Table of Contents

The Portfolio - For Faculty Peer Evaluation

Introduction

A portfolio is a reflective analysis of a faculty member's teaching, scholarship, service and the integration of faith and learning made by that faculty member, often for use in consideration for tenure or promotion. It is an instrument for evaluation and a vehicle for presenting information which may include the results of evaluations. The faculty member approaches the preparation of the portfolio as an opportunity to offer evidence of achievement in teaching, scholarship, service and the integration of faith and learning.

Purposes for the portfolio include: providing data for personnel decisions, including tenure and promotion; supplying data for aggregate information that might be communicated to assessment groups; and, perhaps most importantly, providing the faculty member with special and significant opportunities for reflection about his or her professional career.

Once started, the portfolio can be routinely updated. In no case should the development of a portfolio be a burden that consumes an excessive amount of a faculty member's time; nor should reading one be a daunting task.

 

Portfolio Format and Contents

General Format

The portfolio should be not more than thirty pages long and should present information under headings of teaching, scholarship, service and the integration of faith and learning. The Faculty Handbook contains descriptions of these categories. Faculty members will need to substantiate claims made in the portfolio by including complementary information in the form of appendices or exhibits. Faculty members should bear in mind, however, the need to be judicious in the amount of information provided. Portfolios are submitted electronically as a single PDF to the Academic Affairs Office.

 

Contents of the Portfolio

  • Statement of commitment to mission and values of the university (500 word maximum)
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Current Faculty Growth Plan
  • Essay on Teaching (10 pages maximum) Appendix
  • Essay on Scholarship (5 pages maximum) Appendix
  • Essay on Service (5 pages maximum) Appendix
  • Essay on Integration of Faith and Learning (10 page maximum)
  • Faculty Growth Plans preceding the most recent FGP (include self-assessments)

 

The Teaching Section Of The Portfolio

Introduction

The teaching section of the portfolio underscores the emphasis on the value of teaching at George Fox University. The outline that follows is meant to be an adaptable template, which can be modified for individual units or even individual faculty members. Nevertheless, there should be a degree of uniformity.

 

General Format

The teaching section should be not more than ten pages. The Faculty Handbook contains a description of this category. Faculty members will need to substantiate claims made in the portfolio essay by attaching complementary information in the form of appendices or exhibits.

The outline that follows can therefore be regarded as a menu from which faculty members can select items to include in the teaching section to fit their particular circumstances.

 

Outline of the Teaching Section

Ideals and Goals (introduction to essay)

Provide a compact but thoughtful statement about your intentions and aspirations in teaching. Use a reflective approach that summarizes the goals identified on the recent FGPs. The Individual Profile done prior to the FGP may be a helpful source of the overarching, philosophical ideals for your teaching that inform your yearly goals.

 

Responsibilities (first division of essay)

The topics listed below reflect the kind of information that will help others assess your performance. Some will not apply to your situation; others might be added. Use your two most recent contract years as the baseline.

  • Percentage of appointment devoted to teaching.
  • Courses recently and currently taught, with credit hours and enrollments.
  • Team-taught courses. When instructional duties for a course are shared, those of the faculty member should be described or at least represented by a percentage. Attachment of typical syllabi as exhibits may be appropriate.
  • Work with individual students. Examples: Guidance of independent study or undergraduate or graduate research; direction of theses advising.
  • Examples: Freshman advising, advising for the Academic Success Program, advising of majors, advising students competing for prestigious scholarships or for admission to graduate or professional programs. Advising students in one's own classes specifically about those classes does not belong here. Approximate numbers of students advised, etc.
  • Instructional innovations. Recent FGPs can provide data to show major efforts to improve teaching. Examples: Novel use of instructional technology; development of collaborative arrangements outside the unit and/or university; adoption of such methods as collaborative learning, use of case studies, etc.
  • Use of disciplinary research in teaching. Recent FGPs can provide data to show how research informs teaching. Examples: Modification of syllabi, laboratory experiments, reading lists, etc., in light of one's own research; involvement of students in one's own research; special activities for helping students to develop creative and critical thinking skills for use in their research; ways in which teaching helps research.
  • Learning more about teaching. Recent FGPs can provide data to show such efforts. Examples: Programs of systematic reading in the literature on teaching; attending short courses and professional conferences concerned with teaching; leading or participating in faculty seminars concerned with teaching issues.
  • Projects and potential projects requiring non-university funding. Teaching-centered grants received and grant proposals under consideration. When other faculty members are involved, the role of the faculty member who is reporting should be made clear.

