Publications

    Mathews, K. R. (2013). Understanding faculty survey nonrespondents: Their characteristics, organizational citizenship behaviors, workplace attitudes, and reasons for nonparticipation. University of Pennsylvania. Read the dissertationAbstract

    College and university administrators frequently survey their faculty to inform decisions affecting the academic workplace. Higher education researchers, too, rely heavily on survey methodologies in their scholarly work. Survey response rates, however, have been declining steadily for decades, and when nonrespondents and respondents systematically differ on variables relevant to the instrument, the resulting nonresponse bias may lead those interpreting the data to erroneous conclusions. Despite the potentially corrosive impact of nonrandom missing data, relatively few scholarly studies—and fewer organizational reports—consider or control it.

    Guided by the framework of organizational citizenship behavior (OCB), this research proposed to determine if faculty who respond to institutional surveys differ meaningfully from those who do not. Interpretation and implications of these findings are discussed for administrators and researchers, with particular consideration given to the faculty context of shared governance.

    Bouvier, D. L. (2013). The Situational Context of Tenured Female Faculty in the Academy and the Impact of Critical Mass of Tenured Female Faculty on Pre-tenure Faculty Job Satisfaction: A Four Discipline Study. Ohio University. Publisher's VersionAbstract

    This research studies the convergence between critical mass, discipline and gender in the academy. Critical mass theory is based on the concept that when a "nonmajority" group reaches a minimal threshold they can generate lasting change within an organization. While women receive doctoral degrees in higher percentages than their male colleagues, they do not ascend the ranks in the same proportions (Touchton, McTighe Musil, & Peltier Campbell, 2008). A critical mass of tenured female faculty has the ability to positively impact the environment for pre-tenure faculty at the departmental level.

    The study used data from the 2011-12 COACHE survey of faculty in finance/accounting, management, English and history. A critical mass of tenured female faculty positively impacted environments for pre-tenure females and males in history and females in management. In management departments without a critical mass of tenured female faculty, females were significantly less satisfied while their male colleagues were significantly more satisfied. Further qualitative research is needed to better understand environments using the lenses of critical mass, discipline and gender.

    The role of citizenship status in intent to leave for pre-tenure faculty
    Kim, D., Wolf-Wendel, L., & Twombly, S. B. (2013). The role of citizenship status in intent to leave for pre-tenure faculty. Journal of Diversity in Higher Education , 6 (4), 245-260. Read the articleAbstract

    Using a national database, this study uses discriminant analysis to explore the role of citizenship status in determining intent to leave for pre-tenure faculty members at 4-year research universities. Of the three possible responses (intend to stay, intend to leave, and undecided), two functions emerged. The first function differentiates those who intend to stay from those who intend to leave and those who are undecided. The second function differentiates between those who intend to leave and those who are undecided.

    Measures of satisfaction with workplace serve as the primary indicators of function one. Race and citizenship status are the only variables significant for function two. Demographic variables, discipline, salary, and institutional variables are not significant in either function. The variables that are significant for the entire sample are similar to those significant just for non-U.S. citizen faculty. Implications of this study for institutions include attending to departmental and institutional fit, recognition of diversity among non-U.S. citizen faculty, and working toward improving various components of satisfaction.

    Young, M. J. (2012). Engineering a place for women: A study of how departmental climate influences the career satisfaction of female mechanical engineering faculty members. Syracuse University. Read the dissertationAbstract

    The purpose of this mixed-methods study was to better understand how female mechanical engineering faculty members’ career experiences in academia affect their satisfaction. The research considered differences in satisfaction reported by female and male mechanical engineering faculty members in terms of departmental climate, nature of work, resource allocations, departmental policies/practices, and overall satisfaction.

    The study compared the levels of satisfaction reported in survey data collected through the Faculty Job Satisfaction Survey from 2005-2010. A subset of the survey participants was interviewed to gain nuanced descriptions of faculty member worklife. 

    This study identified the role of gendered divisions of labor, gendered divisions of allowed behavior, gendered symbols, and gendered interactions as reasons why female mechanical engineering faculty members are less satisfied with employment in academia than their male colleagues. Recommendations for how mechanical engineering leadership can improve the climate in the department include transparency in decision-making and encouraging senior faculty members to engage in constructive, collaborative research conversations with junior faculty members.

    Victorino, C. A. (2012). Examining faculty satisfaction, productivity, and collegiality in higher education: Contemporary contexts and modern methods. University of California, Santa Barbara. Read the dissertationAbstract

    In response to discourse surrounding faculty accountability and diversity, this dissertation describes three studies of faculty satisfaction, productivity, and collegiality in higher education. The studies employed advanced quantitative methods to analyze and interpret faculty data at four-year colleges and universities.

