Professor Goodwin Reflects on Tenure as Faculty Assessment Coordinator
After a decade as the Faculty Assessment Coordinator (FAC), Professor Sarah Goodwin is stepping down in preparation for retirement. After ten years of steady leadership in a challenging position, assessing colleagues and helping them improve, Goodwin reflected on her experience with The Skidmore News.
The Faculty Assessment Coordinator, or FAC, is there to assess how professors and departments are meeting their educational goals, and then helping faculty improve to meet them. At times, this process can be contentious and has caused tension between colleagues and Goodwin. “It’s like having an outside consultant,” she said. Ultimately, the FAC position is about “finding out by what means our students learn best” said Goodwin.
When asked what the most rewarding part of her tenure as the Faculty Assessment Coordinator was, Goodwin responded that working with a faculty team researching the intersection between visual images and education has always fascinated her. She has developed a report on their work over the span of two years, which was done in conjunction with Professors Katherine Hauser, Jeffrey Segrave, and Paul Benzon. The report is structured like a rubric, which is about “breaking it down into questions to assess how well students analyze images,” explained Goodwin.
Goodwin and the rest of her team’s work on how students and faculty should use visual images has gained recognition beyond the Skidmore community. Last year she presented her findings at the American Association of Colleges and Universities Conference. The work was well-received as a standard for best practices in visual images and education.
When asked to elaborate more on her work specifically, Goodwin clarified that it is still in progress, and that the group is hoping to have it ready for publication soon. The group that she worked with on it will be presenting again at the next American Association of Colleges and Universities conference in February. Goodwin will continue to hold faculty workshops periodically to teach faculty how to better use visual imagery and media in class.
Goodwin is planning on leaving the position later this school year, after the conference about education and media. Goodwin cannot say who is in the running to fill her position, but Skidmore is currently accepting applications and nominations from professors. Whoever is the next FAC will have big shoes to fill.