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Policy Name: Faculty Evaluation, Promotion and Tenure
Policy No: 5.03
Date Passed: 03/06/1991
Last Reviewed: 08/25/2006
Review Next: Policy Expired on August 31, 2008

Faculty Evaluation, Promotion and Tenure

Faculty Evaluation

Evaluation: Faculty evaluation at the Texas Woman's University is designed to improve teaching, to enhance professional competencies, to provide a planning mechanism for faculty development, and/or delineate areas for faculty improvement which may lead to merit increases in salaries. In all, these goals are focused on improving the educational experience of students.

To these ends and toward improvement of the instructional process, all faculty members at Texas Woman's University shall participate in an annual faculty evaluation. The faculty evaluation should include student, self, peer, and administrative evaluations in the areas of teaching, scholarly activities, and service to the University, the community, and the professions.

The first purpose of faculty evaluation is to provide a basis for professional growth and development. Professional growth plans serve as the framework for this evaluation of past endeavors and for the refocusing on future goals and objectives.

A second purpose of faculty evaluation is to recognize professional performance and to reward those endeavors with appropriate merit increases in salaries provided funds are available.

A third purpose of faculty evaluation is to provide a structure for systematically measuring progress toward change in academic rank and to substantiate consideration for tenure.

The faculty in each department or similar administrative unit (hereafter referred to as "component") at Texas Woman's University shall adopt a performance evaluation plan reflecting the distinctive missions of the component within the larger mission of the total University. These plans should also include the unique qualifications and competencies of faculties in each component. The plans should be forwarded to the Faculty Evaluation and Development Committee of the University for review and approval.

Further, the criteria used by the departments for faculty evaluations should relate to merit salary increases, faculty professional growth plans, and promotion and tenure recommendations. These criteria are delineated in the following subsections. Specific criteria for evaluation of faculty performance will be established in each individual component.

Faculty Promotion

Promotion: Promotion to a higher professional rank is the expression of achievement and expectation of continued excellence in performance. Promotion shall be recommended on the basis of proven professional ability and demonstrated potential according to component criteria of excellence in teaching, scholarship, and service.

Initiation of Promotion: Each component will prepare a description of the criteria for promotion, and this description must be reviewed and approved by the Faculty Evaluation and Development Committee of the University.

The Peer Review Committee (PRC) shall review and recommend candidates for promotion. The request for promotion may be initiated by the academic component head or by the individual faculty member. To initiate the request for promotion, the candidate shall prepare a file for the component's Peer Review Committee according to the guidelines established by each component. The guidelines should include suggestions of the kinds of documentation that the candidate must provide.

The faculty member should provide appropriate materials to demonstrate that she/he has met the criteria established by her/his component and the University.

Timing: Promotion recommendations shall be considered annually. Schedules will be prepared and announced by the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs.

Evaluation Procedures: Each academic component shall establish a Peer Review Committee (PRC).  Each academic component shall make available for faculty members, and have on file with the Faculty Evaluation and Development Committee of the University, criteria used in making recommendations for promotion.

General Guidelines

Promotion from Instructor to Assistant Professor: The candidate must have a terminal degree or its equivalent appropriate to the discipline, preferably the doctorate, as determined by the component, together with other professional qualifications and accomplishments, including teaching competence in the candidate's field of academic endeavor.  The quality of the candidate's activities should evidence enough professional growth and contributions to the stature of the University to warrant promotion to Assistant Professor.

Promotion from Assistant Professor to Associate Professor: Normally, the candidate shall possess the appropriate terminal degrees for the profession. In special cases, the appropriate terminal degree requirement will be waived for a candidate of sufficient stature in the field as attested to by regional and national recognition.  Normally, the candidate will have served full-time a minimum of six years at the rank of Assistant Professor and have completed two years at Texas Woman's University. The candidate's professional activities should be significant enough to warrant promotion to Associate Professor.

Promotion from Associate Professor to Professor: The candidate's professional accomplishments shall be of such high quality as to deserve the awarding of this highest rank.  Normally, the candidate will possess the appropriate terminal degrees in the field. In special cases, the appropriate terminal degree requirement will be waived for a candidate of sufficient stature in the field as attested to by regional and national recognition.  Normally, the candidate will have served full-time at least four years at Texas Woman's University at the rank of Associate Professor and completed six years in the profession at the college or university level as Associate Professor.  There must be evidence of continuing high-quality professional performance with emphasis upon teaching, scholarship, and service as mutually supportive activities. It is also understood that when promotion is awarded there is an expectation for continued high-quality performance.

Normally, time spent on paid or unpaid leave of absence shall not be counted toward time in rank period for promotion. A copy of the letter authorizing a leave shall be included in the faculty member's personnel file.

Tenure Policies

Academic tenure is defined as the employment condition under which faculty appointments, after successful completion of a probationary period, are continued, subject to dismissal for adequate cause with due process, until retirement or mental or physical disability. Tenure shall be held in the University with appointment in an academic component. TWU seeks to uphold the U.S. Constitution and TWU Faculty Handbook and to utilize many of the principles set forth in the American Association of University Professors' 1940 Statement of Principles on Academic Freedom and Tenure with 1970 Interpretive Comments (http://www.aaup.org/AAUP/pubsres/policydocs/1940statement.htm).

