AA 17 Standards of Academe (School of Education) - Nevada State College
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AA 17 Standards of Academe (School of Education)

  • policy name:
    AA 17 Standards of Academe (School of Education)
  • owner:
    Office of the Provost
  • Contact:
    Sita Sales
  • category:
    Academic Affairs/Faculty
    All Policies
    Human Resources
  • Policy Id#:
    AA 17
  • Effective Date:
    08/01/2017
  • viewing/downloading options:
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PHILOSOPHY

1.1 Overview

The School of Education (SOE) subscribes to the philosophy that teaching should be the primary area of emphasis for faculty members, with scholarship and service as important but secondary priorities to teaching. Faculty will be recruited, evaluated, awarded tenure, and promoted predicated on this perspective.

The academic evaluation and reward system in SOE has two purposes: (a) to provide the means by which faculty, through annual reviews, progress through the academic ranks; and (b) to certify high achievement.

1.2 Definitions of Concepts

The following section defines pertinent concepts.

Teaching: For annual reviews, teaching refers to the act of cultivating a rich learning environment, which includes sharing knowledge, nurturing critical inquiry, inspiring curiosity, and encouraging students to apply what they have learned. Teaching primary reflects instruction-related activities that directly impact student learning. Because Nevada State College is a teaching institution, offering engaging and meaningful instruction is a highly valued activity in SOE. Section 2.0 provides a detailed description of the lines of evidence used within SOE to evaluate teaching.

Scholarship: For annual reviews, SOE defines scholarship as the process of exploring a relevant question or problem, synthesizing existing knowledge, developing new ideas, and sharing the results through professional, discipline- appropriate outlets. SOE values scholarly efforts that represent the spectrum of orientation from basic to applied, including Ernest Boyer’s scholarship of teaching. Section 3.0 provides a detailed description of the lines of evidence used within SOE to document accomplishment in scholarship.

Service: SOE defines service as a faculty member’s professional responsibilities to Nevada State College and its external community, including, but not limited to, professional organizations, Nevada System of Higher Education (NSHE), school district, and community/governmental. Section 4.0 provides a detailed description of the lines of evidence used within SOE to document accomplishment in service.

1.3 Annual Review Plans

At each annual review, the faculty member and evaluator will develop an annual review plan for the following year. The annual review plan will include goals for the faculty member to achieve in teaching, scholarship, and service. At each annual review, the faculty member must provide a copy of the annual review plan agreed upon at the previous year’s review and indicate which items they completed.

1.4 Annual Review Portfolios

Faculty will submit a portfolio of annual review materials each year; this portfolio will include an updated CV; syllabi; course evaluations; and a narrative or table of no more than 10 pages summarizing accomplishments throughout the year in the areas of teaching, scholarship, and service. The page limit does NOT include any of the following:

1.5 Flexibility in Annual Review Ratings

SOE sets the rating guidelines for assessing teaching, scholarship, and service on annual reviews. Discipline-specific standards and constraints should be considered when evaluating the quality and quantity of faculty contributions, and evaluators may adjust the ratings requirements accordingly. It is the responsibility of faculty members to justify flexibility in applying SOE ratings guidelines to their teaching, scholarship, or service contributions.

1.6 Standards of Academe and Tenure Guidelines

Both the Standards of Academe and the Tenure Guidelines utilize many of the same evaluative criteria. Initially, they were part of the same document. However, there was a strong rationale for separating the Standards of Academe from the Tenure Guidelines. The Standards of Academe require more frequent updates to reflect institutional changes, faculty concerns, modifications of service priorities, and research on best practices in pedagogy. The Tenure Guidelines, however, need to remain consistent throughout a faculty member’s progress toward tenure. Therefore, in 2016, the SOE separated the two documents. The Standards of Academe now apply specifically to annual reviews and the Tenure Guidelines apply specifically to tenure. Appointed faculty committees will evaluate and update the Standards of Academe as needed, and faculty will be required to follow these standards for annual reviews upon approval by the Provost. Faculty committees will also evaluate and update the Tenure Guidelines as appropriate.  Faculty will be evaluated for tenure and promotion under the guidelines (SOE standards of academe, SOE promotion and tenure policy, and NSC promotion and tenure policy) in place when their contract as a tenure-track faculty member at NSC began. This protects faculty from having the Tenure Guidelines change as they are progressing toward tenure. If the Standards of Academe change within the first three years of the faculty member’s date of hire, the faculty member can choose to follow the new Standards of the Standards in place upon hire. Faculty cannot change or select new Standards after their third year of employment.

