One of the ultimate protections of being a tenured faculty member, historically, has been being immune from layoff in all but the most extraordinary circumstances. Under policies issued by the American Association of University Professors and largely accepted by higher education leaders, only institutions that declare "financial exigency" -- a state so dire that it "threatens the survival of the institution as a whole" -- can eliminate the jobs of tenured faculty members.
On the surface, the proposed changes to the tenure system at Brown University may seem like relatively minor adjustments, designed to help junior faculty members build up a more complete portfolio of work for review. For instance, the review would be moved to the seventh year of employment instead of the sixth.
When Duke University's Cathy Davidson announced her grading plan for a seminar she would be offering this semester, she attracted attention nationwide. Some professors cheered, others tut-tutted, and others asked "Can she do that?"
Her plan? Turn over grading to the students in the course, and get out of the grading business herself.
DENVER -- Gatherings of any significant number of faculty members on the tenure track feature many discussions of the stresses associated with coming up for tenure. Will I publish enough? Have I offended a senior colleague? Do I know what the review committee really cares about? The American Educational Research Association’s annual meeting here is no different, with plenty of hallway chatter among younger scholars about their chances.
At Hinds Community College, swearing can get you in trouble. "Public profanity, cursing and vulgarity" are all punishable with a $25 fine for a first offense, and a $50 fine for a second offense. Further, the offense of "flagrant disrespect" (which may be demonstrated by swearing, as became clear Tuesday when a controversy over the code went public) can earn a student demerits that could lead to suspension.
On Sept. 4, 2008, Andrei Borisov was in his Ann Arbor office, waiting for a meeting in which he planned to give his bosses at the University of Michigan documents supporting accusations he had made about a colleague's alleged academic misconduct, among other things. But before the morning was over, Borisov had been forced to sign a resignation letter, arrested for trespassing (in his own office) and for disturbing the peace, and taken from the campus in handcuffs by public safety officers whose presence at the meeting had been arranged, in advance, by his superiors.