Promotion and Tenure Guidelines
2.1. Teaching and Academic Advising
2.2. Research, Scholarship and Creative Achievement
2.4. External Letters of Evaluation
Each member of the faculty is expected to contribute to the achievement of the University’s mission through his or her teaching and academic advising; research, scholarly and/or creative achievement; and service. It is the candidate’s responsibility, with assistance from the department and, in the case of the regional campus faculty, the coordinator and the Dean of the Regional Campuses, to document the quality of his or her contributions by maintaining and presenting clear and complete records. It is the responsibility of the faculty member’s peers to evaluate his or her teaching, scholarship, and service contributions and to determine if the faculty member should receive a positive recommendation for promotion and/or tenure. Each candidate for promotion and/or tenure should compile a dossier specifying his or her achievements other deliberating bodies for consideration.
A candidate initially prepares a dossier, not to exceed twenty (20) pages, for review by the chair/program director, department promotion and tenure committee, divisional dean, and subsequent reviewers, if any. The candidate’s dossier should present in narrative and summary fashion the information he or she wants those making promotion and/or tenure decisions to know about the record of performance. It should make the case for tenure and/or promotion. The dossier should include the following items:
- A summary of the candidate’s educational and professional experience.
- The core of the dossier containing the information requested in Part 3 of this document.
The outline presented in Part 3 represents the core of the dossier. The lettered and numbered headings in the outline should reflect the order of emphasis stipulated in the candidate’s appointment letter(s) of agreement or, in their absence, the order usual for that individual’s campus assignment.
IT IS IMPORTANT TO NOTE THAT IT IS NOT NECESSARY TO HAVE ITEMS UNDER EVERY SECTION OF THE OUTLINE.
The outline is intended solely as a guide and is not intended to supersede, supplement, elaborate upon, or otherwise alter the stipulations for promotion and tenure published in the Miami University Policy and Information Manual (MUPIM). In conformity with these stipulations, absent any appointment letters of understanding regarding the weighting of criteria for promotion and tenure, the order of emphasis of teaching/advising, scholarship, and service shall reflect the order indicated by the individual’s campus assignment. As specified in MUPIM: “The usual emphasis in descending order of significance for the above criteria shall be ‘teaching and academic advising,’ ‘research, scholarly and/or creative achievement,’ ‘professional service,’ and ‘professional collegiality.’ For regional campus faculty, the usual emphasis in descending order of significance shall be ‘teaching and academic advising,’ ‘professional service,’ ‘research, scholarly and/or creative achievement,’ and ‘professional collegiality.’”
- A brief description of the relationship of the candidate’s teaching, research, and service activities. (Note: It is recognized that in some cases faculty will be asked to teach outside their specializations because of the faculty vacancies or leaves or enrollment pressures.) This relationship may be position specific rather than specific to a particular discipline or sub-discipline.
- A reflective statement indicating how multiple indicators of teaching effectiveness are used to improve the quality of instruction.
- Other materials may be included in the dossier, provided that the dossier’s total number of pages does not exceed twenty (20).
- An index of supplemental materials assembled by the candidate. The following paragraph contains a description of possible supplemental materials.
The candidate should also assemble supplemental materials, to be retained and made available by the department to all persons and bodies making promotion and tenure recommendations and decisions. Supplemental materials might include a teaching portfolio; student evaluations; peer reviews of teaching; evidence of service-learning activities, interdisciplinary work, or study abroad activities; and copies of publications, recordings, works of art, or other evidence of research, scholarship and creative achievement. Appeal requests, reconsiderations, or court challenges during the probationary period and the promotion and tenure review process may also be included in supplemental materials. All supplemental materials shall be returned to the faculty member after the promotion and tenure review process has completed.
A. The chair/program director appends to the candidate’s dossier the following materials:
- Copies of any letters of understanding regarding the weighting of the criteria for promotion and tenure. Absent any appointment letters of understanding regarding the weighting of criteria for promotion and tenure, the order of emphasis of teaching/advising, scholarship, and service shall reflect the order indicated by the individual’s campus assignment. As specified in MUPIM: “The usual emphasis in descending order of significance for the above criteria shall be ‘teaching and academic advising,’ ‘research, scholarly and/or creative achievement,’ ‘professional service,’ and ‘professional collegiality.’ For regional campus faculty, the usual emphasis in descending order of significance shall be ‘teaching and academic advising,’ ‘professional service,’ ‘research, scholarly and/or creative achievement,’ and ‘professional collegiality.’”
