The Impact of Tenure Status on the Perception of Shared Governance in Higher Education

Brett Cetron, Fordham University


Current literature shows a trend away from hiring faculty on a tenure line and instead hiring full-time non-tenure track faculty. Full-time non-tenure track faculty are becoming the majority base of the full-time faculty. It is unclear how this new majority of full-time non-tenure track faculty perceive shared governance at their respective institutions. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the relationship between shared governance and tenure. Understanding the impact of a faculty’s tenure status on the faculty’s perceptions of shared governance will be quite important given the current hiring shift that is happening in higher education. The American Association of University Professors (AAUP) Committee T developed and approved a survey called the Indicators of Shared Governance (IOSG). This survey helps to assess how universities compare to the national standards for shared governance in higher education (ISOG, 2001). This committee’s survey was modified and used in this study to assess the state of shared governance based on faculty status at the universities that were selected. The survey was sent to the top 20 colleges/universities that met the criteria and were ranked in the US News and World Reports Best Regional Universities North Rankings. This study had 291 participants that were split into two groupings, Tenure/Tenure Track (TT) and Full-Time Non-Tenure Track Faculty (FTNTTF). The FTNTTF group only had 14 respondents from the survey. This study found that regardless of tenure status, both groups of faculty (tenured and non-tenured) shared similar views on all questions. Regardless of the tenure status, each question showed that the views of the tenured/tenure track (TT) group and that of the full-time non-tenure-track faculty (FTNTTF) group had consistent understanding of shared governance across each area. There were no statically significant differences between the groups on any of the four research questions.

Subject Area

Education Policy|Education|Higher education

Recommended Citation

Cetron, Brett, "The Impact of Tenure Status on the Perception of Shared Governance in Higher Education" (2023). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI30632663.