APS #1022

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Standards, Processes and Procedures for Reappointment, Tenure, Promotion, and Post-Tenure Review

Brief Description

This policy outlines the standards, processes, and procedures for the reappointment, tenure and promotion of tenure-track faculty members and the promotion and post-tenure review of tenured faculty members.

Reason for Policy

Provides procedures for implementing Regent Laws and Policies on the reappointment, tenure, and promotion of tenure-track faculty members and the promotion and post-tenure review of tenured faculty members.

Policy Profile

APS Policy Title: 
Standards, Processes and Procedures for Reappointment, Tenure, Promotion, and Post-Tenure Review
APS Number: 
1022
Effective Date: 
July 1, 2020
Approved By: 
President Mark R. Kennedy
Responsible University Officer: 
Vice President for Academic Affairs
Responsible Office: 
Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs
Policy Contact: 
Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs
Supersedes: 
July 1, 2014, Standards, Processes and Procedures for Comprehensive Review, Tenure, Post-Tenure Review and Promotion
Last Reviewed/Updated date: 
July 1, 2020
Applies to: 
Tenured and Tenure-Track Faculty on All Campuses

I. Introduction

This Administrative Policy Statement (APS) states the standards of performance for tenure and outlines the process of evaluating a tenure-track faculty member for reappointment, promotion, and tenure, evaluating a tenured faculty member for promotion, and conducting post-tenure reviews.  The integrity of the reappointment, tenure, and promotion process depends upon the consistent and knowledgeable application of university processes by the faculty and academic administrators.  Participants are expected to have no conflict of interest in the case and to keep the deliberations of the proceedings confidential. 

II.  Policy Statement

  1. The performance of a tenure-track faculty member shall be evaluated according to the standards established in Regent Policy 5.D – Reappointment (to a tenure-track position), Tenure, and Promotion and this Administrative Policy Statement (APS).
     
  2. As stated in Regent Policy 5.D – Reappointment (to a tenure-track position), Tenure, and Promotion,, criteria for evaluating faculty performance shall be established by the primary unit.
     
  3. Every primary unit (described in Section VII.A) and reviewing body or person making recommendations concerning reappointment, tenure and promotion, or participating in the post-tenure review process, shall strictly apply the procedures and standards described herein.1 Failure to adhere to these procedures and standards may lead to the imposition of sanctions.  Questions about proper processes and procedures should be directed to the dean, faculty affairs office, or provost.
     
  4. In accordance with subsection (H) of Regent Policy 5.C.2 – Tenured and Tenure-Track Faculty Appointments, tenured faculty shall be reviewed in a comprehensive manner every five years.

III. Tenure Probationary Period

  1. A recommendation on tenure shall be made after a probationary period of continuous full-time service as a professor, associate professor, or assistant professor.  (See exceptions in section III.E) The probationary period shall not exceed seven years, unless an extension has been approved by the dean and chancellor or the chancellor’s designee.  If an individual’s professional accomplishments warrant, the probationary period may be waived and tenure may be recommended upon hire.
    1. If a faculty member utilizes family medical leave or parental leave during the tenure probationary period, and the leave period is of sufficient length that the faculty member’s performance cannot be appropriately evaluated during that period, the faculty member shall be granted a one-year extension of the tenure probationary period.  A faculty member may irrevocably elect, no later than six months following their return to full-time service, to have the leave time count as part of the tenure probationary period.  Such an election shall be made in writing and is subject to approval by the dean and the chancellor.
       
    2. A faculty member may apply for leave for reasons other than family medical leave or parental leave during their probationary period.  If the faculty member requests leave, with or without a requested extension of the probationary period, the request shall be reviewed by the chair and dean and the dean will issue a recommendation to the provost.  The request is subject to provost approval.  Any change to the probationary period because of leave shall be in increments of one year.
       
    3. If a one-year extension to the probationary period is provided, a one year extension also applies to all personnel actions (comprehensive review or tenure review) scheduled to occur after the leave period.
  2. The tenure probationary period shall begin when the faculty member is first appointed to the rank of assistant professor or a higher rank.
     
  3. Typically, up to three years of full-time service in the rank of assistant professor, associate professor, or professor at other institutions may be included in the probationary period. 
     
  4. Each tenure-track faculty member shall be evaluated in a comprehensive manner at least once during the tenure probationary period apart from the review for award of tenure.  The comprehensive review typically occurs during the fourth year of full-time service.
    1. The comprehensive review is a critical appraisal designed to identify a candidate’s strengths and weaknesses in sufficient time to allow promising candidates to improve their records before the evaluation for tenure.
       
