Envisioning the Faculty for the 21st Century


Envisioning the Faculty for the 21st Century
Envisioning the Faculty
for the 21 Century
Adrianna Kezar
Elizabeth Holcombe
William Mallon
Leslie Gonzales
Nancy Hensel
R. Eugene Rice
• Context and Need for New Faculty Models
• Emerging Consensus about New Faculty Roles
• Model for the Future of the Faculty: Faculty as Scholarly
• Medical Schools Leading the Way
• Changing Demographics and New Opportunities for Faculty Work
• Collaborative Evaluation and Holistic Departments
• Academic Freedom in the 21st Century
Context and Need for New Faculty Models
Changes in Faculty Composition
Composition of Instructional Faculty Among Nonprofit Institutions*
*Excludes graduate students responsible for providing instruction
Drivers of Change in Faculty Composition
• Massification of higher education, with rising enrollments and new
types of institutions
• Market fluctuations, necessitating greater flexibility
• Economic concerns, such as uncertain revenue streams and cost
• Corporatization of higher education
• New ways of using technology
• Assessment
• More to come…
Critiques of Adjunct Model
Poor working conditions and lack of support leading to worse student outcomes
Few professional development opportunities
Exclusion from departmental and institutional service
Little or no constructive evaluation of their work to allow for improvement
Not provided with important information about programs, policies, and curricula
Lack of job security leading to high rates of turnover and instability
Viewed as merely a tool for content delivery, important role in student learning
not respected
• Professionalism degraded
• Inequities in compensation, benefits, and working conditions
Critiques of Tenure-Track Model
Overemphasis on research at expense of teaching
Lack of flexibility
Few incentives to improve teaching or focus on learning
Lack of attention to other scholarly roles in service, civic
engagement, or local leadership
• Probationary period (tenure-track but before tenure is granted)
constrains faculty to focus primarily on research and publication
Faculty Matter for Student Learning and
Institutional Mission
• Abundance of research on importance of faculty-student
interactions for student success
• Particularly strong impact for students of color and firstgeneration college students
• Depth and quality of interactions impact strength of outcomes
• Institutional factors can promote or constrain positive studentfaculty interactions and shape outcomes
Emerging Consensus
• Survey of over 1500 stakeholders in higher
education, including faculty, campus
administrators (deans & provosts), policymakers,
trustees, and accreditors in 2014-2015
• Goal was to get key stakeholders to envision
future faculty models and see if there were areas
of consensus around a more effective model
• Questions in 8 areas: faculty pathways; contracts;
unbundling of faculty roles; status in the
academic community; faculty development,
promotion, and evaluation; flexibility;
collaboration and community engagement; and
public good roles
Broad Consensus
• General agreement on the attractiveness of many ideas presented
in the survey
• Strongest agreement on issues related to restoring professionalism
of faculty
• No major differences among faculty members in unions
• Concerns about feasibility
Consensus on Restoring Professionalism to
Faculty Role
• Elements of professionalism:
Academic freedom
Equitable compensation and access to benefits
Involvement in shared governance
Access to resources needed to conduct their role
Opportunities for promotion
Clearly defined expectations and evaluation criteria
Clear notification of contract renewal as well as grievance
• Continuous professional development
Other Areas of Consensus
• Reduce reliance on part-time faculty by increasing number of full-time
• Create differentiated faculty roles
• Emphasize importance of teaching
• Maintain some sort of scholarly component in all faculty roles, using
Boyer’s expanded definition of scholarship
• Allow more flexibility in working arrangements, such as creativity
• Foster more collaboration and community engagement
• Revise incentives and reward structures
• Promote public good roles
Feasibility Concerns
• Several feasibility “gaps,” where there were high
levels of agreement but low perceptions of
Creativity contracts
Boyer model
Consortium agreements
Flexible work arrangements
• Concerns cited in open-ended comments mostly
around budgets or logistical complexity
Hot Button Issues
• Some key areas of disagreement to navigate carefully:
• Phasing out vs. maintaining tenure
• Termed tenure appointments
• Concerns about emphasizing teaching to exclusion of other
• Having faculty more closely align their work to departmental
and institutional needs
Model for the Future of the Faculty
Faculty as “Scholarly Educators”
• Emphasis on student success
• 4 arcs of influence:
• Mission, goals, and roles
• Responsiveness to external forces
• Reprofessionalization of
• Reinforcing or restoring key
Resources to Help Redesign Faculty Roles
• The Adapting by Design report goes into more
detail on many of the ideas we discuss, and its
accompanying Toolkit provides a practical guide
for institutional leaders interested in taking
concrete steps to redesign faculty roles on their
• REPORT: http://www.uscrossier.org/pullias/wpcontent/uploads/2015/06/DELPHIPROJECT_ADAPTING-BY-DESIGN_2ED.pdf
• TOOLKIT: http://www.uscrossier.org/pullias/wpcontent/uploads/2016/12/DelphiProject_Adapti
Other Delphi Project Resources
• Dispelling the Myths: Locating the Resources Needed to
Support Non-Tenure-Track Faculty
• The Imperative for Change: Fostering Understanding of
the Necessity of Changing Non-Tenure-Track Faculty
Policies and Practices
• Non-Tenure-Track Faculty on Our Campus: A Guide for
Campus Task Forces to Better Understand Faculty Working
Conditions and Necessity of Change
• These and other resources can be found at
Up Next
• Medical Schools Leading the Way: William Mallon
• Changing Demographics and New Opportunities for Faculty Work:
Leslie Gonzales
• Collaborative Evaluation and Holistic Departments: Nancy Hensel
• Academic Freedom in the 21st Century: R. Eugene Rice
Medical Schools
Leading the Way
William Mallon, Ed.D.
