- In planning, setting priorities, and making decisions, The University of Iowa is guided by its commitment to the core values of learning, integrity, quality, community, and responsibility. With respect to faculty, the core values of learning, quality, and responsibility are extremely important. These three values state:
- Learning. The University of Iowa is dedicated to discovering, disseminating, and preserving knowledge and to the development of an educated citizenry. Through teaching, research, scholarship, creative endeavor, clinical practice and public outreach, the University develops ideas, enlarges understanding, and extends its resources to society. Recognizing the need for constant inquiry and continuous reinterpretation of knowledge, the University vigilantly protects free expression of thought, respects difference and diversity, and fosters opportunities for all members of the community to generate and discuss ideas and contribute to the vitality of the educational environment.
- Quality. As a center of learning, the University of Iowa measures itself by exacting standards, honors high aspiration and achievement, and expects all persons associated with the University to strive for excellence.
- Responsibility. The University of Iowa is obligated to exercise responsible stewardship over the intellectual and material resources entrusted to it. As a public institution, the University aims for accessibility, affordability, and quality, so that a broad array of qualified students from Iowa and elsewhere may obtain an excellent education at reasonable cost. The University recognizes the responsibility of its faculty to determine what students should learn and to shape the body of knowledge that will be passed on to future generations. It is also the University's obligation to engage all members of its community in collective reflection on their responsibilities not only to their disciplines and professions but also to the institution and to society.
In carrying out its obligation to transmit learning in an exacting and responsible manner, faculty at a major research institution are expected to engage in teaching, research, and service. Although these categories parallel our University's threefold mission, in our experience, they do not adequately suggest the complexity of faculty work, its different configurations across the University, and its development throughout any single faculty member's career. Faculty members engage in teaching, research, scholarship, artistic endeavor, clinical practice, and public outreach; they administer departments and colleges; they run teaching and research laboratories; design curricula; write grants; and advise students. Although each faculty member's efforts may not be distributed evenly among the various components of academic work, each has the responsibility to serve the University and its constituents in full measure and according to exacting standards.
The expectations of work for the attainment of tenure are spelled out in various documents relating to pre-tenured faculty. Pre-tenure effort allocations must generate profiles that demonstrate teaching effectiveness, research, and, to a lesser extent, service.
Faculty profiles can be expected to look most alike at the time of the tenure decision. It seems reasonable, and even desirable, however, to expect that after tenure, faculty careers will begin to diversify as individuals develop different strengths and assume different responsibilities. This policy establishes the concept of a "faculty portfolio" that allows for variations in the combination of teaching, research, and service for a limited period of time through which faculty can make their maximum contribution to the University's mission. Because the efforts of all faculty will be marshaled in ways to assure that the talents of all at a given time are used most effectively, use of individualized portfolios and portfolios consistent with unit norms should only have a positive impact on the quality of faculty teaching and research.
The faculty portfolio concept reflects the notion that tenured faculty members may negotiate with their DEOs individualized patterns of work that differ from the expected distribution of efforts for a typical faculty portfolio (herein "unit norms") of their college, department, or unit (hereinafter called unit). These portfolios, however, should be developed with the view that all faculty within a unit will commit their collective strengths to fulfilling the overall mission of their units and the University consistent with appropriate strategic plans. The opportunity for differential allocation of post-tenure effort thus facilitates the attainment of the University's core values of quality, learning, and responsibility.
The activities of faculty at institutions with a significant research mission differ markedly from the activities of faculty at institutions with no significant research mission. Immediately below are highlighted some of the prominent features of the activities of the faculty at The University of Iowa under the categories of: 1) Teaching, 2) Research, Scholarship, and Creative Work, and 3) Service, Administration, and Outreach.
- Teaching. Faculty members teach a wide variety and types of courses at the University. Teaching of courses includes the preparation of course syllabi, classroom materials, class lectures and discussion topics, and student assignments such as papers and projects. Faculty also prepare and administer examinations, evaluate student work, train and supervise the work of teaching assistants, continuously read in their field to include up-to-date material and information in their classes, and meet their students outside of class to advise, help, and guide them in their course work. Teaching also includes the mentoring of undergraduate and graduate students in research settings.
Other important teaching efforts include faculty initiatives to improve instruction through the design and revision of the curriculum, the creation of new courses, the revision of existing courses, and supervision of the creative work and research of students.
