Higher Education

, Volume 70, Issue 3, pp 375–394

The research–teaching nexus among academics from 15 institutions in Beijing, Mainland China



For long, the research–teaching nexus has maintained the interest of the scholarly community. The present study introduced a process variable—teaching styles—into the investigation of the association between research and teaching. The study adopted a predominantly quantitative-driven, mixed research method design, with a questionnaire survey supplemented by insiders’ views. Three hundred and fifty-four academics from 15 institutions in Beijing, P. R. China, responded to the Thinking Styles in Teaching Inventory and reported their research publications for 3 years. The quantitative findings suggested that after key demographics and contextual factors were controlled for, teaching styles were related to research productivity largely in the anticipated directions. Subsequently, four additional academics who met the criteria of possessing expertise in teaching styles and of having experiences as academics in China were invited to explain the quantitative findings concerning the relationships between specific teaching styles and particular types of publications. It was concluded that although the magnitude of the relationship between teaching and research is rather small, the research–teaching nexus does exist. Theoretical significance is discussed and practical implications of the findings are proposed for academics and for university senior managers.


Teaching styles Research productivity University academics Mainland China 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of EducationThe University of Hong KongPokfulamHong Kong
  2. 2.Department of EducationSeoul National UniversitySeoulKorea

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