2.7 Promotion Policies and Procedures

The college [university] seeks to sustain and improve its academic quality by maintaining and improving the quality of the faculty. Promotion in academic rank assists in this process by encouraging, recognizing, and rewarding faculty members for excellent performance of their roles and responsibilities.

Faculty members are promoted on the basis of the fulfillment of the criteria discussed in this section, in Section 2.1.2, “Ranked Faculty: Criteria for Appointment,” and in Section 2.5, “Faculty Evaluation: Policy, Criteria, and Evidence.” The criteria in Section 2.5 are applied more rigorously as rank advances.

2.7.1 Eligibility to Apply for Promotion

Individual faculty members are eligible to apply for advancement in rank only if they expect to complete the minimum length of full-time service in current rank by the end of the academic year in which application for promotion is made. In addition, applicants for promotion to the rank of associate professor must already have tenure or must be simultaneously applying for tenure and promotion.

In rare cases, the provost, in consultation with the divisional dean and the department chair [and/or the dean of the School of Theology], may recognize extraordinary circumstances or performance by authorizing a review for promotion prior to the usual deadline.

Sabbatical leaves and leaves with pay count toward the satisfaction of years in rank needed for eligibility to apply for promotion. Leaves without pay do not count toward promotion unless the faculty member and the college [university] agree in writing to the contrary at the time the leave is granted. (For initial appointment at the rank of associate professor or professor, see Sections 2.1.2 and 2.3.6.)

2.7.2 Procedures for Promotion Review

Formal reviews of all faculty members who apply for promotion in rank are conducted by the Rank and Tenure Committee. Deadlines

The responsibility for applying for promotion in rank rests with the individual faculty member. The Rank and Tenure Committee issues specific deadlines and procedures for implementing the Faculty Handbook provisions.

  1. A faculty member applying for promotion in rank must inform the Rank and Tenure Committee of his or her intention to apply by the notification deadline announced by the committee.
  2. Application materials must be complete and on file in the Office of the Dean of the college no later than the application deadline announced by the committee. Simultaneous Application for Tenure and Promotion

If the candidate for promotion is simultaneously applying for tenure and promotion to the rank of associate professor, the committee will use the materials for the tenure review as the basis for its recommendation concerning promotion. Candidates should, therefore, take care in their application materials to request both tenure and promotion and to provide ample evidence for advancement in rank as well as for the granting of tenure. Promotion-review Files

The burden of proof to warrant promotion in rank rests with the individual faculty member and must be provided in the promotion file. Criteria for appointment to each rank are stipulated in Section 2.1.2. Evaluation criteria and forms of evidence are described in Section 2.5. Candidates should consult guidelines issued by the committee as they prepare their application for review.

The candidate will prepare a promotion-review file that contains:

  1. a current curriculum vitae;
  2. a self-evaluative essay that includes a reflective statement describing personal teaching philosophy, strategies and objectives;
  3. evidence of teaching effectiveness: the teaching portfolio, as described in Section 2.5.1;
  4. a current program of professional development (see Section 2.9.1) (including one or two earlier programs and a description of progress made on earlier goals);
  5. a letter of evaluation in support of promotion from the appropriate department chair(s) [and/or the dean of the School of Theology];
  6. letters of recommendation from peers familiar with the candidate’s performance, from within and/or outside the college [university]; and
  7. any other evidence that the candidate has met the various criteria necessary for the promotion being requested.

No material may be placed in the file without the faculty member’s knowledge, indicated by his or her signature or initials on the first page of each document. It is the responsibility of the faculty member to make sure that this review file is complete.

In the event that a department chair is applying for promotion, the divisional dean, in consultation with senior members of the department, will designate someone to prepare the evaluation.

The Rank and Tenure Committee solicits an evaluation of each candidate from all tenure ranked members of that person’s department(s) [and/or the School of Theology]. Such evaluations are optional for departmental colleagues.

All letters of evaluations should specifically address the degree to which the candidate meets or fails to meet the appropriate criteria in Sections 2.1.0 and 2.5. In the spirit of open dialogue, faculty members are encouraged to share their written evaluation with the candidate, but only the chair is required to do so.

At no time will the material in the review file be available to anyone other than the candidate, the Rank and Tenure Committee [the dean of the School of Theology if appropriate], the dean of the college, the divisional dean, the provost, the president, legal counsel, and the Board. Action on Promotion

In addition to the above materials in the promotion-review file, the committee also has the right to consult additional experts, either from within or outside of the college [university], for clarifications on matters of fact which might aid them in their evaluation. If additional information about the candidate’s performance is obtained, the candidate will be invited to respond.

  1. The Rank and Tenure Committee examines the evidence on light of the criteria for appointment in Section 2.1.2 and the criteria for evaluation in Section 2.5.
  2. After completion of the review, the committee will come to a decision and submit to the candidate and the provost an evaluation of the candidate and a recommendation either for or against the promotion. A copy of this evaluation, with recommendations, is also sent to the department chair [and/or the dean of the School of Theology] and the divisional dean.
  3. The provost then transmits the committee’s recommendation to the president along with the provost’s own evaluation and recommendation.
  4. The president reviews these materials and then forwards the file and the recommendations of the committee and the provost, along with the president’s own recommendation, to the Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees [Regents] for the final decision.

The provost informs the candidate of the Board’s decision as soon as possible. A copy of the formal notification is also sent to the department chair [and/or the dean of the School of Theology] and the divisional dean.

2 .7.2.5 Date of Actual Change in Rank

Promotion in rank takes effect with the beginning of the next contract period.