A&Spire to Illuminate Pillar 3

Research

The University seeks “to accelerate its quest toward preeminence as a Christian research university” recognized by achieving the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education as an R1 university. Faculty at R1 universities are more often participants in national conversations on matters that are critical to the well-being of society as reflected by their cutting-edge research. With R1 status, Baylor will become a co-equal participant in such discussions and bring the Christian perspective to this forum.

Achieving R1 requires growth according to three principal criteria: research expenditures, number of doctoral graduates, and research staff. In recent years, we have made positive strides, but more work is ahead.

Currently, the College of Arts & Sciences accounts for approximately 60% of external research expenditures from granting, and A&S graduate programs collectively account for 73% of STEM doctorates, 88% of social science doctorates, and 100% of humanities doctorates awarded at Baylor during the 2019-2020 academic year.

In Arts & Sciences the number of doctoral degrees awarded will dramatically increase as existing doctoral programs expand and as new programs are developed. We seek to double external funding, and we plan to increase dramatically the number of postdoctoral fellows engaged in research. 

Much of this growth will come through increasing faculty and postdoctoral researcher hiring, as well as accepting additional doctoral students into our programs. We will seek to promote practices that will lead to diverse pools of applicants which should lead to the overall goal of increasing diversity among our faculty, postdoctoral researchers, and doctoral students.

Vision: Elevate the research profile of the College of Arts & Sciences to align with the research profiles of arts & sciences colleges at R1 institutions.

Goal 1: Double external funding in STEM and more than double external funding in the Humanities and Social Science departments.

Action Steps

1.1    Hire more than 100 new and replacement faculty in A&S.

1.2    Revise departmental tenure and promotion guidelines in STEM departments to reflect funding expectations comparable with the level achieved by faculty in their disciplines at R1 universities without medical schools.

1.3    Revise departmental tenure and promotion guidelines in the Humanities and Social Science departments to increase the number of externally funded fellowships and research grants.

1.4    Develop a Five-Year Core Facilities Plan for the Baylor Sciences Building to ensure that growth among research faculty is supported by our infrastructure.

Goal 2:  Increase the number of external research proposals in the Humanities and Social Science departments by a factor of four.

Action Steps

2.1    Include granting expectations in position advertisements for the Humanities and Social Science departments.

2.2    Increase resources and support for Humanities and Social Science faculty to identify funding opportunities.

Goal 3: Within a decade, double the number of doctorates awarded annually in STEM programs, while increasing the number of Humanities doctorates awarded by one-third and the number of Social Sciences doctorates awarded by one-half.

Action Steps

3.1    Collaborate with the Graduate School to increase the pool of doctoral students in existing doctoral programs targeted in areas that have a positive outlook for employment.

3.2    Design and launch new Ph.D. programs with interested departments in the Humanities and Social Sciences in areas that have a positive outlook for employment.

3.3    Streamline or re-organize graduate offerings to decrease the number of low-enrollment sections and decrease students’ time to degree.