In carrying out its obligation to transmit learning in an exacting and responsible manner, faculty at a major research institution are expected to engage in teaching, research, and service. Although these categories parallel our University's threefold mission, in our experience, they do not adequately suggest the complexity of faculty work, its different configurations across the University, and its development throughout any single faculty member's career. Faculty members engage in teaching, research, scholarship, artistic endeavor, clinical practice, and public outreach; they administer departments and colleges; they run teaching and research laboratories; design curricula; write grants; and advise students. Although each faculty member's efforts may not be distributed evenly among the various components of academic work, each has the responsibility to serve the University and its constituents in full measure and according to exacting standards. The unique requirements and features of faculty work in the different types of classes taught can vary. For example, in a large lecture course, considerable effort is spent in preparing lectures, maintaining records of student work, and coordinating teaching with other faculty in other sections of the course. By contrast, in a clinical or professional course, considerable effort is devoted to working with small groups of students in clinical or professional settings, arranging for the settings and the student activities in these settings, and closely guiding the interactive work of the students in those settings.
- Research, scholarship, and creative work. Faculty conduct a wide range of research, scholarship, and creative work to advance the core value of learning, including engaging in hands-on creative work and research, directing and collaborating with graduate students and professional students in joint creative activities and research, directing and supervising undergraduate creative work and research, and supporting this scholarly work through efforts to arrange and sustain adequate physical, financial, and institutional (and interinstitutional) support.
As with teaching, there are many different types of activities necessary to create and sustain vitality in research, scholarship, and creative work by faculty. At the center of this activity, faculty require the time and resources to pursue scholarly or creative work in the laboratory, the library, the studio or office, and/or in the field, to supervise and direct the work of their students, to write proposals to obtain support for their projects, to attend professional meetings and to consult with a variety of groups and individuals to enhance their understanding of problems and challenges.
- Service, administration, and outreach. Faculty serve their professional colleagues and organizations, the public, and various off-campus constituencies. They also administer and govern the academic programs and services of the University and assist colleagues and University administrators with a variety of functions and tasks.
With regard to professional service, faculty are often asked to hold offices in professional organizations and help to organize professional meetings. They edit books and professional journals and serve as reviewers for such publications. They serve on federal and regional panels and offer advice to private, corporate, and government funding agencies. With regard to public service, faculty may provide health care, legal service, artistic leadership, and educational expertise. Faculty offer educational outreach programs to the business community, community organizations, and governmental bodies. Faculty expend considerable effort to help administer and govern the University. They chair departments, serve on a wide-range of appointed and elected committees, and recommend the allocation of fiscal and human resources necessary to the educational mission of the institution.
The University's commitment to learning and to the above listing of some of the efforts of faculty toward the achievement of that commitment implicitly recognize that teaching, research, and service are inextricably interwoven and that the proportions of time and effort that all faculty within a unit devote to them at any particular time need not be equal.
- In determining differential allocation of post-tenure effort, the following rules and principles apply:
- Each unit is obligated to contribute fully to the accomplishment of the overall mission and values of the University, consistent with the strategic plan of the University and the unit. Just as the proportion of effort among units may vary in carrying out the University's mission, so too may the proportion of effort by individual faculty vary. However, the aggregate efforts of all faculty within a unit must be consistent with the overall strategic plan of the unit.
- Over a faculty member's aggregate post-tenure work life, the faculty member is expected to contribute to the University's core value of learning by efforts expended primarily in teaching and research and, to a lesser extent, service. In some units, the common use of the terms "service" or "clinical service" includes efforts that may properly be viewed as teaching or research.
- As individual faculty members follow typical post-tenure career patterns, shifts may occur in the proportion of a faculty member's efforts devoted to these three components, capitalizing on the individual faculty strengths at any particular time to fulfill the teaching, research, and service needs of the unit or the University.
- Following the adoption of this policy, the faculty of each unit will develop expected norms for a typical faculty portfolio reflecting its judgment as to the appropriate allocation of effort for its faculty among teaching, research, and service. Unit norms must be approved by the dean in which the unit is located and by the Executive Vice President and Provost. Changes in unit norms must be initiated by the faculty of the unit and approved by the dean in which the unit is located and by the Executive Vice President and Provost.
- Faculty members within a unit may negotiate with the DEO individualized effort portfolios that differ from the unit norms. Ordinarily, portfolios are effective for a maximum of two years. Renewals are possible. Either the individual faculty member or the DEO may initiate discussions for an individualized portfolio. Agreements concerning individualized faculty portfolios that differ from unit norms shall be formalized in a document to be included in the faculty member's personnel file. Such agreements should reflect a clear understanding of the efforts to be made by the faculty member.
