Putra Malaysia, in the field of Youth Studies. He has worked as a Program Assistant for the Center for Youth Development and Policy Research-Academy for Educational Development (Washington, D.C.); a Social Worker at the Montefiore Medical Center (Bronx, New York) and the Jewish Child Care Association (New York, New York); and the Director of Documentation and Evaluation at Community IMPACT! (Washington, D.C.). He spent several years as a volunteer with the Taqwa Gayong Academy (New Jersey, U.S.A./Penang, Malaysia) for troubled youth. In 2001, he moved from the U.S. to Malaysia with his wife and following the completion of his doctorate was appointed as a Lecturer in the Department of Professional Development and Extension Education, Faculty of Educational Studies, University Putra Malaysia. Since 2001 he has conducted research in Malaysia on Muslim youth religiosity and Felda family strengths, and has been involved in a number of other projects as both a researcher and writer. As a recent (1999) convert to Islam, he spends much time writing about his experiences as a Muslim-American convert and is presently an online counselor with www.islamonline.net.

Dr. Norhasni Zainal Abiddin

Lecturer, Department of Professional Development and Continuing Education, Faculty of Educational Studies, UPM, Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia

Dr. Norhasni Zainal Abiddin completed her formal secondary education at Johore Bahru Technical School, Johor. She then continues her study for tertiary education at University Putra Malaysia starting with Diploma of Science (Agriculture), Bachelor of Science (Human Development) and she then pursue her Master of Science (Extension Education). Later, she went to The University of Manchester in United Kingdom for her PhD. She is now attached at University Putra Malaysia (UPM) since 1998 and currently holding the position of Lecturer at the Department of Professional Development and Continuing Education of the Faculty of Educational Studies, UPM. She is actively involved in research and consultancy works in the field of supervision and education at higher learning institutions. As a winner of Royal Education Award in 1998 for being best student for academic and co-curricular activities, she is currently involved herself in community services in the areas of leadership, motivation and supervision at school and higher learning institution.

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