ADFL Guidelines and Policy Statements
The ADFL recognizes that numerous factors affect the size of elementary and intermediate language classes, including pedagogical methods, modes of instruction, scheduling parameters, institutional type, faculty contracts, finances, and facilities. The ADFL endorses the guiding principle that class size must be appropriate for enabling, rather than inhibiting, the kind of effective interaction between teacher and students necessary for developing proficiency in speaking and writing. Smaller class size also leads to greater student satisfaction and retention.
The ADFL recommends that, in foreign language courses that stress all four skills, the maximum class enrollment not exceed twenty students.
(Revised in 2012.)
Foreign language faculty members should spend no more than twelve hours per week per semester in the classroom. If there is an expectation of ongoing research, they should not be required to teach more than nine hours per week (three courses). Institutions that require publication for tenure and promotion should lower teaching loads, especially for junior faculty members.
Departments of foreign languages and literatures, to make the best use of their faculty members' interests and abilities, should adopt flexible workload policies.
Standards for Selecting a Chair
Except in unusual circumstances, the chair of a department of foreign languages and literatures should be a tenured member of the department. The position of chair demands qualities that will encourage faculty members of the department to excel in teaching, scholarship, and service. In addition, the position demands the qualities and skills necessary to represent the department to the students, the administration, other departments of the institution, professional organizations, and other entities of the academic community.
Junior Faculty Development
Faculty members on probationary appointments should be given the maximum opportunity for professional accomplishment sufficient to achieve tenured status. These faculty members should have fair and reasonable teaching loads, appropriate release time and internal grants for research, and modest service assignments, even while being full members of the department and college governance system. Foreign language department chairs, tenured faculty members, and college administrators should encourage their junior colleagues to participate in professional organizations and conferences, to engage in scholarly research and publication, and to travel for professional development, both domestically and abroad, and support them in doing so.
Evaluation of Nontraditional Fields
The curricula of departments of foreign languages continue to change and expand. The thrust toward interdisciplinary work and the study of new technological advances, broaden the legitimate areas of both teaching and research within a foreign language department. Department members may be involved in disciplines not traditionally considered integral parts of a foreign language department, such as area studies, creative writing, film studies, foreign language acquisition research, foreign language pedagogy, gender studies, and literary and technical translation.
In questions of promotion, tenure, and salary, colleagues working in these fields should be evaluated using the same procedures and standards as those used for the more traditional fields but with proper consideration for the particular standards each discipline requires.
Teacher Education in Graduate Programs
The ADFL recommends that graduate departments of foreign languages and literatures include the theory and practice of teaching foreign language, literature, and culture as integral components of their graduate degrees.
(Proposed in 1991; adopted in 1993.)
continue on to Use of Part-Time Faculty Members
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