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.

Author: Kajill Vuzahn
Country: Guinea
Language: English (Spanish)
Genre: Video
Published (Last): 25 December 2010
Pages: 388
PDF File Size: 7.66 Mb
ePub File Size: 15.5 Mb
ISBN: 389-1-54112-532-1
Downloads: 65669
Price: Free* [*Free Regsitration Required]
Uploader: Garamar

But that’s not to say research isn’t important to me. Some also regularly augment their professorial tenude with substantial fees for speeches to groups yearning to hear about how corrupt those awful professors are, sitting around teaching only a few hours each week and spending their ample leisure time criticizing everything sacred. Marshall’s small microbiology department recently merged with a larger biology division, boosting the number of faculty members.

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

Following the adoption by Committee A, Council endorsed the statement at its meeting the following week. Thomas Stephenson likes the camaraderie of a small department. But the state legislature then puts the screws on in terms of teaching load. Faculty in different biology, chemistry, and other science departments are collaborating and cross-listing courses more than ever.

Since these standards have risen steadily over the past two decades, there are many faculty members who were granted tenure long ago and might not currently meet the most stringent standards of today. That committee produced the compromise report to be published in Academe. I have had to broaden my interests. In response, Committee A appointed a subcommittee of its own members to draft a report on the recommendations for presentation to the entire Committee.

Where senate leaders find themselves asked to serve on the various committees associated with the planning process, they are often selected by administrators, rather than elected by the faculty, either directly or through their academic senate.

I have heard Wilfred Kaplan complain about this at the University of Michigan on more than one occasion, where the review in a grievance is by the very administrator against whose action it was filed. Third, the statement that, “the standard for dismissal or severe sanction remains that of adequate cause,” should be changed to “just cause.

Some administrators even inflame these sentiments. There are some authors, like Roger Kimball, or Dinish D’Sousa, who attack the academy as a hotbed of “tenured radicals,” infecting new generations of students with the failed ideas of marxian revolution in America of the halcyon days of s protest.


Only universities are divided that way. 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. Wooster is a small place.

In this view, the Woodstock generation grew up or perhaps didn’t to become today’s faculty members and are corrupting our youth.

Higher education administrators have responded to the attacks on tenure and the calls for greater account. Others complement these attacks on tenure by coming at it from another direction.

When I began my first term as President of the AAUP, it was becoming undeniably clear that powerful forces aimed at restructuring the academic world were at work.

The Debate over Post-Tenure Review

When the discussion resumed, a motion was passed that asked that the Council withdraw its approval of the report as policy and that it be published in Academe for review and comment by members across the country. The administration can merely say that they are only presenting what has been already endorsed by the national AAUP and “what is your problem with your own organization?

Now, if you just had a department of 10 [faculty members], it would be impossible to get that money. By pushing for instituting post-tenure review processes, administrators get themselves off the hook.

Perley, however, had studied and worked in big schools, including the University of Michigan and Wayne State University. George Smith says a department with many faculty promotes “cross-fertilization. The summary of tbe various points of view names the discussion is broadly accurate, but not very helpful when it comes to understanding the political context that must be taken into account when responding to specific proposals for post-tenure review.

The procedural proposals, primarily found at the end of this long, and longwinded, summary have serious problems. No copies of the policy were distributed at the time of the announcement. These administrators, nevertheless, must deal with those outside the academy, politicians and others, who think that faculty members are a shiftless lot feeding at the public trough.

The core premise of post-tenure review is that there is a substantial enough minority of faculty members who are so incompetent that they need to be dismissed. Since such a world does not exist, the AAUP can either continue to remain silent on the phenomenon and therefore not be a part of the debates which are raging and threaten to significantly affect our lives, or we can do our best to help shape emerging developments around our principles.


However, several studies refute that assumption, suggesting small research groups can be as constructive as larger ones R. Faculty involvement could well be through a committee selected by the administration to judge faculty members, employing procedures dictated by administrators. In a small department, would he feel content-or claustrophobic?

The goals of those working to this end were per,ey by financial constraints on higher education and by a decrease in the willingness to fund higher education at both the federal and state level.

The Key To Academic Bliss Can Be Found In Large Or Small Departments | The Scientist Magazine®

Some researchers predict that increasing interdisciplinary focus and new technology will make departmental size issues moot. In many cases these procedures would, if adopted, allow for the firing of faculty members without peer review and without access to those due process protections required by the AAUP which had become an essential feature of practice protecting the profession.

Performance is almost always defined in terms of research productivity. Further, the question of how the standards, rules and procedures are to be formulated is clarified by the report’s references to faculty involvement. Brown is a freelance science writer based in Columbia, Mo. The faculty should also conduct the actual review process. In a department with some 40 faculty members, he’s likely to hear lectures on topics as diverse as neurobiology and plant genetics.

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.

They can tell the critics that they are doing something about the situation about which they are concerned and can push off the major responsibility onto the faculty to conduct these new reviews.

It was my strong feeling, reinforced by developments since then, that tenure would be under increasingly hostile assault and that one of the forms of that attack would be the development of schemes involving post-tenure review.