New Faculty

 

Tips on Getting Off to a Good Start at Armstrong


During your first month:

  • Introduce yourself to the faculty and staff in your department.
  • Participate in at least one faculty forum or workshop.
  • Invite to lunch one new faculty member whom you met during orientation.
  • Don't hesitate to ask questions - of anyone.
  • For each course that you teach, prepare a syllabus that clearly and specifically identifies course objectives, methods, assignments, and policies: provide sufficient detail so that students aren't left guessing as to what you expect of them.
  • If you have been assigned to teach a large lecture class, put extra effort into careful planning and organization.
  • Make sure that your students are familiar with and understand Armstrong's Honor Code and Code of Conduct.
  • Become familiar with such student support services as Disability Services, Counseling Services, and Career Services - and be prepared to direct your students to the appropriate offices.
  • Even if you're not teaching online or hybrid-online classes, develop a simple web site with contact information for students and pdf copies of your syllabi.
  • If you're not familiar with all of the software on your computer, take advantage of the training sessions offered by IT Services.
  • Begin drafting a research plan, setting a timeline and establishing clear goals.
  • Get out of your office now and then: visit the Writing Center, the Advisement Center, and the Teaching & Learning Center.
  • Consider this bit of advice from Robert Boice's The New Faculty Member (2000): "Moderate over attachment and overreaction: learn to seek out and learn from criticism while reacting less emotionally to it."
  • Above all else, maintain your sense of humor.



During your first semester:

  • Schedule specific times during the week for research.
  • Schedule specific times during the week for conferences and advisement sessions with students.
  • Although you won't be invited to serve on any university-wide committees until your second year as a full-time faculty member, fulfill your service requirement on one or two departmental committees.
  • Attend a grant-writing workshop, and consider applying for an internal grant.
  • Maintain a teaching portfolio with all class materials, assignments, syllabi, and exams.
  • Attend an advisement workshop even if you haven't yet been assigned any advisees.
  • Arrange a meeting with your department head to discuss requirements and procedures for promotion and tenure.
  • Invite a colleague to visit one of your classes and comment on your teaching.
  • Save supportive e-mails and letters of thanks from students and colleagues.
  • Attend the end-of-term dinner hosted by the Faculty Development Committee, and exchange a few war stories about your first hundred days at Armstrong.

SEE ALSO

Technology Resources for Faculty
Meet the New Faculty
New Faculty Facts Form

FacultyConnect Interactive Virtual Resource