Standard Five: Faculty Qualifications, Performance, and Development
Faculty are qualified and model best professional practices in scholarship, service and teaching, including the assessment of their own effectiveness as related to candidate performance; they also collaborate with colleagues in the disciplines and schools. The unit systematically evaluates faculty performance and facilitates professional development. Evidence will be provided in this section that supports the statement that Pacific University meets this standard.
Element Seven: Unit Facilitation of Professional Development
Professional development in the College of Education is supported by the Dean in collaboration with two COE faculty committees: COE Personnel Committee and the COE Faculty Development Committee. The COE Personnel Committee reviews each faculty member annually and gives formative feedback on the faculty member’s contributions to the COE through teaching, scholarship and service. This annual feedback is the basis from which a summative judgment for tenure or extended-term status is made during the fall of the sixth-year of employment. The COE Faculty Development Committee works to welcome new faculty members into the COE, matching them up with mentors during the first year. In addition, the committee plans activities that celebrate faculty accomplishments and opportunities for faculty to present their works in progress. These committees play a very important role in supporting and challenging all faculty members to reach excellence in teaching, scholarship and teaching.
The College of Education takes professional development seriously, especially in each area that we have identified as a major philosophical focus: growth in cultural competence, student-centered classrooms and technology to enhance learning. Individuals provide periodic presentations to the joint faculty, a book club has been established, and faculty members regularly remind their colleagues when an event such as a community lecture is scheduled. The dean has challenged senior faculty members to take the lead in promoting these activities and they have been eager to do so.
To encourage faculty scholarship, the annual COE budget provides $600 a year to attend regional and national conferences and $1,000 when presenting (maximum $1,000 a year). Further, for 2007-08 the dean has targeted some resources that have been allocated to the COE Faculty Development Committee for three $2,000 competitive scholarship proposals. In addition, the College of Education provides a budgeted fund ($200) for each faculty member that can be used for membership and subscriptions in professional organizations and for student activities. Full-time faculty members are eligible to spend up to $400 to acquire professional materials such as books, videos, software or instructional materials. All faculty members make use of these budgeted funds in some manner annually and the policy can be seen here (pdf).
A special scholarship opportunity exists for newcomers to the College of Education. During the first year of employment new faculty members are released from one three-semester course for the purpose of working on their scholarly agendas. This provides a healthy start towards meeting the university’s requirement for excellence in order to reach tenure or extended-term status.
The College of Education has one endowed faculty development fund, the Thomas S. Thompson Distinguished Professorship. To better align the use of the funds with the giver’s intent, the fund now provides about $14,000 a year for three years to one faculty member for the purpose of moving forward a scholarly agenda. The faculty member selected for this three-year honor is chosen by a committee that consists of the immediate past recipient, the Dean, and a third person from the campus other than that of the immediate past recipient (elected by the faculty from both campuses). The Dean meets annually with the chosen individual to discuss ways that she/he might use the funds during a three year period to purchase course release for the purpose of scholarship; enable travel for research, conferences, and presentations; to acquire additional teaching materials; and/or to secure a student intern or research assistant.
The Professional Development Committee has established Professional Development Grants (pdf), designed to encourage scholarly activities among our faculty.