    2. The review may include evaluation by external reviewers, as determined by campus, school/college, or library policy.
       
    3. Candidates may also request additional feedback from the primary unit head in the second year of their appointment and any subsequent year prior to the tenure and/or promotion decision (except the academic year in which the comprehensive review is undertaken).  
      1. In this additional feedback process, the primary unit head shall examine evidence provided by the candidate of the candidate's teaching (or librarianship), scholarly/creative work, and leadership and service, (and, where indicated in primary unit criteria, other activities relevant to the specific unit), and make suggestions for improvement in those areas in which the record of the candidate should be stronger in order to meet primary unit criteria. 
         
      2. Suggestions provided by the primary unit head are not intended to provide the level of specific formal feedback that is provided through the comprehensive review.  The primary unit head may recommend advising sessions where the candidate can work with senior faculty members and/or with a campus office of faculty development.
         
      3. If the candidate elects these advising sessions, the candidate shall report this fact in the annual report of professional activity (e.g., FRPA), but the content of these consultations shall remain confidential unless the candidate elects otherwise.
    4. The faculty member shall be informed in writing of the results of the comprehensive review, which is one of two outcomes:
      1. the faculty member is reappointed to a tenure-track position, or
         
      2. the faculty member is informed that they will be given a one-year terminal appointment and the tenure-track appointment will not be continued. 
  5. In the Schools of Medicine, Pharmacy, and Public Health, promotion and tenure are separate processes, but may occur concurrently.
    1. Unless waived by the faculty member and approved by the dean and chancellor, a decision regarding promotion to associate professor shall be made after a maximum probationary period of seven years of continuous full-time service at the rank of assistant professor (or its prorated equivalent).  Normally, the promotion review of a faculty member will commence at the beginning of the seventh year of service.
       
    2. School of Medicine, Pharmacy, and Public Health tenure-track faculty members in the rank of associate professor or professor are eligible for consideration for tenure.  There is no maximum time limit for the award of tenure; however, the faculty member who is turned down for tenure may not be reconsidered for three years.

IV.  Standards for Tenure

  1. As stated in Regent Policy 5.D – Reappointment (to a tenure-track position), Tenure, and Promotion, tenure may be awarded only to faculty members who have demonstrated, at a minimum, meritorious performance in each of the three areas of: teaching (or librarianship), scholarly/creative work, and leadership and service (to the university, profession, and/or public); and demonstrated excellence in either teaching (or librarianship), or scholarly/creative work.

    Additionally:
    1. In the School of Medicine, tenure may be awarded only to faculty members with national and international reputations for academic excellence who are among the best in their field of academic endeavor and who have demonstrated excellence in scholarship and demonstrated excellence in, and dedication to, teaching (as further defined in the rules of the School of Medicine).

      Professional/administrative leadership and service and/or clinical activities should be weighed into any decision regarding tenure, but such activities in the absence of significant accomplishments in both teaching and scholarship are not an adequate basis for tenure.
       
    2. In its tenure recommendations, the Colorado School of Public Health may consider public health practice/clinical activity and scholarship, as further defined in school policy.
       
    3. In the School of Pharmacy, tenure may be awarded only to faculty members who have demonstrated excellence in scholarship and demonstrated excellence in, and dedication to, teaching (as further defined in the appointment, reappointment, promotion and tenure policy of the School of Pharmacy).
       
    4. Candidates at the University of Colorado Colorado Springs may also be evaluated on professional practice, in which case they shall also demonstrate at least meritorious performance in that area to be recommended for tenure.  A faculty member cannot be tenured based on excellence in professional practice without excellence in scholarly/creative work or teaching.
  2. A recommendation of tenure based on excellence in scholarly/creative work shall include evidence of impact beyond the institution.  A recommendation for tenure based on excellence in teaching shall include multiple measures of teaching evaluation and demonstrated achievement at the campus, local, national, and/or international level that furthers the practice and/or scholarship of teaching and learning beyond one’s immediate instructional setting.
    1. For the School of Medicine and the School of Pharmacy, which require excellence in both teaching and scholarship, at least one area, as specified in the primary unit criteria, must show evidence of impact beyond the institution.
  3. Effort or promise of performance shall not be a criterion for excellence or meritorious performance.  Demonstrated performance and outcomes are required for tenure.
     
