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ADVANCE: Our Research Questions and Methods

Research Questions

  1. How do opportunities for workplace flexibility impact women in STEM at teaching intensive universities?
  2. How can a teaching institution provide increased workplace flexibility to full-time faculty members, especially during particular times of need (e.g. family leave, pre-tenure status, etc.)?
  3. What role does workplace flexibility play in the career paths of part-time faculty, and how can the institution support faculty who work part-time?

 

More detailed analyses

Research Methods

The National Science Foundation’s definition of STEM includes the natural as well as the social sciences. As a result, the following BSU departments were part of our data collection pool, representing approximately one third of both full and part time faculty on campus:
 
•    Anthropology
•    Aviation Science
•    Biology
•    Chemical Sciences
•    Computer Science
•    Criminal Justice
•    Geography
•    Geological Sciences
•    Economics
•    Mathematics
•    Physics
•    Political Science
•    Psychology
•    Social Work
•    Sociology
 
It is important to note that NSF supports data collection from these departments. However, and policy changes or practices that result from this work can - and should - impact the entire campus.

Surveys were developed by the research team and distributed via Qualtrics. The survey included questions from validated survey instruments, including the Work Culture Scale (Clark, Journal of Vocational Behavior 58, 348–365 (2001)) and the Utrecht Work Engagement Scale (Schaufeli et al., Educational and Psychological Measurement 66 no. 4, 701-716 (2006)) and the Higher Education Research Institute (HERI) Faculty Survey.
Questions were asked about:

•    Flexibility
•    Stress
•    Departmental climate
•    Job satisfaction and dedication
•    Trust in institution
•    Productivity measures
•    Job history
•    Workload

All surveys and amendments were approved by BSU’s Institutional Review Board (IRB). The surveys are below response rate details.

Our response rates were 59% for full time faculty, and 44% for part time faculty, and within each group of faculty of color and white faculty we have a representative sample from both the natural and social sciences as well as in tenure status.

ADVANCE Survey Response Rates

Full time (FT) Faculty
(59% total response rate from FT faculty in data pool)

Faculty of color

11 (7W, 4M)
41% of FT faculty of color in data pool

White faculty

63 (38W, 25M)
58% of FT white faculty in data pool

Part time (PT) Faculty
(44% total response rate from PT faculty in data pool)
Faculty of color

5 (2W, 3M)
23% of PT faculty of color in data pool

White Faculty

68 (40W, 28M)
46% of white PT faculty in data pool

Semi-structured 15-25 minute interviews of full and part time faculty were conducted by off campus vendors using Adobe Connect or over the phone. Some interviews were transcribed by temporary administrative assistant hires and some were sent to Rev.com and those transcriptions were then verified by temporary administrative assistant. All transcripts were de-identified by a BSU faculty member outside of the data pool.

Full time faculty were asked questions about:
•    Time use priorities and constraints
•    Academic productivity
•    BSU structures for/against flexibility
•    Social identity concerns

Part Time faculty were asked questions about:
•    Career paths leading to PT teaching
•    Need or desire for flexibility
•    Experience of flexibility
•    Institutional support

All interview protocols were approved by BSU’s Institutional Review Board (IRB) [Insert link to interview questions here]
Our response rates were 38% of full time faculty and 17% of part time faculty, and within each group of faculty of color and white faculty we have a representative sample from both the natural and social sciences as well as in tenure status.

ADVANCE Interview Response Rates

Full time (FT) Faculty
(38% total response rate from FT faculty in data pool)

Faculty of color

11 (7W, 4M)
41% of FT faculty of color in data pool

White faculty

38 (23W, 15M)
37% of FT white faculty in data pool

Part time (PT) Faculty
(17% total response rate from PT faculty in data pool)

Faculty of color

6 (3W, 3M)
25% of PT faculty of color in data pool

White Faculty

23 (14W, 9M)
16% of white PT faculty in data pool

National Science Foundation logo     We are grateful that this work has been supported by National Science Foundation grant HRD-1409438