Faculty orientation programs are commonly used to introduce faculty members to institutional practices, establish relationships, and integrate new faculty with institutional culture. Faculty development programs provide opportunities for faculty to learn and apply new skills. These programs can also be an important part of organization change initiatives.
This paper summarizes best practices regarding faculty orientation and development. Principles of organization change and systems implementation are discussed, and a framework is proposed for leveraging faculty orientation and development programs to supporting aspirational goals..
A brief case study of one university’s faculty orientation program is presented. The evolution of the orientation program from a human resources and benefits review to its current format is described. Four specific examples are provided where faculty orientation has been linked with faculty development programs to support organization change initiatives: implementing a new evaluation, tenure, and promotion process; improving teaching and learning with technology; implementing an online system for tracking faculty accomplishments; and implementing an online system for identifying and managing grant opportunities.
Lessons learned from integrating organization change and systems implementation within faculty orientation and development programs are discussed, focusing on discovering and mitigating barriers to change. The paper concludes with recommendations for evolving faculty orientation and development programs and for further academic study.