Title: A Precursor to Change: How Understanding Faculty Change Readiness Can Support EDI Change Initiatives
Stream: Higher Education
Presentation Type: Virtual Presentation
Brian Delevie, University of Colorado Denver, United States
Begun with a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Grant in 2017, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (CLAS) at CU Denver has engaged in several student success initiatives targeting underrepresented minority (URM) students within STEM-related fields. In the five years since receiving the grant, CLAS has undertaken several initiatives (e.g., workshops, advising practices, student experience, etc.) to build and nurture a culture of inclusiveness within the college and decrease drop, failure, and withdrawal rates amongst URM STEM students. Though CLAS has had many successes, it has also encountered confusion, resistance, and apathy from its STEM faculty and needs to understand better their faculty's capacity, desire, or urgency to undertake EDI-related efforts. Change inevitably comes with uncertainty, ambiguity, and, in many cases, information overload and resistance. The success of change efforts within higher education rests upon an individual faculty's change readiness (e.g., beliefs, attitudes, intentions, etc.) and the change context. Additionally, through organizational change may be a shared experience, it is perceived as singular and understood through an individual's interpretive sense-making processes and frames of reference. Though examining the results of a 2021 quantitative change readiness study, this chapter examines how the construct of change readiness can better understand faculty's responses to EDI efforts and equip administrators in implementing and facilitating systemic institutional change. Questions investigated include: is there a relationship between faculty's openness to EDI change and their change readiness, commitment, and collective efficacy? And How can developing a more nuanced understanding of faculty readiness inform EDI change efforts?
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