Tuesday, October 31, 2006


I spent almost the entire day today doing work for one of the more important committees in the department, the one that reviews and evaluates the annual review files for the entire faculty.

Earlier this summer, I produced my own first full file for this committee to review...it didn't occur to me how much effort would be required to review all of these files...reading over the new published work, examining all of the syllabi for what evidence they may contain of excellent or subpar teaching, reading each student evaluation, and on and on.

Well, maybe this did occur to me, but what really was a surprise was how much work transferring this information into a report wopuld require, copying all of those titles, transcribing indicative student remarks, poring over the statistical reports of those evaluations.

I worked all day on this and only finished two files. My eyes hurt.

But at least this means that next week I can work on my own writing, completing what will go into my file for next year, which, of course, someone else will have to read...


Jason said...

I'm somewhat surprised junior-ish faculty are "able" to serve on such a committee. At my school, it's full professors only, and if your dept. doesn't have enough to round out the committee, then you have to borrow some from one that doesn't.

Even from the outside, it seems like a mighty amount of work . . .

Horace said...

The rationale (one that I buy right now) is that you do it once pre-tenure (usu. your second full year), and a lot of the tenure / promotion /annual review process is demystified.

There are three full professors and two associate professors who serve staggered two-year terms, and the tt faculty elected to the committee serve one year, and, again, usually don't serve more than once pre-tenure.

The work load is heavy, but it's not wretched, despite today's work, and it almost certainly means I'll get the highest rating available for service next year. But the whole demystification thing really does ring true for me. I'm glad I've gotten the opportunity.

Bardiac said...

The demystification idea sounds potentially REALLY helpful. You can also take pity on your colleagues who are doing this for you every year.

Personnel work is a huge and important responsibility, but it does suck up time like nobody's business!