Proposed revisions to the faculty review process

Faculty Affairs Committee, Academic Dean Beth Rushing, and Clerk’s Committee are working on bringing forward the following changes to the review process. These changes were distributed to faculty and discussed at the April 20, 2016 faculty meeting.

It is our hope that we can approve some or all of these changes in time to bring them to the Academic Affairs subcommittee of the Board of Trustees at their meeting in October, 2016. No faculty will be under review by Academic Affairs in October, which means that they can focus on the criteria and procedures without connection to individual cases.

The changes are listed in brief detail below, and each section header links to a page with more information. Please feel free to comment here and on the linked pages for each section. Comments can be anonymous.

1. Changes to review schedule

Replace the current system of FAC reviews in the 2nd, 4th, and 6th year with reviews in the 3rd and 6th year, plus a post-tenure review in the 10th year prior to promotion to full. Prior to tenure, in the 2nd, 4th, and 5th years, faculty members will undergo less formal developmental reviews  conducted by Faculty Development. The substance of these reviews would only be shared with the faculty member under review.

2. Parental delays to tenure clock

 The tenure clock automatically pauses if a faculty member’s family adds children. Faculty members may indicate that they wish NOT to pause the clock.

3. Updated criteria for reviews

Criteria for three of the four review areas (growth as a scholar or creative artist, advising, service to the community), which have not been updated in many, many years, would be changed to align mostly with FEP proposals. The standards for teaching excellence were already approved by the faculty and the Board.

The three new areas are below. Click the links to see the standards.

4. Standards for promotion to associate are the same as standards for awarding tenure

Promotion to associate rank would normally accompany a positive 6th-year tenure review, although FAC would retain the option to recommend tenure without promotion. Reviews for tenure and promotion would take place at the same time, with a single portfolio.

Some faculty suggested that we simply link promotion to associate and tenure in all cases and not keep the provision that we could award tenure without promotion.

5. Process and standards for promotion

 Faculty would nominate themselves for promotion rather than requiring a colleague to do so. Standards for promotion to associate and full ranks (and also library ranks), currently addressed in only limited detail in the handbook, would be clarified, mostly following FEP guidelines.

6. Including bias training for Faculty Affairs Committee and Faculty Development reviewers

Faculty involved in the review process should receive training about sources of bias (including race and gender) in faculty evaluation and in course evaluations. This was part of the FEP proposals and was proposed as an additional revision at the meeting on April 20th.


Document library

FEP Proposals Part_1 Part_2 (November 2008)

Draft handbook changes as track changes (April 2016)

Draft handbook changes split by section (April 2016)

Dave’s slides on history of faculty review discussions (April 2016)  View  Download

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