2. TEACHING

2.1 Overview

According to the Nevada State College mission statement, “excellence in teaching leads to innovative, technology-rich learning opportunities that promote the acquisition of interdisciplinary knowledge and skills.” To support this mission, the lines of evidence for excellence in teaching provide some comparability in evaluation while recognizing the diverse ways in which faculty may demonstrate teaching excellence.

Material evaluated for annual reviews will include: updated CV; syllabi; course evaluations; and a narrative of no more than 10 pages summarizing accomplishments throughout the year in the areas of teaching, scholarship, and service. Faculty should address, at a minimum, the items under 2.2 Required Evidence of Teaching Effectiveness, when discussing teaching in their narrative. Faculty members may be expected to provide additional evidence of teaching effectiveness as requested by their Dean during the review process.

Items submitted as evidence of teaching effectiveness should relate to the quality of the learning environment provided to students in courses at NSC. Other items that may be related to teaching, such as research or publications in the scholarship of teaching, mentoring students toward making a conference presentation, or taking a leadership role in teaching workshops, should be submitted in the scholarship or service categories, as defined in the service and scholarship sections of this document.

2.2 Required Evidence of Teaching Effectiveness

Faculty can access private, individual folders on the X drive created by SOE administration that contain:

A teaching effectiveness statement (to be included in the faculty member’s 10 page narrative for annual reviews) is the minimum required line of evidence of teaching effectiveness. Faculty need NOT provide the items available on the x drive in their annual reviews but are strongly encouraged to incorporate information from their syllabi, course evaluations, final grade distribution, and teaching observation(s) into their teaching effectiveness narrative. Faculty must include in their narrative a list of new goals and a list of old goals from the previous year with a reflection on how the old goals were met.

Evidence of teaching effectiveness may include, but is not limited to, the following best practices not listed in priority order:

  1. demonstrating content expertise;
  2. possessing tools and processes to assess students’ understanding of the subject;
  3. creating an atmosphere that is conducive for learning;
  4. allowing students’ needs, voice, and diversity to inform the pedagogy;
  5. understanding how students differ in their approaches to learning, and creating instructional opportunities with high expectations that are adapted to diverse learners;
  6. using a variety of instructional strategies, technology tools, and pedagogical methods to encourage students’ development of critical thinking, problem-solving, and performance skills;
  7. understanding individual and group motivation and behavior to create a learning environment that encourages positive social interaction, active engagement in learning, and self-motivation;
  8. being a reflective practitioner who continually evaluates the effects of his or her choices and actions on others and who actively seeks out opportunities to grow professionally;
  9. attending ongoing professional development designed to improve teaching;
  10. fostering relationships with colleagues across campus and agencies in the larger community to support students’ learning and well-being;
  11. utilizing strategies to scaffold learning;
  12. integrating active learning strategies in the classroom;
  13. using highly-engaging and appropriate learning materials that are targeted toward the respective course and student learning outcomes;
  14. designing and revising courses based on evidence from published literature on teaching effectiveness;
  15. earning external certification in teaching practices;
  16. integrating written work and use of evidence-based strategies that improve student writing skills;
  17. being highly attentive to classroom dynamics and working to ensure the participation of all students;
  18. adapting and improving teaching based on feedback from students, peers, and the Dean;
  19. providing effective feedback in a reasonable timeframe such that students are aware of their progress throughout the course;
  20. assessing the effectiveness of teaching endeavors;
  21. assessing student learning;
  22. supervising an independent study or experiential learning activities that include assessment of student learning;
  23. teaching and supervising student research;
  24. incorporating or significantly addressing diversity issues in courses or course materials.

The faculty member may request that the Dean exclude course evaluations with extremely low response rates from consideration, or the Dean may use independent discretion to exclude them.

2.3 Artifacts to Support Teaching Effectiveness

Additional evidence and activities of teaching effectiveness may be provided by the faculty member. This may be included as appendices, and is not limited to the following items not listed in priority order:

  1. Exams, assignments, projects, or other assessments developed by the instructor to measure student performance;
  2. Lectures, handouts, and other materials used to aid instruction;
  3. Peer observations of teaching conducted by the faculty member;
  4. Video or audio recordings of teaching;
  5. Descriptions of innovative teaching methods used including the incorporation of new technologies and approaches to learning;
  6. Mid-semester evaluations and descriptions of how they were used to adjust or improve a course;
  7. Descriptions of how diversity issues were incorporated into course content;
  8. Examples of feedback provided on papers, projects, exams, or other assignments;
  9. Select or design effective assessment strategies;
  10. Evidence-based assessment of the effectiveness of an assignment, activity, or instructional technique used in a course;
  11. Video or audio recordings of student performance;
  12. Teaching awards (regional, national, local, college wide);
  13. Other discipline-specific evidence of teaching effectiveness;
  14. Acceptance of an external teaching-related grant;
  15. Additional evidence as requested by the faculty member’s department chair;
  16. Documented study of curricular and pedagogical issues, and incorporation of this information into instructional practices;
  17. Recipient of fellowship.

