Administrative Issues Journal


Traditional colleges and universities face a unique challenge of increasing the scope of educational operations to accommodate the growing demand for online education. While online enrollments in higher education have grown at a rapid pace, faculty resources have remained stagnant at many institutions due to budget constraints and a sluggish economy. Many administrators in higher education struggle to find a balance between meeting course demands and maintaining quality of instruction while adhering to financial constraints. This paper proposes a model to manage costs by supplementing traditional faculty with virtual faculty who would operate primarily in an online environment and work for a fraction of their market costs. The concept of the virtual professor is facilitated by modern technology that allows remote participation in all aspects of academic responsibility ranging from campus meetings to student advising. This model is of particular significance to universities that are located in geographical areas where it may be difficult to attract and retain qualified faculty.