What is exciting about the COACHE survey is that we will get specific, actionable feedback that we will disseminate to faculty via campus programming and Otterbein’s NSF-ADVANCE Website. Preliminary reports from COACHE will be available Spring 2013 -- more in-depth COACHE reports and feedback will be developed in year 2 of this project.
Beyond COACHE data, the ADVANCE team will collect multiple quantitative and qualitative data in years 1 & 2 of the project. These will include analysis of existing data, focus group data, time-use diary data, and more.
The COACHE survey and addition data collection will allow Otterbein to compare our own data directly to peer institutions.
Our administration has pledged its support of the ADVANCE grant. This includes communicating the COACHE survey findings to the Board of Trustees.
What kind of change are we hoping for?
After our initial assessments are complete, we will form Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) to further explore the aspects of stereotyping and bias, and aspects of invisible women and dual-career issues that have been emphasized by women at Otterbein. These PLC inquiry groups will meet bi-monthly in a collegial and supportive context.
While we can’t know what particular strengths and weaknesses might emerge from the data prior to collection and analysis, this project will aim to develop specific policy recommendations which will be disseminated to administrators and other interested parties. For example, based on our assessment findings, will will also begin to work towards equalizing service levels and bringing clarity to service expectations for all faculty on campus. We will also specifically look at ways to increase leadership of female STEM faculty. In particular, based on work at other ADVANCE funded institutions, we will explore the concept of horizontal mentoring between senior women across schools. Our assessments will be used to inform data-driven proposals for instituting favorable work-life balance policies at Otterbein.
Finally, we hope that the findings of this project can contribute to knowledge of issues faced by women in STEM disciplines at other primarily undergraduate institutions. The issues that women at smaller school face vary greatly from those at larger schools. We hope that our assessments and analysis will serve other similarly-sized institutions. We see our project as having an important regional -- and perhaps even national-- impact.
For examples of the kind of success we hope to achieve at Otterbein, see our Success Stories page.