Summary of Faculty Survey

CFA Summary Report

Fall 2020 Faculty Survey

In November 2020, CFA-SFSU members completed a survey on our working conditions. 

776 faculty completed the survey, for a response rate of 39%. Of these 776 respondents, 39% (280) were lecturer faculty, 17% (119) were probationary/tenure-track faculty, and 44% (317) were tenured faculty. 

Strike readiness: The administration has threatened a series of austerity measures, and a majority of faculty have indicated they are ready to strike should the administration impose them. 

This report summarizes trends for the following survey topics:

  1. SETEs (Student Evaluation of Teaching Effectiveness)
  2. Workload
  3. Austerity Measures & Strike Readiness
  4. Additional Costs 
  5. Contract Negotiations 
  6. Solidarity actions

SETEs (Student Evaluations of Teaching Effectiveness)

87% of us read our SETEs (usually or always), but their helpfulness shows the opposite pattern — only 42% of us report that we (usually or always) find them helpful (Figures 1 and 2 below).

Figure 1: Do you read your SETEs?

See Figure 1 HERE

Figure 2: Do you find your SETEs helpful?

See Figure 2 HERE

Alternatives to SETEs

More than half of us (58%) want to find alternative forms of student feedback, and many (39%) agree that suspending SETEs for this academic year is a good idea.

About a third of us (31%) support abolishing the quantitative ranking in SETEs, and just under a third (29%) support excluding SETEs from personnel files or decisions. 

There is roughly equal support across the faculty for proposed alternatives: increased peer reviews (42% support), student opinion questionnaires (51% support), or SLO assessments (46% support).


About 200 faculty reported a numerical amount of extra hours worked over the summer to convert to remote instruction — this averaged out to 111 extra hours, with a median of 80 hours. Many others didn’t give a number because you didn’t track it, but qualitatively reported working far more hours.

To contextualize that extra time, most of us (58%) estimate having spent between 0-10 hours per week converting to remote instruction this term, though a full 31% report that number is 10-20 hours per week. This response is similar across lecturer faculty, TT faculty, and tenured faculty (Figure 3).

Figure 3: additional hours spent per week converting classes to remote modality:

See Figure 3 HERE

Most of us (72%) report that our teaching workload has increased this term in comparison with face-to-face instruction. 46% of us report increased service workload, including advising, as compared to face-to-face instruction.

Austerity Measures and Strike Readiness

76% of SFSU faculty oppose the proposal to increase class sizes to face the budgetary crisis, and 71% oppose the elimination of assigned time for advising and administrative duties.

Regarding the proposal to eliminate “duplicate” departments, 72% of faculty are willing to take action including going on strike if their own department is cut, and more than half of the faculty (55%) will contemplate going on strike if any faculty are laid off or not reappointed.

The strongest opposition concerns increasing the teaching workload: 80% strongly oppose increasing the teaching workload of T-TT, and overall, 62% of faculty are willing to go on strike on this issue, the percentage is higher for probationary faculty (86%) and for tenured faculty (77%).

Percentage of faculty willing to go on strike to oppose austerity measures

  1. Eliminates my program or employment unit: 72.18% 
  2. Increases T-TT workload to 4-4 (except as is already the case for GCOE): 61:77%
  3. Intends to lay-off or not reappoint any faculty member: 54.90%
  4. Eliminates administrative time for administrative duties: 40.82%
  5. Eliminates any existing program: 27.35%

Additional Costs

The existing system set up by the administration to assess faculty’s ergonomic needs is not working, or is a failure: of the surveyed faculty, 93% (89+4) of them have NOT been contacted by ERM (Enterprise Risk Management) regarding an assessment of adequate ergonomic equipment for their home offices. Among the 7% who were contacted, 78% asserted that the assessment was NOT satisfactory, and only 14% have received the reimbursement of the 50% of the costs for the covered upgrades.

Increased costs in relation to electricity bills and internet services:

80% of the faculty are spending more than $40/month additionally in electricity and internet services since they started teaching online, as most had to upgrade their internet services. In fact 35% are spending more than $100/month with those services combined.

Increased cost for ergonomic equipment (ergonomic desk chairs, etc):

Only 13% of the surveyed faculty spent no money or less than $100 to get the necessary ergonomic equipment to work at home. 

39% of the faculty spent between $200 and $500

25% faculty spent between $500 and $1,000 and 

8% of faculty spent $1,000 or more.

In total 33% have spent $500 or more in upgrading their home offices.

Solidarity Actions 

In response to SFSU layoff of 131 members of the CSUEU and Teamsters unions and two days of action that CFA took part in, the majority of all faculty and staff support mobilizing in solidarity with staff to protect the quality of our programs and services. The majority of faculty and staff are interested in attending future actions hosted by the CFA. 

Contract Negotiations

Most faculty and staff said they would be willing to participate in a discussion on the upcoming contract reopener. These have a smaller margin between the majority and minority. 

A majority of faculty and staff voted to support a full CFA membership vote to determine whether or not CFA should re-open our contract.