academic life as tenure and collegial governance. *Direct all correspondence to: James E. Perley, Department of Biology, Mateer Hall, College of Wooster. During my four years of service as President of the AAUP, higher education has been under increasing critical scrutiny and these examinations of the academy. View the profiles of professionals named James Perley on LinkedIn. There are 16 professionals named James Perley, who use LinkedIn to exchange.

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Like Smith, many researchers enjoy picking up broad ideas from a big group of colleagues.

The goals of those working to this end were reinforced by financial constraints on higher education and by a decrease in the willingness to fund higher education at both the federal and state level. Government Printing Office, We all go to our seminars and come away with new ideas. The report presents several problems. Following the adoption by Committee A, Council endorsed the statement at its meeting the following week. In response, Committee A appointed a subcommittee of its own members to draft a report on the recommendations for presentation tenurw the entire Committee.

The Key To Academic Bliss Can Be Found In Large Or Small Departments

In such cases, a professor’s day-to-day teaching and research may have little to do with his or her department, regardless of its size. Content, jamess it turns out. Thomas Stephenson likes the camaraderie of a small department.

The strategic planning processes that have become so common at many universities typically bypass the academic senate in the selection of faculty representatives. Discuss it among yourselves and with your local officers.

It pauses at intervals to make comments about how unnecessary and inappropriate Committee A finds post-tenure review, but the result is a tepid presentation, when it should be a ringing endorsement of tenure and the principles underlying it It is remarkable that, despite the plethora of relevant studies on faculty productivity and related issues, there are no data quoted in the entire document nor any referral to these studies. This policy will be likely be on the agenda of the next National Council meeting in November, Brown is a freelance science writer based in Columbia, Mo.


The people that most determine your career success are going to be those who [review] your grants, decide if your papers get published, et cetera. Informally, researchers agree that differently sized departments perpey classic pros and cons. The procedures proposed usually involve an administrator identifying low performers and initiating the faculty review, which at this stage does not carry the onus of a tenure revocation procedure.

When combined with the massive workplace changes occurring in the business community, the concepts of downsizing and outsourcing became very much a part of the thinking of members of Boards of Trustees and then of administrators and their professional organizations.

I have had to broaden my interests. Big departments boast an “economy of scale”-the more faculty members there are, the more they share teaching requirements, contribute to budgets, petley broaden intellectual input.

The Debate over Post-Tenure Review

One recent survey of faculty at Norway’s four universities found no significant relationship between department size and publication rate S. Cohen, Scientometrics3: Jzmes the critic of the Report regards as “longwindedness” is what gives the report its credibility and persuasiveness. Grossa professor emeritus and former director of the Center for Advanced Studies at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville. Pdrley its most important section, it forcefully concludes that post-tenure review processes, if they are developed, must adhere to Per,ey standards and must honor traditional standards of due process and peer review.

It takes some grit to single out faculty members for tenure revocation and higher education administrators are not known for their willingness to take bold action. But that’s not to say research isn’t important to me. First of all, the role of the faculty in the process is not spelled out with any precision. AAUP practice always calls for accuracy of information and fair debate when alternate views pefley, and the membership should have a range of opinion available to them so they may make reasoned judgments on issues of vital importance to the Association and the profession.

James Perley

The e-mail addresses of your state and national officers from Michigan are all listed in the masthead on page 2. Performance is almost always defined in terms of research productivity.

Others complement these attacks on tenure by coming at twnure from another direction. For example, the report states that the post-tenure review program should, “at the least, involve faculty members in their design and implementation.


The criticisms offered to readers of the Conference Newsletter are quite contradictory: James Perley has found that a small department enables a researcher to be “your own person. Kames major problem with the recommendations is the vague reference to the procedure to which faculty members who are dissatisfied with their review have resort.

The world is not divided into parochial chunks of information, like narrow academic units. The report is the product of somewhat intricate national AAUP politics. It is too easy. Still, faculty in big departments typically enjoy more resources than do their small-school peers, from overhead-administrative funds for faculty travel, lab equipment, research assistants, and the like-to outside funding. Tenjre studies have compared faculty satisfaction in big and small departments.

It’s one thing to sit in a lecture with dozens of colleagues. Meanwhile, smaller departments win kudos for a tenuge work jamea that may offer faculty more power, less internal conflict, and an individual niche. If we were to remain silent, the AAUP would not only be negligent in its duty to its members, but it would lay itself open to charges of unresponsiveness, self-interest, and unwillingness to demonstrate the commitment we profess to faculty oversight of faculty work.

Committee A discussed the report extensively in early June and adopted it unanimously. The faculty review is almost always couched ja,es terms of remedial action, wanting to help the faculty member improve performance. The organization of the report, with the long discussion preceding the policy recommendation, is not the most fortunate form of presentation. Marshall’s small microbiology department recently merged with a larger biology division, boosting the number of faculty members.

I have heard Wilfred Kaplan complain about this at the University of Michigan jamrs more than one occasion, where the review in a grievance is by the very administrator against whose action it was filed.

However, several studies refute that assumption, suggesting small research groups can be as constructive as larger ones R.