Tenure is a term designating permanent and continuous appointment for a full-time faculty member. It implies a mutual commitment on the part of the faculty member and the University and cannot be taken lightly.
Once tenure is granted, it will be discontinued only for grave reason, which may include moral turpitude, flagrant abuse of academic freedom, or professional incompetence. In addition, as expressed in its Retrenchment of Faculty policy, the University may be required to discontinue tenure because of severe financial exigencies or reorganization of the department and/or curriculum resulting in lack of need.
The commitment of a faculty member who requests tenure is as deep and binding on the faculty member as it is on the University. Just as the conferring of tenure by the University recognizes the competence of an individual faculty member, submission to the University of an application for tenure suggests a strong acceptance by that individual of the mission, goals and objectives of the University. The request represents a commitment to work jointly with faculty, students, administrators and staff for the growth and welfare of the University. It is a commitment to devote one's energies to continued personal development and continued high levels of achievement as a member of the Marywood academic community. It is an assertion of career goals; it is expected that a faculty member will not lightly withdraw from this relationship.
The probationary period shall not exceed seven years of full-time teaching/librarianship at Marywood, with application for tenure being made in the sixth year. Successful candidates receive a tenure contract for the seventh year; unsuccessful candidates receive a one-year terminal contract for the seventh year. Faculty members on leave during the probationary period must follow the University’s policy on leaves. Interrupted service at Marywood University and also prior service at another regionally accredited, four-year college or university may be credited toward the fulfillment of the probationary period. Such credit will be determined by the Vice President for Academic Affairs.
Tenure occurs by action of the President of the University.
This revised Tenure policy is effective January 1, 2012. Faculty members whose date of hire as full time is before January 1, 2012, may choose the policy in effect prior to that date if they wish.
Procedures for Tenure Consideration
A candidate for tenure must submit a Notification of Application for Tenure form and submit relevant data and documentation in the sixth year of the probationary period, according to the deadline dates noted below. The candidate for tenure is encouraged to meet with the dean and chairperson during the summer prior to submission to discuss the application. The intent of this review is to afford the dean and chairperson the opportunity to offer the candidate informal guidance that will help the candidate to make the strongest case possible for tenure. The candidate is also encouraged to meet with the tenured members of the department one year before submission of the application to identify areas of strength and weakness in meeting the tenure criteria. In applying these tenure procedures for faculty librarians, the Director of Library Services acts in place of both dean and department head. If the candidate decides to withdraw the application, he/she must do so by October 17 or February 21.
(A faculty member who is hired to begin work at Marywood in the spring semester submits a tenure application in the spring of his/her sixth year. For the spring semester dates of submission of the application, refer to the procedures in the Promotion of Faculty Members policy.)
If a due date below falls on a weekend or a holiday, the due date becomes the next business day.
- By September 1 or January 3, the faculty member initiates the process by submitting the Notification of Application for Tenure form to the Chair of the Rank and Tenure Committee. The Chair will be responsible for providing a list of candidates who are applying for tenure to the Vice President for Academic Affairs, the appropriate dean(s), and the head of the applicant's academic department.
- By September 21 or January 21, the applicant submits paper copies of the Application for Tenure form, together with an up-to-date curriculum vitae and a narrative not to exceed an equivalent of 100 printed pages in 12-point font to the head of the applicant's department. (If the applicant is the department head, the senior member of the department functions as the department head during these procedures.) The candidate may submit supplementary materials in the form of appendices. The application must be structured based on how the tenure criteria section of the handbook is organized. The document must be numbered sequentially, include definitions of terms related to one's discipline, and carefully proofread. All annual evaluations of the candidate written by the appropriate dean and the department head must be included in the application materials. The Vice President’s report to the candidate on the results of his/her 3 year pre-tenure review must be included.
- The department head notifies the department's full-time, tenured and tenure-track faculty members that the application is available for their review. The Chair of the Rank and Tenure Committee notifies the tenured members of the applicant's department of their responsibility to complete the Confidential Colleague Evaluation Form. Each tenured faculty member is to submit the Confidential Colleague Evaluation Form to the Chair of the Rank and Tenure Committee by September 28 or January 28.
If a candidate for tenure is the chair of a department, the most senior tenured member of the department acts as chair during the tenure process. If no senior tenured faculty member is available, the Rank and Tenure Committee, in consultation with the appropriate dean and the candidate, chooses a senior tenured faculty member from another department to act as chair.
Once an untenured faculty member submits a pre-tenure file to the Rank and Tenure Committee, he/she completes by September 28 or January 28 the Confidential Colleague Evaluation form for tenure applications that originate in his/her department.
- By October 7 or February 7, the department head submits to the dean of the appropriate college all application materials and a recommendation letter that is based on a thorough review of the application documents. By this date, the department head also submits to the applicant a copy of the same recommendation letter.
- By October 17 or February 21, the appropriate dean or the Director of Library Services reviews the evaluation of the department head when applicable and submits to the Chair of the Rank and Tenure Committee a recommendation letter and all application materials. The recommendation letter is to be based on a thorough review of the application materials.
- The Rank and Tenure Committee evaluates the application and submits its recommendation, vote, and materials upon which the recommendation was based to the Vice President for Academic Affairs.
- Having received all materials by November 21 or March 20, the Vice President for Academic Affairs evaluates the application with its accompanying documents, and submits a recommendation with the materials on which it is based to the President of the University. This includes the Rank and Tenure Committee's recommendation and vote, all other recommendations, and all application and evaluative documentation.
