UNH Faculty Senate

Motion on clear, written promotion and tenure standards


on clear, written promotion and tenure standards


1.  Motion presenter:   Jim Connell

2.  Date of Faculty Senate discussion:   4/29/2013

3.  Rationale:  Different disciplines will naturally have different promotion and tenure standards.  All units, however, should discuss the issues and recommendations and then incorporate the unit's decisions into its standards.  The main promotion standards issues include the following.  (1) There should be written standards documents, including for promotion to the rank of full professor.  The documents should be reviewed periodically and made available to newly hired faculty and faculty eligible for promotion.  (2) Departments and units should be clear about what is meant by service, outreach, and engagement and what the expectations in these areas are.  For example, does a department expect service beyond the departmental level or university level?  How much service is expected, and does this differ for assistant and associate professors?  Is advising undergraduates and graduate students considered service or teaching?  (3) What standards are used by a unit to evaluate teaching?  If the standard course evaluations are used, what scores are expected?  If qualitative evidence from evaluation forms is used or if additional evaluations are solicited, what kinds of opinions are expected?  What does a department consider most important: qualitative evaluations, quantitative evaluations, letters solicited from former students, peer evaluations?  (4) What are the standards for research?  How does a department weigh peer-reviewed research or creative work and non-peer-reviewed research or creative work?  Is there an expectation of engaged scholarship?  Departments should discuss the definition of engaged scholarship, its relationship to "traditional" scholarship, and its relevance in each discipline.  What standards are used to evaluate interdisciplinary and collaborative activities, inside and outside UNH, and how are such activities weighted relative to other kinds of research?  If faculty have less than a normal teaching load, is more scholarship expected?  Are faculty expected to obtain external funding to support research?  (5) What standards are used for the promotion of research and clinical faculty?  This should include not only standards for research or clinical practice but, if the faculty member also teaches or directs undergraduates or graduate students, that activity should also be evaluated according to clear standards.  (6) Because UNH has been hiring ever more non­tenure-track lecturers and now is promoting some within that kind of position, the committee feels it is important that standards be developed for that too.

4.  Motion:  To continue the ad-hoc Promotion and Tenure Standards Oversight Committee into the next academic year and to specify that members who cannot continue should be replaced promptly by appointment by the Faculty Senate’s Agenda Committee.  The charge of the ad-hoc committee will continue into the next academic year.  Departments and units, which have not yet acted, should discuss the issues and make necessary adjustments in their standards. These departments and units should aim to schedule the discussions early next fall.  College and unit administrators should work with the committee and produce their own responses and also should encourage departments to do so. Faculty senators are urged to step forward and encourage this work as well.

5.  Senate action:  passed with all ayes except for two nays

6.  Senate chair’s signature:  Willem deVries

Forwarded to:  President Mark Huddleston, on 5-7-2013

Forwarded to:  Provost John Aber, on 5-7-2013

Forwarded to:  Lisa MacFarlane, Senior Vice Provost for Academic Affairs, on 5-7-2013

Forwarded to:  all college deans, on 5-7-2013

Forwarded to:  all department chairs, on 5-7-2013


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