Higher education has recently faced new challenges and responsibilities such as higher expectations to contribute to national and regional developments, considerable cuts in public funds, and the highly competitive educational markets. Previous research has suggested a positive association between the development of human capital and capacity to deal with these challenges in higher education institutions. Yet, there are few empirical studies on the factors that constitute faculty members’ development. The main purpose of this study was to investigate faculty members’ development components in Agricultural Higher Education in Iran. Specifically, it aimed to explore the differences among faculties of agriculture on the components of their faculty members’ development and analyzed academics’ perceptions toward the current and desirable status of their development. Furthermore, this research examined the faculty members’ perceptions of the most influential component of their development. The population was 1837 faculty members and 280 of them were selected using the stratified random sampling method. The results showed that the faculty members perceived their individual development as higher than and equal to average. There was also a significant difference between universities on the components of their faculty members’ development based on their size except for their individual development. The analysis also suggested wide gaps between the status quo and desirable situations of each component of development as perceived by the faculty members. Furthermore, the faculty members perceived their professional development as the most influential component of their development. Recommendations are made to improve faculty members’ development in agricultural higher education particularly in Iran.
- The faculty members perceived their professional development as the most influential component of their development
- There were significant differences among social, professional, and educational development components of the faculty members’ development in different universities
- There were significant differences between the status quo and desirable situations of each component of development as perceived by the faculty members