Because faculty are such a fundamental part of the university essence questions are continually being asked about them: Who are they? What do they do? How much assigned effort is devoted to carry out the functions/services they provide? What are the workload ratios? How does their workload compare with peer institutions? How many hours a week do they spend in direct instruction?
At a more fundamental level is the question whether the purpose is to monitor the institution, the department, or the individual professor. Also who is doing the monitoring? Is it the Legislature (through the HECB), the UW top administration, the Dean, the department chairperson, or the individual faculty member? Answers to these two questions are essential for shaping any workload assessment system.
Faculty workload information is currently used at the department level for making course planning/scheduling decisions, estimating current and future staffing needs and determining curricular barriers to timely progress toward a degree. Higher administrative levels use FWS information for interaction with the legislature and peer institutions.
In an effort to provide ongoing information which will aid in answering these and related questions an on-line Faculty Workload computer System (FWS) was constructed to (1) identify who is instructing every class and (2) report the number of average weekly class contact hours (CCTH) each faculty member spends providing direct instruction to students. From the outset the decision was made that this workload system would focus only upon INSTRUCTIONAL EFFORT. All other individual, non-instructional assigned or budgeted effort, eg., sponsored research, public service, and/or administration, would be separately gathered as needed. Further, the system was designed to be as minimally intrusive for faculty as possible.
FWS MANUAL PURPOSES
This Instruction Manual has several purposes. First, it should be a desktop aid as you electronically identify the faculty who teach your courses and subsequently report their average weekly contact hours spent in direct instruction. Second, it seeks to answer some common, recurring questions about the system and its operation. Using this manual should enable you to operate FWS with maximum efficiency and minimum difficulty.
The FWS contains 3 integrated components: (1) identification of persons who are teaching all scheduled courses, except Independent Study, during the term, (2) capability to link individual students with individual faculty mentors in all Independent Study type courses, and (3) the reporting of the average weekly contact hours each faculty member spends in direct instruction in all classes regardless of discipline. There is a main menu screen which enables you to go to each component. This manual examines each component separately and describes a summary report that is prepared quarterly. Illustrations of the computer screens and edit listings associated with each component are displayed and described. Operating instructions, suggested tips (J), and cautions (M) are also included. A question and answer format responds to some common questions that have been asked over the years. A simple example has been prepared to go across all screens and edit listings to further illustrate the system operation and capabilities. Finally a glossary of major FWS terms and definitions appears in the Appendix.
FACULTY WORKLOAD HISTORY
Faculty workload data was originally gathered to prepare a Faculty Activity Analysis report originating from a federal government demand to monitor and audit federal grant activities. Nonfederal reporting requirements were merged so all faculty, whether working on federal grant money or not, were required to participate. Such reporting requirements were very hard to comply with so the reporting procedure was divided into 2 separate components in 1986. The Financial Analysis unit of the UW Controller's Office prepared a Faculty Effort Certification Report which surveyed time spent on federal grant activities only. NOTE: Any questions related to FEC should currently be addressed to the FEC Coordinator at (5-7395). The second component was called the Course Information Report (CIR). It was created by the Planning and Budgeting unit to link all instruction with faculty effort. It was also used to satisfy a state legislative mandate through the Higher Education Coordinating Board to conduct a periodic 'Cost of Education' analysis. CIR data was used for preparing these cost studies until Autumn 1993.
In 1993 a Washington State legislative mandate was issued to all higher education institutions requiring them to provide information about faculty teaching load prior to the 1995 legislative session. The design of this statewide study was much more comprehensive than previous studies on how faculty spend their time. The legislature also mandated a Cost of Higher Education analysis during 1993-94 which figured prominantly in the design of this workload reporting system. The university decided early on in the project that they wished to do more than meet minimal compliance requirements. They saw an opportunity to design, automate and improve their internal workload data management retrieval capability.
The project design required that information be gathered about weekly activities of university instructional faculty. That included time spent in actual classroom contact, class preparation, student advising, departmental research, administration, UW and public service, etc. Such data was solicited from every instructional faculty member for each quarter of 1993-94. There was significant faculty and departmental objection to the necessity for gathering such detailed information. It also required many additional resources, effort and burden on the university staff to gather such a huge amount of data. As a result, when the mandate was satisfied, the university decided to reduce data gathering to just those hours spent in direct instructional contact with students. That model continues to the present.
