Faculty Qualifications

Do tutors or workshop facilitators need to be included in our faculty tables?

If the tutor or workshop facilitator is the primary person to whom a student has access, and the tutor is responsible for grading, assessment, or other activities central to the course delivery or student learning, they may need to be included in the tables. A Peer Review Team and committee members will look closely at the tutor or facilitator’s activities, and if the student-faculty interaction is primarily with the facilitator or tutor, and the facilitator or tutor is also responsible for other teaching activities as mentioned above, there is a possibility a team/committee would ask for the faculty members in question to be included. While each situation is unique and each case will be looked at individually, we encourage you to research comparable schools that may have implemented a faculty model similar to your school.


In Table 15-1, how do we represent a faculty member that teaches in more than one department?

If a faculty member is involved through teaching or research in two departments, they should be listed in each department and footnoted. However the percentage of time devoted to mission should not be 100% in both lines. The percentages should reflect the faculty member's allocation of time devoted to mission in each department e.g. 50/50. Percentages also depends on the initial qualification and sustained engagement in research/industry of the faculty member in question.


In Table 15-2, does a school need to represent the deployment of faculty by degree level or each program within a degree level?

All degree programs should be individually listed in Table 15-2. For example, under the Bachelor's degree level, a school needs to list the each one of the school's BA and BS degrees.


What should our school's faculty teaching load be?

AACSB standards do not specify faculty teaching loads. A peer review team and committee will often use the school’s peer school list to benchmark whether the school’s teaching expectations are reasonable. For example, if the peer schools expect a 3-3 teaching load and the school being reviewed has a 5-4, this may be deemed to be too high. Also, during a peer review team visit the team will visit with the faculty and will ask questions to try and get a sense of whether they have the time to devote to their responsibilities such as research and advising.


Should we include non-business faculty that teach in cross-disciplinary programs in our documentation and on our tables?

Generally speaking with cross-disciplinary programs, schools are not expected to document the qualifications of faculty teaching outside of the business discipline. If it were to be determined that the content of their courses held traditional business content, it could be challenged that the faculty should be included.


What are the particular criteria (contract types and length, part-time vs. full-time, etc.) for faculty members to be considered as a school's faculty?

AACSB Business Accreditation Standard 5 states: Normally, the school considers participating faculty members to be long-term members of the faculty regardless of whether or not their appointments are of a full-time or part-time nature, whether or not their position with the school is considered the faculty member’s principal employment, and whether or not the school has tenure policies. A supporting faculty member does not, as a rule, participate in the intellectual or operational life of the school beyond the direct performance of teaching responsibilities. Usually, a supporting faculty member does not have deliberative or involvement rights on faculty issues, membership on faculty committees, or assigned responsibilities beyond direct teaching functions (e.g., classroom and office hours). Normally, a supporting faculty member’s appointment is on an ad hoc basis—for one term or one academic year without the expectation of continuation—and is exclusively for teaching responsibilities. AACSB is not prescriptive and therefore provides guidance but does not provide exact criteria regarding the classification of faculty as part-time or full-time.


Are research assistants (doctoral students with a master's degree working on a dissertation) included as faculty?

The faculty member of record should be included on the tables. Unless the research assistant has substantial teaching responsibilities for a specific course, this assistant is not included on the table.


We have a faculty member with a yearlong fellowship in another country. He will be away for an entire academic year. How should we count him in our faculty tables (2 and 15)?

The faculty member’s intellectual contributions should be included on Table 2-1. The faculty member should be included on Table 15-1 for faculty qualifications. This person should not be included in the participating or supporting numbers as this classification is based on the actual teaching a faculty member does.


How should a faculty member who meets more than one faculty definition be classified? Can this person be listed for 100% in more than one category?

The school applies its own definitions for faculty and ensures that the definitions are aligned with the mission statement. A person cannot be double counted and has to be qualified under one classification.


