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Criteria for Promotion and Tenure

 

VI. CRITERIA FOR PROMOTION AND TENURE

The University expects faculty members will achieve distinction in teaching (which includes most extension activities) and scholarship (usually through research) and provide exemplary service as collegial and constructive members of the University and professional Community. The relative emphasis to be expected for these areas is determined by the position description.

The following sections are meant to clarify the application of the University standards to the promotion and tenure process in the Department of Botany and Plant Pathology.

A. Identification of Candidates for Promotion and/or Tenure

1. The expected process is for individual faculty members to take the initiative to put their own name into consideration; this usually involves consultation with the mentoring team and Department Chairperson.

2. The Department P&T Committee may initiate the process.

3. The Department Chairperson may put a candidate forward for consideration.

4. Only Assistant Professors in their 6th year will be automatically considered for promotion and tenure.

B. Evaluation of Professorial Candidates for Promotion and/or Tenure

General Expectations: The Department expects the candidate to be creative in his or her position, to produce a body of significant, high quality work, to show initiative in developing programs and disseminating results, and thereby to gain the positive recognition of others in the profession and among users of their services. Contributions are expected in all areas of academic endeavor. A positive recommendation for promotion or tenure will be based on the candidate's past record and future potential as an effective member of the academic community.

Departmental P&T Committee evaluation of Teaching will be based on:

1. Documentation in the CV, including list of courses taught by term, a summary of the standardized "Student Evaluation of Teaching" forms and list of teaching honors (See sample CV).

2. Reports of Peer Teaching Review Teams.

3. Written comments and surveys solicited from former students and Graduate Teaching Assistants.

4. The candidate's statement of teaching goals and accomplishments.

5. Written and oral reviews of the teaching portion of the candidate's dossier by a Student Teaching Evaluation Committee and a Peer Teaching Review Committee.

6. Other material as relevant to the case.

Departmental P&T Committee evaluation of Advising will be based on:

1. Documentation in the CV, including the number of undergraduates advised (if any) by year and program, and a list of graduate students advised, including year of degree and current position.

2. The candidate's statement of advising goals.

3. Solicited letters of evaluation from current and former graduate students, post-doctoral scholars, and from undergraduate advisees.

Departmental P&T Committee evaluation of Scholarship will be based on:

1. Documentation in the CV, including lists of publications, grants and other research support, other research communications (seminars, workshops, symposia, etc.), and honors for scholarship (see sample CV).

2. Published manuscripts and manuscripts in press since the last promotion. The candidate should identify the five publications he or she regards as the most significant since the last promotion.

3. Candidate's statement of research or scholarship goals and accomplishments.

4. Solicited external peer letters of evaluation.

5. Evaluation of other assigned duties will be conducted as appropriate, based on the position description.

Departmental P&T Committee evaluation of Service will be based on:

1. Documentation in the CV of candidate's collegial and constructive service to the Department, College, University and his or her profession (see sample CV).

2. Solicited external letters of evaluation, as appropriate. 

C. Process for Evaluation of Teaching and Advising

Teaching and advising are important parts of most faculty position descriptions and their evaluation is an important component of most P&T evaluations. Teaching is an integral part of most Extension appointments, and Extension teaching will be evaluated in a manner parallel to the procedures described here. Teaching and advising effectiveness will be reviewed and evaluated by a Student Teaching Evaluation Committee and by a Peer Teaching Review Committee. The Department solicits written comments from a sample of former students. The comments must be signed, and they are available to the candidate, but only upon specific request.

Student Teaching Evaluation Committee: according to the OSU Promotion and Tenure Guidelines, students shall participate in the review and assessment of the teaching portion of the dossier. The Department Chairperson shall appoint a Student Teaching Evaluation Committee comprised of both graduate and undergraduate students to evaluate those portions of the candidate’s dossier related to teaching. University guidelines must be followed for the composition of the Student Committee and their duties. The Committee will evaluate the summaries of the standardized “Student Evaluation of Teaching” forms, outcome surveys of former students, comments from Graduate Teaching Assistants supervised, the candidate’s statement of teaching philosophy, and teaching materials related to classes taught.  The Student Committee summarizes its evaluation in a written letter to the Dean and participates in the discussion of the Department P&T Committee relevant to the teaching activities of the candidate. The letter becomes part of the dossier.

Peer Teaching Review Committee:

The P&T Executive Committee appoints the Peer Teaching Review Committee which includes two department faculty members and a faculty member from outside the department.  The Peer Teaching Review Committee is responsible for evaluating the teaching and advising portions of the dossier.  The teaching review is based on numerical summaries of “Student Evaluation of Teaching” scores, written comments solicited from former students, review of course syllabi and other materials provided by the candidate, the letters summarizing the reports of the Peer Teaching Review Teams, and the candidate’s statement of teaching philosophy.  Evaluation of advising is based on, letters solicited from current and former graduate students, post-doctoral scholars, and undergraduate advisees, and the statement of advising philosophy.

The Peer Teaching Review Committee summarizes its evaluation in a written letter to the Dean and participates in the discussion of the Department P&T Committee relevant to the teaching and advising activities of the candidate.  The letter becomes part of the dossier.

D. Evaluation of Faculty Research Assistants for Promotion to Senior Faculty Research Assistants

A FRA may be promoted to Senior FRA I and then Senior FRA II in recognition of distinguished professional service. Promotion, however, is not automatic, nor is it granted for years of service alone.  Because Senior FRAs are not granted tenure, employment is always contingent on performance and availability of funds.

