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Reimagine Faculty

As we chart a new path forward, we must develop a shared vision for the future of faculty. We must align faculty work, evaluation, and rewards to allow faculty greater career autonomy, create incentives for interdisciplinary collaboration and create opportunities to solve grand societal challenges. 

To expand our curricular offerings and attract diverse academic experiences, we must expand our faculty definitions and categories. Such flexibility will also help retain faculty by providing pathways for success focused on their areas of interest and strength. 

To empower the faculty of the future, we must reimagine evaluation, promotion, and tenure criteria to be customizable to individual faculty strengths in teaching, research, creative activity, or service. The new criteria must allow faculty to chart their career paths while emphasizing one or more of the categories without having to address them all equally.  We must celebrate academic freedom, strengthen shared governance, and incentivize professional development.

As we reimagine how we empower faculty, we must also examine the college and department organizational structures surrounding RSCA, teaching, and service to support both student and faculty success.

Expand faculty lines for 2030.

RECOMMENDED ACTIONS

1a. Expand categories of faculty (clinical faculty, faculty of practice, etc.) to attract and strengthen the faculty talent pool and to diversify the portfolio of curricular offerings.

INFRASTRUCTURE AVAILABLE
  • California Faculty Association
  • College Deans
  • Faculty Affairs
  • Collective Bargaining Agreement
  • Retention, Tenure and Promotion Policies
OPPORTUNITIES

By expanding the categories of faculty at the university, we will be better able to attract an instructional faculty that reflect both the curricula of the future and the types of programs demanded by our constituents.

CHALLENGES

Implementing new faculty categories will require revising and expanding the definitions and descriptors of “faculty” in the Collective Bargaining Agreement. This may add complexity to what is currently a simple system with two categories of faculty.

RESILIENCE

Dramatic shifts in the world of work will not be limited to the COVID-19 era; as demand for online and alternative offerings increases, faculty skills and qualifications must likewise respond. Expanding faculty lines will ensure that CSULB maintains a competitive talent pool to prepare students for the workforce of the future. Non-traditional faculty may be sourced from industry partners with financial arrangements that offset hiring costs.

Align faculty work, evaluation, and rewards for 2030.

RECOMMENDED ACTIONS

2a. Revise university Retention, Tenure and Promotion (RTP) policies to allow tenure candidates to place differential emphasis on the three components of tenure review; Encourage colleges and departments to review their RTP policies with similar considerations.

2b. Reward interdisciplinary collaborations in support of our values. 

2c. Reward intellectual achievement in response to grand challenges in the communities we serve. 

INFRASTRUCTURE AVAILABLE
  • Retention, Tenure and Promotion Policies
  • Collective Bargaining Agreement
  • Academic Senate Policy on faculty awards
  • California Faculty Association
  • College Deans
  • Faculty Affairs
OPPORTUNITIES

As we allow greater autonomy in tenure and promotion, we empower our faculty to engage each other across disciplines, strengthen our ties to community in terms of research, teaching, and service, and redefine what it means to be a faculty member at CSULB.

CHALLENGES

Redefining the idea of the teacher-scholar at the CSU and CSULB levels will challenge current expectations for tenure.

RESILIENCE

The ability to redefine faculty roles allows us to be responsive to the changing demands on higher education institutions over time. There will always be a place for traditional teacher-scholar models in our university, but as the world of work changes, we must expand the faculty body to include those with the skills and experience to prepare a workforce of the future.

Reimagine department and college structures.

RECOMMENDED ACTIONS

3a. Form a working committee to develop recommendations for new department and college organizational structures that best support interdisciplinary teaching, scholarship, creative activities, and community engagement.

INFRASTRUCTURE AVAILABLE
  • Academic Senate Policies
  • Retention, Tenure and Promotion Policies
  • Collective Bargaining Agreement
  • Existing administrative structures within Departments (Chairs, ASCs, technology)
  • California Faculty Association
  • College Deans
  • Department Chairs and Directors
OPPORTUNITIES

Reimagining department and college structures provides the opportunity to enhance interdisciplinarity in teaching, research, creative activity, and service.  The goal is to foster an environment for faculty to collaborate across disciplines to explore new opportunities for intellectual pursuits.

CHALLENGES

Disciplinary models are often ingrained in department and faculty identity, and implementing new, future-oriented disciplinary models will require careful development of, or transition away from, traditional models. All developments must be done with full transparency and representation of faculty and departments, with a clear goal of increasing faculty autonomy and opportunities.

RESILIENCE

Reimagining department and college structures will create more opportunities for interdisciplinary collaboration and nimble restructuring of degrees and programs in response to the needs of students and the workforce, ultimately empowering departments and faculty to better tackle emerging social issues and grand challenges.