This system balances the need for each department to retain its unique character while, at the same time, providing data that will be comparable across departments and colleges. Writing a manual that describes every idiosyncratic situation is not possible. Therefore the manual will focus upon the basic system. However, both electronic and personal assistance is available should you need it (see below).
The system itself required the collaborative effort of several units to construct and maintain. Because of its complexity the type of problem you encounter will dictate whom you should contact for help. The lines separating these system functions are blurred but initially diagnosing the problem yourself before going to the most probable individual should speed problem resolution.
If you are having difficulty with computer operations, including password problems, or access to FWS please contact:
Hugh Parker, Associate Director, Admissions & Records, Data Management
Email: (preferred) email@example.com
If you are having difficulty with any of the course characteristics, or students who are enrolled in these courses, please contact:
Robert Jansson, Assistant Registrar
If you are having difficulty with the faculty workload system itself please contact:
Institutional Research & Data Management
Additionally, if you are having questions relating to instructor data on the HEPPS system, contact your department payroll coordinator and/or the person responsible for entering your data into that system.
In addition to the contact persons, an email distribution list (FACLOAD) has been set up to provide the campus with knowledge about reporting deadlines and other pertinent information. Persons who seek system access are placed on this list when the Access Request Form passes through OIS. Contact OIS using the email address <firstname.lastname@example.org> above to confirm you are on FACLOAD or wish to be removed from it. If requested, OIS personnel will make every effort to come to departmental offices and provide on-site instruction in system operation. The various FWS computer screens display edit messages that are designed to aid in correcting abnormal conditions. Finally, printed edit listings are prepared for you to isolate missing data and document data completeness.
FWS SYSTEM OVERVIEW
Before going into specifics about each FWS component it is helpful to have a global understanding of the system. Figure 1 presents a visual flow of significant events that occur each quarter. To start, an individual must have authorized computer access into the system (See FWS ACCESS section). The system is designed to provide departments with as much lead time flexibility as possible to add/delete/modify their data prior to the 3 deadlines each quarter. The 10th day census deadline influences your statistics but does not require action on your part other than getting all students registered prior to that point. Once deadlines 2 and 3 pass, however, FWS is not as user-friendly so ATTENTION TO DEADLINES IS VERY IMPORTANT.
M It cannot be overstressed that the data and information this system produces are only as complete and accurate as the departmental input. Departments control if and what data is entered. Final edit listings are maintained in the OIS office showing missing data by department and instructor. They can be provided as context to those who interpret the summary reports. FWS WILL EXCLUDE ANY CLASS MEETING RECORD THAT HAS MISSING OR INCOMPLETE DATA EVEN IF IT HAS ACTIVE 10TH DAY ENROLLMENT. Correcting all such conditions prior to the deadlines is essential.
BEGINNING TO DEADLINE 1
The process starts when a department submits their quarterly course offerings to the university's student database (SDB) via Time Schedule worksheets. NOTE: Only credit courses that are on the SDB are included in the Faculty Workload System. Each course offering is composed of one or more class meetings and the department should indicate when/where/how long each class meets. They may or may not include the instructor(s) Social Security Number at that time. The department can identify who is instructing each class from the moment the course is placed on SDB until the middle of the quarter. This includes Teaching Assistants, volunteer instructors, and faculty from other departments. With limited exceptions you can enter data for multiple quarters if the course offerings are on SDB. Thus you could put a faculty member's teaching load for nearly an entire year on FWS at one time if desired. At periodic intervals the department is provided with an Edit Listing that aids them in locating only those specific class meetings for which (1) no instructor has been reported or (2) the instructor is not yet on the university personnel/payroll (HEPPS) system. Your goal is to reduce the listing to zero before the mid-quarter deadline.
This system has a unique way to identify and include all Independent Study courses that are part of a faculty member's total direct instruction load. Many departments customarily set up a single thesis and dissertation course within their discipline and enroll all students needing such courses in the same schedule line number, making it difficult to link students with their mentor and give that faculty member full credit for all such students served. A procedure was instituted as part of FWS whereby a student wishing to sign up for such a course receives a unique 'Faculty Identification Number" from the department for a particular faculty member. The student has to provide that number during registration or is blocked from enrollment in that course. Once the number is provided the linkage is made between professor and student even if there are multiple students with multiple mentors registered in the same course.