- A statement comparing the individual’s responsibilities with those usual and customary within the department, including any contractual differentials in load for probationary faculty afforded individuals with Oxford Campus affiliation. The chair/program director should indicate the actual teaching load of the individual since coming to Miami.
- A letter evaluating the quality of academic performance and effectiveness of the candidate in each of the defined areas of faculty responsibility: teaching and academic advising; research, scholarly and/or creative achievement; professional service; institutional service; and public service. This evaluation should highlight important accomplishments and interpret the value of significant contributions. More specifically, what are the quality indicators for each candidate? What is the role of the candidate in the department’s teaching program (e.g. expertise in teaching first-year courses, capstone courses, graduate courses)? If conducted, what do peer reviews of teaching show? What involvement did the candidate have in academic advising? What is the quality of the advising? What involvement did the candidate have with service-learning activities, interdisciplinary work, inquiry-based activities, or study abroad activities, if applicable? Are certain articles/exhibitions/performances especially important? Is publication in certain journals or participation in certain shows, etc., especially significant (e.g., what is the relative quality of the journals or presses in which publications appear and/or of the shows in which artistic works are exhibited or performed)? What are the candidate’s contributions to the field? What is the quality of the service rendered to the various constituencies?
- If departmental governance indicates, a separate letter from the department promotion and tenure committee.
- Copies of annual chair/program director evaluations and/or departmental committee evaluations as departmental and University governance require. In the case of an individual assigned to a regional campus, the chair/program director will also consult with the regional campus dean and include his or her evaluation and that of the appropriate regional campus coordinator.
- Copies of peer and external letters of evaluation with copies of the chair’s/program director’s letters outlining the realm of the review and the specific criteria to be applied. Requirements for the external letters of evaluation are described in Part 2.
B. After the Department Tenure and Promotion Committee and Chair have made a recommendation, the Chair forwards the following materials to the division:
- The recommendation letter from the chair or program director.
- If the recommendations of the committee and the chair or program director differ, both letters are forwarded to the dean.
- The candidate's dossier.
- A sample copy of the letter to external reviewers.
- A summary of the academic and scholarly credentials of each of the external reviewers and their relationship to the candidate.
- The letters from the external reviewers.
This part enumerates activities and measures of quality acceptable for presentation under each criterion. However, it does not intend to limit acceptability to these stated activities. In applying these guidelines, both candidates and evaluators should recognize two important points:
- The guidelines are in conformity with University rules and policies, and they are intended to assist candidates in applying these rules and policies in making the case for promotion and/or tenure and to assist those who must evaluate the candidates and make promotion and tenure recommendations and decisions.
- The guidelines are aids to, rather than substitutes for, the professional judgment of the candidate’s colleagues.
Teaching and academic advising are multifaceted activities that include but are not limited to the components shown below. The difficulties associated with determining quality in teaching and advising have long been recognized. Several measures, many of them suggested below, are currently used. Candidates for promotion or tenure and department chairs/program directors may feel free to provide additional ways to evaluate quality in teaching and advising.
Perhaps ideally, high quality teaching could most appropriately be recognized in terms that measure the learning that occurred, the success of students, and the long-term impact of a faculty member on the subsequent behavior of his or her students. In any case, evaluators of candidates for promotion or tenure at all levels are obliged to give first consideration to an assessment of quality in teaching and advising, both at the undergraduate and graduate levels.
To be evaluated favorably, an individual should contribute to the accomplishment of the mission of the University in several components of teaching, with contributions in the area of classroom teaching given greatest weight. Multiple measures of teaching quality should be provided as well as a statement indicating how these multiple measures of evaluation are used to improve the quality of instruction.
Academic advising encompasses a variety of activities including service as chief departmental adviser, adviser to an assigned group of students, and career counseling.
Evidence and measures of quality of teaching and academic advising may include, but are not limited to:
A. Classroom teaching. Examples of student work; formal student evaluations of teaching; peer evaluations; nominations for teaching awards; receipt of teaching awards.
B. One-on-one or small group teaching (includes independent studies). List of students’ names and titles of their projects, theses, dissertations; examples of student work; indication of quality of projects.
C. Teaching in continuing education programs. (Some departments or divisions may describe these activities as professional service; regular courses taught using a workshop format [such as during the summer] will be considered as teaching). Examples of course materials (e.g., syllabi; handouts; examples of student work; participant evaluations; letters from coordinators; letters from participants).
D. Development of teaching materials and making presentations related to the teaching process. Publications related to the teaching process will usually be listed in Part 2, Section II. Examples of innovative materials; evidence of acceptance of materials beyond the candidate's own classes (e.g., inclusions of materials in books, adoptions of texts, requests for use by other faculty); descriptions of presentations; letters from participants and/or reviewers.