The Board of Regents of the Texas Woman's University, upon the recommendation of the Chancellor and President, will grant tenure to eligible full-time faculty members who have been reviewed and recommended according to the policies set out below.

Eligibility: A full-time faculty member is a person employed full-time for teaching and/or academic administration who holds the rank of assistant, associate, or full professor.

An academic administrator who holds rank in an academic component will be evaluated as a candidate for tenure by the component. If a candidate for administrative appointment is approved by the academic component reviewing for tenure, immediate tenure may be granted.

Persons holding adjunct, interim, emeritus, visiting, and/or part-time appointments; lecturers; research ranks; clinical ranks; artists-in-residence; writers-in-residence; designers-in-residence; or other professionals-in-residence do not earn credit toward tenure.

A contract must indicate whether an appointment is on a tenure track or a non-tenure track position.

The policies concerning the granting of tenure, as well as all other aspects of policies regarding non-reappointment and resignation, apply only to full-time faculty members in service of the University.

The probationary appointment (tenure track) is that period of professional service during which a faculty member does not hold tenure and is subject to evaluation of her/his professional qualifications.

Recommendations for non-reappointment of tenure track faculty during the probationary period are governed by the following policy: notice of termination of the appointment for the following academic year must be given in writing not later than March 1 of the first full year of the probationary service and not later than December 15 of the second consecutive academic year of probationary service. For the tenure track faculty member with two or more academic years of employment at Texas Woman's University, notice of intention to give a terminal contract must occur by August 1 preceding the faculty member's last academic year of service.

The probationary period at Texas Woman's University may not exceed seven years. By the end of the six-year period, the faculty member is awarded tenure or a one-year terminal contract.

The probationary period may be reduced to four years when a faculty member is employed by TWU after probationary service on faculties of other institutions of higher learning provided this agreement is made at the time of the initial appointment.

Time spent on a paid or unpaid leave of absence shall not be counted toward the probationary period of service unless the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs and the faculty member agree at the time the leave is granted that the purpose of the leave is such that it shall count in the probationary period. A copy of the letter granting the leave shall be included in the faculty member's personnel file.

The probationary period may be waived when a distinguished faculty member, who is tenured at another university, is employed by Texas Woman's University subject to the approval of the Peer Review Committee of the academic component.

Criteria for Tenure: The granting of tenure status is a major decision and should not be considered as automatic once the faculty member enters the probationary period. A decision not to award tenure does not necessarily reflect on the competencies or service of probationary faculty members. The statements below are the primary criteria considered important at Texas Woman's University in making a tenure recommendation. Exceptions to these criteria, while possible, will be rare.

The Peer Review Committee of the academic component is responsible for tenure recommendations. Specific qualifications, such as terminal degree or an equivalent qualification in the discipline, are to be determined by the appropriate academic component and will be considered together with other professional qualifications and accomplishments, including teaching competence, in the candidate's field of academic endeavor.

There must be evidence of continuing high-quality professional performance during the probationary period with emphasis upon teaching, scholarship, and service as mutually supportive activities. It is also understood that when tenure is awarded, there is an expectation for continued high-quality performance.

Limitations to Continued Tenure: When tenure has been granted a faculty member, that person shall remain in the continuing employment of the University unless the faculty member meets one of the following conditions: termination for cause with due process; voluntary retirement or an appointment on a modified retirement plan; resignation; termination as a result of bona fide financial exigency or program termination; inability to fulfill the terms and conditions of the appointment due to a physical or mental incapacity.

Termination of a Tenured Faculty Member as a Result of Bona Fide Financial Exigency or Program Termination: A tenured faculty member affected by one of the aforementioned conditions necessitating a reduction in staff shall be given the opportunity for reappointment in a related area under the following conditions: the faculty member must be qualified professionally to serve in such area and such position must be available; or, any tenured faculty member appointed to a related area under these circumstances has the right of reappointment to the previous position if it is subsequently reestablished within five years.

Promotion/Tenure Review Procedures Effective for  2006-2007 and 2007-2008 Academic Years

Submission and Review Process: The submission of a candidate’s portfolio will follow the university calendar of promotion and tenure review. The candidate’s portfolio will be closed at the time of submission and no new materials may be added to the main body of the portfolio, with the exception of the following. The candidate may submit to the chair of the PRC, for placement in the portfolio, relevant “update” information that verifies a change in status of achievements referenced in the portfolio. For example, if a faculty member receives notification that one of the publications or grants listed as “in review” or “proposed” has been accepted for publication or funding, the candidate may submit documentation to this effect.

At any level during the review process, the candidate may submit a statement correcting factual errors in the report within seven days of receiving the report. The statement, which may not exceed one page, is forwarded to the next level as a permanent part of the portfolio. This action will not change the evaluation timelines.

Access to the portfolio will be limited to the appropriate personnel at each review level (PRC, University Promotion and Tenure Committee, administrators, and staff appropriate to the level of review).

