Faculty Evaluation (G/P)

Effective date: 05/09/23

This guideline/procedure details the underlying policies and outlines the overall procedures of the faculty evaluation process at Austin Community College District (“ACC” or “the College”).

The College values quality teaching and a learning environment that supports the continuous enhancement of the professional skills of its faculty. The purpose of faculty evaluation is to support exemplary teaching through a process that is transparent, fair, formative, and results in actionable information faculty can use for continuous enhancement of faculty teaching and equitable student learning and success.


  1. Collegewide expectations for teaching at ACC are summarized in the exemplary teaching statement:

ACC faculty are committed to exemplary teaching that engenders equity and student success and is guided by ACC Faculty Values. Intentionally using innovative, evidence-based teaching practices, faculty creatively foster critical thinking, student engagement, learning, persistence, achievement, and sense of purpose. While cultivating a culture of belonging and inclusiveness for all students, faculty pursue excellence and continuous improvement in course design, teaching strategies, assessment and feedback, and student learning.

To meet the highest level of exemplary practice, faculty seek out new strategies to intentionally nurture and respect learners’ strengths, interests, needs, and cultures.  Faculty commit to continuous mastery of their disciplines and teaching pedagogy as well as engagement in ongoing reflective practices in support of lifelong learning.

  1. Transparency – All faculty members have the right to know how they will be evaluated before submitting evaluation materials. As such, the College will develop and maintain a website that includes links to the Faculty Evaluation Manual and associated materials along with the following information provided by each instructional department. This information will be available to all and updated annually and as any information changes:
    1. The departmental evaluation process for full-time and adjunct faculty (i.e., whether reviews will be carried out by a committee, Assistant Department Chair(s), peer reviewers, etc., prior to moving on to the Department Chair).
    2. The rubrics adopted by the department for all criteria on the Summary Evaluation Form. These can be developed by the department or can be taken from the rubrics provided by the college or elsewhere, or any combination of those.
    3. How the different criteria on the Summary Evaluation Form will be weighted within the collegewide required guidelines in determining the Overall Rating, along with the scale for determining that rating.
  2. Consistency – In support of contributing to an atmosphere of equity and transparency in the faculty evaluation process, faculty evaluations will be consistently administered across the College, while allowing for reasonable variation by department. This applies particularly to:
    1. Weighting of the Criteria on the Summary Evaluation Form in determining the Overall Rating must follow the standards established in Procedures below.
    2. Ratings for each of the Criteria on the Summary Evaluation Form will be determined through rubrics determined by each department through the departmental shared governance process, in consultation with full time and adjunct faculty.
    3. All departments will follow the same calendar for faculty evaluation.
  3. Formative – For the faculty evaluation process to be truly meaningful, it is important that faculty receive actionable, meaningful feedback from multiple sources: departmental reviewers, students, and self-reflection. The purpose of the faculty evaluation is to provide faculty with the formative feedback necessary for faculty growth in addition to the necessary summative ratings and comments.
  4. Continuous updating of the process – Faculty evaluation is a dynamic process. It is important that the process be updated on a regular basis over time in order to keep pace with the changing needs of our students and the college. In order to support this continuing need to monitor and tweak the process, there will be established a Faculty Evaluation Steering Committee, composed of full-time and adjunct faculty, department chairs and deans, and representatives from other relevant college groups. The charge for this committee is:
    1. Systematically collect feedback from instructional departments and instructional leaders about problems and concerns related to the faculty evaluation process each year.
    2. Provide a central collection point for faculty feedback about the evaluation process
    3. Each year, review this feedback and determine procedural tweaks that could be made to improve the process moving forward and recommend those that seem most advantageous to the college; particular attention should be paid to balancing the importance of this process to faculty and the college with the workload imposed on Department Chairs and Deans.
    4. Evaluate, monitor, and make recommendations concerning the software used by the college to collect and expedite the faculty evaluation process.
    5. Every 5 years, conduct a holistic review of the faculty evaluation process and determine what changes are recommended to improve the overall process. These changes will need to be approved through the shared governance process requiring the recommendation of the Faculty Development and Evaluation Committee and the approval of the Academic and Student Affairs Council.
    6. Research ways to make the faculty evaluation process more meaningful and useful to both individual faculty as well as the College.