2.4 Rating Teaching in the Annual Review Process

When rating teaching, evaluators will consider the faculty member’s progress toward meeting the goals in the annual review plan. The quality of contributions will be rated more highly than the quantity.

Due to the variability of the numerical ratings on course evaluations across courses, the numerical thresholds in this section should be interpreted as guidelines and not absolute standards. Receiving numerical ratings above or below the thresholds do not guarantee that an instructor will attain the corresponding rating as they are merely one measure among many used for evaluation.

Excellent: Course evaluations should have positive written comments and numerical ratings typically above 4.0 on a 5-point scale, with 5 being highest (where faculty members do not meet these criteria, they may explain mitigating circumstances they believe led to unreasonably low scores). Additionally, faculty provide strong evidence of satisfying the best practices under 2.2 Required Evidence of Teaching Effectiveness.

Commendable: Course evaluations with positive written comments and numerical ratings at or above 3.7 on a 5-point scale, with 5 being highest (where faculty members do not meet these criteria, they may explain mitigating circumstances they believe led to unreasonably low scores). Additionally, faculty provide some evidence of satisfying the best practices under 2.2 Required Evidence of Teaching Effectiveness.

Satisfactory: Course evaluations include written comments that are generally satisfactory and numerical ratings at or above 3.0 on a 5-point scale, with 5 being the highest (where faculty members do not meet these criteria, they may explain mitigating circumstances they believe led to unreasonably low scores). Additionally, faculty provide limited evidence of satisfying the best practices under 2.2 Required Evidence of Teaching Effectiveness.

Unsatisfactory: Course evaluations include written comments that are generally satisfactory and numerical ratings at or below 3.0 on a 5-point scale, with 5 being the highest (where faculty members do not meet these criteria, they may explain mitigating circumstances they believe led to unreasonably low scores). Additionally, faculty provide no evidence of satisfying the best practices under 2.2 Required Evidence of Teaching Effectiveness.

3. SCHOLARSHIP

3.1 Overview

Boyer’s (1990) definition of the scholarship of teaching as an activity that “both educates and entices future scholars” is the foundation for determination of tenure and post-tenure progress in scholarship in the School of Education at Nevada State College.

Tenure-track faculty members are expected to progress in scholarship as outlined in the following document. Evidence of productive scholarship can be supported by published records as well as other original work of a professional nature. External validation (peer reviewed, juried, and editor-reviewed) of one’s work resulting in a published product is requisite for promotion and tenure at NSC.

Scholarly activities should be systematic and show a contribution in areas such as pedagogy, models and methods of teaching, curriculum research, grants, etc. Evidence of scholarship in-progress serves as an indicator of the candidate’s intent to demonstrate scholarly productivity. Statements of scholarship in-progress, supported by evidence, are required.

Quality is an essential factor in judging scholarship. Quality refers to the effect that scholarship makes on advances in knowledge, the professional community, and the enrichment of teaching and learning. This concept of quality places high emphasis on original thinking, process, and effect as opposed to the sheer quantity of products. To this end, faculty will provide a narrative description to the Dean of the School of Education, on an annual basis, of their scholarly activities. It is strongly recommended that tenure-track faculty will have a minimum of one work submitted for review by the third year review.

3.2 Evidence of Scholarship

Lines of evidence and related criteria for evaluation related to scholarship might include, but are not limited to:

Research and Professional Publications. The quality of the candidate’s research and professional publications or reports will be evaluated within the context of norms for the candidate’s discipline.

Chapters in Books. Book chapters will be evaluated in terms of the inherent quality of the piece and its dissemination across the candidate’s area/s of expertise.

Books. Scholarly books that broaden a disciplinary knowledge base with original research or that produce novel applications of existing knowledge represent one category of evidence.

Creative and Scholarly Production. Nevada State College respects the creative work of scholars and supports their efforts. For those in fields where artistic production is not typical, works that are creative will be evaluated in the context of the candidate’s discipline

Undergraduate Research. Faculty members are encouraged to mentor student research and research projects (e.g. action research, problem-based learning, project-based learning). Mentorship and supervision of student research will be evaluated in terms of the length of project, dissemination of research, and/or peer-reviewed professional publications or conference presentations. Projects that are sustained over a longer period of time or more intensive in nature will be accorded more significance. Student work accepted for publication in a professional, peer-reviewed journal will be accorded the most significance within this subcategory.

