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Beyond Bias and Barriers: Fulfilling the Potential of Women in Academic Science and Engineering
A3. University leaders should work with their faculties and departmentchairs to examine evaluation practices to focus on the quality of contributions and their impact.
B. Professional societies and higher education organizations have a responsibility to play a leading role in promoting equal treatment of women and men and to demonstrate a commitment to it in their practices.
B1. Together,higher education organizations should consider forming aninter-institution monitoring organization. This body could act as an intermediary between academic institutions and federal agencies in recommending norms and measures, in collecting data, and in cross-institution tracking of compliance and accountability. Just as the opening of athletics programs to girls and women required strong and consistent inter-institutional cooperation, eliminating gender bias in faculty recruitment, retention, and promotion processes requires continuous inter-institutional cooperation, including data-gathering and analysis, and oversight and evaluation of progress.
As an initial step, the committee recommends that the American Council on Education, an umbrella organization encompassing all of higher education, convene national higher education organizations, including the Association of American Universities, the National Association of State Universities and Land Grant Colleges, and others to consider the creation of a cross-university monitoring body.
A primary focus of the discussion should be on defining the scope and structure of data collection. The committee recommends that data be collected at the department level by sex and race or ethnicity and include the numbers of students majoring in science and engineering disciplines; the numbers of students graduating with bachelor’s or master’s degrees in science and engineering fields; post-graduation plans; first salary; graduate school enrollment, attrition, and completion; postdoctoral plans; numbers of postdoctoral scholars; and data on faculty recruitment, hiring, tenure, promotion, attrition, salary, and allocation of institutional resources. The committee has developed a scorecard that can be used for this purpose (Chapter 6).
B2. Scientific and professional societies should
Serve in helping to set professional and equity standards, collect and disseminate field-wide education and workforce data, and provide professional development training for members that includes a component on bias in evaluation.