- Having received the documents by January 10 or April 15, the President of the University reviews them and renders a final decision. The President or the Vice President for Academic Affairs informs the faculty member of the status of the application, including the recommendations of all reviewing bodies. In the case of a negative decision, the criteria not met are communicated to the applicant.
All materials submitted by the applicant will be returned at the conclusion of the process.
The candidate for tenure must:
- have completed all formal educational requirements in the relevant academic field, judged necessary to meet the needs of the department and the University;
- have achieved at least the rank of Associate Professor or, if currently an Assistant Professor, must apply for promotion to Associate Professor and Tenure at the same time and may do so with the submission of a single document using the tenure criteria;
- have evidenced an expertise needed by one's department or a related department, which may include developing new courses and teaching a diversity of courses as needed, or in the case of faculty librarians by developing new library services and initiatives;
- have demonstrated consistently effective teaching/librarianship ability as attested to by the evaluation procedures of the University;
- have provided service to students extending beyond the teaching/librarianship function to student advisement and direction;
- have evidenced accomplishment and promise in research, scholarship, publication, and/or creative achievement;
- have evidenced membership and involvement in the activities of professional societies;
- have demonstrated significant involvement in community service related to the mission, goals or core values of the University, and the University community’s academic, cultural, administrative, and student affairs.
Procedures for Pre-Tenure Review
A Pre-Tenure review system evaluates the first three years of each tenure-track faculty member's progress toward tenure.
The candidate submits pre-tenure review materials in the fall of his/her fourth year. The candidate must notify the Chair of the Rank and Tenure Committee by September 1 or January 3 of his/her intent to submit materials. The candidate must submit the materials to the appropriate department chairperson by September 10 or January 12. By September 20 or January 22 the department chair submits to the appropriate dean all pre-tenure materials and an evaluation letter based on a thorough review of the pre-tenure documents. By October 1 or February 1 the Dean submits all materials to the Chair of Rank and Tenure along with an evaluation letter based on a thorough review of all pre-tenure materials.
Pre-Tenure review materials should be no more than 35 pages (12-point font). The document should be numbered sequentially, include definitions of terms related to one's discipline, be proofread carefully and contain one appendix which will include a copy of the candidate's yearly self-evaluations and a copy of the chairperson and Dean responses to the yearly self-evaluations.
The Pre-Tenure portfolio must include:
1. A description of the pre-tenure candidate's progress to date in fulfilling each of the criteria for tenure (organized according to the tenure criteria section above); this description should include the following items in appropriate sections:
a. tables that compile the pre-tenure candidate's teaching evaluations, including department, college, and University teaching evaluation means and course GPAs;
b. the pre-tenure candidate's reflection on his/her teaching/librarianship;
c. the pre-tenure candidate's description of his/her scholarship/creative activity agenda/plan;
d. a self-assessment of the pre-tenure candidate's scholarly/creative work (e.g., selectivity of venues, impact of articles, citations);
e. the pre-tenure candidate's reflection on his/her service.
2. The department chairperson's detailed evaluation of the pre-tenure candidate's portfolio, which must include a summative statement of the pre-tenure candidate’s progress toward tenure.
3. The dean's detailed evaluation, or in the case of library faculty, the Director of the Library's evaluation, of the pre-tenure candidate's portfolio, which must include a summative statement of the pre-tenure candidate's progress toward tenure.
Pre-Tenure faculty members must structure their annual self-evaluations based on guidelines for the tenure application portfolio as described in the Tenure policy.
Deans and chairs must organize their responses to pre-tenure faculty members' self-evaluations and pre-tenure portfolios based on how the tenure section of the Faculty Handbook is organized. These responses must take into account departmental standards for scholarship/creative activity.
Model pre-tenure files are available in the office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs for the pre-tenure candidate's review.
Pre-Tenure Review Procedures
If a due date below falls on a weekend or a holiday, the due date becomes the next business day.
- By September 1 or January 3, the faculty member initiates the process by submitting the Notification of Submission of Pre-Tenure Materials form to the Chair of the Rank and Tenure Committee. The Chair will be responsible for providing a list of faculty members who are submitting pre-tenure materials to the Vice President for Academic Affairs, the appropriate dean(s), and the head of the individual faculty member's academic department.
- By September 10 or January 12, the faculty member submits to the department chairperson pre-tenure review materials of no more than 35 pages (12-point font). (If the applicant is the department head, the senior member of the department functions as the department head during these procedures.) The submitted materials must be structured based on how the tenure criteria section of the handbook is organized. The document must be numbered sequentially, include definitions of terms related to one's discipline, and carefully proofread. All annual evaluations of the candidate written by the appropriate dean and the department head must be included as part of the 35-page application.
- By September 20 or January 22, the department head submits to the dean of the appropriate college all pre-tenure materials and an evaluation letter that is based on a thorough review of the pre-tenure documents.
- By October 1 or February 1, the appropriate dean or the Director of Library Services reviews the evaluation of the department head when applicable and submits to the Chair of the Rank and Tenure Committee an evaluation letter and all pre-tenure materials. The evaluation letter is to be based on a thorough review of the pre-tenure materials.
- The Rank and Tenure Committee evaluates the pre-tenure materials and submits its evaluation and the materials upon which the evaluation was based to the Vice President for Academic Affairs.
- Having received all materials by October 21 or February 21, the Vice President for Academic Affairs evaluates the pre-tenure materials and accompanying documents.
- By November 15 or March 15, the Vice President for Academic Affairs responds to the faculty member with an evaluation letter that is based on a thorough review of the pre-tenure material.
- Contractual Agreements with Faculty Members
- Evaluation of Faculty Members
- Promotion of Faculty Members