 

Evaluations (second division of essay)

The evaluation section should consist chiefly of summaries of data from student evaluations and peer reviews. The data themselves may be attached in exhibits or offered as available on request. Some faculty members may wish to include explanations or rejoinders for evaluations which they believe to be potentially misleading. The following will be represented in the essay by summary statements that are substantiated by exhibits in the appendices.

  • Student Evaluations Examples: Summary results of student questionnaires; interviews of students; the one-minute essay and other forms of "classroom research."
  • Measures of student learning. Use departmental assessment data as applicable. Direct evidence of the extent and quality of learning by the faculty member's students, e.g. performance on appropriate standardized tests, student presentations at conferences, student publications to which faculty contributed in some substantial way.
  • Peer evaluation. Reports from respected colleagues who have visited classes, examined instructional materials, talked with the faculty member, etc. Letters from colleagues may also be useful.
  • Letters from students, alumni, and employers of alumni. Solicited letters, e.g. from former students, are not likely to carry the credibility of unsolicited statements.
  • Teaching awards. Something should be said about the character of the awards if the names are not self-explanatory.
  • Other evaluations

 

Results (third division of essay)

  • Student successes. Examples: Noteworthy achievements of students (in awards, admissions to graduate school, employment, other accomplishments), for which the faculty member claims a significant part of the credit.
  • Instructional materials. Examples: Workbooks, manuals, visual aids, software, etc. In item 2, data about publications should be presented in some standard style.
  • Other results

 

Appendix or Exhibits

These may include: detailed information (syllabi, student evaluation forms, reports of peer evaluations, grade distributions, etc.) about specific courses and other teaching activities; copies of materials listed under D.2; preprints or offprints of items listed under D.3; etc.

Adapted from WSU web page. Copyright © 1996 Washington State University. Disclaimer Electronic Publishing and Appropriate Use Policy. Used with permission. http://www.wsu.edu/provost/teaching.html

 

The Scholarship Section of the Portfolio

Introduction

The scholarship section of the portfolio is information compiled by the faculty member about that faculty member's scholarly contributions, often for use in consideration for tenure or promotion.

Purposes for the scholarship section include: providing data for personnel decisions, including tenure and promotion; providing opportunity to the faculty member for reflection about his or her contribution to the field of knowledge identified as a research interest; providing opportunity to the faculty member for reflection on integration of the faculty member’s field with the Christian faith.

 

General Format

The scholarship section should be less than five pages. The Faculty Handbook contains a description of the expectations for scholarship. Faculty members will need to substantiate claims made in the portfolio essay by attaching complementary information in the form of appendices or exhibits.

The outline that follows can therefore be regarded as a menu from which faculty members can select items to include in the scholarship portfolios to fit their particular circumstances.

 

Outline of the Scholarship Section

Goals

A compact but thoughtful statement about the faculty member's intentions and aspirations in scholarly contributions, especially for the near future, as identified in the Faculty Growth Plan. The Individual Profile done prior to the FGP may be a helpful source of the overarching, philosophical ideals for your scholarship that inform your yearly goals.

Examples: Choice of a defined area (or areas) of interest for scholarship; identification of conferences where presentations on that area might be welcome; identification of journals or publishing houses in which such scholarship might find publication.

This might be a good place to mention unforeseen obstacles the faculty member has encountered, such as inadequate library resources, limitations on time available for research, distance from archives, etc., while maintaining a professional tone throughout.

 

Responsibilities

The topics listed below reflect a broad concept of scholarship. Others might be added. The following will be represented in the essay by summary statements that are substantiated by exhibits in the appendices.

