Category: Professional Posters
Purpose: To survey United States (U.S.) pharmacy faculty and compare current attitudes regarding work-life balance and career satisfaction with results from a similar survey conducted in 2012. The previous study found pharmacy faculty members to have relatively high levels of job satisfaction but relatively low levels of work-life balance. The 2012 survey also found work-life balance to be significantly related to intention to remain in academia.
Methods: A Web-based survey was administered via Qualtrics to members of the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP). Survey items included demographics (i.e., gender, age, marital status and ethnicity), type of college (public vs. private), department, academic rank and years in academia. In addition, the validated perceived stress score (PSS) was used to assess stress. Questions related to faculty work-life balance, career satisfaction, lifestyle and stress-coping mechanisms were also queried. An initial invitation to participate in the survey was sent in June 2018, followed by three email reminders to non-responders until the survey closed in November 2018. The 46-item questionnaire took approximately 15 minutes to complete and participants who completed the survey were offered a chance to enter a random drawing for one of three $50 gift-cards. Pharmacy faculty within the U.S. who were members of AACP and had a valid email address and internet access were eligible to participate in the study. The previous study conducted in 2012 utilized a similar methodology and format. Statistical comparisons between study years 2012 and 2018 were made using Student t-tests, Chi-square or Fischer’s exact tests, as appropriate, using SAS V9.2. The study received Touro University California IRB approval.
Results: Of the 5,773 AACP members invited to participate, 1,205 initiated or started the survey with 1,090 completing the survey in its entirety for an overall response rate of 18.9%. The 2012 survey had a similar sample size and response rate (sample size=811, response rate=16.9%). Among the 1,090 respondents in the 2018 survey, 63.7% were female, 63.0% were aged 30-49 years and 79.2% were white. Institutional type (public vs. private) and length of time in academia ( < 9 years or > 10 years) were nearly evenly split, with 48.7% reporting being employed by a private school and 52.1% reported being in academia for 9 years or less. In comparison to the 2012 sample, there were significantly more females (63.7% vs. 57.1%, p<0.01), fewer assistant professors (40.7% vs. 46.0%, p<0.01), more associate professors (34.2% vs. 27.5%, p<0.01), and a greater percentage of pharmacy practice professors (71.4% vs 66.2%, p<0.01) in the 2018 sample. The mean PSS was also significantly higher in 2018 (16.0 ± 6.6 vs. 13.5 ± 6.7, p<0.01) relative to 2012. Other measured demographic (e.g., marital status, number of children), and institutional variables (e.g., full professor, department or committee chair) were relatively similar between 2012 and 2018.
Conclusion: The makeup of educators has evolved to comprise more female and associate professors working within a pharmacy practice department. Noteworthy is the significant increase in self-reported stress. The implications of this are unknown but suggest that while academia is maturing and changing to reflect the current pharmacy workforce there has been a marked increase in stress. Limitations of the study include broader limitations of survey research (recall bias and response rates). Findings may aid administrators with plans to recruit and retain faculty. Stress may be a burgeoning concern, especially as roles continue to change rapidly within the academic workplace.