  4. All faculty members within a unit, no matter when they are considered for tenure, are held to the same standards.  Department chairs and mentors have a responsibility to counsel tenure-track faculty on the wisdom of coming up for early promotion or tenure.  An unsuccessful candidate for early tenure may reapply within the existing tenure clock.

V.  Primary Unit Criteria for Reappointment, Tenure and Promotion

  1. Primary units shall develop criteria that define the teaching (or librarianship), scholarly/creative work, and leadership and service expectations for faculty, such as expectations for publications, grants for scholarly/creative work, measures of clinical excellence, etc., in terms of their scholarly field(s).
     
  2. The primary unit shall review its criteria at least every seven years (or more frequently if directed by the dean or provost) for rigor, fairness, and consistency with regent requirements.  Criteria are effective when approved by the dean and provost.  In those cases where the primary unit has requested and received Board of Regents approval of specific alternative or additional standards (e.g., professional practice, clinical activity), those standards shall be reflected in the primary unit criteria.
     
  3. All primary unit criteria shall be in writing and shall be included in the candidate’s dossier or made available electronically to individuals and committees involved in the review process.  They must be used by the primary unit and by all other bodies or persons in their evaluation of the candidate.
     
  4. Regent Law 5.C – Faculty Appointments and Tenure, Regent Policy 5.D – Reappointment (to a tenure-track position), Tenure, and Promotion, this administrative policy statement, and the primary unit criteria and procedures shall be made available by the head of the primary unit to each tenured and tenure-track faculty member at the time of initial hiring/appointment.
     
  5. The primary unit criteria shall include a description of the level of achievement that warrants the designations “meritorious” and “excellent” performance in teaching (or librarianship), scholarly/creative work, and leadership and service as well as other activities relevant to the specific unit.  However, reducing the inherent complexity of faculty activities to a strict formula is discouraged.
     
  6. The primary unit criteria shall also provide a description of the types of evidence that will be used to evaluate the candidate against the performance standards.  Examples of criteria that might be considered in evaluating teaching, scholarly/creative work, and leadership and service are included in Appendix A.
     
  7. If new or revised primary unit criteria have been adopted during a faculty member’s tenure probationary period, the faculty member may choose to be evaluated for reappointment or tenure based on the new criteria or the criteria in place at the time of appointment.  The choice must be made before the next personnel action that follows implementation of the new criteria.  When a faculty member is evaluated for promotion to full professor, the current primary unit criteria shall apply.
    1. Faculty members on the Anschutz Medical Campus who are evaluated for promotion to associate professor without a coincident evaluation of tenure may choose to be evaluated for promotion based on the primary unit criteria at the time of appointment or the current primary unit criteria.
  8. When joint or split appointments are made, the affected faculty member must be informed in writing, prior to the appointment, of:  (1) the duties and expectations as agreed upon by all primary units involved; and (2) which primary unit will be responsible for such personnel recommendations as reappointment, tenure,  promotion, and salary.
     
  9. Tenure and promotion decisions are based on summative evaluations of a faculty member’s cumulative performance according to primary unit criteria.  These processes and criteria are separate and distinct from the annual merit performance evaluation.
     
  10. The merit of the candidate is the only consideration in recommendations for awarding tenure.  The program requirements of the primary unit shall be considered only at the time of appointment and reappointment.
     
  11. To be promoted to the rank of Professor (also referred to as “Full Professor”), an individual should have the terminal degree appropriate to their field or its equivalent, and:
    1. a record that, taken as a whole, may be judged to be excellent;
       
    2. a record of significant contribution to graduate and undergraduate education, unless individual or departmental circumstances can be shown to require a stronger emphasis, or singular focus, on one or the other; and
       
    3. a record since receiving tenure or promotion to Associate Professor that indicates substantial, significant, and continued growth, development, and accomplishment in teaching (or librarianship), scholarly/creative work, and leadership and service.

VI.  Mentoring

  1. A considerable amount of time and resources is invested in hiring tenure-track faculty; therefore, the university has a significant stake in their success.  While it is the individual faculty member's responsibility to develop the teaching and research skills and a work plan that produce the quality and quantity of professional activity needed to warrant reappointment, tenure and/or promotion, the unit and the administration have certain obligations to mentor tenure-track faculty and to help them navigate the review processes.  In addition to published policies and guidelines, schools and colleges shall provide their faculty members reasonable opportunities for training and information sessions on the tenure and promotion process.
    1. Primary units shall ensure that reasonable mentoring opportunities are available for faculty members during their probationary period.  However, in some cases, it may make more sense for the campus’s faculty development office or a school or college to take responsibility for providing mentoring opportunities. 
       