    The first study revealed a strong, positive, and highly significant relationship between campus racial climate and faculty satisfaction at the individual level, regardless of gender, race/ethnicity, and tenure status. The second study identified five classes of faculty productivity with respect to gender, race, institutional type, and levels of faculty satisfaction.

    The third study examined the relationships among faculty collegiality, job satisfaction, and turnover intentions. Significant findings indicated that faculty collegiality was strongly and positively related to job satisfaction and negatively related to turnover intentions, regardless of gender and race/ethnicity. Women faculty and faculty of color indicated lower levels of collegiality, and faculty of color reported lower job satisfaction and higher turnover intentions.

     

    Taylor, J. D. (2012). A comparison of institutional climates in higher education in the United States and South Africa. The University of Southern Mississippi. Read the dissertationAbstract

    Increasing opportunities and access of historically underrepresented populations to higher education in both the United States and South Africa has proved challenging due to institutional climates perceived as unwelcoming and unsupportive. The purpose of this study was to investigate factors relating to institutional climates to uncover social constructs that positively and negatively impact the institutional environment. Transformational leadership serves as the theoretical framework for this study.

    Data results from institutional climate studies administered at higher education institutions in the United States and South Africa were analyzed and compared. Collegiality and collaboration; communication; diversity and equity; governance and strategy; harassment and discrimination; and organizational environment were the primary social constructs measured and evaluated at each institution. Results demonstrate differences in the perceptions of faculty and academic staff based on institution, race, gender, and academic rank. Findings provide academic leaders with cross-national strategies for creating inclusive academic environments and replicating excellence.

    Schneller, H. L. (2012). Family policies and institutional satisfaction: An intersectional analysis of tenure-track faculty. University of Arkansas. Read the dissertationAbstract

    Guided by an intersectional perspective, this study compares responses to the 2008 and 2009 Tenure-Track Faculty Job Satisfaction survey provided by four groups of faculty: African American women, African American men as well as white women and white men. The study examines faculty perceptions regarding the importance of family policies as related to career success, the effectiveness of family policies at the institution, and the level of satisfaction with work-life balance. The findings indicate that there are significant differences in policy perceptions and work-life satisfaction. African American women overwhelmingly indicate that eldercare policy is important to career success, while white women are more concerned with childcare policy. Significant group differences emerge in faculty assessment of childcare policy. The analysis reveals institutional-level support for care work influences overall satisfaction with the institution more than departmental support. The findings suggest care work still matters in relation to a faculty member's career advancement.

    Mukhtar, F. (2012). Work life balance and job satisfaction among faculty at Iowa State University. Iowa State University. Read the dissertationAbstract

    This study utilized the existing database from the Iowa State University 2009-2010 Faculty Job Satisfaction Survey to explore faculty work life balance and job satisfaction among academic disciplines. This research sought to determine if (a) work life differs by academic discipline group: (b) job satisfaction differs by academic discipline, and (c) there is a relationship between faculty work life and job satisfaction and whether this relationship differs by academic discipline group, and (d) if academic discipline has a unique effect on faculty work and life balance.

    The results indicated that there is a significant relationship between work life and job satisfaction. When controlling for demographic and professional experience, the result also indicated that age and climate, and culture were significant predicators for work life balance. The results also showed that female faculty have lower job satisfaction, and indicated that the level of job satisfaction was lower for hard pure disciplines than soft pure disciplines.

    Success on the Tenure Track: Five Keys to Faculty Job Satisfaction
    Trower, C. (2012). Success on the Tenure Track: Five Keys to Faculty Job Satisfaction (pp. 288) . Baltimore, Johns Hopkins University Press. Read the full textAbstract

    Landing a tenure-track position is no easy task. Achieving tenure is even more difficult. Under what policies and practices do faculty find greater clarity about tenure and experience higher levels of job satisfaction? What makes an institution a great place to work?

    In 2005–2006, the Collaborative on Academic Careers in Higher Education surveyed more than 15,000 tenure-track faculty at 200 institutions. The survey was designed around five key themes: tenure clarity, work-life balance, support for research, collegiality, and leadership.

    Success on the Tenure Track positions the survey data in the context of actual colleges and universities. Best practices at the highest-rated institutions in the survey—Auburn, Ohio State, North Carolina State, Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Iowa, Kansas, and North Carolina at Pembroke—give administrators practical, proven advice on increasing employee satisfaction. Additional chapters discuss faculty demographics, trends in employment practices, creating a great workplace for faculty, and the future of tenure.