Oregon State University’s minimal criteria for promotion of FRAs to Senior FRA I and II are stated in the OSU Guidelines for Promotion and Tenure.  The University guidelines state those candidates for promotion to Senior FRA I must have:

1. Completed at least 4 years of service.

2. A graduate degree appropriate to the field in which the research activities are performed or comparable educational or professional experience.

3. Demonstrated a high level of competence, achievement, and potential in research or serve effectively in a position requiring high individual responsibility or special professional expertise.

4. Demonstrated a high degree of initiative in research and leadership among research colleagues in the Department, as documented in authorship, management responsibilities, and creative approaches to research.

Promotion to the rank of Senior Faculty Research Assistant II may be considered after 4 years of full time service at the rank of Senior Faculty Research Assistant I. The candidate must have a sustained record of exceptional achievement and evidence of professional growth and innovation in assigned tasks.

Senior Faculty Research Assistants I and II are eligible for extended fixed term contracts.

To be promoted to Senior FRA II, a candidate must have met these criteria (criteria were developed by BPP to be consistent with OSU criteria for other categories and ranks of faculty):

  1. Demonstrated an exceptional level of competence and achievement in research, or served exceptionally in a position requiring high individual responsibility or special professional expertise.
  2. Demonstrated an exceptional degree of initiative in research and leadership among research colleagues in the department, the university, and/or outside the university as documented in authorship, management responsibilities, and creative approaches to research.

Within the Department of Botany & Plant Pathology, the following additional criteria and considerations apply to candidates for promotion to Senior FRA I and II:

1. Candidates for promotion to Senior FRA I and II must have the support of the supervising faculty member.

2. FRAs who do not hold a graduate degree but hold a Bachelor's degree in an appropriate field may be considered for promotion to Senior FRA I after 6 years of service. The issue of comparable educational or professional experience must be clearly addressed by the FRA and the supervising faculty member in the candidate's dossier.

3. FRAs who have not yet met the required years of service (4 or 6 years within BPP), but have previous experience and have demonstrated expertise and achievement within their field sufficient to warrant promotion may be considered on an individual basis. However, in such cases, the FRA must have been employed within the Department for at least 2 years by September 15 of the year of review.

4. The promotion time-line is at the discretion of the supervising faculty member and is dependent upon both the nature of a position and the contributions made by the FRA. Some positions may not have the latitude to allow incumbents to demonstrate the professionalism and superior achievement necessary for promotion to Senior FRA I. Positions without possibility of promotion should be so identified by the supervisor.

5. The supervising faculty member is responsible for careful counsel of the FRA concerning promotion and for writing a supportive letter for the promotion dossier.

6. The candidate's file will be evaluated by the Department's Senior FRAs, who will prepare a letter of evaluation addressed to Chair of the P&T Executive Committee. This letter becomes part of the dossier.

7. The Senior FRA who serves on the Mentoring Team will be present for discussion of the candidate's file with the P & T Committee.

FRAs who wish to be considered for promotion should notify their supervisor and the P&T Executive Committee before the end of Spring term.

E. Evaluation of Instructors for Promotion to Senior Instructor

OSU guidelines state that promotion from the rank of Instructor to Senior Instructor I may be considered after four years of full-time service, calculated from the hire date to December 31 of the calendar year prior to the promotion decision (promotion decisions are made in June of the following year). For part-time instructors at 0.50 FTE or greater, promotion to Senior Instructor I may be considered after accumulating the equivalent of four years of full-time service in relation to the type of appointment (9 or 12-month). For fixed-term instructors with extended prior service, promotion to the rank of Senior Instructor I cannot be made effective before the end of the third year of full-time service or the accumulation of its equivalent for part-time instructors at 0.50 FTE or greater.

To be promoted, a candidate must:

  1. Have a graduate degree appropriate to the assigned duties, or comparable educational or professional experience.
  2. Have special skills or experience needed in the unit.
  3. Have an exceptional record of achievement in the assigned duties.

Promotion to the rank of Senior Instructor II may be considered after four years of full-time service at the rank of Senior Instructor I or the accumulation of its equivalent for part-time Senior Instructor I at 0.50 FTE or greater. To be promoted, a candidate must have a sustained record of exceptional achievement and evidence of professional growth and innovation in assigned duties. Senior Instructors I and Senior Instructors II are eligible for extended fixed-term contracts. The criteria for Teaching, Advising, and Other Assignments in this document can provide guidelines for documenting and evaluating the level of achievement. Promotions cannot be made from non-professorial to professorial ranks.

To be promoted to Senior Instructor II, a candidate must have met these criteria (criteria were developed by BPP to be consistent with OSU criteria for other categories and ranks of faculty):

  1. Demonstrated a sustained record of exceptional achievement in the assigned duties.
  2. Shown evidence of exceptional professional growth and innovation in assigned duties.

Tenure-track Instructors

A tenure-track Instructor position is defined by teaching, advising and other assigned duties as delineated in the position description, and has a focus on a specialized assignment within an academic program. Such positions carry an expectation of scholarship as defined in the position description. Faculty in such positions are expected to demonstrate their potential for long-term contributions to the institution.

Only those instructors hired into tenure-track positions are eligible for tenure. Tenure-track instructors must hold a minimum of a Master’s degree. Promotion and tenure of tenure-track instructors shall be governed by the promotion and tenure process and guidelines. This means that a tenure-track instructor, under normal circumstances, will be considered for tenure in their sixth year of service. By the end of the sixth year, a tenure-track instructor must be granted indefinite tenure or be given a year’s timely notice that the appointment will not be renewed. Instructors in tenure-track positions who have extended prior service as fixed term instructors may have credit for prior service specified in their offer letter, but will not be eligible for tenure before they have completed three years of tenure-track status.