Faculty Survey Results – Q1 2024

TL;DR: A survey was conducted among the Training Team Faculty members to gain insights into their experiences and perspectives. Main takeaways are to continue improving documentation, collaboration, and communication. Improvements to Faculty onboarding are also suggested.

As we established last year, a regular check in with all Faculty members was conducted again this year to gain insight into their experiences and perspectives on the Faculty program. This also included asking their estimated amount of contribution hours they could dedicate to Faculty tasks, so we could determine if there is a need to train new Faculty members.

Faculty check-ins were accomplished by sharing a check-in survey with Faculty members. This post serves to share the findings and insight from the survey.

Training Team Faculty at a glance (as of 30 January, 2024):

  • Number of Faculty members: 37
  • Number of completed surveys: 27

Faculty roles:

  • 13 Administrators
  • 16 Content Creators
  • 13 Editors
  • 15 Subject Matter Experts (SMEs)
  • 10 Translation Coordinators

*Note: Some Faculty members fulfill more than one role on the team, which is why the numbers add up to more than the total number of Faculty members.

Let’s explore what our Faculty members had to share. Please read on for more details!

Contribution Time

Question: How many hours per month do you estimate that you contributed to the Training Team in 2023?

An average of 33 hours per month in 2023 was estimated among Faculty members. Note that this includes 4 full time sponsored volunteers; self-sponsored and part time sponsored volunteers average 15 hours per month. Breaking down the contribution time into 3 different buckets:

  • 12 people are available up to 10 hours/month (roughly <2 hours/week)
  • 8 are available 11–119 hours a month
  • 4 are available more than 120 hours/month (roughly >30 hours/week)

Question: How many hours per month do you think you can contribute in 2024?

An average of 27 hours per month was estimated among Faculty members for 2024. This breaks down to:

  • 1 person is not available in 2024
  • 15 people are available up to 10 hours/month (roughly <2 hours/week)
  • 6 are available 11–119 hours a month
  • 3 are available more than 120 hours/month (roughly >30 hours/week)

This is a slight drop, but most respondents are able to maintain the same amount of contribution time as the previous year.

A huge thanks to all the volunteers that contribute to the Training team! 

Faculty Documentation

Question: Was/is the Faculty documentation clear enough for you to get started in your role?

Answers: Yes – 26, No – 1

There were some positive comments on the improvements in documentation over the past year, so the team should definitely continue to create and update handbook pages.

There was also a comment that it takes a lot of effort for someone that does not read English fluently to read the handbook, despite it being a goldmine of information.

Faculty Expectations

Question: If continuing your work with the Faculty this year, please review the Expectations for Active Faculty Members. Do you agree to meet these expectations in 2024?

Answers: Yes – 25, No – 2

The two respondents answering “No” have decreased bandwidth in 2024. Some factors affecting contributors from meeting the Faculty expectations include:

  • Participating on the organizing team for flagship WordCamps
  • Language barriers
  • General availability/bandwidth concerns.

WordPress Project Contribution

Question: Which other WordPress Make teams do you contribute to?

The largest number of Faculty members (14) also contribute to the Community team. The CoreCore Core is the set of software required to run WordPress. The Core Development Team builds WordPress., Photos, Polyglots, Documentation,TV, Marketing, Support, and Test teams follow as the most popular Make teams for Faculty members to contribute to. 

Question: How many hours total do you contribute to those other teams each month?

An average of 10.5 contribution hours per month to other teams was estimated among Faculty members.

Along with the answers indicating the hours spent contributing to the Training Team, this leads to the conclusion that most Faculty members focus most of their contribution time on the Training Team.

Training Team Contributions

Question: In which ways have you contributed to the Training Team in 2023?

