McPherson College wants all faculty to teach through scholarship, through service, and through participation–not only through classroom and course activities. However, all teachers are employed with the expectation that they are effective in the classroom. In regular faculty evaluations, classroom teaching is an important component: for example, faculty being evaluated are asked to administer course evaluation forms in two of their courses. The quality of teaching is assessed by means of (1) these student evaluations, (2) a classroom visit by an administrator, and (3) a faculty member’s self-evaluation (see Section 440).

Teachers are expected to maintain current knowledge of developments in their academic fields. Each teacher is encouraged, in consultation with the department head, to select her/his own textbooks and to work out her/his own syllabi. Text selection should be kept current, though yearly changes of texts are not necessary. All textbooks should be ordered through the bookstore well in advance of the time they are needed.

At the beginning of each semester, faculty must place on file in the Provost’s Office a current syllabus for each course taught. A suggested model for syllabi has been adopted by the faculty; this model shows information that must appear on all syllabi.

Faculty and departmental self-assessment for the purpose of improving instruction is an important component of the college-wide assessment program. The college recommends that faculty use Classroom Assessment Techniques (CAT’s) to determine the effectiveness of teaching practices. The book Classroom Assessment Techniques (Angelo & Cross, 1993) provides an explanation of many such techniques, and is available in the college library and in many academic departments.

A new faculty member who wants assistance with teaching or preparation of materials is encouraged to speak to the department chair or to the faculty mentor assigned to her/him by the administration.