    2. Department chairs/unit heads have the responsibility to assist any faculty member who requests a mentor during their probationary period to locate an appropriate mentor on the campus.  In some units, it may be helpful to identify an external mentor from another CU campus or from outside the university.  External assistance, however, cannot be assured.  If the mentoring program is formal, the frequency and general subjects of the mentoring sessions should be documented.
       
    3. Faculty members who serve as mentors should be able to count mentoring activities in the annual merit evaluation process.
  2. During the probationary period, candidates are expected to proactively seek and take advantage of available mentoring and advising programs.
     
  3. Faculty members who believe they are not getting adequate mentoring are responsible for bringing their situation to the attention of the unit head.  If they are not satisfied with the mentoring opportunities the unit head provides, they should bring this concern to the attention of the dean or the provost’s office.

VII. Review Process

  1. The Primary Unit.  The primary unit is composed of professional colleagues most directly involved with the candidate and having authority to make recommendations concerning reappointment, tenure, and promotion.  In schools and colleges with departmental organizations, each department will usually constitute a primary unit.  In a school or college without such organization, all tenured and tenure-track faculty members have the responsibility for developing the terms of the working structure whereby the primary unit is defined.  The primary unit may be a division, or may be the school or college as a whole.  In some instances, the primary unit may involve faculty from cognate departments or institutes.
     
  2. The Candidate Dossier.  Each candidate for reappointment, tenure or promotion, assisted by the head of the primary unit making the recommendation, shall prepare a comprehensive dossier for evaluation.  Faculty members should include copies of their published materials, as well as supporting data and electronic communications documenting their professional activities.  The School of Medicine has different standards for the dossier and campuses may have requirements in addition to those listed below.  The primary unit or the dean should provide templates or models of good dossiers to guide candidates in dossier preparation.  The dossier submitted by the candidate shall include the following materials:
    1. A current curriculum vitae.
       
    2. Evidence concerning the teaching ability of the candidate, including results of learner evaluations.  (See APS 1009 - Multiple Means of Teaching Evaluation for examples of the types of evaluative material that may be used.)  Each candidate should submit an organized teacher’s portfolio that highlights accomplishments in teaching (for example, development of new instructional materials or methods, educational scholarship, receipt of teaching awards or other evidence of success as a teacher, course syllabi; and normed student feedback, e.g., Faculty Course Questionnaires, which are required when available).  This section may also include evaluations by the candidate's students, colleagues or other qualified individuals who may have observed the candidate's teaching in classroom, laboratory, clinical or other settings.  A self-evaluative statement or narrative summary should be provided.
       
    3. Documents supporting the candidate’s research, scholarly/creative work, or other activities relevant to their specific unit.  This section may include articles, book reviews, research data and grants, receipt of awards, electronic communications, letters, and other evidence of success.  A self-evaluative statement or narrative summary should be provided.
       
    4. Documents supporting the candidate’s leadership and service to the university, profession and community.  A self-evaluative statement or narrative summary should be provided.
       
    5. Any other information the candidate believes will assure adequate consideration and evaluation during the review process.
       
    6. Documents to be added by the primary unit following receipt of the dossier from the candidate include:
      1. A copy of the primary unit criteria;
         
      2. Previous reappointment, tenure and/or promotion letters if required by the campus, primary unit, school/college or library; and/or
         
      3. Evaluation letters received from external reviewers.
        1. The primary unit requests written evaluations by experts from outside the university who are qualified to judge the candidate, using a solicitation letter following the college-approved format.
           
        2. Such outside evaluations are mandatory in cases of recommendations for tenure and promotion. Comprehensive reviews may also include external evaluations, as determined by the campus/school/college/library policy.
           
        3. Selection of external evaluators shall be undertaken by the primary unit; the candidate shall be given the opportunity to suggest possible evaluators and/or indicate specific scholars whom the candidate feels should be excluded from consideration.  Primary unit review procedures shall describe the process used in the primary unit for the selection of external evaluators.  Care must be taken to exclude any evaluators whose evaluations may constitute a conflict of interest, such as a dissertation director.
          - If a candidate for tenure is a new hire, and at the time the letter of offer was issued, the individual held a tenured position at another institution, the letter(s) of recommendation for hire may be used in the tenure evaluation process in place of the external evaluation letters typically required.  If necessary, additional letters may be requested in the tenure evaluation process.
           
