Connected Campus

3.7.2 Faculty Evaluation

 

The institution regularly evaluates the effectiveness of each faculty member in accord with published criteria, regardless of contractual or tenured status.

 

_X_  Compliance           ___  Partial Compliance          ___  Non-Compliance

 

Narrative

 

Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary (MABTS) publicizes policies, procedures, and criteria governing faculty evaluations administered on a regular and timely basis (annually). The institution ensures that evaluation policies are sufficiently broad for all faculty, regardless of status. Focus is given on the faculty’s effectiveness in terms of student learning and procedures for full-time and part-time faculty are synonymous. Copies of faculty evaluations are available in the Academic Vice President’s (AVP) office ensuring that they are administered on a regular and timely basis. The evaluation form is broad enough to provide equitable and applicable evaluations regardless of the status of the faculty member and are administered by department chairpersons and reviewed by the AVP to ensure there is evidence of student learning. The AVP, in turn, interviews and assesses each chairperson.

 

Policies, Procedures, and Criteria

 

MABTS maintains policies, procedures, and criteria that govern the faculty evaluation process, which are publicized annually in the 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook and the 2014-15 Adjunct Faculty Handbook.

 

Policies and Procedures that Govern Faculty Evaluation. Several policies and procedures are a part of the performance evaluation of faculty.

 

At the end of each semester, each student completes an evaluation form for the class just completed [1]. Course evaluations are reviewed by the professor, the dean of the Masters and Undergraduate programs and the AVP [2]. The purpose of this process is to indicate possible changes needed in teaching methodologies, course content, department curriculum, and faculty assignments.

 

At the Northeast campus, each student completes an evaluation form at the end of each term on the class just completed. The professor/instructor examines responses and then submits the evaluation to the Director of the Northeast campus [3].

 

In March/April of the academic year, students participate in annual surveys and forums prepared by the Institutional Assessment Committee. This process is designed to measure faculty and program effectiveness. The results are compiled by the Director of Institutional Assessment and are given to the President and the AVP to be used in the strategic planning process.

 

Specific information pertaining to each department (curriculum content and faculty) is compiled by the Office of Institutional Assessment and is forwarded to the Department Chairman, Academic Deans, and the AVP. This information becomes a part of the total evaluation process.

 

The same survey and forum process is used at the Northeast campus. The results are compiled by the office of the Director. A copy of the results is forwarded to the Office of Institutional Assessment and the AVP.

 

Annual student evaluations and forums are important but are just a part of the evaluative process to measure a professor’s effectiveness and competency in the classroom. Course syllabi and professional observation are also used to evaluate course content, assignments, methodologies, and professionalism in the classroom.

 

Each faculty member submits an annual Professional Activities Report (PAR) to his/her department chairman by October 15 [4 and 5]. In addition, each department chairman evaluates departmental faculty using the MABTS Performance Evaluation form [6]. The department chairperson also responds in writing to departmental faculty’s PARs and discusses these reports in scheduled meetings with each faculty member before November 1 [7]. Any pertinent information from the course evaluations and the annual student surveys and forums is shared with the professor during this meeting. After meeting with faculty members, the department chairperson shares the summary conclusions from the evaluation in a meeting with the AVP prior to November 1.

 

Concurrent with this process, the AVP receives a PAR on November 1 from each academic dean [8] and department chairperson [9] and conducts an evaluation of each dean [10] and chairperson [11]. The PAR and results of the total evaluation process are discussed in a meeting with the respective Dean or Chairman and the AVP. This meeting is to be held prior to January 1.

 

At the Northeast campus, all faculty evaluations are coordinated through the Office of the director and copies are forwarded to the AVP.

 

In addition to the signature of the professor being evaluated, the seminary operates a two-signature evaluation system. The direct supervisor and his or her supervisor must sign the evaluation form to protect against bias or discrimination.

 

All faculty evaluations are stored in the office of the AVP and in the President’s office in a locked filing cabinet. At the Northeast campus, all faculty evaluations are stored in the office of the Director, also in a locked filing cabinet.

 

A questionnaire is mailed to graduates two years after their graduation [12]. The questionnaire provides an opportunity for graduates to give input on their experiences with seminary instruction, faculty, and programs. Questionnaires are read and summarized by the President, then verbally shared with individual faculty and staff members.

