Professor is the rank title for the most senior faculty. Because the term professor can be confusing to others and may not convey their senior status, some institutions refer to professors as full professors, to indicate that they have advanced beyond the ranks of assistant and associate professor. Like all other professors, the professor participates in the three sets of duties that come with a career in academia: teaching, research, and service. All professors do more than teach classes; they also must conduct scholarly work, specifically, present and publish their work in peer reviewed conferences and journals. The third set of duties that come with the job of being a professor is service. Service duties entail all of the administrative work that keeps a college or university running. Service includes sitting on committees ranging from creating and evaluating curricula to overseeing workplace safety.
As senior members of the university, professors take on leadership roles, such as chairing departments and committees. Given that they have earned tenure and cannot be dismissed without due cause, associate professors conduct the service tasks that junior faculty members cannot, such as evaluating other professors for tenure and promotion.