Component Peer Review Committee (PRC):The purpose of the PRC is to review a candidate's portfolio and make a recommendation based on the university and component criteria for promotion and tenure.

Each academic component shall have a PRC composed of three faculty members; all members of the PRC must be tenured. One member shall be elected the chairperson.

Faculty members holding line administrative appointments are excluded from PRC service. If the component does not have three tenured faculty members, tenured faculty members from other components must be elected to serve on the component PRC. Faculty members of the PRC shall be elected by component faculty members and serve for three-year staggered terms. A faculty member shall not serve as a PRC member when she/he is being reviewed for promotion.  In the case of joint appointments, the faculty member should be evaluated in the component where major time is spent; if time is spent equally, the faculty member may choose the component.

The PRC shall submit its final report, including rationale for its recommendations, and minority reports regarding promotions and tenure to the component administrator. Any committee member may submit a minority report. A minority report is defined as a written statement indicating reasons for dissenting from a majority position. A copy of the final report, including all minority reports, will go to the candidate.

Component Administrator Review: The component chair or appropriate administrator shall review the recommendations and reports of the PRC and prepare a final report of her/his recommendations for promotion and/or tenure, including rationale, to accompany the candidate's portfolio for submission to the Dean. A copy of the report will go to the candidate and the chair of the PRC.

College Dean Review: The dean shall review the recommendations from the PRC and the component administrator and prepare a final report of her/his recommendations for promotion and/or tenure, with rationale, to accompany the candidate’s portfolio for submission to the University Promotion and Tenure Committee. A copy of the report will go to the candidate, the chair of the PRC, and the component administrator.

University Promotion and Tenure Committee Review: The purpose of the committee is to review candidates’ portfolios and make recommendations for tenure and/or promotion. To this end, the committee will ensure that: 1. consistent standards for promotion and tenure exist across the university, 2. appropriate procedures were followed at all levels prior to the University Promotion and Tenure Committee review; and, 3. component and university promotion and tenure criteria have been met by each candidate.

The University Promotion and Tenure Committee will be composed of eleven voting members. Representation will be as follows:

College

Number of Representatives

Arts and Sciences

4

Professional Education

2

Health Sciences

3

Nursing

2

Total

11

All faculty members elected to serve on the University Promotion and Tenure Committee must be full-time tenured faculty members with a minimum of two years' experience at TWU. At least one member from a college shall be a Professor. Committee members will be elected for staggered 3-year terms and may serve on more than two consecutive terms.

Elected members may not serve during the year when they are a candidate for promotion and/or tenure. In this circumstance, the college will elect a substitute member to serve during the academic year in which the elected member is being considered for promotion and/or tenure. The originally elected member will then serve the remainder of the elected term.

Each college will develop internal procedures to elect representatives to serve on the University Promotion and Tenure Committee. Elections may be held by mail ballot or at a meeting of all full-time college faculty, but must include the following minimum procedures. All full-time regular faculty members shall have an opportunity to nominate individuals to serve. Qualified faculty may self-nominate.  All nominees must agree to serve. Balloting must be by written, secret ballot. If the election is conducted by mail, ballots will be distributed to all full-time regular faculty in the college. Completed ballots must be placed in a sealed envelope and returned to the dean's office in a separate envelope that contains the signature of the voting faculty member on the seal of the envelope. The dean's office is responsible for counting the ballots and maintaining a separate list of faculty who voted in the election.

Election will be determined by plurality of votes. In the case of a tie vote, the election shall be determined by lot. Elections must be conducted by the last Friday in September.

The chairperson of the University Promotion and Tenure Committee is elected by the committee and shall have a minimum of one year of service on the committee. Members of a candidate's PRC shall recuse themselves from reviewing the candidates portfolio at the level of the University committee review.

The committee shall prepare a final report, including rationale for recommendations, to accompany the candidate's portfolio for submission to the Provost/VPAA. A copy of the report will go to the candidate, the chair of the PRC, the component administrator, and the Dean.

Provost/VPAA Review: The Provost/VPAA shall review the recommendations made at each level of review and prepare a recommendation for promotion and/or tenure, to accompany the candidate's portfolio for submission to the Chancellor. A copy of the recommendation will go to the candidate, the chair of the PRC, the component administrator, the Dean, and the chair of the University Promotion and Tenure Committee.

Chancellor Review: The Chancellor shall review the recommendations made at each level of review and prepare a final recommendation for promotion and/or tenure for submission to the Board of Regents. A copy of the recommendation will go to the candidate, the chair of the PRC, the component administrator, the Dean, the chair of the University Promotion and Tenure Committee, and the Provost/VPAA.

At this point, if tenure and/or promotion are denied, a faculty member may request a review by the Faculty Review Committee.

Exceptions and/or Extenuating Circumstances: Any unusual situations not apparently covered by this policy should be brought to the attention of the component administrator and Dean. If an interpretation of university intent is required, the Dean shall bring this matter to the attention of the Provost/VPAA.

page last updated 10/30/2014 3:54 PM