The Leadership Committee leads ACSA’s efforts to support the strategic development of architecture programs. The committee identifies and disseminates best practice models of program leadership and administration, and oversees ACSA’s efforts to promote awareness of architecture education.
Examining Excellence in the Academy – In line with prioritizing the ACSA’s ongoing racial equity work, the Leadership Committee is charged with investigating assessments of faculty scholarly and teaching excellence in academia in order to better understand assumptions about what makes a successful career for architectural academics and how ACSA’s programs and procedures can support a more racially just approach to this question. This includes documenting implicit assumptions and explicit criteria that determine hiring of faculty into contingent and tenure-track positions, that define expert knowledge, teaching excellence and that produce a profile for an architectural educator who is most qualified to teach, contribute to the disciplinary knowledge base, and guide students into careers beyond the university. The committee is asked to consider what characteristics and experiences are privileged by the application of these measures across various stages of a faculty member’s advancement and across a range of institutional types, including community colleges, non-accredited, and accredited professional undergraduate and graduate programs.
Online discussion to surface some of the implicit assumptions about scholarly and teaching excellence.
Draft a report that identifies metrics of scholarly and teaching excellence applied at early, mid, and late stages of an architectural academic’s career and analyzes who applies these metrics, in what contexts, who is privileged by these metrics, and how they relate to systems that provide access to resources across the arc of an academic career. The report will ideally identify alternative models of scholarly and teaching excellence and ways that those models change the calculus for individuals underrepresented across the ranks of architectural educators.
Propose changes to the description and evaluative metrics for ACSA’s New Faculty Teaching Award using insights from the report and feedback collected.
Summary of Previous Relevant Work
Over the past several years, ACSA has worked to understand systemic barriers to entry and educational success for architecture students with diverse backgrounds. It compiled best practice recommendations to help schools increase the demographic diversity of students within their programs. These efforts were shared with schools through the following resources:
Cards for Equity (2018) highlight numerous ways in which student diversity can be increased at schools of architecture from pre-college to the profession. Available for purchase on the ACSA website, the limited edition deck of 68 cards can be used by architecture faculty, students and administrators to identify action items that schools can use to promote inclusion and improve their culture.
Moving Towards an Equitable Future (2018), a report produced by the 2017-18 ACSA Education Committee, identifies significant barriers that students from lower socioeconomic backgrounds face in architecture school.
Founded in 1912 by 10 charter members, ACSA is an international association of architecture schools preparing future architects, designers, and change agents. Our membership includes all of the accredited professional degree programs in the United States and Canada, as well as international schools and 2- and 4-year programs. Together ACSA schools represent some 7,000 faculty educating more than 40,000 students.
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