     

    Gen X Meets Theory X: What New Scholars Want
    Trower, C. A. (2012). Gen X Meets Theory X: What New Scholars Want. Journal of Collective Bargaining in the Academy. Read the full articleAbstract

     

    “If they can’t understand that I want a kick-ass career and a kick-ass life, then I don’t want to work here,” sums up how many Generation X’ers (born between 1965 and 1980) view their workplace, according to Lancaster and Stillman. As a group, Gen X’ers are willing to work hard but want to decide when, where, and how. As this generation enters the professoriate in large numbers, some institutions may be wondering what hit them.

    This study measured the importance of 19 job factors to recent graduates of doctoral degree programs. The primary considerations of recent graduates when choosing a job were: finding a situation in which they could do meaningful work and strike a balance between teaching and research; quality of living conditions, e.g., affordability of housing, commute, good K-12 schools, community feeling and safety, and job opportunities for spouse or partner; and balance between work and home life.

     

    International Faculty in American Universities: Experiences of Academic Life, Productivity, and Career Mobility
    Kim, D., Twombly, S., & Wolf-Wendel, L. (2012). International Faculty in American Universities: Experiences of Academic Life, Productivity, and Career Mobility. New Directions for Institutional Research , 155, 27-46. Publisher's VersionAbstract

    In the past 20 years, the number of international faculty members at American universities has continued to increase rapidly. This growth is evident in data showing that the proportional representation of foreign-born faculty easily surpasses that of domestic underrepresented racial/ethnic groups. The increasing presence of international faculty members is validated using multiple data sources, and their professional experience is examined in terms of the perception of academic life, productivity, and career mobility.

    The primary interest of this chapter on international faculty and their professional experiences in U.S. higher education institutions is based on the assumption that international faculty are considered to be different than domestic faculty in their academic experiences, largely due to their cultural, educational, and language backgrounds. 

    Data, Leadership, and Catalyzing Culture Change
    Benson, T., & Trower, C. (2012). Data, Leadership, and Catalyzing Culture Change. Change: The Magazine of Higher Learning , 44 (4), 27-34. Read the articleAbstract

    As the national economy has worsened, a large cadre of tenured senior faculty is graying and staying at their institutions. This has left an older set of full professors who began their careers in a different era, an overworked and underappreciated set of associate professors, and a group of assistant professors who are wondering, “What have I gotten myself into?”

    By and large, tenure-track faculty want what they have always wanted: clear and reasonable tenure requirements; support for teaching and research; an environment that allows them to juggle responsibilities at work and home; and a set of colleagues to whom they can turn for mentoring, collaborations, intellectual stimulation, and friendship. But several differences between the past and present affect these faculty dramatically.

     

    Political Science in the 21st Century
    (2011). Political Science in the 21st Century. Read the reportAbstract

    Is political science positioned to embrace and incorporate the changing demographics, increasing multicultural diversity, and ever-growing disparities in the concentration of wealth present in many nation-states? Can political science do so within its research, teaching, and professional development? These two questions were the focus of the Task Force on Political Science in the 21st Century. To answer these questions, the Task Force assessed the practice of political science to determine whether it is living up to its full potential as a scholarly discipline to enrich the discourse, broaden the understanding, and model the behavior necessary to build strong nation-states in a rapidly changing world where population shifts and related issues regarding race, ethnicity, immigration, and equal opportunity structure some of the most significant conflicts affecting politics and policymaking.

    Bruce, D. S. (2011). Intent to leave the professoriate: The relationship between race/ethnicity and job satisfaction for pre-tenured professors in doctorate-granting universities. University of Kansas. Read the dissertationAbstract

    This study investigated pre-tenure faculty satisfaction and intent to leave their institution using 2005–2008 data from the Faculty Job Satisfaction Survey. The purpose of this study is to identify salient variables influencing faculty of color retention and to explain the lack of progress in diversifying the professoriate by exploring the relationship between racial/ethnic group membership and pre-tenure faculty job satisfaction and the relationship these variables have with departure intentions. The study was limited to faculty working at doctorate-granting U.S. universities.

    Results of the study suggest faculty of color are more likely to intend to leave their institutions than their White (non-Hispanic) counterparts. Specifically, the study's findings suggest satisfaction with tenure processes and procedures, teaching, advising, service, and research expectations, and collegiality negatively influenced departure intentions of pre-tenure faculty overall and for specific racial/ethnic groups. The study offers ideas for expanded research on pre-tenure faculty job satisfaction and intent to leave.