E. Development of courses and curricula. Syllabi, proposals, outlines, with evidence of effectiveness including letters from chairs/program directors, peer evaluation, etc.
F. Embedding service-learning activities, interdisciplinary work, inquiry-based activities, or study abroad activities into a course of study. Syllabi, student projects, student outcomes and reflections, community partners' evaluations, etc.
G. Academic advising. The number of advisees served per semester; hours per week spent in advising; evaluative statements by colleagues, the department chair/program director, advisees, and the regional campus coordinator as appropriate.
While both the quality and the quantity of the candidate’s research, scholarship, and creative achievement are evaluated, quality is of premier importance.
For purposes of this analysis, quality is defined in terms of the importance of the work toward progress of the discipline or for the improvement of practitioner performance, and of the creativity of the thought processes and methods behind it. Original breakthroughs in conceptual frameworks, conclusions, and methods are considered to be of higher quality than works making minor variations in or repeating familiar themes in the literature of the candidate’s previous work.
The determination of quality is obviously difficult and involves substantial judgment. Those charged with this evaluation must synthesize information from: (a) their own reading or observation of the key works of the candidate; (b) evaluations obtained from widely known and respected scholars and/or critics; (c) knowledge of the quality of the outlet (e.g., books, chapters in books, journals, monographs, sponsored research reports, exhibitions, performances) in which the work appears; and (d) extramural funding (e.g., NSF, NEH) achieved through a peer review process.
The most difficult phase of the evaluation of research, scholarship, and creative achievement is the weighting of quality in terms of quantity. How, for example, does one equate two first-rate and one mediocre journal articles on the one hand, and a monograph and a proceedings piece on the other? Clearly, this activity requires the highest level of professional judgment on the part of evaluators, not only because of the difficulty of the judgments involved, but because (especially when tenure is under consideration) the judgment being made concerns not only the contribution per se, but the candidate’s future research, scholarship, or creative achievements while working at Miami. For candidates who come with one or more years credited to the six-year probationary period, the accomplishments they bring relevant to Miami’s tenure criteria are fully credited. Nonetheless, research, scholarly, or creative activity during the remaining years of the probationary period must provide persuasive evidence of its “prospective continuation” at Miami.
Evidence of Research and Scholarship: Completed and published or in-press works which have undergone peer review represent the primary evidence of the candidate’s research and scholarly contributions. Presentations at professional meetings are another outlet for dissemination of research results. In the case of work disseminated through channels where evaluators are unlikely to know the quality of the outlets, the candidate and chair/program director should provide evidence of the stature of the outlet and the nature and importance of the contribution. It is the responsibility of the candidate to provide a description of his or her contribution to the research or scholarly work cited in the dossier. In the case of work with multiple authors, it is the candidate’s responsibility to explain the ordering of authors listed on a publication or research grant and the nature of the contribution by the candidate.
Evidence of Creative Achievement: Candidate’s works which have been exhibited or performed and juried or reviewed, candidate performances, competitions entered and/or won, and commissioned works completed represent the primary evidence of the candidate’s creative achievement. As above, in the case of works or outlets with which the evaluators might not be familiar or which might be outside the area of the evaluators’ expertise, the candidate and chair/program director should provide evidence of the stature of the outlet and the nature and importance of the contribution.
Faculty members are expected by the University and the public-at-large to make their professional knowledge and skills available in ways beyond those discussed in the previous sections. In addition, as professionals committed to governance by peers, there are many internal activities that must be performed to maintain the operations of the institution. Thus, service to the University and the community at large, as well as to academic and professional organizations, is an important component of the faculty member’s obligation. Service includes, but shall not be limited to, activities which contribute to the University’s and/or the campus’s mission. The dossier should document such contributions. Service includes, but is not limited to, the following activities:
A. Service to the profession (includes for example):
- Serving as an appointed or elected officer of an academic or professional association.
- Serving as an organizer or leader of workshops, panels, or meetings in areas of professional competence.
- Refereeing manuscripts or grant proposals submitted to journals, professional meeting program committees, funding organizations, and the like.
B. Service to the University (includes for example):
- Serving as an appointed or elected administrator or head of any academic group at the department, division, or University levels.
- Serving as a leader or member of task forces or committees providing service to the department, the division, or the University.
- In some divisions or departments, providing intramural continuing education programs if these are not accounted for in the category of teaching.
- Serving as a member of University Senate or of one of its governing committees.
C. Service to students (includes for example):
- Contributing to student welfare through service on the student-faculty committees or as adviser to student organization, and the like.