In the footnotes of Table 15-1 it states: Doctoral students who have obtained All But Dissertation (ABD) status are considered SA for 3 years. How is ABD defined? Some schools call you ABD after exams, some after proposal defense.

The school can define ABD in a manner that makes sense for the particular type of program, duration, etc. in question. In general, the student must be in the final stages of their dissertation, that is- the dissertation proposal needs to have been submitted and accepted.


Can faculty members holding LLM degrees, and previously considered AQ, now be considered SA (Scholarly Academics)?

According to Standard 15, “Individuals with a graduate degree in law will be considered SA or PA for teaching business law and legal environment of business, subject to ongoing, sustained, and substantive academic and/or professional engagement activities demonstrating currency and relevance related to the teaching field.” As we understand this language, if your LLM faculty member is engaged in ongoing, sustained, and substantive academic activities such as scholarly research and other scholarly activities, they can be classified as SA.  If they remain current through sustained activities related to practicing law or other related activities, they should be classified as PA.


What is "percent of time devoted to mission"?

"Percent of time devoted to mission” is intended to broadly represent and encompass all professional responsibilities of each faculty member, including teaching, research, and other professional responsibilities that may be assigned. Table 15-1 should not be developed using a metric that only captures teaching. Clearly, for full-time faculty members including those holding administrative roles within the business school/accounting program that also are full time, the “percent of time devoted to mission” is 100%. For part-time faculty members, something less than 100% should be specified.


How do you calculate "percent of time devoted to mission" for part-time faculty members?

For part-time faculty members, something less than 100% should be specified. If the school uses a full-time equivalent (FTE) model for its human resource system, then FTE may be a reasonable approximation of “percent of time devoted to mission.” However, in the absence of an FTE model, the school will need to have a rational way of assigning the percentage to part-time faculty.


How should faculty members who are on sabbatical leave be documented for AACSB review purposes?

Sabbatical leaves represent an important faculty development opportunity. Faculty members who are on sabbatical leave during periods in which accreditation reports on faculty must be filed should be identified since they are part of “total faculty resources.” Since faculty on sabbatical leave do not normally teach, schools should include them in Table 15-1 but clearly identify them as on sabbatical leave either in a footnote or other materials that support the data included in the tables.


What is the status of faculty members in the business school who teach traditional business communications classes?

First and foremost, all faculty members housed in the business school or accounting program, including faculty teaching business communications classes, should be accountable for normal, reoccurring faculty management and evaluation processes in accordance with the provisions of Standard 6. However, for Standard 5 and 15 purposes, business communication faculty may be excluded from these analyses to the extent they are teaching traditional business communications classes in writing and speaking. If these faculty members teach traditional business subjects (See Part 2 Section 2 under Eligibility Criteria for a list of traditional business subjects), they would be included in Standard 5 and 15 analyses to the extent of this teaching. Clear disclosure of the treatment of business communication faculty housed in the business school should be provided.


Do all faculty members have to produce intellectual contributions to be qualified?

AACSB Accreditation standards do not state and have never stated that “all” faculty members must produce intellectual contributions as a condition of accreditation. It states that “all” faculty members should be current in the field of teaching and in support of the business school/accounting program’s mission as a consequence of appropriate development activities. The interpretive materials for Standard 2 state that “Intellectual contributions should emanate from a substantial cross-section of faculty in each discipline.” This does not state “all” faculty must contribute. Of course, each individual business school/accounting program is expected to provide guidance for faculty as to the activities that are appropriate to ensure the currency of qualifications as well as the production of intellectual contributions.


Why is emphasis placed on the portfolio of intellectual contributions to include a significant proportion of ―peer reviewed journal articles?

“Peer reviewed journal” articles (including equivalents as scholarly books, research monographs, or sections/chapters of such publications subject to peer review) have traditionally been the most respected form of research and publication outcomes across the academic community. Business schools/accounting programs traditionally grant the most credit in faculty performance reviews to such research outcomes in recognition of the quality that result from an independent review of the work of individual or groups of faculty.