    Senior Faculty Vitality
    Trower, C. (2011). Senior Faculty Vitality. TIAA Institute . TIAA CREF. Publisher's VersionAbstract

    Academic institutions and faculty are pressured today from multiple directions as the federal government demands greater accountability, states cut budgets, tuition payers demand more, granting agencies become more selective and trustees apply more pressure and scrutinize more closely. In this context, this report examines the workplace satisfaction of senior faculty members at seven public research universities.

    The vitality, productivity and satisfaction of senior faculty is extremely important to colleges and universities in fulfilling their missions and achieving their goals. One-quarter of senior faculty surveyed feel that the single most important thing colleges and universities can do to improve the workplace revolves around leadership stability and consistency of mission, focus, and priorities. Sixteen percent feel that increased salaries are most important and 14 percent would like more research support.

    Trower, C. (2011). Senior Faculty Satisfaction: Perceptions of Associate and Full Professors at Seven Public Research Universities. Publisher's VersionAbstract
    This TIAA-CREF paper presents data from a survey of 1,775 tenured associate and full professors at seven public universities, showing that many are frustrated about leadership turnover and the corresponding shifts in mission, focus, and priorities, and also about salary. In addition, associate professors are less satisfied than full professors on critical factors such as support for research, collaboration, and clarity of promotion, and women are less satisfied than men on numerous dimensions including mentoring support for research and interdisciplinary work, and clarity of promotion.
    Career Stage Differences in Pre-Tenure Track Faculty Perceptions of Professional and Personal Relationships with Colleagues
    Ponjuan, L., Conley, V. M., & Trower, C. (2011). Career Stage Differences in Pre-Tenure Track Faculty Perceptions of Professional and Personal Relationships with Colleagues. The Journal of Higher Education , 82 (3), 319-346. Read the articleAbstract

    Despite a steady decline in available faculty tenure-track positions, future vacancies in tenure-track positions provide opportunities to diversify faculty ranks with new female faculty and faculty of color. This impending employment shift in faculty demographics may change departmental climates, pre-tenure faculty socialization processes, and professional and personal relationships between pre-tenure female faculty and faculty of color and their colleagues.

    This study examines pre-tenure faculty members' perception of collegial relationships with colleagues. We primarily focus on the organizational socialization of female faculty and faculty of color, and faculty in different pre-tenure career stages. We found differences in satisfaction with collegial relationships between faculty by gender, race, and pre-tenure career stages.

     

    (2010). COACHE Benchmark Exemplars, 2006-2009 . The Collaborative on Academic Careers in Higher Education. Publisher's VersionAbstract
    Data from COACHE’s Tenure-Track Faculty Job Satisfaction Survey reveal some colleges and universities as “exemplary” on key dimensions of the work experiences of early-career faculty. The assessment considers the same benchmark dimensions used in COACHE’s institutional reports: tenure practices; the clarity of institutional expectations for tenure; the nature of faculty work overall, in research, and in teaching; work and home balance and supports; climate, culture, and collegiality; and global satisfaction.
    (2010). The Experience of Tenure-Track Faculty at Research Universities: Analysis of COACHE Survey Results by Academic Area and Gender.Abstract

    The COACHE Faculty Job Satisfaction Survey is organized around five themes: tenure, nature of the work, policies and practices, climate, culture, and collegiality, and global satisfaction. This analysis looks at survey data for pre-tenure faculty at research universities. In particular, the analysis examined gender differences across twelve academic areas. Mean scores for each of the 83 survey dimension were ranked across all 12 academic areas.

    New Challenges, New Priorities: The Experience of Generation X Faculty
    Helms, R. (2010). New Challenges, New Priorities: The Experience of Generation X Faculty . Cambridge, Collaborative on Academic Careers in Higher Education. Read the studyAbstract

    This study explores how Generation X (born 1964-1980) faculty are approaching their jobs, long-term careers, and work-life balance, and examines if and how the generational “clashes” reportedly arising in the workforce are being manifested in the academic environment. The study was designed to complement and build upon the coache Tenure-Track Faculty Job Satisfaction Survey by using qualitative interviews to explore many of the same themes in greater depth with a limited number of participants, and provide insights into how those themes play out in the day-to-day lives of individual faculty members. While the survey provides a snapshot of how tenure-track faculty are feeling about their current job situation, this study examines the broader context of faculty members’ long-term careers, and the interplay between their work and non-work lives.

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