academic life as tenure and collegial governance. *Direct all correspondence to: James E. Perley, Department of Biology, Mateer Hall, College of Wooster. During my four years of service as President of the AAUP, higher education has been under increasing critical scrutiny and these examinations of the academy. View the profiles of professionals named James Perley on LinkedIn. There are 16 professionals named James Perley, who use LinkedIn to exchange.

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James Perley, Former AAUP President, Dies at 77

Perley, however, had studied and worked in big schools, including the University of Michigan and Wayne State University. By contrast, a large department can divide course requirements among many faculty members, lessening the burden on each person.

Committee A discussed the report extensively in early June and adopted it unanimously. I have heard Wilfred Kaplan complain about this at the University of Michigan on more than one occasion, where the review in a grievance is by the very administrator against whose action it was filed. Even when they don’t, small departments generally need faculty to carry heavier course loads than faculty in large departments do. It takes some grit to single out faculty members for tenure revocation and higher education administrators are not known for their willingness to take bold action.

One recent survey of faculty at Norway’s four universities found no significant relationship between department size and publication rate S. The report presents several problems. Third, the statement that, “the standard for dismissal or severe sanction remains that of adequate cause,” should be changed to “just cause.

But judging resources solely by department size can be deceptive, cautions Martin Trowa professor, emeritus, of public policy at the University of California, Berkeley. When the discussion resumed, a motion was passed that asked that the Council withdraw its approval of the report as policy and that it be published in Academe for review and comment by members across the country.


James Perley

Some of these are mine and some have been offered to me by others. When combined with the massive workplace changes occurring in the business community, the concepts of downsizing and outsourcing became very much a part of the thinking of members of Boards of Trustees and then of administrators and their professional organizations. Only universities are divided that way. Another major problem with the recommendations is the vague reference to the procedure to which faculty members who are dissatisfied with their review have resort.

Others complement these attacks on tenure by coming at it from another direction.

For those faculty who do not enjoy the protections of a collective bargaining contract, who knows what they may face. Smaller schools-particularly those that jamds undergraduates only-have traditionally emphasized teaching over research. We all go to our seminars and come away with new ideas. Some researchers predict that increasing interdisciplinary focus and new technology will make departmental size issues moot.

The procedural proposals, primarily found at the end of this long, and longwinded, summary have serious problems. Paul Gross notes that specialization in science today makes department size irrelevant. If this statement is adopted as policy, those of us in collective bargaining units may very likely find post-tenure review on the table as we begin negotiations over our next contract, put there by our own national organization.

The report states that, in the event of a negative outcome, “he or she should have the right to appeal the findings through prrley grievance procedure that offers the opportunity to correct the record. In a small department, would he feel content-or claustrophobic?

The Debate over Post-Tenure Review

There is no specification as to how the faculty members who are to perform these tasks are to be chosen. The core premise of post-tenure review is that there is a substantial enough minority of faculty members who are so incompetent that they need to be dismissed. It is too easy. In many cases these procedures would, if adopted, allow for the firing of faculty members without peer review and without access to those due process protections required by the AAUP which had become an essential feature of practice protecting the profession.


It is not surprising, then, that the concept of tenure should come under increased scrutiny and that attempts would be made to weaken or even eliminate it as a core feature of higher education, or that attempts would develop to invent new procedures aimed at circumventing due process protections that inhere in tenure.

Grossa professor emeritus and former director of the Center for Advanced Studies at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville. But that’s not to say research isn’t important to me. I urge every AAUP member to read the report carefully and to transmit your thoughts and your position to your local, state and national AAUP leadership.

They will all be happy to hear from you. In response, Committee A appointed a subcommittee of its own members to draft a report on the recommendations for presentation to the entire Committee.

It pauses at intervals to make comments about how unnecessary and inappropriate Committee A finds post-tenure review, but the result is a tepid presentation, when it should be a ringing endorsement of tenure and the principles underlying it It is remarkable that, despite the plethora of relevant studies on faculty productivity and related issues, there are no data quoted in the entire document nor any referral jamea these studies.

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