The Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic on MotherScholars

A Comparative Case Study of United States and Australian Higher Education Women Faculty Role Strain

Authors

  • Amanda Pascale University of North Florida
  • Suzanne Ehrlich University of North Florida
  • Kristen Hicks-Roof University of North Florida

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.32674/jcihe.v14i3%20(Part%201).3783

Keywords:

MotherScholar, COVID-19, Faculty, Higher Education, United States, Australia, Role Strain Theory, Case Study

Abstract

This study examined the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the experiences of women faculty with children (i.e., MotherScholars) in the United States and Australia. Using interpretive comparative case study design, the researchers interviewed MotherScholars to identify common themes based on roles and responsibilities that emerged as a result of the pandemic-caused shift to remote academic demands. Three primary themes emerged including a) accumulative burdens, (b) rationalization, and (c) gendered expectations. These themes were explored through the lens of Goode’s (1960) role strain theory to examine the experiences of both groups of MotherScholars. Researchers found that for these MotherScholars the circumstances of the pandemic rendered many coping mechanisms previously utilized to manage role strain obsolete, which contributed to increased role strain from the conflict between the role systems for mother and scholar.

Downloads

Download data is not yet available.

Author Biographies

Amanda Pascale, University of North Florida

Amanda Blakewood Pascale, PhD is an Assistant Professor of Higher Education Administration at the University of North Florida. Her research coalesces around higher education faculty issues, gender equity in higher education, and STEM-equity and identity.

Suzanne Ehrlich, University of North Florida

Suzanne Ehrlich, EdD is an Assistant Professor in the Educational Technology, Training and Development program at the University of North Florida and is a certified ASL/English interpreter. Her work focuses on the UDL mindset in post-secondary settings and the workplace. Her global work has included cross-collaboration with academic partners in Australia and Scotland, where she has spent time living, studying, and cultivating professional networks.

Kristen Hicks-Roof, University of North Florida

Kristen K. Hicks-Roof PhD, RDN is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Nutrition and Dietetics at the University of North Florida. She previously studied at Griffith University in Gulf Coast, Australia, where she has several professional networks. Her research primarily focuses on interprofessional education and collaboration, mentoring in dietetics and gendered differences of health and wellbeing.

References

Australian Government, Department of Education and Training, “Table 2.6: Number of Full-Time

and Fractional Full-Time Staff by State, Higher Education Institution, Current Duties and

Gender, 2018,” Selected Higher Education Statistics—Staff 2018 Numbers (2018)

Cannito, M., & Scavarda, A. (2020). Childcare and Remote Work during the COVID-19

Pandemic. Ideal Worker Model, Parenthood and Gender Inequalities in Italy.

Italian Sociological Review, 10, 801-820.http://dx.doi.org/10.13136/isr.v10i3s.399

Collins, Caitlyn, Liana Christin Landivar, Leah Ruppanner, and William J. Scarborough.

"COVID‐19 and the gender gap in work hours." Gender, Work & Organization 28

(2021): 101-112.

Glaser, B., Strauss, A. (1967). The Discovery of Grounded Theory. Aldine Publishing

Company, Hawthorne, NY.

Goode, W. J. (1960). A theory of role strain. American sociological review, 483-496.

Heuser, B., Lyken-Segosebe , D., & Braxton, J. (2020). Internationalizing a Broader View of Scholarship: An Exploratory Study of Faculty Publication Productivity in Boyer’s Four Domains of Scholarship in English-speaking Universities. Journal of Comparative &Amp; International Higher Education, 12(Fall), 5–37. https://doi.org/10.32674/jcihe.v12iFall.1611

Hollis, D. [Dave Hollis]. (2020, March 25). Hear this: In a rush to return to normal, use this

time to consider which parts of normal are worth [Facebook Post]. Facebook.

https://m.facebook.com/mrdavehollis/photos/a.181239665784376/522814878293518/?ty pe=3

Kelly, B. T. (2019). Though more women are on college campuses, climbing the

professor ladder remains a challenge. Brookings. Brookings, March, 29.

Marinoni, G., Van’t Land, H., & Jensen, T. (2020). The impact of Covid-19 on higher

education around the world. IAU Global Survey Report.

Mason, M. A., Wolfinger, N. H., & Goulden, M. (2013). Do babies matter?: Gender and

family in the ivory tower. Rutgers University Press.

Matias, C. (2011). Cheryl Matias, PhD and Mother of Twins”: Counter storytelling to

critically analyze how I navigated the academic application, negotiation, and relocation process. Division G-Social Context of Education/Section 2. American Educational Research Association (AERA), New Orleans, LA.

McDermott, M. (2020). Learning from the Experiences of Mothers of School-Aged Children on Tenure

Track during the COVID-19 Global Pandemic

Merriam, S. B. (1998). Qualitative research and case study applications in education.

San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Minello, A., Martucci, S., & Manzo, L. K. (2021). The pandemic and the academic mothers: present

hardships and future perspectives. European Societies, 23(sup1), S82-S94.

Myers, K.R., Tham, W.Y., Yin, Y. et al. Unequal effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on scientists. Nat Hum

Behav 4, 880–883.https://doi.org/10.1038/s41562-020-0921-y

Ramlo, S. (2021).The Coronavirus and Higher Education: Faculty Viewpoints about Universities Moving

Online during a Worldwide Pandemic. Innovative Higher Education https://doi.org/10.1007/s10755-020-09532-8

Ruppanner, L., Tan, X., Scarborough, W., Landivar, L. C., & Collins, C. (2021). Shifting Inequalities? Parents’

Sleep, Anxiety, and Calm during the COVID-19 Pandemic in Australia and the United States. Men and Masculinities, 1097184X21990737.

Shillington, A. M., Gehlert, S., Nurius, P. S., Delva, J., Hooyman, N. R., Manderscheid, R. W., & Palinkas, L. A. (2020). Commentary: COVID-19 and Long-Term Impacts on Tenure-Line Careers. Journal of the Society

for Social Work and Research, 11(4), 499-507.

Weisshaar, K. (2017). Publish and perish? An assessment of gender gaps in promotion to tenure in

academia. Social Forces, 96(2), 529-560.

Yildirim, T. M., & Eslen‐Ziya, H. (2021). The differential impact of COVID‐19 on the work conditions of

women and men academics during the lockdown. Gender, Work & Organization, 28, 243-249.

Published

2022-07-11

How to Cite

Pascale, A., Ehrlich, S., & Hicks-Roof, K. (2022). The Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic on MotherScholars: A Comparative Case Study of United States and Australian Higher Education Women Faculty Role Strain. Journal of Comparative & International Higher Education, 14(3 (Part 1). https://doi.org/10.32674/jcihe.v14i3 (Part 1).3783

Issue

Section

Summer 2022 Special Edition