Proceedings of The 5th International Conference on Teaching, Learning and Education
Undergraduate Experience of Faculty Members’ Attire
Prior studies suggest that faculty members who perceived as credible and professional are more evaluated and effective in classrooms, and their students achieve better learning results. Perception of individuals is influenced by plural factors among which is attire. Formal attire is associated with an organized, knowledgeable and well-prepared professional, compared to other forms of attire. The proposed study wishes to understand the effect of faculty members’ style of attire, on the learning experience of their students. 238 Israeli undergraduate students completed an online survey. The participants were presented with pictures of supposed faculty members with formal and non- formal attire and asked to evaluate professionalism and quality of teaching based on their attire. Formal attire was differentiated with business suit for men, and a business suit or classic dress for women. Non-formal attire for men was differentiated by slacks and buttoned up shirt and blouse and skirt or slacks for women. The survey was based on a questionnaire used in a similar research) Lavin, Davies, & Carr, 2010(and is internally valid and reliable (α=.82). Results indicated that formally attired faculty members were graded higher in both measures of professionalism and quality of teaching (t (236) =1.852, p<0.05, t (236) =-3.19, p<0.01 respectively). The current research offers a unique perspective, supported by empiric evidence in a closed environment, on the role of attire as an important personal factor that requires consideration. Findings may promote awareness among faculty as to the message their dress convey and their students’ experience in classroom.
keywords: Israeli students, learning experience, professionalism, quality of teaching.