Connected Campus

3.7.3 Faculty Development

 

The institution provides ongoing professional development of faculty as teachers, scholars, and practitioners.

 

_X_  Compliance           ___  Partial Compliance          ___  Non-Compliance

 

Narrative

 

Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary (MABTS) recognizes that ongoing professional development for faculty is key to promoting innovation, job satisfaction, and student success. Therefore, the seminary strives to promote professional development among faculty members through providing financial support, through encouraging faculty to avail themselves of professional development activities, by setting forth policies, procedures, and programs that foster professional development, and by informing the faculty of the opportunities for professional development.

 

Seminary Sponsored Professional Development Activities

 

MABTS provides funding for various opportunities for professional development. Among the funded activities available to professors are the following six:

 

Learned Society/Southern Baptist Convention. The seminary will pay dues to one learned society a year and up to $1,000 travel expenses for learned society meetings. Travel expenses are applied to the year in which expenses are incurred and cannot be carried over from one year to the next. The seminary will also pay up to $800 for expenses to the Southern Baptist Convention. Travel expenses are applied to the year in which expenses are incurred and cannot be carried over from one year to the next [1].

 

Faculty Scholarly Publications Fund. The seminary has established a Faculty Scholarly Publications Fund from the general revenues of the seminary to encourage the faculty members to contribute to professional research literature in their respective academic fields. Written requests for awards from the fund are submitted to the Faculty Publications Fund Committee. The Committee recommends awards to the Executive Administration for approval.
 

After a scholarly journal has published a research-based article written by a member of the MABTS faculty, that faculty member may request financial consideration from the Faculty Scholarly Publications Fund. Letters to the editor or other responses to material appearing previously in a journal will not normally be considered. When it is judged that these conditions have been met, the faculty member will be awarded $250 for the article. No faculty member will be awarded for more than two such articles in any academic year, although, because of publishers’ schedules, a faculty member may “carry over” one article per year for consideration the following year.

 

After a bona fide book publisher has published any academic book edited by, or containing a chapter written by, a member of the MABTS faculty, that faculty member may request financial consideration from the Faculty Scholarly Publications Fund. When it is judged that these conditions have been met, the faculty member will be awarded $250 for the work appearing in the book. Articles published in discipline-related dictionaries, encyclopedias, and the like will be awarded at a rate of seven cents per word, up to $250 for works appearing in such books. No faculty member will be awarded for more than one such book in any academic year, although, because of publishers’ schedules, a faculty member may “carry over” one such book per year for consideration the following year.
 

After a bona fide book publisher has published any academic book written by a member of the MABTS faculty, that faculty member may request in writing financial consideration from the Faculty Scholarly Publications Fund. An academic book is defined as a book appearing in the academic catalog of the publisher or one deemed appropriate for use as a required textbook for a course at MABTS. Books written primarily for the general trade of the popular market will not normally be considered. When it is judged that these conditions have been met, the faculty member will be awarded $750 for the work appearing in the book. No faculty member will be awarded for more than one such book in any academic year, although, because of publishers’ schedules, a faculty member may “carry over” one such book per year for consideration the following year.

 

Dated materials intended for local church consumption for which a faculty member is paid by contract with the publisher will not be considered for this award, since the intent of the award is to encourage the production of scholarly research not paid by the publisher, such as Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society or Bibliotheca Sacra. Thus, Sunday School or discipleship training material as well as articles in magazines such as Home Life or Biblical Illustrator are excluded from consideration. First, second, and third items above will be considered independently of each other, so that in any given year a faculty member might receive as much as $1,500 from the fund (two articles; one chapter; one book) [2].

 

Faculty In-Service. Each year the faculty meets for in-service training the week before the academic year begins. The focus for the 2014-15 school year was online training in anticipation of the fully online degree launch for the fall 2015-16 academic year. Dr. Ray Meadows made a presentation on the use of Adobe Connect and its benefits for teaching. In addition, each department chairman described what was on the horizon in his or her field of study [3].

 

Colloquia. Each student enrolled in doctor of philosophy seminars is required to attend two doctoral colloquia each academic year. One colloquium will be program-wide and held in conjunction with the annual Forum of Contemporary Theological Issues. The other colloquium will be sponsored by each academic department offering a doctoral seminar for departmental majors and seminar participants. A departmental colloquium will meet for two hours and will normally consist of a presentation by a guest scholar or of discussions of trends, issues, and bibliography in the academic field. Doctor of Philosophy students with candidacy status are encouraged to attend the colloquia. Modular seminars will include the colloquium during the week on-campus [4].

 

Conferences. MABTS hosts conferences such as the recent Counseling Conference, which may include faculty led plenary and breakout sessions [5]. 

 

Sabbatical Leaves. A faculty member may apply for a sabbatical leave following six years of teaching at MABTS. Sabbatical leaves will be granted for one regular school session. The seminary will pay full salary for both half and full sabbaticals. The administration will try to assist in the obtaining of special grants from foundations and other sources. A special leave of absence may be granted for specialized study projects upon the recommendation of the faculty and by action of the Board of Trustees. Leaves may be granted to faculty members to teach in other institutions of higher learning [6].

 

Policies, Procedures, and Programs that Foster Professional Development

 

It is the policy of MABTS to help faculty members to develop professionally [7]. The policies, procedures, and programs to accomplish that end are listed below.

 

Services Policy. MABTS provides services to faculty to foster professional development. Among the services provided are library services and textbooks, other books, and supplies [8].

 

Learned Society Policy. MABTS provides funds for professors to be a part of learned societies and to attend their annual meetings. The seminary policy is to pay dues to one learned society a year and up to $1,000.00 travel expenses and registration for the learned society [9].

 

Southern Baptist Convention Policy. The policy of MABTS is to provide faculty members with the opportunity to attend the Southern Baptist Convention each year. The seminary budgets $800.00 for expenses [10].

 

Sabbatical Leave Policy. MABTS encourages professional development its Sabbatical Leave Policy. After six years, professors cant take a half or full sabbatical for the purpose of professional development [11].

 

Faculty Scholarly Publication Fund Policy. MABTS has a policy whereby faculty members are given funds to help them publish their works. The Faculty Publishing Fund Committee [12] provides a request form [13] to the faculty for the purpose of distributing funds in supporting the faculty in publishing their works.

 

Dissemination of Information on Faculty Development

 

MABTS is committed to continued growth and development of its faculty. Faculty members are responsible for reading the MABTS Employee Handbook, which informs them of all information concerning faculty development. They affirm the receipt by signing a signature page indicating their agreement to the policies and procedures contained therein [14].

 

Documentation

 

1. 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook, p. 48

2. 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook, p. 49-50

3. 2014 MABTS Faculty In-Service Training Schedule

4. 2014-15 MABTS Catalog, p. 189

5. 2014-15 MABTS Counseling Conference

6. 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook, p. 73-74

7. 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook, p. 52

8. 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook, p. 74-75

9. 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook, p. 48

10. 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook, p. 48

11. 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook, p. 73-74

12. 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook, p. 44

13. 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook, p. 83

14. 2014-15 MABTS Employee Handbook, p. 105

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