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VICE PROVOST OF FACULTY AFFAIRS
The VPFA welcomes and orients new faculty to DU; coordinates faculty development programs across campus; serves as a central resource for information about faculty and faculty policies; supports deans and department leaders with searches, hiring, retention, and advancement; assists faculty with grievances; offers programs to orient new academic leaders; supports programs to enhance teaching; and works with departments, colleges, and other offices to enhance faculty experiences. We work with academic leaders across campus to enhance DU’s efforts to support faculty.
ADVANCING EQUITY IN FACULTY WORKLOADS & REWARDS
Our next steps in “Advancing Equity in Faculty Workload and Rewards” acknowledges both the long existing challenges with recognizing all the work that faculty do that is essential to our public good mission and the specific workload equity challenges around service and teaching across rank and series. Equity in faculty evaluation and career advancement is an area that requires greater institutional attention. Additionally, as we work to recruit, retain, and ensure the success of a diverse faculty, our ability to count what matters–not simply what is easier to count–is essential to advancing equity in faculty workload and rewards.
R1 OUR WAY
In January 2022, DU was reclassified as a “Very High Research Activity Institution” (R1). Most of its faculty are excited about the reputational and material benefits, as well as the possibilities for graduate education and contributing to the knowledge of the world. Their concerns about this transition, however, center around anxieties that DU’s commitment to the “teacher-scholar” model, where innovative research and transformative teaching mutually inform each other, may shift to one in which “scholars” are seen as mutually exclusive from “teachers” and valued more highly. According to the COACHE Faculty Satisfaction Survey and the 2020 “R1 Report” administrated by the VPFA and Faculty Senate, in addition to concerns about how teaching will be valued (and evaluated), faculty worry about their own and their colleagues’ workloads, especially in terms of teaching, mentoring, and student support. The transition to R1 has the potential to exacerbate concerns articulated in the COACHE data, such as that the worst parts of teaching at DU are “teaching load” and “service load.” It also connects to our identified areas for improvement: leadership, service, promotion, and departmental collegiality—all of which are addressed in the new multi-year initiatives below.
Current COACHE Survey Faculty Completion Rate
Since 2003, the Collaborative on Academic Careers in Higher Education (COACHE), a research-practice partnership (RPP), has been committed to improving the workplace, career and overall experience of faculty members. COACHE is based at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and has surveyed 20,000+ faculty members at more than 300 colleges and universities. Survey results are intended to be used to develop strategies to improve the professional lives of faculty members; the goal is to create an environment where faculty can do their best work.
In the spring of 2019, DU faculty members were invited to complete a survey in nine key areas. The survey results revealed diversity of opinions across campus and some significant concerns. We invite your participation as we move forward, building on these results to improve our working environments.
VPFA News and Updates
By: Robin Tinghitella, Associate Professor of Biological Sciences and Sarah Watamura, Professor and Chair of Psychology This year marks the third year of DU’s engagement in the...
Final Reflections on Workload Equity
By: Kate Willink, Vice Provost of Faculty Affairs Dear Colleagues, As we continue to move forward with workload equity implementation, with gratitude to the Workload Equity...
COVID Impact Survey Results
The OTL is committed to a data-informed approach to faculty support. We are pleased to share results of our Fall 2020 and Fall 2022 faculty surveys. Thank you to faculty members...
Update on Ombuds Search
The search for DU’s next ombuds has commenced. The committee was finalized before winter break, and the position is posted publicly with applications received. Search...
Congratulations to our January You Rock! Winners
The You Rock! program encourages faculty and staff to recognize each other for accomplishments, large and small. Designed as a means to spotlight faculty and staff who have gone...
Crafting Newsletters for Faculty
By: Rashida Banerjee, Professor and Chair for the Department of Teaching and Learning Sciences Key Steps When crafting a department or team-level newsletter, it is...