The largest number of Faculty members (16) participated in Faculty meeting threads which is up from 2022. It has been great to see more Faculty engagement during Team meetings, likely due to specific Faculty check-in threads. Other top contributions included:

  • Reviewed or edited content (15)
  • Created or contributed to an Online Workshop (14)
  • Triage in GitHubGitHub GitHub is a website that offers online implementation of git repositories that can easily be shared, copied and modified by other developers. Public repositories are free to host, private repositories require a paid subscription. GitHub introduced the concept of the ‘pull request’ where code changes done in branches by contributors can be reviewed and discussed before being merged be the repository owner. https://github.com/ (13)
  • Created or contributed to a tutorial (12)
  • Translated Learn WordPress content (12)

Lowest numbers of contributions included:

  • Hosted a Training Team meeting (4)
  • Faculty application vetting (4)
  • Welcome wrangler (5)
  • Online Workshop or Tutorial application vetting (5)
  • Created or contributed to a Lesson Plan (5)
  • Created or contributed to a Course (5)

Other contributions were mentioned, such as working on onboarding new contributors and Faculty members, drafting handbook pages, leading contributor tables, and flagging important items for upcoming releases.

It is apparent from these responses that there are fewer faculty members working on Administrator tasks.

Question: ​​In which ways do you think you will contribute to the Training Team for the rest of 2024?

The responses to this question varied slightly from their 2023 contributions. The largest number of Faculty members (16) answered “Review or edit content”. Other top answers included:

  • Participate in Faculty meeting threads (14)
  • Triage in GitHub (14)
  • Create or contribute to an Online Workshop (13)
  • Co-host an Online Workshop (12)
  • Create or contribute to a Tutorial (12)

Flagging important items to address for each upcoming release was also mentioned.

Faculty members largely expect to continue in 2024 with the same types of contributions they did in 2023.

Question: Estimate when is the last time you have:

  • Attended a Training Team meeting
  • Posted or commented on the Training Team blog
  • Worked on an issue on the Learn WordPress GitHub repo

The answers to this question revealed that most respondents participated in these contributions within the last month. However, posting or commenting on the Training Team blog is quite low in comparison to the other two contributions.

Impact of Contribution

Question: As a Faculty member, where do you feel your contribution is most impactful?

The general trends in the responses show that Faculty members feel most impactful when they are:

  • Working on Administrator tasks
  • Localization and translation
  • Onboarding
  • Mentoring, guidance, and empowerment of other contributors
  • Content creation and review
  • Technical and development contributions
  • Contributions focused on accessibilityAccessibility Accessibility (commonly shortened to a11y) refers to the design of products, devices, services, or environments for people with disabilities. The concept of accessible design ensures both “direct access” (i.e. unassisted) and “indirect access” meaning compatibility with a person’s assistive technology (for example, computer screen readers). (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Accessibility) efforts

Looking back at 2022, there were some responses that expressed uncertainty about their impact. There were no responses for 2023 that expressed uncertainty, which leads us to conclude that there is more clarity surrounding Faculty roles. However, there were a couple of folks that opted to not answer this question.

Team Reps

Question: What can the Training Team Reps do to better support your work?

Overall, respondents feel like the Training Team Reps have been doing a great job supporting Faculty members, providing clear direction and answering questions as they come up. Folks expressed that Team Reps should keep up the excellent support and assistance that they are already providing.

Suggestions for Team Reps include:

  • Providing feedback and constructive suggestions to improve work.
  • Pay attention to release roadmaps and organize efforts around high priority work to complete/update.
  • Help recruit and onboard more folks to do the work.
  • More guidance as folks get started in their roles.
  • Patience and understanding, especially when outside commitments arise.


Question: Are there any blockers in your contributions to the Training Team?

While many respondents report no or uncertain blockers in their contributions, the trends in blockers to Faculty members include:

  • Language barriers
  • Time/bandwidth constraints
  • Limited resources, need for more teammates
  • GitHub overwhelm
  • Lack of sponsorship

Overall, a majority did not report any significant blockers in their contributions. For those who did, time constraints and external commitments were the primary factors. Most folks expressed optimism that some of these challenges can be addressed over time.

Improving the Faculty Program

Question: Do you have any suggestions on how we could improve the Faculty program?

Some suggestions from Faculty members to improve upon the program include:

  • Clarity on the future vision for the program
  • Continue asking for feedback and the surveys
  • Continue improving on documentation/handbook
  • Increase interactions and coordination, perhaps with more regular check-ins and/or meetings
  • Expand Faculty onboarding to include an onboarding period with additional training

Continued improvements in communication, documentation, and the onboarding process are the main themes in the suggestions for improvement. In addition, many positive sentiments were expressed regarding the ongoing progress of the program.

Do you have more suggestions for improvements for the Faculty program? Please share in the comments.

#faculty-program, #faculty-survey