  1. Portfolio and Evaluation Calendar summary – Faculty evaluations occur annually; all materials for a given academic year are submitted by faculty to their department prior to the beginning of the subsequent academic year. The evaluations are carried out during that fall semester and evaluations are provided to faculty by the end of that semester, with the exception of faculty in their first 3 years of service at the College and the possible exception of evaluations where a conference with the Department Chair or Dean was requested. Deadlines for each component are as follows:
    1. Student course evaluations – These are administered every semester according to a calendar determined by the Faculty Evaluation Office in consultation with the shared governance Faculty Development and Evaluation Committee. These will be returned to individual faculty according to the schedule established by the Faculty Evaluation Office.
    2. Faculty Reflection Form – These are submitted to the department by each faculty member within three weeks of receiving their Student course evaluations or within the first three weeks of the following semester, whichever is later.
    3. Course materials and other annual portfolio evaluation materials (Peer Dialog, Faculty Values Framework, Purposeful Change, Goals for Professional Development and Growth, any other specific materials required by the departments) – These materials are submitted by the deadline set by the department. The deadline must be after the end of the spring semester but prior to the beginning of the subsequent academic year.
      1. New full-time faculty who have taught at the college for 3 years or less will submit this material after the end of the spring semester (according to Departmental deadline); these reviews will take place during the summer semester and returned to these faculty before the end of the first summer session.
      2. Adjunct faculty will submit course materials, Reflection Forms, student course evaluations, and the Purposeful Change according to the posted schedule. Adjunct faculty teaching fewer than 6 LEH during the academic year under evaluation will not be required to submit the Purposeful Change.
  2. Criteria in the Summary Evaluation Form – Each of the criteria in bold will receive a rating and supporting comments based upon the posted departmental or college rubric. All instructional formats/modalities are evaluated using this set of criteria. Comments can be made in any section to address different modalities; if the Department Chair feels that different modalities should be rated differently, that should be addressed in the comments and combined together to determine a single rating.
    1. Teaching and Student Learning
      1. Instructional Performance – Each year’s rating should be based upon departmental and college-wide requirements, especially the Exemplary Teaching Statement. It should consider the following inputs (depending on the year of the evaluation cycle):
        1. Course materials (year 3, all years for faculty in their first 3 years at ACC)
        2. Faculty Reflection Form: Faculty Reflection Form (Each year – departments may review additional years when needed.)
        3. Report from peer reviewers and/or evaluation committee, if applicable
        4. Faculty Values Framework (year 1, full-time faculty only)
        5. Purposeful Change (year 2)
        6. Grade distributions
        7. Student complaints/faculty discipline (where applicable)
        8. Class observation report(s) (where applicable – required during first semester teaching with the college, may also be requested as part of a  Performance Improvement Plan)
      2. Student Feedback and Faculty Reflection – This rating should be based upon departmental and college-wide requirements, especially the Exemplary Teaching Statement. It should consider the following inputs (depending on the year of the evaluation cycle):
        1. Student Course Evaluations (each year – departments may review additional years when needed.)
        2. Faculty Reflection Form (each year – departments may review additional years when needed.)
        3. Student complaints/faculty discipline (where applicable)
    2. Professional Responsibilities
      1. Administrative performance – Administrative duties in the ACC faculty contract must be met in addition to the timely completion of the following:
        1. Holding the required number of office hours and being available to students during those times
        2. Certifying attendance and submitting grades by the deadline at the end of each session
        3. Maintaining required information in Lighthouse according to the departmental/college deadlines
        4. Submitting textbook order/information by the appropriate deadlines (where applicable)
        5. Maintaining departmentally required information in Blackboard for each course (where applicable)
        6. Submitting syllabi and other departmentally required documents by the required deadlines
        7. Appropriate and timely submission of all required faculty evaluation materials
        8. Responding to student, departmental, and college communications in a timely manner
        9. Fulfilling other required departmental duties, where applicable
      2. Professional Development and Growth – This rating should reflect both professional growth and the completion of Professional Development, according to college and departmental requirements. It should also consider stated professional development goals and updates over time, including the following information:
        1. Goals for Professional Development and Growth (year 3, full-time faculty only)
        2. Faculty Reflection Form (each year)
        3. Completion of college and department required training
        4. Recorded faculty development hours and how they relate to college requirements and professional growth
      3. Professional Service (required for full-time faculty, optional for adjunct faculty) – This rating should reflect work outside of the classroom and normal preparation to teach assigned classes. This can include service for the department, for the college, or for a professional or industry group. While this is not a required criteria for adjunct faculty, some positive notice should be credited to those who contribute service to the department or college, even if paid a stipend. This should consider the following inputs:
        1. Faculty Reflection Form (every year)
        2. Faculty Values Framework (year 1, full-time faculty only) or Statement of Teaching Philosophy for faculty in their first 3 years of teaching at the college if approved by the department.
        3. Other documented information regarding service
    3. Overall Rating – The Overall Rating on the Summary Evaluation Form is determined by combining the above individual ratings together using a weighted average (as described in the Faculty Evaluation Manual) with weightings determined by departments but following the collegewide weighting specifications below. When computing the overall rating, if the score falls within a score range that can be either “rounded up” or “rounded down”, it falls to the discretion of the department chair whether to use the higher rating or the lower rating although some explanation of that choice should be included in the Summary Statement.
  3. Ratings – The Faculty Evaluation Manual provides guidance on what reviewers should look for, where to find it, and what standards need to be met for each rating. All ratings of Criteria in the Summary Evaluation Form will use the following rating system:
    1. ACC exemplary teaching and faculty expectations have been met – Overall, the faculty member has met the teaching standards set forth in the above Statement on Exemplary Teaching, as well as other non-instructional duties required of faculty. Formative feedback on potential areas for improvement as well as areas of particular merit will be provided in comments.
    2. Approaching ACC exemplary teaching and faculty expectations – The faculty member has met many of the above standards, but there are one or more areas that do not satisfy that standard. This might be one significant issue or multiple lesser issues.
      1. Required: In addition to providing formative feedback on areas in need of improvement, the Summary Evaluation Form should contain a list of specific improvements necessary to attain ACC exemplary teaching and faculty expectations have been met.
      2. Failure to make significant progress towards addressing these issues could result in a rating of Does not meet ACC faculty expectations in the following year.
    3. Does not meet ACC faculty expectations – The faculty member has not met the expected teaching and/or non-instructional standards of the college in a significant manner.
      1. Required: If this rating is received in any individual areas of the Summary Evaluation Form, a list of specific improvements needed must be provided.
      2. If the Overall Rating is “Does not meet faculty expectations,” a meeting with the Department Chair is required to develop a Performance Improvement Plan with clearly specified outcomes and timeline.
      3. Failure to make significant progress on these issues within the time specified in the Performance Improvement Plan will result in further action being taken. Faculty who receive this rating will be given reasonable time and support to address these problems.
  4. Weightings – In order to ensure that Summary Evaluation Form criteria are weighted in a consistent, transparent, and equitable manner in computing the overall evaluation rating, each department must post the percentage weightings for each criteria clearly on the college website for this purpose, well before faculty turn in their evaluation materials. The percentages for each department will be determined through departmental shared governance, in consultation with both full-time and adjunct departmental faculty. The College will provide a form to aid in computing ratings. These percentages must satisfy the following specifications:
    1. Instructional performance – This criterion must be weighted the same for both full-time and adjunct faculty. It will be no less than 40% of the total.
    2. Student feedback and faculty reflection – This criterion must be weighted the same for both full-time and adjunct faculty. It will be between 20%-30% of the total.
    3. Professional service (Required for full-time only) – This must be at least 15% of the total.
    4. Both Administrative performance and Professional development must each count for at least 5% of the total.
  5. Prior to the Evaluation process
    1. Prior to the evaluation, it is important that every faculty member be made aware of which materials faculty must submit that year, the online location where departmental evaluation rubrics and department-specific requirements are posted as well as links to how evaluation materials are to be submitted, and clear deadlines for submission of all materials.
    2. New faculty (faculty who have taught for 3 years or less at the college) – It is important that faculty who are new to the college receive the support and formative feedback they need early in their teaching career at ACC. Prior to and during their first semester teaching in the Department, departments should coordinate faculty mentors and teaching observations and provide for help in setting up their courses and becoming familiar with ACC systems and policies. Further, they are strongly encouraged to arrange for some formative feedback opportunities for these faculty on their course design and teaching methods. While this feedback should not be a part of the evaluation process, it is important that the college support these new faculty as they begin their work at the college.
  6. The Evaluation process:
    1. Evaluation components
      1. Course materials (submitted by all faculty) – Course materials are integral to understanding a faculty member’s design of their course. It informs reviewers of how the faculty member integrates course objectives into the course.
        1. Faculty who have taught more than 3 years at the college are in a 3 year cycle:
          1. in years 1 and 2 of cycle – There are no course materials required in these years of the cycle unless the Department requires some limited collection of materials (such as syllabi, for example).
        2. In year 3 of cycle – Course materials will only be required for one or two courses from that academic year; some departments may choose to review and provide feedback on additional course materials as long as this is applied to all departmental faculty.