Professional Reports, Technical Reports, Informational Reports, Monographs, and Lab Manuals. Professional publications will be evaluated in terms of their quality, with reference to the intended audience. Original material generated by the faculty member and used as course content may also be considered under this category of scholarly production. As with books and book chapters, the scope of dissemination will be considered.

Conference Papers and Poster Presentations. Paper and poster presentations will be evaluated using various factors, including but not limited to:  (a) the quality of the paper or poster, (b) the quality of the conference, (c) the scope of the conference – international, national, regional, or local, (d) the scope of the dissemination of the paper, (e) whether the item was refereed, and (f) whether the paper or poster was invited.

Scholarship-Based Grants and Contracts. Funded grants and contracts provide evidence of the capacity to organize scholarly activity judged meritorious by external funding agencies. Therefore, external funding will be accorded more significance than internal (college) funding. Grant and contract proposals should be evaluated in terms of the funding agency and the scope of the funded research.

Scholarship Production in Progress. Evidence of scholarship in progress, particularly the continuation of funded endeavors, manuscripts under review, exhibitions under development, and formal working papers serve as an indicator of the candidate’s intent to complete projects. Completing a prospectus, literature review, or data collection, and writing individual parts or chapters of a project, are examples of production in progress. Statements of scholarship in progress should be supported by artifacts such as working drafts or notes.

Other Peer-Reviewed Creative Endeavors. Evidence provided for scholarship production in other forms (lectures, creative works, unique equipment, computer software/program design, video productions) will be evaluated in terms of (a) scope of dissemination, (b) character of receiving audience, and (c) prestige of validating authority, institution or agency. External validation of quality is essential.

Refereeing Peer-Reviewed Books and Journal Articles. Reviewing the contributions of other scholars is an important scholarly activity. This achievement will be evaluated based on the time and effort it takes to referee the publication, as well as the overall impact of the publication.

Shorter Written or Digital Works that Advance Public Knowledge. This may include short articles published in the bulletins of academic organizations and various forms of public media (newspapers, legitimate web magazines, podcast, webinar, recorded interview, etc.) that advance the general public knowledge. Such activities have less significance than original peer-reviewed contributions such as journal articles. Two shorter written works count as one item for annual review. This category cannot be counted more than once in any review year, regardless of the total number of items published.

3.3 Academic Leadership in Scholarship

Lines of evidence related to the demonstration of academic leadership in scholarship might include, but are not limited to, the following items not listed in priority order:

  1. Identifying, developing, funding, designing, implementing, and completing research, development, dissemination, or evaluation projects of significant scope. Evaluations will consider the extent to which such projects enhance one’s recognition and involve other faculty, students, and staff;
  2. Developing or assisting in the development of regional, national, or international conferences, symposia, or the like for the dissemination of research findings;
  3. Active membership on editorial boards of scholarly journals.

3.4 National Recognition in Scholarship

Lines of evidence related to the demonstration of national recognition in scholarship may include, but are not limited to, the following items not listed in priority order:

  1. Development of a model or practice that is widely adopted;
  2. Extensive publications in primary scholarly outlets;
  3. Record of high accomplishment in creative endeavors of relevance to the field;
  4. Frequent citations in literature;
  5. Obtaining funding through competitive proposal writing;
  6. Number and quality of invited addresses, symposia, colloquia, and presentations.

3.5 Rating Scholarship in the Annual Review Process

Each year, all faculty members shall present evidence of scholarly progress that outlines their scholarly contributions over the year in review. Evaluators will then assess each faculty member’s scholarly output by applying the categories in 3.6 to the ratings requirements in 3.7.

3.6 Categories for Rating Evidence of Scholarship in the Annual Review

The following categories provide general guidelines for assessing an individual’s work. Contributions not listed here, as well as those contributions listed in 3.3 and 3.4, should be considered. In keeping with SOE’s emphasis on optimal scholarship, the level of rigor and excellence is listed below in descending order from superior to noteworthy. As SOE values quality over quantity, evaluators should adapt these categories where necessary, especially when dictated by the standards or requirements of a particular field or discipline.

