Participating Faculty Task Force – Summary of Work

To better understand the experience of Marquette’s full- and part-time participating (non-tenure track) faculty, in June 2019, then Acting Provost Kimo Ah Yun convened a Task Force to study the participating faculty experience and make recommendations to improve that experience based on their findings. The Task Force was comprised of more than 20 individuals and included both tenured and participating faculty members, leaders from each of Marquette’s colleges and schools (as well as the Raynor Libraries), and members from various university offices including the Office of Institutional Research and Analysis, Office of Marketing and Communication, Office of the General Counsel and Human Resources.

Qualitative and quantitative data were collected through a variety of methods, including: listening lunches with participating faculty; an anonymous online questionnaire; analysis of policies and procedures associated with the participating faculty experience across all of Marquette’s colleges and schools (everything from hiring, onboarding and supervision to compensation, benefits and professional development to recognition, reappointment and promotions); data from 18 peer universities; and the College and University Professional Association for Human Resources’ Faculty Salary Survey.

Based on the information they were able to collect and review, the Task Force made recommendations for improving the participating faculty experience at Marquette, which were categorized into the following five themes: (1) Contract Terms, (2) Compensation and Total Rewards, (3) Performance Evaluation and Promotion, (4) Professional Development, and (5) Recognition and Inclusion.

Task Force members believe that some of the recommendations can be acted upon relatively quickly, while others will take further study. Likewise, some recommendations can be implemented at relatively little financial cost, whereas others will take some additional time, study and financial resources to implement.

Recent Progress

  • The Office of the Provost will provide another $10,000 in professional development funds to participating faculty this year. A call for proposals will be distributed shortly after the fall term begins.
  • The task force collected data from all colleges and schools pertaining to promotion criteria for participating faculty, and is working with those units to establish standards where none currently exist.
  • The full-time participating faculty salary study will be completed this fall and sent to the provost with recommendations.
  • The task force is working on establishing new awards to recognize the excellent work of participating faculty in the areas of teaching and leadership.
  • A regular and systematic process for evaluating the work of participating faculty will be completed this fall.
  • A process for regularly awarding multi-year contracts in accordance with the provost’s existing policy has been established and already more than 50 full-time participating faculty have or will receive three-year contracts. Additional multi-year contracts will be awarded as full-time participating faculty become eligible.
  • A $400 course cancellation compensation payment for part-time participating faculty members has been created and will be issued in cases when a course gets cancelled prior to the start of the semester, after a contract had already been signed.  
  • Professional development funds in excess of $10,000 have been awarded with the expectation of continual funding in the years ahead.
  • A full-time participating faculty salary study is underway. 
  • The Participating Faculty Forum scheduled for early April was canceled due to COVID-19 event restrictions, however the social hour scheduled for May 6 will take place virtually.

Moving Forward

To continue building on the progress made on the recommendations above, the Task Force identified four additional recommendations from their report completed last fall to pursue next. The next four report recommendations the team will address include:

  • Providing formal evaluations for all participating faculty on a regular basis.
  • Creating a clear, standardized, and limited set of titles for participating faculty that correspond with a clear standardized pathway to promotion.
  • Ensuring promotion standards exist in all colleges and schools.
  • Establishing mechanisms to formally recognize participating faculty for excellence.

The task force will continue its work by partnering with the Provost’s Office to finalize specific recommendations related to the above and operationalize them as quickly, yet thoughtfully, as possible.