        3. Faculty in their first 3 years at the college – Where possible, materials for at least 2 courses (more if required by the department) taught each year are required for all faculty members during their first three years of teaching at the college; faculty teaching only 1 course submit coursework for that course.
        4. Requirements to submit for each course may be modified by each department, but the basic components for each course are:
          1. Course syllabus
          2. Samples of Major Assignments – Tests, Major Assessments, Projects, etc. Many departments will require all major assessments to be included.
          3. Other course-related documents required by each department
      2. Student course evaluations (submitted by all faculty) – Reviewers will consider not only the student course evaluation rating for each course, but also the student comments as well as any faculty response to those comments.
      3. Faculty Reflection Form (submitted by all faculty) – The Faculty Reflection Form is meant to encourage more thoughtful reflection on teaching and student learning, leading to more meaningful formative feedback for faculty. This form is required in the fall and spring semesters every year (some departments may choose to require this for faculty who teach during the summer as well). This form asks faculty to reflect on their teaching experience, their students’ experiences, their response to student course evaluations, their professional development activities, and (required only for full-time faculty) their professional service each semester.
      4. Purposeful Change (submitted by all faculty, except for adjunct faculty teaching less than 6 LEH during the academic year under review) – The Purposeful Change is meant to encourage ongoing faculty reflection, experimentation, and change. Once every 3 years, each faculty member will decide upon some focused, purposeful change to make in their teaching that year in order to improve teaching and student learning in some specific manner. During that year, they will attempt that change and then reflect upon whether it accomplished what was intended, led to some completely different outcome than expected, or didn’t really work. Reviewers will consider the reasoning, planning, and analysis of the outcome.
      5. Peer Dialog (submitted by full-time faculty only) – The Peer Dialog is meant to provide an additional perspective in a 360° evaluation. It should lead to a more formative assessment with peer feedback and learning about teaching and learning. This is an unevaluated activity that is meant to encourage faculty to support, learn from, share, and provide formative feedback for each other about teaching and student learning. Faculty will report upon this, but the results will not be rated or used in the evaluation. (Activities may include mutual class observations, participation in Faculty Interest Groups or Learning Communities, or as approved by the department.)
      6. Faculty Values Framework (submitted by full-time faculty only) – The Faculty Values Framework provides faculty an opportunity to reflect upon their current work and how that connects to ACC Faculty Values. During the first 3 years of teaching at the college, faculty may choose to develop a statement of teaching philosophy instead of the Faculty Values Framework, if approved by the department.
      7. Goals for Professional Development and Growth (submitted by full-time faculty only) – Professional Development Goals are intended to encourage faculty to reflect upon their current career goals and what additional training they might need to pursue those. Faculty will set overall goals for their professional development activities for the next three years at this time. Changes in these plans during that time period should be documented in the Faculty Reflection Forms.
    2. In addition to the required evaluation components submitted by faculty, the following information will also be collected:
      1. Class grade distributions and student course evaluations (distributed by the Faculty Evaluation Office);
      2. student complaints, faculty discipline information, and information on faculty absences;
      3. list of Professional Development hours
      4. Lighthouse/Office hours compliance data;
      5. prior year Summary Evaluation Forms for all returning faculty, as well as any active Performance Improvement Plans from prior evaluations;
      6. other departmentally required information
    3. Department Chairs may choose to distribute materials for some portion of their faculty to designated reviewers to assist with the evaluation process. Designated reviewers must be well-versed on departmental/college rubrics and the rating schema. Department Chairs must complete and approve Summary Evaluation Forms for every faculty member in their department.
    4. Summary Evaluation Forms will then be sent to faculty by the collegewide deadline for review and acceptance, after which they are returned to the Department Chair. Deans should be notified when the forms are sent out or if there is a delay in sending them out and may optionally choose to review these forms before distribution to faculty.
    5. For any faculty who request a conference with the Department Chair or who receive a “Does not meet faculty expectations” as an overall rating, the department chair conducts the conference prior to the beginning of the spring semester and records any comments on the Supplemental Conference form. If this conference is the result of a rating of “Does not meet faculty expectations,” the Department Chair and the faculty member must develop a Performance Improvement Plan with a clearly specified timeline. Faculty members who disagree with the Performance Improvement Plan or the outcome of the conference may request a conference.
    6. All approved Summary Evaluation Forms will be returned to the Dean for final approval and distribution back to the faculty.
    7. In order to facilitate collegewide data collection and record retention, all Summary Evaluation Forms and associated conference notes and Performance Improvement Plans will be collected in an established centralized electronic location within the College.

Back to Top