D. Service to the Community (includes for example):
- Serving as a leader or member of a task force, committee, board or commission providing service to local, state, regional, national, or international organizations.
- Serving as professional consultant to public or private organizations.
- Serving to meet community needs by supervising or mentoring service-learning activities.
- In some divisions or departments, providing extramural continuing education programs, if these are not already accounted for in the category of teaching.
Selection of the external reviewers is the responsibility of the chair/program director and divisional dean. A list of eight (8) to ten (10) potential reviewers should be developed in consultation with the candidate. The candidate shall describe, in writing, the nature of the relationship the candidate has with each of the potential reviewers.
A minimum of four (4) letters from appropriate external reviewers should be included in the candidate’s dossier. These letters are to be considered by relevant bodies at all levels of the decision-making process. They should evaluate the research, scholarly and/or creative achievements of the candidate. The letters are to be accompanied by a summary statement, limited to two (2) pages, prepared by the department identifying the professional/academic stature of the individuals from whom the letters were sought, why they were selected as reviewers, and describing their relationship with the candidate. In addition, the summary statement should:
- Identify the institution (including department) of affiliation.
- Give the rank or other title of the reviewer within the organization.
- Describe the reviewer’s academic specialization.
- Provide other relevant information about the reviewers that may be useful to those unfamiliar with the field.
Letters from external reviewers are intended to be unbiased evaluations from recognized scholars, artists, other professionals in the field, and (when relevant) community partners. External reviewers for candidates for promotion to full professor should hold the rank of full professor or professional equivalent; external reviewers for candidates for tenure should hold the rank of associate or full professor, or professional equivalent. These letters should not be solicited from individuals with whom a close personal or professional relationship exists, such as the candidate’s former teachers, dissertation director, co-author(s), co-worker(s), or former co-worker(s). All letters received are part of the file and must be forwarded with the dossier. All letters are subject to the Ohio Public Records Act.
External reviewers should be sent the candidate’s curriculum vitae. External reviewers for candidates being considered for tenure should receive published materials or documentation of scholarly and creative works. External reviewers may also receive materials that are documented as in press or in review. External reviewers for candidates being considered for promotion to professor should receive copies of those scholarly and/or creative works along with any other materials or information that the candidate and his or her department chair/program director have agreed upon sending. If additional letters are requested from external reviewers to evaluate service-related achievements, these same criteria should apply.
- Summary of your education and professional experience
- Brief description of the relationship of your teaching, research, and service activities
(See below for detailed information about the items in this outline.)
- Classroom teaching
- One-on-one/Small Group Teaching, independent studies
- Credit workshops and Continuing Education instruction
- Development of teaching materials
- Curriculum development
- Service-learning, interdisciplinary activities, inquiry-based activities, or study abroad activities
- Academic advising
- Publications, presentations, performances, etc.
- Editorship of journals or other learned publications
- Funded Research
- Research agenda
- Service to the profession
- Service to the University
- Service to students
- Service to the Community
A. Classroom teaching
1. Undergraduate and graduate courses taught
List each course taught since your last promotion or date of hire. Include: courses taught in chronological order by semester and year; course number, title, and number of credit hours; official course enrollment; percentage of course you taught based on proportion of total student contact hours in course; brief explanation of your role, if not solely responsible for course, including TA supervision, course management, team teaching, etc. Do not include in this list independent studies, credit workshops, continuing education, or other non-credit courses.
2. Evaluation of teaching
Describe carefully how the quality of your teaching has been evaluated (e.g., student evaluation of teaching, peer review, departmental surveys of former students) and how you have used these multiple measures of evaluation to improve the quality of instruction.
A summary of the completed evaluation forms for classes evaluated by students should be provided. Indicate how the evaluations were administered. If the completed evaluation forms contain written comments, a summary, in typed form, should include examples of the full range of those comments. The summary for each course evaluations should specify the course number, title, and date.
Reports of observations by peers should be included in the chair’s/program director’s statement and should describe the overall quality of teaching and the basis for that evaluation (in-class observation, review of syllabus, examinations, etc.). The course(s) observed and the point in the semester at which the observation(s) took place should be specified.
Other evaluations of teaching, such as exit interviews; critiques of syllabi; self-evaluations; reports or evaluations by service-learning, interdisciplinary, study abroad, or assessment partners, or letters from former students solicited by the chair/program director, may be included.
3. Awards and formal recognition for teaching
Identify commendations you have received for recognized excellence in teaching. These awards may include citations from academic or professional units (department, division, university, professional association) which have formal procedures and stated criteria for outstanding teaching performance.
