ITEM # - 5: PRESENTED BY THE FACULTY ENHANCEMENT COMMITTEE
AND THE RESEARCH COMMITTEE
TO THE UNF FACULTY ASSOCIATION BASED ON AN EXAMINATION OF THE FACULTY
SURVEY ON RESEARCH AND
CAMPUS CLIMATE, SPRING 2000.
PRESENTED BY THE FACULTY ENHANCEMENT COMMITTEE
THE RESEARCH COMMITTEE, Spring, 2001
the many findings in the UNF Faculty Survey on Researc
of respondents perceive teaching loads to be a
barrier to research;
of respondents perceive service requirements to be
a barrier to research; and,
of respondents noted that it was important to receive release
time to do research.
findings are so fundamental, they form the primary impetus
for the recommendations put forth from the UNF Faculty Enhancement
and Research Committees herein.
Committees agreed that the foundation for improving the climate
for faculty research activity has to be built at the departmental
level. The committees believe that department chairs are responsible
for setting the tone for their departments. It is at the department
level that a climate of trust and collegiality is established.
Department chairs need to foster the success of their faculty,
and exercise consistency in these actions.
faculty should be discouraged from taking on excessive service
loads and mentored to say "NO.” New, untenured
faculty often feel vulnerable about their positions, and
may take on overloads of service at both the University
and College levels.
faculty should be encouraged to limit their service activities
and focus on building their research agenda for their first
two or three years at UNF. This will give them time
to focus on building their research agenda.
with minority status, through gender, race, disability,
etc., should not be overused to meet affirmative
action criteria for faculty searches or to create gender
and ethnic balance on any committee.
We are a University seeking to enhance our diversity, yet
in the interim, those faculty members with minority status
should not have to pay an extra price because of said status.
should be a quantifiable maximum level of service
that untenured faculty are allowed to do. Department
Chairs should monitor faculty service loads and prevent
faculty from becoming overburdened with service. Chairs
should be accountable to their evaluators for abuses of
coordination should be recognized as a form of service,
and it should reduce faculty’s other service requirements.
If they are coordinating a program without a course release,
this should be weighted heavily in the service category.
Committees. If a faculty person is chairing a search
committee or any committee, this should also be given significantly
greater weight than merely serving on the search committee
Club Faculty Advising and Student Competitions also require
an inordinate amount of time and these generally fall to
younger, untenured faculty. The very nature of student
clubs include continued renewal as the officers and members
graduate. Faculty advisors are constantly coaching and
developing the club leaders. This should be heavily weighted
in the evaluation process.
limit departmental and college meetings. Conduct meetings
by email when possible.
releases for program coordination should be a given across
all departments and colleges.
should strongly discourage the generation of more than one
completely NEW class preparation per academic year for untenured
faculty. If more are needed, tenured professors should
classes. Faculty should be allowed to carry a strategic
overload for one or more semesters to bank course time which
can be used to free time blocks for research in later semesters.
However, the number of preparations and days of teaching
should still be considered.
use of Technology in the classroom is being strongly encouraged.
However, it requires huge amounts of time to modify courses
into alternative delivery methods to incorporate blended
learning, or state of the art technology into the teaching
methods. The departments and colleges should reward
those faculty taking what is now uncompensated course development
time to revamp existing courses or stop encouraging the
use of technology.
Teaching Scheduling. Faculty should be encouraged to
schedule their summer courses into 6, 10, or 12 week sessions
to fit their summer research needs. Those who are locked
into teaching all summer miss valuable time to focus on
research. Many colleges or departments do not schedule
in the shorter time blocks even though comparable institutions
offer the same classes in shorter time blocks.
Negotiations. Given the increased emphasis on conducting
research at UNF, increases in salaries and reductions in
teaching loads to foster the creation of research time should
be addressed through UFF contract negotiations. Specifically,
a 26-week pay schedule for the faculty would ensure
regular consistent paychecks from a 9-month appointment.
This is turn should encourage more faculty to pursue research
in the summer time frame as opposed to maintenance of incoming
RESEARCH AND EXTERNAL FUNDING
should be taken on the University, College, and Departmental
levels to PROTECT the time of faculty. This will help
them create time for research and foster a sense that faculty
research is important. For example:
Chairs should work with individual faculty members
to construct and schedule "protected" blocks of
time each week for research.
These blocks of time must be sacred, no-conflict
times for that individual faculty member in his/her individual
Research Grants should be monetarily equivalent to that
of a summer class. Many faculty cannot afford the
pay reduction, and opt for a class instead of being paid
to focus on research.
to external funding, the University policy/formula for distribution
of indirect cost should be modified to provide some significant
distribution to faculty in every case. This would
be an improvement over the current allocation of these funds,
which go primarily to the Colleges, with distribution to
faculty only in exceptionally large funding cases. Faculty
need to feel a greater sense of incentive to pursue external
is imperative that the University systematically identify
and rectify bureaucratic and operational impediments to
the conduct of research by faculty. UNF needs to review
its existing procedures for purchasing supplies, mailings
for surveys, etc.
external funding should be looked at on an individualized
basis, depending on the discipline, and on whether or not
this use of time, which may or may not produce funds in
the short term, is the best use of untenured faculty’s time
related to the pressure they face to publish in a timely
and consistent way in order to be successful for promotion
and tenure. There is great variation in how external
funding is weighted in different collegiate disciplines.
Administration should put heavy emphasis on pursuing Research
Endowments to help faculty with larger seed money
contributions and to fund competitive research projects.
should be increased emphasis on mentoring, not only across
campus but also within colleges. Mentoring activities
should exist for all faculty, not just untenured faculty.
should come not just from the Department Chairs, but also
from those who are prolific and successful researchers,
and those who are successful at obtaining external funding.
with a successful grant track record should seek out new
faculty and faculty seeking external funding instead of
waiting to be sought out. Many untenured faculty feel
they are imposing by approaching successful grants recipients.
Extending an invitation is an important part of the mentoring
System of rewards for mentoring should be developed.
of the mentoring process should involve collaborative research
and grant preparation.
faculty leave UNF, exit interviews and surveys should be
conducted, anonymously if possible in the case of surveys,
to gain better information about why individuals leave,
and what, if anything, about the UNF environment, contributed
to their leaving.
Copyright © 2001 University
of North Florida.
All Rights Reserved.
Questions, Comments, Suggestions
May 31, 2001