  • Percentage of appointment devoted to research. Time released from teaching because of hiring negotiations or internal research grants or leaves should be noted here.
  • Presentations and publications in the identified research areas with short explanations of the scope and membership of conferences or the circulation and status of the journal or publishing house. Includes work co-authored with students. When authorship for a presentation or publication is shared, the contribution of the faculty member should be described or at least represented by a percentage.
  • Exhibitions, performances, recordings, creative publications with short explanations of the venue for exhibition, performance, or publication. Includes work co-created with students.
  • Contributions to the scholarship of teaching. "The scholarship of teaching" treats teaching itself (especially in one's discipline) as a subject of scholarly discourse. Results may include oral presentations, papers in appropriate journals, etc. or other means of making research available to the review of professional peers. (In items 2, 3, and 4, data about publications should be presented in some standard style)
  • Scholarly projects and potential projects requiring non-university funding. Research-centered grants received and grant proposals under consideration. When other faculty members are involved, the role of the faculty member who is reporting should be made clear.

 

Validation by peers

The "Validation" section in a portfolio should consist chiefly of summaries of invitations to give conference presentations, published articles or pieces, peer assessment of performance, or other evidence appropriate to the discipline.

  • Awards: something should be said about the character of the awards if the names are not self- explanatory.
  • Appendix or exhibits: these may include preprints or offprints, slides, tapes, photocopies of items listed under B and C.

 

The Service Section of the Portfolio

Introduction

The service section of the portfolio is information compiled by the faculty member about a faculty member’s service beyond load-credit assignments, often for use in consideration for tenure or promotion.

Purposes for the service section include: providing data for personnel decisions, including tenure and promotion; providing opportunity to the faculty member for reflection about his or her contribution to the department, the professional discipline, the university, the community, or the broader Christian church.

 

General Format

The service section should be less than five pages. The Faculty Handbook contains a description of the expectations for service. Faculty members will need to substantiate claims made in the portfolio essay by attaching complementary information in the form of appendices or exhibits.

The outline that follows can therefore be regarded as a menu from which faculty members can select items to include in the service section to fit their particular circumstances.

 

Outline of the Service Section

Goals

A compact but thoughtful statement about the faculty member's intentions and aspirations in service, especially for the near future, as identified in the Faculty Growth Plan. The Individual Profile done prior to the FGP may be a helpful source of the overarching, philosophical ideals for your service that inform your yearly goals.

Example: choice of a defined area (or areas) of interest for service

This might be a good place to mention obstacles the faculty member has encountered, such as limitations on time available for service, distance from service opportunities, need for financial underwriting for necessary travel, etc., while maintaining a professional tone throughout.

 

Responsibilities

The topics listed below reflect a broad concept of service. Others might be added. The following will be represented in the essay by summary statements that are substantiated by exhibits in the appendices.

  • Percentage of appointment devoted to service, if stipulated.
  • Service contributions done without pay and/or outside of institutional load to organizations such as the department, the professional discipline, the university, the community, or the broader Christian Church, with short explanations of the specific type of service provided, any leadership positions held, the time commitment, and the constituency served.
  • Service projects and potential projects requiring non-university funding. Service-centered grants received and grant proposals under consideration. When other faculty members are involved, the role of the faculty member who is reporting should be made clear.

 

External Confirmation

The "Confirmation" section in this section should consist of invitations to provide leadership, letters of acknowledgment or appreciation for service rendered, etc.

  • Awards or citations. Something should be said about the character of the awards if the names are not self-explanatory.

 

Appendix or Exhibits

These may include written contributions of the faculty member to the organization, ceremonial programs, by-laws describing the faculty member's position in the organization, etc.

 

The Faith Integration Section of the Portfolio

Introduction

The faith/learning integration essay is a scholarly piece of writing that demonstrates your current thinking about how you bring your identity as a teacher, scholar, and servant into sync with one another in a holistic picture of “your vocation?” The essay should be the length of a brief scholarly article (no longer than 10 pages) and include a brief bibliography.

Major Sections of the Paper Include:

  • Description of their personal faith journey

  • Description of your personal faith in relation to a major theological position/tradition

    • The strengths of that theological perspective as it relates to your work as a Christian scholar
    • The weaknesses of that theological perspective as it relates to your work as a Christian scholar
  • Describe how your faith informs/shapes your teaching

  • Describe how your faith informs/shapes your scholarship
  • Describe how your faith informs/shapes your service

     

    Buchanan, K. & Allen, P. (2011).