Level A – Includes the following items or equivalent not listed in priority order:

  1. Published a peer-reviewed journal article;
  2. Substantial role in guiding an undergraduate research project that may or may not be accepted for peer-reviewed publication;
  3. Acceptance of a national-level external research grant (level of contribution may be indicated by whether faculty member is among principal researchers);
  4. Completion of two or more chapters or equivalent of an accepted editor- or peer-reviewed book that is scholarly and based on original research and thought;
  5. Completion and publication of a book that is scholarly and based on original research and thought;
  6. Completion and publication of an edited or co-edited book that is relevant to the candidate’s discipline;
  7. Exhibition, publication, or release of a substantial creative work in a peer-reviewed venue;
  8. Serving as editor of a journal or book;
  9. Serving as chair of Master’s’ thesis and/or Doctoral dissertation committee;
  10. Presentation as keynote or invited speaker at a conference, symposia, colloquium, or other significant academic event.

Level B – Includes the following items or equivalent not listed in priority order:

  1. Submission of a manuscript to a refereed publication for initial peer-review;
  2. Resubmission of an article to a peer-reviewed journal that required substantial revisions;
  3. Completion and publication of one book chapter (editor- or peer-reviewed);
  4. Presentation of a scholarly paper or a research presentation at a professional conference;
  5. Substantial role in mentoring a student or students toward the successful presentation of a scholarly paper or poster at a professional conference;
  6. Mentoring a student to publish work in an undergraduate research journal or creative outlet;
  7. Acceptance of a scholarly peer-reviewed or editor-reviewed book chapter;
  8. Refereeing a book for an academic press;
  9. Receipt of an NSC, local or regional external grant or seed money (level of contribution may be indicated by whether faculty member is among principal researchers);
  10. Peer-reviewed exhibition or release of a single, discipline-specific, stand-alone piece of creative work;
  11. Completion of a scholarly technical/professional report or monograph;
  12. Publication of a laboratory workbook or other original material generated by the faculty member and used as course content;
  13. Acceptance of book prospectus;
  14. Presentation of a poster at professional conference;
  15. Management of an external grant (level of contribution may be indicated by whether faculty member is among principal researchers).

Level C – Includes the following items or equivalent not listed in priority order:

  1. Develops, conducts, and/or supervises research with students;
  2. Acceptance of an invited publication;
  3. Evidence of preparation of scholarly work with a clear timeline for completion (e.g., pilot testing; data collection, literature review);
  4. Submission of scholarly work for presentation at a conference;
  5. Completion of other scholarly products (e.g., software or conference proceedings);
  6. Refereeing an article for a peer-reviewed journal;
  7. Serving as a reviewer for regional, national, or international conferences;
  8. Serving as invited reviewer of textbook;
  9. Publication of a research note or book review;
  10. Publication of a peer-recognized field-specific encyclopedia article;
  11. Submission of an external grant (level of contribution may be indicated by whether faculty member is among principal researchers). Note: Submission of external grant applications that require significant research and preparation may be considered as a level B item at evaluator’s’ discretion;
  12. Two short discipline-specific published works that advance public knowledge (non-refereed). Note: Two works that fall into this category together count as one item for the purposes of annual review. This item cannot be counted more than once in any review year.

3.7 Scholarship Ratings for Annual Review

SOE set the following rating guidelines for assessing Scholarship on the annual review. These benchmarks serve solely as a guide. Evaluators can be flexible in the ratings where faculty members have undertaken forms of scholarship or scholarly leadership not listed here.

Note: Tenure-seeking faculty should plan out their scholarship agendas so they have time to complete the required expectations listed in the Tenure Guidelines.

4. SERVICE

4.1 Overview

As a developing institution, NSC values the service contributions of its faculty. It is one of the many ways that faculty work together to fulfill our mission. Service may encompasses four areas: (a) institutional (NSC) (b) school of education (c) service to the community (d) service to the profession. Faculty must include in their annual review narrative how they address service in the aforementioned four areas.

4.2 Evidence of Service

Lines of evidence related to the demonstration of accomplishment in service are listed below, but these are examples only and do not exhaust the range of possibilities.

4.3 Rating Service in the Annual Review Process

When evaluating faculty contributions in service, both the quantity and quality of service are important considerations. Quantity in the absence of quality is insufficient to earn high ratings in service. As part of their annual review materials, faculty members shall submit a brief narrative description of their service activities. Faculty members are encouraged to submit relevant evidence (e.g., documents created, revisions or edits made) that reflects particular service contributions and they may be asked to provide additional evidence of service contributions as requested by their department chair during the review process.

Excellent: Faculty provide strong evidence of satisfying the service items listed under 4.2 Evidence of Service.

Commendable: Faculty provide some evidence of satisfying the service items listed under 4.2 Evidence of Service.

Satisfactory: Faculty provide limited evidence of satisfying the service items listed under 4.2 Evidence of Service.

Unsatisfactory: Faculty provide no evidence of satisfying the service items listed under 4.2 Evidence of Service.

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