        4. A minimum of three external letters shall be added to the file; however, campuses, schools/colleges/libraries may require more than three letters.  All letters that are received must be included in the candidate’s promotion or tenure dossier.
           
        5. External letters solicited by the primary unit must be treated as confidential; they shall not be shared with the candidate.
           
        6. The primary unit may offer external evaluators a modest stipend for their work.
           
        7. Primary unit letters should include summaries of key comments by evaluators, with all identifiers removed to preserve confidentiality.
  3. Levels of Review2.  The case for reappointment, tenure and promotion of a tenure-track faculty member and promotion of a tenured faculty member is evaluated at multiple levels.  The expertise of the primary unit is balanced by the broader perspective introduced at other levels of review.  At each level of the review process, the candidate should be informed of the outcome as expeditiously as possible.  The primary unit criteria shall be used at every level of the review.

    For tenure and promotion cases, faculty and review committees at each level of review vote on the teaching (or librarianship), scholarly/creative work, and leadership and service (and, where indicated in primary unit criteria, other activities relevant to the specific unit) of the candidate as “not meritorious,” “meritorious,” or “excellent.” The faculty and review committees then vote on whether to recommend tenure, and/or promotion (detailed review procedures are provided in the subsections below).

    For cases involving reappointment at comprehensive review, faculty and review committees at each level of review vote on whether the candidate is either:  (1) on track for tenure; (2) not yet on track for tenure, but could meet standards for tenure with appropriate corrections; or (3) not on track for tenure.  A determination shall be made for each of the areas of teaching (or librarianship), scholarly/creative work, and leadership and service, (and, where indicated in primary unit criteria, other activities relevant to the specific unit).  Based on this evaluation, the faculty and review committees shall issue a recommendation regarding reappointment.

    The result of all votes, together with the dossier, are forwarded to the next level of review.  If errors are discovered during the process, they should be remedied, if possible, before the dossier moves to the next level of review.  No individual may vote in more than one stage of the review process.  Participants at every level of the review process shall maintain the confidentiality of the deliberations.  Participation includes being present for any discussion of the review or providing information or opinions to any individuals who will be discussing the candidate’s application.
    1. The First-Level Review is at the school/college/library/department level; it includes review by the primary unit and the chair, the dean’s review committee and the dean.
      1. The Primary Unit Evaluation Committee (PUEC) is the group within the primary unit responsible for initially reviewing the qualifications of a candidate for reappointment, tenure, and/or promotion.  In a small primary unit, all members of the unit may constitute such a committee and additional members may be added from other units.  The PUEC issues a recommendation that includes:
        1. A description and evaluation of the candidate's teaching (or librarianship), scholarly/creative work, leadership and service to the university, profession, and/or public, and other activities relevant to specific units, as required by primary unit criteria;
           
        2. Salient points of external reviewers’ analyses, with care taken to maintain confidentiality;
           
        3. A statement describing the procedures followed, perceived strengths and weaknesses of the candidate, and the committee vote.
      2. Following the PUEC recommendation, a vote is held by the faculty of the primary unit.  The faculty vote shall address the candidate’s performance in teaching (or librarianship), scholarly/creative work, and leadership and service (and, where indicated in primary unit criteria, other activities relevant to the specific unit) and shall include a positive or negative recommendation for reappointment, tenure, and/or promotion.
        1. Only members of the primary unit holding tenure may vote on decisions relating to reappointment or tenure.
           
        2. Only members of the primary unit with the rank of full professor may vote on decisions to promote a faculty member to the rank of full professor or hire a faculty member at the rank of full professor.
           
        3. PUEC members may participate in these votes.

          Deviation from these procedures is allowed when primary unit size and/or requirements for non-duplicative voting warrant an alternative process; however, any deviation from the stated procedures must be voted on and approved by the faculty of the primary unit.
      3. In units with a department structure, the chair shall also issue a recommendation on reappointment, tenure, and/or promotion.  (If the chair is a member of the PUEC, a separate recommendation letter is not required.)
         
      4. The PUEC recommendation, results of the faculty vote, and chair recommendation are forwarded to the Dean’s Advisory or Review Committee (DRC).  The DRC will review the dossier and all prior action on the case, conduct a vote, and issue a recommendation to the dean.
        1. The DRC is typically composed of full professors in the candidate’s school/college.  Members of the committee who are faculty within the candidate’s primary unit are ineligible to vote.
           
        2. When necessary due to the size or structure of the school/college, the DRC may include faculty from other schools or colleges.
           