B. One-on-one/Small Group Teaching, independent studies
- Independent studies, directed studies, tutorials, practicum, or other major projects
- Graduate/professional exams, theses, and dissertations (if appropriate)
- Graduate Level Status A and B (date ranges)
- Number of completed and number current doctoral students as dissertation adviser
- Number of completed and number current master's students as thesis adviser
- Number of completed and number current doctoral students as committee member
- Number of completed and number current master's students as committee member
C. Credit workshops and Continuing Education Instruction (Some departments or divisions may describe these activities as professional service.)
Summarize the major instructional activities (workshops, non-credit course, etc.) which you have conducted since your last promotion or date of hire. Identify your role in the instruction and the number of participants. Provide participant evaluations if available.
D. Development of teaching materials
Give specific examples of new teaching methods or materials you developed. A summary evaluation of these activities should be included in the chair’s/program director’s letter.
E. Curriculum development
Give specific examples of your involvement in curriculum development and/or assessment (e.g., your role in the design and implementation of new or revised courses; creation of new programs; your role in assessment data collection or analysis and how it was used to document or improve student learning). A summary evaluation of these activities should be included in the chair’s/program director’s letter.
F. Service-learning, interdisciplinary activities, inquiry-based activities, or study abroad activities
Give specific examples of the incorporation of service-learning activities, interdisciplinary activities, inquiry-based activities, or study abroad activities into your courses. List courses developed or taught that have any special designation in one or more of these categories.
G. Academic advising
Describe specific responsibilities in advising. Identify number and level of advisees seen on a regular basis. Include an estimate of the approximate time spent per week.
A. Publications, presentations, performances, etc.
Provide a chronological listing of publications, papers, exhibitions, performances, and other creative or scholarly works. Be sure citations are complete and that authorship and the ordering of authors is as listed on the publication. Indicate whether refereed or reviewed. Indicate the quality of the publication by noting the impact rating and/or acceptance rate. Describe your contribution to the research or scholarly work cited in the dossier including, but not limited to, how authors are listed on the publication and the nature of your contribution. Include as separate categories:
- books, chapters
- monographs, bulletins
- articles, notes
- reviews, abstracts
- presentations at meetings of learned societies
- commissioned works
- other creative or scholarly works
B. Editorships. Indicate editorship of journals or other learned publications.
C. Funded Research
Identify research in which you are or have been involved and specify the period. Indicate proposals written, source and amount of funding received, and whether funding is in the form of a contract, research grant, training grant, or commission. List internal and external proposals separately. Include cooperative or interdisciplinary research projects, educational or curriculum development projects, service-learning/community-based projects. For each project, list your degree of involvement. Cite prizes and awards where appropriate.
D. Research agenda. Describe briefly your research agenda for the next three (3) to five (5) years.
For significant service activities, please describe the service, its impact, your involvement or contribution, and indicate how the quality of the service can be assessed.
A. Service to the profession
- Offices held in professional societies. List organization in which office was held or service performed and dates of service. Describe the nature of the organization: i.e., open or elected membership, honorary, etc. Indicate awards received.
- Participation in state or regional, national or international programs or special assignments. List specific activities (e.g., panel discussant, session chair, respondent). Include brief description.
- Continuing education instruction, if not included under teaching. See Part 3, I.C for details.
- Other professional service, if not included elsewhere, such as reviewer of proposals or manuscripts, or external examiner.
B. Service to the University
Indicate dates and degree of responsibility. Include brief description.
- departmental committees
- division or University committees
- administrative positions held
- other administrative services to/for the University
- other special assignments
C. Service to students
- Adviser to student groups and organizations.
Identify name of group or organization and specific responsibilities as adviser. Include estimate of approximate time spent per week in such advising.
- Other student services
Summarize participation in student affairs programs such as fireside discussion, lectures to student groups outside your department, addresses or participation at student orientation. Identify other involvements with or services to students not covered in the above categories.
- Awards or formal recognition for service to students
Cite commendations received as recognition for contributions to student affairs, such as election to student honoraries.
D. Service to the community
- Identify name of community group or organization with which you are working, describe nature of organization, and explain your role and/or office within the group or organization.
- Identify your participation in community programs or projects, indicating scope and nature of such efforts (e.g., speaker for annual banquet of organization with approximately 100 persons attending; facilitator for community project, etc.).
- Cite any commendations received from community groups or organizations (e.g., recipient of service award from Red Cross Chapter, etc.).
- Describe accomplishments that meet community needs emanating from service-learning courses or activities.
- If not already accounted for in the category of teaching, describe service related to continuing education programs.
- Describe any additional examples of community service, especially those that are relevant to your academic discipline.