We’ve always known that Ohio Wesleyan is a friendly place, but now a national survey has validated that perception, at least as related to pre-tenure faculty. As reported in The Chronicle of Higher Education, the Collaborative on Academic Careers in Higher Education (COACHE), a 160-member consortium based at Harvard’s Graduate School of Education, has released the names of its member colleges and universities with the highest levels of pre-tenure faculty job satisfaction.
The survey benchmarks dimensions of satisfaction on eight work-life categories: tenure practices; the clarity of institutional expectations for tenure; the nature of faculty work overall, in research, and in teaching; work and home balance and supports; climate, culture, and collegiality; and global satisfaction.
In the report that draws from a survey of 15,000 junior faculty at 127 of the organization’s member colleges nationwide, Ohio Wesleyan ranked as exceptional on two dimensions: clarity of expectations for tenure and work and home balance and supports and among the top two of 38 baccalaureate institutions that have participated in the COACHE survey since 2006.
COACHE officials are quick to point out that this important survey is not a ranking; it instead “highlight[s] best practices and let[s] struggling institutions know about other colleges they can turn to for advice. …With this information, academic leaders on COACHE campuses can contact and learn from institutions that seem to be doing something (or several things) right.”
The list of 38 colleges is divided into Ph.D./research institutions, master’s degree institutions, and baccalaureate institutions. Joining Ohio Wesleyan on the list of exemplary baccalaureate institutions this year are Bowdoin College, Hendrix College, Kenyon College, Medgar Evers College of the City University of New York, Mount Holyoke College, St. Olaf College, Trinity College, Wellesley College, and Wesleyan University.