        3. The dean shall determine whether the committee is elected or appointed.
      5. Should either the DRC or the dean disagree with the recommendation of the primary unit (based on the faculty vote), the dean shall communicate in writing the nature of this disagreement with the head of the primary unit.
        1. The primary unit shall then reconsider its original recommendation and return its reconsidered judgment, including the results of any additional votes, to the dean. The dean may then ask the DRC to reconsider its original recommendation and cast a new vote.
           
        2. The recommendation of the dean, the results of all votes of the primary unit and the DRC, and the candidate dossier shall be forwarded together to the provost.
           
        3. Where differences of opinion between the primary unit, the DRC, and/or the dean have occurred and have not been resolved, each party in the disagreement shall submit a brief statement outlining the areas of disagreement and the reasons for its recommendation in that context.
    2. The Second-Level Review is at the campus level; it includes review by the vice chancellor for academic affairs advisory committee (VCAC), the provost, and the chancellor.  However, at the Anschutz Medical Campus, promotions without dissenting votes from the first-level review are not subject to a second-level review except for the approval of the provost and chancellor.
      1. The provost on each campus shall have an advisory committee of faculty members (VCAC) to assist in the review of recommendations submitted by the dean.  The provost shall determine whether the committee is elected or appointed.
         
      2. Following its review, the VCAC shall conduct a vote and issue a recommendation to the provost.  Members of the VCAC who are faculty within the candidate’s department are ineligible to vote.
         
      3. Should the VCAC or provost disagree with the recommendation of the dean or primary unit faculty, the provost shall transmit to the dean of the school or college the nature of the disagreement.
        1. If the VCAC disagrees with the recommendation of the primary unit faculty or the primary unit faculty and the dean, the case shall be returned to the faculty for reconsideration, and then, in turn, the case shall go back to the dean for reconsideration. 
           
        2. If the VCAC agrees with the primary unit faculty recommendation, but disagrees with the dean’s recommendation, the case shall be returned to the dean for reconsideration.
           
        3. The reconsidered judgment(s), including the results of any additional votes, shall be forwarded to the provost.
           
        4. As needed, the dean may seek additional input from the primary unit as part of this reconsideration.
           
        5. After receiving the reconsidered judgment from the dean, the provost may ask the VCAC to review its original recommendation and cast a new vote.
      4. If the provost finds significant procedural errors may have affected the outcome of the case, the provost may return the case to the primary unit and other levels of the campus review to repeat the process.  The provost may appoint a responsible party to oversee the process to ensure procedural integrity and fairness to the candidate.  If it is determined that the repetition of the process will carry forward into the next academic year, the provost may extend the contract of the candidate by one year.  The re-evaluation process shall focus on the record as it existed at the time of the first review.
         
      5. The provost shall make a recommendation to the chancellor.
         
      6. For cases involving reappointment decisions, the program requirements of the primary unit may be considered by the chair, dean, provost, or chancellor when issuing a recommendation.
         
      7. A candidate for reappointment, promotion and/or tenure shall be informed in writing of the final determination of the chancellor as expeditiously as possible.
        1. All positive recommendations for tenure shall be forwarded to the president.
           
        2. Decisions not to recommend tenure are not forwarded to the president.  A decision by the chancellor to deny tenure may be appealed according to the terms of section VIII of this APS. 
           
        3. Non-reappointment is not subject to administrative appeal.  See section VIII of this APS for faculty grievance rights.
           
        4. Denial of promotion is not subject to administrative appeal unless it coincides with a denial of tenure.  See section VIII of this APS for faculty grievance rights.
    3. The Third-Level Review is at the presidential level; it refers to either:  (1) the review by the president of a positive recommendation for tenure or (2) an appeal of a negative decision for tenure or promotion.  (Promotion may be appealed only in accordance with sectionVII.C.2.g.iv.
      1. All positive recommendations for tenure shall be forwarded to the president for review prior to submission to the Board of Regents.  The role of the president’s office in faculty personnel decisions is to ensure that appropriate and established procedures are followed, and that university standards for tenure and promotion are upheld at each campus.  The primary responsibility for making personnel recommendations rests with the chancellors.
         
      2. An appeal of a negative decision for tenure shall follow the procedures specified in section VIII.A.
    4. The Board of Regents makes the final decision on the award of tenure.  Only the board has the authority to award tenure.
  4. Candidates Prerogatives
    1. At any stage in the review process, a candidate shall be entitled to submit any material or information that they believe will be helpful in evaluating their case.  Materials provided at a higher level of the review shall also be provided to all other bodies reviewing the candidate, and they may respond as they deem appropriate.
       
