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Tenure: Perceptions of Requirements and Impediments for Civil Engineering & Construction Disciplines

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2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Tampa, Florida

Publication Date

June 15, 2019

Start Date

June 15, 2019

End Date

June 19, 2019

Conference Session

ConstDiv Technical Session 5 - Pedagogy & Accreditation II

Tagged Division

Construction Engineering

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Paper Authors

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Nicholas Tymvios Bucknell University

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Eliana Christou University of North Carolina at Charlotte

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The academic tenure process began in the US in 1915, and since then, the concept has been both criticized and praised. Arguments for tenure include freedom of teaching/research, and economic security, while critics comment on faculty underperformance and emphasis of research over teaching. Yet, a tenured position is coveted and sought by many aspiring assistant professors in the US education system, and that includes faculty from civil engineering and construction disciplines.

This paper aims to display the variability in perceptions of tenure requirements among assistant professors in civil and construction programs between universities of different research activities, and identify their perceived impediments towards obtaining tenure. The motivation for this research is to bring to surface some of the concerns assistant professors have relating to the tenure process.

Faculty from ACCE and ABET accredited programs in tenure-track positions were identified through an online search, and were provided with an online survey to complete. In total, 1052 faculty were identified, and 193 participants responded (18.3%) from 115 institutions and 45 states. Initial results show that, faculty employed in “Highest” (R1) and “Higher” (R2) research activity universities, perceive that their research requirements are similar, while faculty in R2 universities have higher teaching requirements.

The authors hope that this paper would spark conversations regarding clarity of requirements, and concerns about work-life balance.

Tymvios, N., & Christou, E. (2019, June), Tenure: Perceptions of Requirements and Impediments for Civil Engineering & Construction Disciplines Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. 10.18260/1-2--33363

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