MyVoice Pulse survey of WSU staff: Working through the COVID-19 pandemic

Danielle Tracey, Maria Varua, Kedir Ahmed, Jo-Anne Chuck, Simon Bedford, Kevin Dunn

Research output: Book/ReportOther report

Abstract

The COVID-19 pandemic profoundly affected both staff and students in higher education institutions globally, with teaching and learning moving online, and research being suspended or adapted via videotelephony. Western Sydney University (WSU) surveyed its staff to develop a comprehensive understanding of the reported impacts of COVID-19 on both their work and life, and the strengths and challenges of utilising videotelephony for teaching and research. All WSU staff were surveyed via the MyVoice Pulse survey, with data collected by The Voice Project. A total of 2335 staff completed the survey, with a response rate of 86%. Permission was secured from 1695 (62.4%) staff for their responses to be included in this research. Out of these respondents, 59.6% identified as female, and 33.1% identified themselves as academic staff. Diversity related questions had Cronbach’s alpha of 0.63. All other questions when tested returned a Cronbach’s alpha of greater than 0.75 implying those questions were consistent. The current study provides valuable insight into the reported impacts of COVID-19 on the work and life of staff at WSU, as well as staff perspectives on some of the innovative practices that were adopted in response. The timeliness and the potential impact for informing University policy and practice are among the strengths of the study. The crosssectional nature of the data means that clear temporal associations between demographic factors and outcomes cannot be established. Additionally, it is important to note that results may be impacted by the uneven sample size in some groups. As COVID-19 transformed the work of the University and its staff dramatically, it appears that staff beliefs about the impacts of these changes varies substantially. If innovative practices such as remote teaching and HDR supervision, and videotelephony for research continue it will be important to conduct further research to identify exemplary practice given the current divide in staff opinion. Similarly, findings may serve as a catalyst for policies and practices that seek to address some of the inequities highlighted in staff voices.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationPenrith, NSW
PublisherUniversity of Western Sydney
Number of pages72
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2022

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