The Mentoring Task Force continues its work and expects to present in January a final report with recommendations for a mentoring program.
The committee will discuss the RUL Group questionnaires at the next meeting. The questionnaires are accessible to committee members in a Sakai site.
Committee members will submit lists of their committed and uncommitted time to the Faculty Coordinator and use them as a basis for a further discussion of faculty committed time at the next meeting.
The committee began a discussion of its role in configuring open lines and recruiting new faculty.
Donald Waters will make a presentation at the Libraries in February on managing digital assets.
There will be two tenure workshops next year, one for tenure-track librarians and one for tenured librarians.
The committee will discuss in future ways of encouraging and helping Librarian IIs to apply for promotion to Librarian I.
The meeting was called to order at 9:30 am. The agenda was adopted with two modifications. The discussion of the RUL group questionnaires was tabled until the January meeting and the report of the Mentoring Task Force was subsumed under the report of the Faculty Coordinator. Minutes of the November meeting had been approved earlier via email.
The Mentoring Task Force continues its work and expects to present in January a final report with recommendations for a mentoring program. The task force anticipates that the biggest challenges in implementing a successful program will be generating interest among tenured faculty and providing effective training. Also, it will be important for the mentors to meet regularly to share information so that untenured librarians are given constructive and consistent advice.
The Faculty Coordinator distributed an analysis of the RUL group questionnaires from the three councils and seven committees mandated in the faculty by-laws. The questionnaires are accessible to committee members in a Sakai site. A review of the activities of the faculty committees is especially important in the context of our discussions of "committed time."
During the lengthy discussion, the committee came to an understanding that the concept of committed and uncommitted time was not as useful to the goal of this exercise as once thought. However, concepts of time flexibility, and tasks mandated by a particular position as opposed to elected, negotiable, and voluntary tasks continued to provide a frame of reference alongside the basic breakdown of librarianship, scholarship, and service.
As a first step towards an analysis of faculty time, committee members will attempt to compile their own lists of time spent in the pursuit of fulfilling the requirements of their position descriptions and of successful promotion applications. They will use as a rough guide a list that Eileen Stec made of her own time, but are free to structure their lists in any way that seems constructive to them; Laura Mullen also contributed an example of a breakdown of her workload that was helpful to the discussion. The committee will then use the experience gained from this exercise to design a means for all RUL faculty members to report as a percentage of an average month the balance of their time doing librarianship, service, and scholarship. Regardless of what form this takes, it will be anonymous. Librarians will identify only their campus and whether they are tenured or tenure-track.
The purpose of this study of time is not to monitor how individual faculty members spend their time. It is simply to gain some sense of norms, of how librarians across the system typically divide their workday. This in turn will allow us to make adjustments where necessary so that we achieve a proper balance both for individuals and the system as a whole. If, for example, a librarian finds that his or her proportion of time required to fulfill the demands of a particular position within the library system is far greater than the norm, that may be an indication that we need to reallocate responsibilities or hire more faculty in a certain area. He or she could then discuss this with his or her director. Again, the entire process will be anonymous, and it will be up to the individual to take the initiative if any changes are made. The study of time is intended to help each of us identify priorities and manage our time more effectively. It should be thought of as a self-assessment or a self-study.
The Planning and Coordinating Committee began a discussion of its role in configuring open lines and recruiting new faculty. Advising the University Librarian on "program priorities in the area of faculty line assignments" is one of the charges assigned to the committee in the faculty by-laws. There was a general consensus that decisions on how to fill and recruit specific faculty lines should be made primarily at the local level. The Planning and Coordinating should help establish strategic priorities that provide a system-wide context for those decisions. This is particularly important in light of the five-year strategic plan currently under development. Rhonda Marker, who serves on the Strategic Planning Committee, will invite its members to attend the Planning and Coordinating Committee meeting in January.
On February 21, Donald Waters of the Mellon Foundation will address the Libraries' faculty and staff on the management of digital assets. This will be a reprise of the keynote remarks he made at a forum sponsored by Association of Research Libraries and other organizations in October. This event will be very important in the context of strategic planning and the development of the digital repository. It will help us think more strategically about the management of the Libraries' digital assets in terms of collection development, access, and preservation. Everyone is encouraged to attend. The text of Waters' talk in October may be found at: http://www.arl.org/forum05/.
Sandy Troy, the Libraries' Human Resources Manager, will organize two tenure workshops next year. One will be for nontenured librarians and will focus on the nuts and bolts of developing a tenure packet. Tenure librarians are welcome to attend and to offer advice. The other workshop will be for tenured faculty and will focus on the process for evaluating tenure cases and the writing of faculty narratives.
The library faculty has relatively few Librarian Is. The Planning and Coordinating Committee should consider ways to encourage Librarian IIs to apply for promotion and to help them in the process. In particular, potential candidates should have a clear understanding of the standards by which they will be evaluated. The committee should review the "ten-year rule." Librarian Is are expected to have reached a new level of accomplishment and expertise, but after ten years as a Librarian II the criteria for promotion shift somewhat. Scholarship and, especially, librarianship are still critical, but a great emphasis is placed upon service after this point. A similar rule applies to faculty in teaching departments, where a greater emphasis is placed upon teaching.
The meeting was adjourned at 11:45 p.m.