- The use of individualized portfolios within a unit must advance the teaching, research, or service missions of the unit or the University, must not significantly compromise the unit's teaching, research, and service mission, and should be consistent with the career goals of the faculty. Because of this, no faculty member is entitled to, or can be compelled to have, an individualized portfolio. Furthermore, when considering the advisability of an individualized portfolio, both the DEO and the faculty member should consider how such a portfolio would fit with the goals of the unit, the University, and the faculty member.
- The DEO shall discuss all proposed individualized portfolios with the dean or Executive Vice President and Provost, who will approve them before they are implemented during the subsequent academic year. The DEO also shall distribute to the faculty of the unit a list of faculty members who have negotiated individualized portfolios, together with a statement of the area of emphasis for those particular faculty members and a statement of how the unit strategic plan will continue to be realized by the unit faculty taken as a group. All of this shall occur within sufficient time to permit appropriate planning of the unit's teaching, research, and service mission.
- The use of individualized portfolios within a unit will not compromise the standards required for a tenured faculty member to obtain promotion. Therefore, individualized faculty portfolios that would interfere with a tenured faculty member's opportunity to be promoted in a timely manner are inadvisable.
- Regardless of how a faculty member's responsibilities are distributed among teaching, research, and service, the faculty member is expected to perform those responsibilities to a high standard of excellence. For purposes of annual merit pay adjustments and peer review evaluations, all faculty will be evaluated relative to how well they perform their efforts pursuant to their individualized portfolio, or, if none, consistent with unit norms, and without regard to whether those efforts involve teaching, research, or service.
- Example #1: In prior years, Faculty A, B, and C each devoted their efforts to teaching, research, and service consistent with unit norms, but with varying degrees of achievement and success. Each of them and their DEO have recognized that their individual strengths are not being utilized to the best in light of their current interests and talents, and that, as a result, the unit has not been able to maximize its commitment to learning as reflected in its strategic plan. Through the use of individualized portfolios, their collective efforts can be reallocated so that each of them expends efforts in a manner that takes into account their different strengths; this effort reallocation will increase the overall productivity of the unit.
- Example #2: Faculty members A, B, C, and D are in the same unit. Faculty A and the DEO agree that, for a particular period, Faculty A will have greater classroom teaching obligations than would otherwise be the norm within the unit. Faculty B and the DEO agree that, during some particular period, Faculty B will have greater governance responsibilities that would otherwise be the norm. Faculty C and the DEO agree that, for a particular period, Faculty C will have greater research obligations than would otherwise be the norm. Faculty D's responsibilities remain consistent with unit norms.
The efforts of each of them will be rewarded on the basis of how well each performs such activities, since all of them contribute in their respective ways to the overall mission of the unit. If each individual performs their agreed-upon activities to the highest level, then the merit pay of each should be determined in the same manner, all other things being equal (e.g., no salary compression issues; no competing offers).
On the other hand, if one of them excels in the performance of their agreed-upon activities while the other three faculty members' performances of their efforts are deemed very good, the faculty member who excelled should receive a higher merit pay adjustment.
- Example #3: Unit X has adopted unit norms that state that in the absence of individualized portfolios, faculty members in the unit shall allocate 50% of their time to teaching, 40% of their time to research, and 10% of their time to service. All but two faculty in the unit have allocated their work efforts according to those norms this year. The work effort of Faculty A and Faculty B, who joined the unit within one year of each other, typically comport with unit norms. This year, however, each of them has an individualized portfolio with Faculty A's time being allocated: 70% to teaching, 20% to research, and 10% to service and Faculty B's time being allocated: 70% to research, 20% to teaching, and 10% to service.
Faculty A has a history of being a good teacher and scholar. Faculty B is recognized to be an exceptional scholar and has consistently been assessed as one of the premier teachers in the unit. In the current year, both A and B continue to perform their work as they have in the past. Under this policy Faculty B should receive a higher merit pay adjustment than Faculty A.
- The decision of a DEO and/or any other group authorized to evaluate and reward faculty in a manner that fails to take into account individualized faculty portfolios may be appealed to the dean of the college in which the unit is located or, in nondepartmentalized colleges, to the Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost.
- Example #4: Faculty A and the DEO agree that Faculty A will devote the next academic year exclusively to teaching. At the end of the year, the DEO advises A that even though A has performed to a high standard of excellence, the DEO has decided to provide more merit funds to those faculty in the unit who have complied with the unit norms. This decision would be inconsistent with the intent of this policy, which is that A's merits be determined by reference solely to the agreed-upon portfolio. Any adverse salary determination would be appealable to the dean or the Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost, as appropriate.
(Board of Regents 5/22/97)