This thesis reports on a literature survey followed by an internet-based enquiry into best practices in academic support, with particular reference to the use of information and communication technology. It was found that higher education is a rapidly changing environment in which there is a constant demand for support, some of which may be provided by information technology. Learning organisations, however, need to be grown within the reality of existing attitudes and learning cultures. The reasons cited for failure of current methodologies are: understaffing/time constraints, money/budgetary limitations, faculty too busy or disinterested, perceived credibility/non-academic status of development practitioners and the perceived level of importance of teaching. No single solution will satisfy everybody; nor do simplistic answers or options exist. Four issues seem to stand out. They include the willingness of staff to be involved in developmental interventions (receptivity), the availability, clarity and accessibility of information (lucidity), the need for networking (dependency) and the use of technology. It would seem that these aspects are interrelated in that the relative levels of receptivity, lucidity and dependency may determine the degree of technological intricacy that staff are likely to tolerate as a medium through which to channel organisational learning interventions.
Thesis (PhD (Information Science))--University of Pretoria, 2006.