    2. With the exception of letters provided by external evaluators, each candidate shall have access to all evaluative documents in their file.  These documents shall include statements prepared by primary unit evaluation committees, by the primary unit chair, or by administrative officers.  Evaluation letters solicited from outside the university are to be treated as confidential and not shared with the candidate.  Any letters provided by students must be de-identified before sharing with the candidate.
       
    3. If a candidate so requests, in a confidential conversation, the provost or the provost’s designee shall advise the candidate of the reasons that contributed to a recommendation not to grant tenure or promotion.
       
    4. At any point in the process prior to the decision by the chancellor, a candidate may withdraw the case from consideration.

VIII. Appeal and Grievance Rights

  1. Administrative Appeal of Decisions Regarding Tenure
    1. Within 10 business days of receipt of notification, a candidate denied tenure by the chancellor may request a third-level review by the president.  The only grounds for a presidential review are:  (1) procedural errors of sufficient magnitude that they may have affected the outcome; (2) factual errors of sufficient magnitude that they may have affected the outcome; (3) the material violation of the Laws of the Regents or Regent Policy; or (4) some combination of these grounds.
       
    2. The president may determine there are no grounds for appeal and uphold the chancellor’s decision.  In this circumstance, the case is closed.
       
    3. If the president determines there are grounds for an appeal:
      1. The president may remand the case to the campus to rectify errors and require the chancellor to then revise or reaffirm the original recommendation.
         
      2. The president may overrule the campus decision and recommend tenure to the Board of Regents.
         
      3. The president may convene a faculty advisory committee to review the case.  The committee may issue a recommendation on tenure or recommend action to rectify errors.  If the committee makes a recommendation on tenure, it shall base its recommendation on the dossier available to the chancellor at the time the chancellor issued a decision.  Ultimately, the president shall either make the final decision to uphold the chancellor’s decision to deny tenure or shall recommend tenure to the Board of Regents.
  2. Grievance Rights
    1. If a candidate is denied reappointment, promotion, or tenure and believes that there have been serious procedural or factual errors in the case, or the denial occurred through the material violation of the Laws of the Regents or Regent Policy, the candidate may submit a grievance to the Faculty Senate grievance committee in accordance with Regent Policy 5.G – Faculty Grievance.
       
    2. A grievance may not be filed until all available administrative appeals have been exhausted.
       
    3. While procedural errors per se may entitle the candidate to proper reconsideration as herein provided, such errors may not be used as the justification for personnel recommendations not otherwise justified on the basis of performance.
       
    4. The faculty governance grievance committee shall not substitute its judgment about an individual's merit for that of other committees and administrators.

IX. Post-Tenure Review

  1. Post-tenure review (PTR) is a summative evaluation over a five-year review period.  The purposes of PTR are to facilitate continued faculty development and to ensure professional accountability to the university community, the Board of Regents, and the public.
     
  2. Each campus shall have procedures for appropriate peer evaluation during PTR and for appeals of the PTR evaluation.  Primary units shall have written guidelines that conform to the campus procedures and this administrative policy statement.
    1. A primary unit’s PTR guidelines shall describe the criteria that will be used to evaluate faculty and shall indicate what level of performance is required for a faculty member to be considered “meeting expectations” in teaching (or librarianship), scholarly/creative work, and leadership and service (and, where indicated in primary unit criteria, other activities relevant to the specific unit).  They shall also consider differentiated workloads.  The primary unit PTR guidelines and criteria must be approved by the dean of the school/college/library and provost.
       
    2. The PTR evaluation shall be conducted by appropriate faculty peers within the campus, either the primary unit faculty or the faculty of the appropriate college personnel review committee.  Other units may be consulted as appropriate.
       
    3. Consistent with campus or primary unit policy, the faculty member under review may prepare and submit a professional plan to the committee that evaluates PTR.  If a plan is submitted, the committee shall consider the plan in its evaluation.  See Appendix B for more information on the professional plan.
  3. The initial post-tenure review process occurs five years after the faculty member is granted tenure and recurs at five-year intervals unless interrupted by promotion review or leave.  Promotion serves to re-start the PTR clock.  Faculty undergoing PTR shall not, in that year, serve on the committee that evaluates PTR
     
  4. The committee that evaluates PTR shall provide an evaluation of the faculty member's performance as either outstanding, exceeding expectations, meeting expectations, below expectations, or fails to meet expectations in each of the areas of teaching (or librarianship), scholarly/creative work, and leadership and service (and, where indicated in primary unit criteria, other activities relevant to the specific unit), and shall provide a narrative explanation of that evaluation.
     
