203  Faculty Development

Approved by President
Effective Date: June 5, 2017
Responsible Division: Academic Affairs
Responsible Office:  University Provost
Responsible Officer: Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs

I. Purpose

Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU or University) recognizes the need for the continued professional growth and development of all faculty at the University. The continued professional growth and development of faculty is necessary for institutions of higher education to continue to provide educational programs which:

A.  include new developments and knowledge in academic disciplines;

B.  reflect new instructional, research, and public service techniques and strategies; and

C.  meet changing needs and expectations of students. While all faculty are responsible for their own continued professional development, it is essential that MTSU provide planned, organized faculty development programs to encourage professional growth in accordance with the mission and goals of the University.

Additionally, faculty exchange assignments with higher education institutions, other appropriate education institutions, business and industry, and private or governmental agencies (the host institution) provide opportunities for faculty to acquire new information and skills to bring to the University a general awareness of different environments which are relevant to their teaching areas, and to expand experiences with the objective of improving their professional expertise.

This policy sets forth the following minimum guidelines concerning faculty development.

II. Faculty Development

A.  MTSU shall plan and implement on an annual basis a structured, coordinated program for faculty development. The program will be designed to achieve predetermined University objectives and will utilize an appropriate variety of activities which may include the following:

1.  Systematic evaluation of instruction by students, faculty, and appropriate administrators to provide bases for planning means of increasing the effectiveness of the instructional program.

2.  Encouragement of innovation and improvement of instruction by a recognition system, i.e., outstanding professor awards.

3.  Effective use of grants-in-aid and scholarships pursuant to Policy 830 Faculty and Staff Support for Educational Expenses.

4.  Provision of financial support through grant awards and other means for research or the improvement of instruction, for faculty participation in workshops, short courses and seminars designed to develop new skills in instruction, research and public service, and for faculty participation in major activities of their respective professional associations.

5.  Sponsorships of local forums, lectures, and workshops on scholarly developments and activities.

B.  University budgets will reflect the amount of funds allocated for faculty development at the University.

III. Faculty Exchange

A.  Faculty Exchange and Personnel Status. A full-time faculty member who applies for an exchange, which is subsequently approved by the President or designee, must remain on the payroll and retain a condition of employment which continues all benefits for which he/she has qualified as a full-time faculty member. Time spent on the exchange constitutes an equivalent teaching load activity and shall be subject to prior review and approval by the President or designee.

B.  Criteria for Exchange Status

1.  A full-time faculty member may only be approved for exchange status if the University enters into a contract whereby the host institution provides, in exchange, an employee who will be assigned for a comparable percentage of full-time load or agreed upon stipend to MTSU.

2.  MTSU is responsible for the salary and benefits of its full-time faculty member assigned to an exchange. The host institution is responsible for salary and benefits of the employee being provided in exchange.

3.  The work load assignment for the full-time faculty member assigned to an exchange shall be determined by the host institution. Likewise, MTSU shall determine the work load assignment of the employee being provided in exchange.

4.  No proposed exchange assignment shall be formally initiated with a host institution unless first approved by the President or designee.

5.  No exchange assignment shall be approved unless it meets the following provisions:

a.  The exchange serves as an integral component of the faculty development plan; and

b.  The exchange will act to provide opportunities for the faculty member to acquire new information and skills to bring to the University a general awareness of different environments which are relevant to their teaching areas and to expand experiences with the objective of improving their professional expertise.

C.  Exceptions. Exceptions to the criteria stated above must be approved by the President or designee.

Forms: none.

Revisions: none.

References: Policy 830 Faculty and Staff Support for Educational Expenses.