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Faculty members, check your inboxes

The 2018 Equity Survey link has been distributed and is open through Oct. 24.

By Lindsey Coulter

October 2, 2018

Faculty sitting in meetingFaculty members can help the Faculty Senate Diversity Committee better understand perceptions of environmental equity across the Metropolitan State University of Denver campus by taking the Faculty Equity Survey.

The survey, administered every three years, is key to helping the Faculty Senate develop policies and practices related to faculty recruitment, hiring, retention, promotion, ratios, diversity and more. The results may result in charges to various other Senate committees (such as the Welfare Committee), and eventually all policy is vetted by the entire Senate.

“We want to hear from faculty of all different identity groups,” said Committee Chair Liz Goodnick, Ph.D., associate professor of philosophy. “We’re not just looking at the typical identity groups but also those connected to specific roles at the University. For example, is there a different perception of how you’re treated on campus if you’re an affiliate faculty member or a full professor?”

Open through Oct. 24, the anonymous survey includes questions about respondents’ race and ethnicity as well as age, ability, veteran status, gender identity, rank, tenure status, years on the job and more to understand perceptions of equity on a more nuanced level. Additionally, it gives faculty members opportunities to make suggestions along with positive and constructive feedback.

“We’re trying to find out from faculty about their experiences here and if there are any issues, but we’re also looking for things we’re doing well,” Goodnick said. “It’s not just so faculty members can be happier but also for retention purposes; it’s one thing to get people here, but it’s another thing for them to stay.”

A longer-term goal is to use survey results to develop a faculty that is reflective of the MSU Denver student body.

“What we would like to see is a ratio across all identity groups that matches our student population as much as possible,” Goodnick said, noting that diversity among faculty has been shown to help negate such things as stereotype threat. “There has been a lot of interesting research about student success when students have mentors they can identify with.”

All faculty members should have received an emailed link to the Faculty Equity Survey on Sept. 26. Those with general questions can contact Goodnick, while technical questions can be directed to Elizabeth Ribble, who is administering the survey and collecting the data. Any faculty members who did not receive the survey email can contact Ribble for the link. Paper copies are available in the Faculty Senate Office in JSSB 342.

Once the data are analyzed, they will be presented at an Executive Committee meeting early next semester, and subcommittees will be assigned to develop strategies to address identified trends or issues. The Diversity Committee will also present the results to the Faculty Senate at large in a formal report that will be available after the Executive Committee presentation.

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