Date of Award

Summer 2010

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Educational Foundations & Leadership


Community College Leadership

Committee Director

Linda Bol

Committee Member

Molly H. Duggan

Committee Member

Monty E. Sullivan


A survey instrument was developed to measure community college faculty and administrator views on the faculty evaluation process. Responses were then compared based on demographic characteristics such as primary area of instruction, supervisory responsibility, years of experience, and gender. Open-ended survey questions asked respondents to identify the strengths, limitations and changes needed for their current faculty evaluation plans.

A total of 404 faculty members and 67 administrators completed the survey. Significant differences were found between faculty and administrator responses with respect to the reasons for conducting faculty evaluations, the relative importance of including certain elements in the evaluation process, and what data sources should be used in the construction of the final evaluation rating. Administrators consistently rated items related to faculty evaluation uses, inclusion of various evaluative elements, and the use of several data sources significantly higher than did the faculty members. Demographic differences were also discovered between faculty members when their group responses were compared based on primary area of instruction (transfer versus career and technical education), years of full-time teaching experience, and gender. Transfer faculty rated external evaluation and service to the college significantly higher than their career and technical (CTE) colleagues, but rated the use of alternative instructional delivery formats and student performance significantly lower than CTE faculty. Faculty with less than 7 years of experience rated administrator and external evaluation significantly higher, and preparation for class significantly lower, than their more experienced colleagues. Female faculty members rated the use of alternative instructional delivery formats significantly higher than did male faculty members.

Qualitative findings supported the use of multiple measures of faculty performance, including student evaluation, supervisor evaluation, and reflective faculty narrative and/or portfolio self-evaluation. Respondents cited the need for objective, standardized criteria for evaluating faculty member performance, with teaching allotted the greatest weight. They suggested faculty evaluation should be primarily a formative process tied to professional development, and merit pay should be uncoupled from the formative evaluation rating and should be the result of a separate, competitive process. These results have implications for revising the current faculty evaluation process used in the Virginia Community College System.


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