Faculty role

Building a World-Class Faculty

Building a World-class faculty requires that the institution hire the best faculty that it can, grow the knowledge, skills and effectiveness of existing faculty, retain the best and eliminate poor performers who are unwilling to grow. By studying this article and its linked resources, and by using the associated shared files, you will be able to:
• Implement a process to build consensus on campus about the role faculty should play at the institution.
• Design a rubric to aid faculty search committees in selecting the best candidate for the institution’s needs.
• Develop a set of interview questions to elucidate a faculty candidate’s overall and research fit.
• Develop a set of questions that yields useful feedback from candidate’s references.
• Design a process to keep track of existing faculty lines across departments and colleges.
• Develop a process for predicting open lines 18 months in advance of hiring so that departments can start the recruiting cycle early.
• Develop policy which encourages retiring and resigning faculty to provide many months’ notice of their planned departure.
• Evaluate and increase the efficiency and effectiveness of the faculty search process so that offers can be made ahead of the competition.
• Modify the recruiting process to increase applications in general and minority candidates in particular.
• Appraise the appropriate rank(s) at which to hire new faculty.
• Construct hiring guidelines that define credential requirements, teaching expectations, workload distribution, tenure considerations, etc.
• Formulate policy and appropriate strategies for spousal hires.
• Formulate policy that enables the institution to offer a tenured position but ensure the faculty member is first a good fit for the department.
• Explain the strengths and weaknesses of publishing salary expectations.
• Develop an effective process for setting salary so the institution is competitive within its marketplace.
• Develop a process to ensure that all hiring conditions are clearly communicated to Human Resources and documented in the hiring contract.
• Develop a plan to help new faculty succeed at grant writing.
• Implement an effective mentor matching process for new faculty.
• Develop a plan to retain faculty by providing growth and leadership opportunities.
• Evaluate the tenure and promotion workflow process.
• Implement an effective annual faculty review process within departments.
• Describe the potential use of a faculty merit raises to support strategic plans, even when merit raises are not available every year.
• Implement a campus climate survey to identify and address issues that could affect faculty retention.
• Describe the advantages and disadvantages of countering job offers received by current faculty.

Creating Congruence Between the Faculty Role and Institutional Expectations, Recognitions and Rewards

Institutional harmony and efficiency can be greatly enhanced by ensuring that institutional expectations of faculty (as defined by the faculty body) are overtly shared and clearly defined. They should also align with institutional reward (promotion, tenure and merit) and recognition systems (awards etc.). By studying this article and its linked resources, and by using the associated shared files, you will be able to:
• Design a process to help clarify faculty expectations and create better alignment between expectations and their rewards and recognition at your institution.
• Constitute and charge a task force to examine expectations of faculty at your institution.
• Provide guidance to the task force of good practices for executing its charge and processes for analyzing its results.
• Clarify task force expectations by sharing a sample outputs and reports from task forces that have completed their charge.
• Formulate a plan to communicate and leverage the task force output to improve hiring practices, the promotion and tenure processes, improve faculty morale and the understanding of the faculty role in a variety of constituent groups.

Faculty Characteristics of Excellence Sample


Sample report from a task force charged to define the role of the faculty member.  Specifies the characteristics that the ideal faculty member would value, how these might be operationalized, appropriate metrics to measure how well the institution is performing,

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