 

Criteria that Govern Faculty Evaluation. There are six criteria that govern the evaluation of MABTS professors. The criteria are as follows: (1) academic preparation as evidenced by earned academic degrees from reputable institutions of higher learning and additional studies in such institutions; (2) professional competency as evidenced by a combination of the response of students in class, course content as reflected in the course syllabi and observation/evaluation by the department chairperson and AVP; (3) scholarly accomplishments demonstrated by the publishing of books and articles and by lectures that reflect scholarship; (4) contribution to the seminary through public relations and in preaching/teaching ministries in the churches; (5) administrative ability and service; and (6) loyalty to the seminary and its mission, including serving as faithful models in practical missions and witnessing [13].

           

The Publication of Evaluation Policies, Procedures, and Criteria

 

The 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook publicizes in detail the full-time and part-time faculty evaluation process. Each full-time instructional faculty member, regardless of contractual or tenured status, is evaluated by his or her direct supervisor. This annual evaluation is based upon: 1) student course evaluations each semester; 2) alumni questionnaire responses; 3) annual student surveys; and 4) annual student forums. The faculty members may respond in writing to the evaluation [14]. 

 

Scope of Faculty Policies

 

At MABTS, the evaluation form is broad enough to provide equitable and applicable evaluations regardless of the status of the faculty member. Copies of the evaluation forms for program deans, department chairs, and faculty members are available in the 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook [15].

 

Administration of Faculty Evaluations

 

To ensure training effectiveness, the seminary developed procedures for the evaluation of training assessment by using the following tools:

 

  • Course evaluations are provided for each student at the conclusion of every course. These evaluations are answered anonymously and are designed to elicit student appraisal and constructive suggestions concerning the course. The professor, in self-evaluation, uses these questionnaires. They are also available for the use of the chairmen of the respective departments, the appropriate academic director, and the AVP in the evaluation of the assessment of the educational program [16].
     
  • Alumni questionnaires are sent by the President to each graduate of the institution during the second year following graduation. This questionnaire is used for the evaluation of instruction, faculty, and programs at the institution. It is a confidential document and is handled by the President only. The results are summarized, and the summary is placed in a confidential file. Pertinent information and suggestions are shared with each faculty member or administrative officer. These alumni surveys focus upon the significant events and trends which have taken place in a two year period in the churches where alumni serve. The results help to measure the effectiveness of the alumni in actual ministry situations [17].
     
  • Student surveys are conducted once each year giving each student the opportunity to evaluate the educational and administrative operations of the seminary. The results are evaluated by the Executive Administrative Committee (EAC) and are shared with the faculty.
     
  • Personnel evaluations of Faculty are conducted yearly by Department Chairmen during the month of November. Results are used by Department Chairmen and the AVP to guide faculty members in the improvement of their teaching effectiveness.

 

Evaluation of Part-Time Faculty

 

While the process of evaluating full-time faculty has already been documented, part-time faculty are also evaluated to enhance their educational effectiveness. The process is as follows: 1) every part-time instructor must be credentialed according to SACSCOC; 2) every syllabus of a part-time instructor is analyzed by both the department chair and the AVP; 3) part-time faculty, like full-time faculty, receive course evaluations that are reviewed by the department chairs and the AVP; and 4) while no part-time instructor is subject to a personal written evaluation, they are subject to the same rigor regarding academic excellence [18].

 

Documentation

 

1. 2014-15 Student Course Evaluation

2. 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook, p. 50-52

3. 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook, p. 54

4. 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook, p. 81

5. 2014-15 Faculty PAR Sample

6. Chairperson’s Evaluation of Professor

7. 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook, p. 51

8. 2014-15 Dean/Director Professional Activity Report

9. 2014-15 Chairman Professional Activity Report

10. 2014-15 Sample of Academic VP's Evaluation of a Dean

11. Chairperson's Evaluation of Professor

12. 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook, p. 51

13. 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook, p. 52

14. 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook, p. 50-52

15. 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook, p. 80-82

16. 2014-15 Student Surveys

17. December 2014 Graduate Survey

18. 2014-15 Employee Handbook, p. 54-55

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