Procedures for Faculty Evaluations

Originally Issued: July 12, 2013
Revised: February 19, 2018
May 7, 2019

Procedure Owner: Provost/ VP for Academic Affairs
SACSCOC Standard:  5.5  and 6.3

In order to  support and maintain a high standard of excellence in teaching, scholarly activity, and service, the faculty of Athens State University do hereby establish a formal, annual performance review of all members of the Athens State faculty, whether full-time, part-time, tenured, tenure-track, or non-tenure-track.

Any rubrics or specific methods of evaluation, or changes to rubrics or methods of evaluation, shall be reviewed by the Faculty Senate.

I.    Evaluation Procedures for all Full-Time Faculty

The full-time faculty evaluation process shall provide information that will allow for formative evaluation, information that can be used by the faculty members to improve teaching, scholarly activity, and service. The evaluation should also provide information that will allow for summative evaluation,   to allow for peer comparison and established professional standards, such that the information can be used to assist in decisions concerning tenure, promotion, and merit raises.  This process should provide for faculty development including, for tenure-track faculty, an internal pre-tenure review. For pre-tenure faculty it is important to have evaluative information for use in faculty development.

The complete evaluation for all full-time faculty shall include: (a) a faculty self-evaluation,  (b) Results of Faculty Course Evaluation Surveys (FCE) for previous calendar year (Spring, Summer, Fall), and (c) an annual Faculty Evaluation Form completed by Department Chair or College Dean that includes an overall performance rating.

A.   Faculty Self-Evaluation

The performance review process starts in January when the faculty member conducts a self-evaluation utilizing the Faculty Self Evaluation Form that  documents teaching competency and effectiveness, advising responsibilities, service, professional development/scholarly activities, and other faculty duties.  The completed Faculty Self Evaluation Form and any supporting documentation should be provided to the College Dean or Department Chair by February 15th.

B.   Faculty Course Evaluation Surveys/Student Evaluations of Faculty

Mid-January – summary data from the Faculty Course Evaluation Survey will be provided for the previous calendar year (Spring, Summer, and Fall semesters). This data will be provided to faculty members and their Department Chair/College Dean normally by the fourth week into the following semester.

The Faculty Course Evaluation Survey (FCE) contains 28 variables that capture student opinions regarding course objectives and content, instructional delivery, depth and relevance of course material, instructor’s approach to teaching, student engagement/participation, and classroom support resources. The FCE is administered at the end of each semester (spring, summer and fall semester) through the Office of Institutional Research and Assessment following the established Survey Protocol.

Faculty shall not be evaluated solely on the basis of one student or one class. Except in the case of first-year appointments, faculty shall not be evaluated based on data from one semester. Results from the Faculty Course Evaluation Surveys shall always be used in combination with other sources of information concerning teaching, for example, annual evaluations by deans/chairs, annual self-evaluations, evaluation by colleagues, and/or portfolio information.  No one item on a FCE Survey shall be used to draw conclusions.  Even the most effective instructor, due to style or experience, may not score high on any particular item. The specifics concerning which of the 28 variables that will be used on a particular faculty member’s evaluation will be determined by the faculty member and their department chair and/or College Dean.

Faculty shall never be rank-ordered on the basis of Faculty Course Evaluation Surveys or any other single piece of data.  Differences among class averages of student ratings, even based on several semesters, cannot be assumed to measure accurately differences in teaching effectiveness.  No single instrument to measure teaching effectiveness is so reliable and valid as to allow ranking of teaching effectiveness, as small numerical differences cannot be assumed accurately to distinguish significant differences in teaching effectiveness.  FCE results shall always be viewed within the context of an individual’s teaching assignment.  The factors to be considered might include class size, rating of instructors of similar courses within the discipline, teaching load, experience in teaching a course, etc.

Faculty should take the steps necessary to understand clearly how student ratings will be used in faculty evaluations and shall always have the right to provide clarification of student evaluations.

C.   Annual Review by College Dean/Department Chair

February – After reviewing the faculty self-evaluation form and Faculty Course Evaluation Survey summary data, the Chair or Dean will provide summative comments using the Faculty Evaluation Form.

The faculty self-evaluation, the Faculty Course Evaluation Survey summary data and the Faculty Evaluation Review Form will be reviewed by the faculty member and Department chair. The Faculty Evaluation Review Form will be signed by the Department chair/College Dean.  Signing the Faculty Evaluation Review Form by the faculty member is an acknowledgment that a meeting occurred between the faculty member and Department chair and is expected.

March – Copies of all documents (Faculty Self-Evaluation Form, Faculty Evaluation Form, Faculty Course Evaluation Survey Summary data) should be filed in the College Dean’s Office as well as forwarded to the Office of Human Resources by March 15th.

II.   Evaluation Procedures and Timeline for all Part-Time Faculty

All part-time faculty members will be evaluated using the Faculty Course Evaluation Survey (FCE) every semester.  In addition, regular reviews (at least annually) will be conducted by the appropriate program coordinator or their designee using one of the college-specific evaluation rubrics.

The results of the FCE Survey will be provided to each part-time faculty and the appropriate Department Chair, normally by the fourth week into the following semester. Results of the rubric evaluation will be discussed individually with each faculty member.  Copies of these results will be housed in the appropriate College Dean’s Office.