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Higher education -- United States -- Oregon, College teachers -- United States, Learning and scholarship -- United States, Research -- United States, College teachers--Tenure


Between 1994 and 1996, Portland State University (PSU) expanded the definition of scholarship used to assess and reward faculty. Three conditions facilitated this change. The first related to PSU's urban history, culture and values. This context allowed faculty to approach their teaching, learning, and community engagement in scholarly ways. The second condition involved external forces, which challenged PSU faculty to identify and use their intangible assets in the scholarship of teaching, integration, and application. The third condition was, and continues to be, university leadership. Leadership at PSU encourages the faculty to engage in institutional reflection and strategic planning from a scholarly perspective. In the mid-1990s, the synergy among these three conditions prompted PSU to broaden notions of scholarship to include, more centrally, an emphasis on teaching. This paper examines the current status of this broadened definition of scholarship within PSU's academic culture. To do so, the authors interviewed 28 faculty, staff members, and administrators and analyzed documents, such as the university's promotion and tenure guidelines, to understand the process and structures that promote a broader view of scholarship across campus. The analysis suggests that PSU has made progress in the use of expanded forms of scholarship to both identify and manage the intellectual assets of the institution. It also suggests that PSU is still in the process of implementation and now faces a second generation of challenges.

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