Senior Director, Strategy and Innovation
Association of American Medical Colleges
Innovations in Faculty Appointment and
Career Pathways
• Differentiated Faculty Tracks
Full-time MD Faculty in Clinical Departments
at U.S. Medical Schools, 1966-2013
Non-tenure track
Innovations in Faculty Appointment and
Career Pathways
• Differentiated Faculty Tracks
• Expanded Definition of Scholarship
• Flexible Approaches to Tenure-Track
Aspirations and Inclinations among Emerging &
Early Career Faculty Members:
Leveraging Strengths, Imagining Possibilities
Chapter contribution by Leslie D. Gonzales & Aimee L. Terosky
• Consider how colleges and universities striving to (re)imagine the
roles, responsibilities, and reward systems for faculty can leverage
the “strengths and aspirations” of emerging and early career faculty
• Emerging faculty members defined as doctoral students in the latter
phases of their doctoral programs (e.g., candidacy) or those within five
years of their graduation (e.g., post-docs). Early career faculty members
included both tenure and non-tenure-stream faculty within the first five
years of their appointment.
• To our knowledge, no current studies/organizations study faculty
careers in this way, which means we relied on several data sources
to understand who these faculty are.
About Our Method
• Examined several data sources to help us understand this
cohort of emerging and early career faculty.
• Data sources we used to construct and understand cohort:
• National Center for Education Statistics, 2013, 2014, 2015
• National Survey of Doctoral Recipients, 2010
• Peer reviewed studies that considers how racial/gender/and other identity
markers seem to shape faculty aspirations & strengths
• Peer reviewed studies regarding inclinations and experiences of generation
generation X, millennial generation
• Peer reviewed studies regarding doctoral education experiences within the last
1.5 decades
• Qualitative data sets that we collected over years 2010-2015
Based on our review of several data sources, here
is a bit of what we learned about this cohort:
• Represents folks born in the late 1970’s through early 1980’s.
• More racially diverse than previous cohorts; in some fields, women constitute
the majority; likely to have more fluid understandings of identity, overall.
• Hold “non-traditional” views with regard to marital/familial roles and
composition, meaning that women and men are likely to share family and
household management.
• Like earlier cohorts, this cohort aspires to work-life balance.
• Hold strong commitments to community-based activities and research agendas.
• Likely to have experienced on-line and/or hybrid classes over the course of
their academic experiences.
• Came to age alongside social media, used to obtaining news, knowledge, and
information from many sources.
How can colleges/universities leverage these
strengths and aspirations?
• Commitments among this cohort of faculty to work with local
communities represent a crucial opportunity for colleges and
universities to mend/improve relations with communities.
• Their work will likely be community-based, action-oriented, and/or
• Must be evaluative language and systems in place to support such
• Non-tenure stream faculty, especially in applied fields, that are engaged in such
activities must be recognized for this work as they often serve “informally” as
bridges between departments/programs and communities.
How can colleges/universities leverage these
strengths and aspirations?
• Comfort and familiarity with technology will mean that this cohort of faculty
is likely to be more interested in and willing to teach online/hybrid formats
and to use social media to distribute research and findings.
• This is an opportunity for institutions to capture post-secondary education students that
they have failed to appeal to, and to do so with a prepared and willing faculty.
• However, colleges and universities must not assume that online teaching is not “easier” than
face-to-face teaching (e.g., avoid overloading class-sizes).
• Institutions should support faculty members who want to engage in blog writing,
dissemination of their work through broader means, etc., as this represents an opportunity
for faculty to engage with a broader public.
• There must be evaluative language for this in reward systems; will likely require training for
faculty evaluation committees.
Final Thoughts
• Any given year/semester, colleges and universities are hiring new
faculty or asking departments to redesign programs.
• Asking faculty to reflect on and share their biographical,
professional, and academic strengths and aspirations can serve as
a powerful start-point.
• This is what we call an asset-based approach to redesigning faculty roles
and evaluative systems.
• Generational literature and literature that attends to doctoral student
experiences can provide insight for administrators.
Academic Freedom and Democratic Engagement:
Two Imperatives for Faculty of the Future
“Democracy has to be born every generation, and education
is its midwife.”
John Dewey
“Liberty and duty. Freedom and responsibility. That is the deal.”
John Gardner
Academic Freedom
Lehrfrieheit (definition by Fredrick Rudolph):
“The right of the university professor to
freedom of inquiry
and to freedom of teaching,
the right to study and to report on
his (her) findings in an atmosphere of consent.”
The consent was from the collegium: “the community of
(peers with tenure)
A Broader, More Integrated Understanding of
Scholarly Work
Epistemological Shift
- A different relationship with students
- Focus on student learning and development
- Attend to the making of meaning
- A different kind of research
- Community-based research
- Two-way street
- Honoring local as well as cosmopolitan knowledge
- A different relationship with community
- Not “application of knowledge”
- Practices that are collaborative, inclusive and reciprocal
- Honoring wisdom of practice
- “Stewardship of place” (AASCU)
Toward a Different Kind of Academic Excellence
1. Integrative / Beyond Differentiation
2. Collaborative / Beyond Hierarchy & Competitiveness
Inclusive / Beyond Diversity
Engaged / Beyond Walls & Silos
Networked / Beyond the Split Between:
- content - process
- content - context
- content - commitment
The Democratization of Scholarship?

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