Associate Deans as Change Agents

Associate Deans as Change Agents
Why did you choose this particular session:
--recently went to CAEP and saw that people who were happiest were
those who used accreditation not to be compliant but to better be who we
--we're responsible for some of the messaging
--how do you strategically put the most important things in front of people
--we serve as facilitators and also translate the dean's vision; we help forge
the vision; we're responsible for getting the buy-in for carrying out the
vision; data inform communication, reform, recruitment and retention; AD
can be more responsible for affecting change than Dean
--help to set the vision, e.g., as enrollments decreased, created new major
that's not teacher cert-it's become very popular major
--faculty have become disconnected from shifts and changes in higher ed;
believe things can go on the way they are, don't see state and national
changes; AD can help communicate the broader context and help shape
response to those changes
--tremendous change in college and university, e.g., shifting to online
environment; faculty are almost at limit of change they can absorb; how to
be the cheerleader
--what is reasonable to expect faculty to be excited about
--not necessarily how to lead change, but how to initiate change;
sometimes as ADs we have to "lead up"
What are some strategies for pulling people together, thinking about what
needs change; what's been useful?
--be out and about; spend percentage of everyday having informal,
unplanned conversations--how's research going, teaching, are you missing
any resources; address needs before becoming concerns; however, concern
about this being contrasted with how the dean is perceived (does it make
the dean seem inaccessible?)
--most ADs seem to work more directly with Chairs and program
coordinators than faculty
--process of accreditation caused some faculty to get excited about
possibilities, what could be
--using process of collecting accreditation paperwork to check how people
are doing; "how do you see this affecting your work?"
How do you successfully work with your dean?
--after 5 conversations; try not to do anything he's not aware of
--having integrity with dean; edit what I say so not misinterpretted
--helping dean vocalize and unpack thinking; consider competing forces,
understand complexity, how things might be perceived by faculty
--look for more efficient mechanism, be problem solvers; keep dean
informed of different ways to solve problems, think through consequences;
we can come up with different solutions because we're working across
departments; ADs can be less myopic-see and hear more broadly; allow for
progress toward vision; making a mechanism or process more efficient is
important contribution; AD is support person for Chairs
--how much are we the problem solver and how much are we the stick?
--the dean has the stick, and the chairs answer to the dean
--accreditation is a stick
--sticks create resentment without solving problems
--negotiables and non-negotiables
--the more cohesive you are at the executive council level, the more you
can be change agents
How many are not CAEP?
--most are CAEP (CAEP not being worst accreditation process)
--a few edTPA states
How much opportunity do you have to affect change at the state level?
--large vs small population states; red vs blue states
--important that we all try--have to be very proactive
--example: getting secondary preservice teachers to have online teaching
environment--state requires face-to-face clinical practice
--can be easier to work with state board than with legislators
--if our goal is to be cutting-edge and have our grads be sought-after, so
how can do that?
--challenge is meeting teacher shortage, stay in-area, stay in profession
--teacher shortage needs to become part of national conversation
--at institutions--differential tuition since teachers will be making lower
Do you meet with other Associate Dean
--yes, very helpful
--often these are task-specific (curriculum change, SLOs)
--hallway conversations most helpful
--if you don't have those meetings, reach out and start that process;
colleges host lunch, set own agenda; socialize
How much are you involved in research
--silos with AD roles-how to overcome that?
--some don't feel they have very defined job descriptions--where to put
your time?
What give you satisfaction as change agents?
--renovating building to create space for research, grad assistants
--when you see a conversation shift from individual focus to what the work
it means and how it benefits college
--community engagement
--successful accreditation process where the faculty was grateful
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