Defining Faculty Work and Guiding Principles

Faculty work comprises many intersecting roles, chief among them instructor, scholar, and engaged campus and community partner. These roles have been a foundational standard for decades in higher education. However, as faculty respond to the changing needs and expectations of students, colleagues, and others, the nature of these roles has changed and continues to develop.

CLAS is a large academic unit that houses the foundation of human knowledge (arts, humanities, and sciences). Furthermore, we value the diversity within our programs and the contributions of each department. As such, it is essential that we establish guiding principles and values that align with and recognize the many ways faculty meet obligations and expectations tied to their roles.

Teaching and Pedagogy

Faculty in CLAS deeply value teaching as an essential and deeply valued act, encompassing a significant aspect of their professional identity. CLAS faculty provide the foundation of human knowledge through the arts, humanities, and sciences. Faculty engage students in the learning process through pedagogy that provides a fundamental disciplinary knowledge. Additionally, they often demonstrate connection points and applicability of concepts through an interdisciplinary lens and reframe concepts for contemporary audiences through equity-minded and inclusive practices.

As experts in their respective fields, faculty are evaluated on the effectiveness and impact of their teaching through quantitative and qualitative measures. While those measures are department- and discipline-specific, CLAS faculty should also strive to include, but are not limited to, several of the following goals and principles in their teaching:

Teaching and Pedagogy Goals and Principles

Research, Scholarship and Creative Work

The creation, acquisition, and dissemination of new knowledge is a hallmark of higher education. CLAS faculty are actively involved in creating new knowledge within their fields, integrating existing knowledge to share with new audiences, and applying disciplinary knowledge and expertise to address contemporary problems. Within a college as large and diverse as CLAS, scholarly and disciplinary impact is vast and constantly developing. The products, venues, and vehicles for distribution of research, scholarship, and creative work (RSCW) vary widely across CLAS.

Despite these necessary distinctions, the overarching foci and scope of research, scholarship, and creative work (RSCW) in CLAS includes one or more of the following assumptions:

Research, Scholarship and Creative Work Assumptions


Service to the institution and profession is an essential facet of faculty work, it is expected of individuals in faculty roles, and much of service supports the academic institution’s foundation of faculty governance. At its most basic level, it ensures that the governance and operational aspects of running an institution are in place and the academy continues to function and thrive. At a more meaningful level, service is how we give back to our students, our colleagues, and our disciplines. Furthermore, building networks, partnerships, and community is a foundational part of faculty work that takes time, care, and reciprocity. Building networks and partnerships through attending and organizing events as well as contributing to a network’s communications helps actualize the university and college mission.

For service to be a consequential endeavor, the responsibilities should align with a faculty member’s interests and passions whenever possible. It is important to acknowledge that service is not always visible, nor is it always tied to committees. When making service assignments, department chairs should assure that the work is equally distributed and truly valued in the evaluation process.

Service is recognized and evaluated as a collection of the following factors:

Factors of Service

Evaluating and Reviewing Faculty Work

The process for evaluation and review continues to be established, upheld, and governed by the Faculty Employment Handbook. As stated in this handbook, and in accordance with AAUP Guidelines, departments establish discipline-specific standards for teaching; research, scholarship, creative work; and service. Those discipline-specific standards are the fundamental tools used for our peer review and evaluation process.

Our guiding principles and values are intended to provide an overarching and aspirational view for faculty work in CLAS. Departments should view their own standards through the lens of these shared values as they continue to develop and enhance their specific quantitative and qualitative disciplinary expectations for faculty work standards.

The Promotion, Retention, Tenure and Post-Tenure Review Narrative

College of Letters, Arts and Sciences

We are CLAS

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