  5. Faculty members who receive a summative evaluation of “below expectations” in any of the evaluated areas, must agree to a performance improvement agreement (see APS 5008 - Faculty Performance Evaluations for more information on the performance improvement agreement and extensive review).
     
  6. A copy of the committee’s report will be given to the faculty member by the department chair or dean, depending on whether the PTR is undertaken by the primary unit or school/college.  A copy of the PTR report will be placed in the faculty member's personnel file.  The reports will be forwarded to the dean, who will provide a summary report and copies of the individual reports to the provost on the results of all the post-tenure reviews in the school/college.  Annually, the provosts will provide a summary report on post-tenure review to the System Office of Academic Affairs, who will forward the campus summary reports to the president and the Board of Regents. 
     
  7. Faculty members who fail to participate in any aspect of the post tenure review process, as required, may be subject to sanctions for neglect of duty, which may include reduction in salary, reassignment of duties, unpaid suspension, or dismissal for cause.

X. Related Policies

XI.History

  • Adopted:  July 1, 2007; Content previously stated in Appendix A of the Laws of the Regents (Appendix A rescinded January 2009).
  • Revised:  January 1, 2011; Non-substantive revision on May 1, 2011; The term “service” was replaced with the term “leadership and service” to reflect a change in regent laws and policies, effective April 30, 2014; July 1, 2014; Non-substantive revision on October 19, 2016; Approved March 18, 2020, became effective July 1, 2020, with the rollout of the new regent article and policy 5 regarding faculty.
  • Last Reviewed:  July 1, 2020.

Appendix A: Examples of Appropriate Criteria for Faculty Evaluation

A.        TEACHING

    1. Evaluations of teaching effectiveness by students, graduate trainees or other learners
    2. Teaching awards and other outstanding accomplishments in instruction
    3. Peer evaluation of teaching
    4. Alumni evaluation
    5. Quality of Doctoral dissertation and Master's thesis supervision
    6. Student advising and mentoring
    7. Innovations in teaching
    8. Clinical supervision
    9. Participation in teaching
    10. Performance of students, graduate trainees or other learners in higher-level courses or levels of training
    11. Performance of learners on Standard Professional Examinations
    12. Preparation of course materials
    13. Teaching scholarship (for example, external grant funding or published research related to teaching).

B.        Scholarly/Creative Work

    1. Publications, including peer-reviewed manuscripts, books, book chapters, monographs and electronic publications
    2. Other products of scholarship as broadly defined, including the scholarship of discovery, education, application or integration in which the candidate is a lead investigator.
    3. Recognition by other scholars of research and publications
    4. Creative work (performance, poetry, drama, competitions, paintings)
    5. Grants and contracts (sponsored research)
    6. Unsponsored research
    7. Professional reputation (both inside and outside the University)
    8. Evidence of capacity for future achievements

C.        LEADERSHIP AND SERVICE

    1. University committees and administrative leadership and service
    2. Leadership and service to profession and discipline (state, national, international level)
    3. Consultation and public leadership and service
    4. Skill and devotion in the care of patients

Appendix B: The Professional Plan

The professional plan is a highly recommended individually prepared blueprint that aids in evaluating performance, during both annual review and post-tenure review.  Academic units or schools/colleges may require faculty members to prepare and maintain a professional plan after their award of tenure.

The professional plan communicates the faculty member's teaching (or librarianship), scholarly/creative work, and leadership and service goals and explains how these goals support the needs of the primary unit and the school/college.  Projections made in the plan, when compared to the faculty member's progress and achievements, can provide one basis for evaluating the faculty member's professional performance.  If the plan calls for a distribution of effort different from the primary unit's standard assignment, a differentiated workload agreement should be included.

At the time of annual merit evaluation and during post-tenure review (or extensive review), the primary unit evaluation committee may review the professional plan (and any revisions or updates to the plan) and compare its goals to the actual achievements of the faculty member to date.

  • 1. Comprehensive review and reappointment policies and practices may differ at the Anschutz Medical Campus; faculty should consult school/college/department policy.
  • 2. At the School of Medicine, Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, and Colorado School of Public Health, review procedures differ in many respects from those described in this APS.  Faculty members should consult their school’s tenure and promotion policies.