DEADLINE 1 TO DEADLINE 2M Because of the nature of personnel reporting procedures at a major research university it is not always possible to have all persons who teach entered on the HEPPS system prior to the official 10th day student census. However, enrollment must be established on that date to reconcile with other reports and external reporting processes
Therefore, for FWS purposes, enrollment in every class containing one or more actively enrolled individuals is frozen at the close of business on each quarter's 10th day. This includes all Independent Study type courses as well. Enrollment changes, either adds, drops or backdates, to any course after the 10th day are ignored in FWS. If the course has active 10th day enrollment but is subsequently cancelled it still remains part of the faculty member's reported teaching load for that term. Thus it is very important that cancellation of any course be completed through the Time Schedule office prior to 10th day. All cancelled courses are ignored by FWS even if they contain enrollment. Faculty members and the courses they teach are linked after the mid-quarter deadline has passed.
DEADLINE 2 TO FINAL DEADLINE (3)
After the mid-quarter deadline, FWS pulls together all classes taught by a particular person (regardless of discipline) and produces a separate "survey form" for each individual. These forms contain the class meeting information, the 10th day enrollment in that class, and the average weekly contact hours if they could be calculated from the original data. If multiple individuals were identified as instructing a single class meeting (team teaching) the weekly contact hours are apportioned to each person according to departmentally-defined proportions. These forms are sent to the person's HEPPS home department. The departments are asked to verify the accuracy of the reported contact hours. They are also asked to determine the average weekly hours each faculty member spends mentoring students in his/her Independent Study courses. They must enter this in the FWS between mid-quarter and end of term. An edit listing is periodically provided to home departments which identifies only those Independent Study courses with missing contact hours. Once again, the goal is to reach zero edit messages before the deadline.
AFTER FINAL DEADLINE
After the end-of-term deadline has passed the data files are transferred to OIS. These are used to produce a summary information report that displays the total class contact hours, student credit hours, and enrollees by course level by faculty group for each department. These reports are prepared after each quarter, including Summer. An annualized average profile, excluding summer, is constructed at academic year's end. Although this completes the process for a given quarter, remember that a department will likely be following this sequence at different points for two quarters concurrently e.g. verifying fall quarter contact hours while identifying winter quarter instructors. Once the data file has been extracted from FWS by the Office of Institutional Studies a department can also request its historical data for local use by contacting OIS. It also becomes part of the relational database used by Deans and UW administrators to analyze teaching patterns and trends.
FWS ON-LINE ACCESS
In order to enter data or make any modifications to data already provided you must first have authorized computer access to FWS from Computing and Communication. NOTE: If you have previously had FWS access but change departments it will be necessary to follow this procedure to gain new access. To obtain that access the first step is to contact Admissions & Records Data Management or the Office of Institutional Studies to request a Faculty Workload System access form. Upon receipt of the form, identify the department you wish to access, obtain the requisite signatures, and submit it to the Office of Institutional Studies. You will be added to the FACLOAD email distribution list before the form is immediately forwarded to Computing and Communications. C&C strongly recommends that the individual register for and complete their class on the SDB. Once that is completed a "SecurID" card and FWS access codes are issued. When you have these items you are able to enter your departmental data on-line. At that point this manual should answer many of your questions about operating the FWS. Should you need additional assistance, contact the OIS office.
For security reasons each person normally has access to just their department. He/she cannot read or change the records of another department. Certain individuals or departments have been granted access authorization to more than one department because of the need to monitor within a school/college. Such exemption from the single department access rule must be granted by Computing and Communication. An exemption request is made by following the FWS access procedure just described.
As indicated previously, FWS is designed to link with the university's student registration system so you have to enter the Student Data Base (SDB) File first. From that point, depending upon your computer terminal, you select either (1) SRF234 or (2) Faculty Workload System. After you transmit, the SRM234 screen in Figure 2 appears. This is the FACULTY WORKLOAD - MAIN MENU. It is the system's command center; use this menu when (1) initially selecting the desired component, (2) changing components, and (3) exiting from the system. To open FWS make sure your 'Caps Lock'is on, place an 'X' beside the desired component, and send. NOTE: To begin our illustration and move to the next section we have placed an "X" beside Instructor Update component.
J Throughout FWS you need to use the 'Enter' key by your number pad rather than the other 'Enter' key.
As will be seen later, entering 'Q' (for Quit) in the action box of any component returns you to this main menu. You then have the option of selecting another component like before or exiting the entire FWS system. To exit from FWS, return to this menu screen. Move the cursor to the home position and type '.BYE' over the SRM234 characters, delete the '34' and send. This removes you from the system.