We want to thank each of you who participated in last spring’s faculty survey conducted by the Collaborative on Academic Careers in Higher Education (COACHE). FSU has administered this survey every three years starting in 2015. The COACHE survey helps us better understand the faculty’s perceptions and experiences of FSU as a place to thrive and excel. What we learn from the survey will inform our decision-making and programming in support of faculty success.

The COACHE survey is unique because it not only assesses levels of satisfaction of our faculty across multiple domains of their work, but also compares our data to a national cohort and a select group of peer institutions. The 2021 national cohort is comprised of 80 universities that recently completed the COACHE survey. Our specific peer comparison group included University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, University of Texas-Austin, North Carolina State University, University of California-Davis, and University of Maryland-College Park.

This third administration of the COACHE survey was conducted in February-April of 2021. Given the pressures that faculty worked under that semester, we are grateful for the almost 1,000 faculty members who were able to participate in the survey. All full-time faculty comprised the study population. Our response rate for survey completion was 46%, a higher rate than that of our peers as well as the national cohort average.

The results of the 2021 FSU COACHE survey are now in, and we are pleased to share them with you. The Preview Report, prepared by COACHE for FSU, provides results for 25 broad thematic areas. The report identifies our strengths (of which there are 22!) and areas of concern (0, as defined by COACHE). Broadly, 81% of our faculty report being satisfied or very satisfied with FSU as a place to work, placing us first among our peers on this measure of overall satisfaction. We are pleased to know that FSU levels of faculty satisfaction compare well with other universities, yet we also view these results as pointing out ways to improve faculty life at FSU.

Our next step is to do a more fine-grained analysis of our COACHE results. Members of the COACHE Steering Committee (Aimée Boutin, Dawn Carr, Shanna Daniels, Michelle Douglas, Lyndsay Jenkins, Eugenia Millender, Iain Quinn, Peggy Wright-Cleveland) with assistance from colleagues in the offices of Institutional Research and Faculty Development and Advancement have already begun this work. Over the next few months, we will share detailed summaries of findings on each thematic area.

Engagement of faculty and academic leaders in discussions of the results is critical to implementing effective and sustainable changes that will support faculty success. VP Janet Kistner will meet with faculty groups, as well as with chairs and deans, to review and discuss the COACHE results. We hope that these meetings will produce faculty-driven plans for making FSU an even better academic home for our faculty.

Your excellence in innovative teaching and cutting-edge research provides evidence that FSU deserves recognition as one of the best universities in the country. We can’t thank you enough for your commitment to that ongoing mission.

Former Provost Sally McRorie

VP Janet Kistner