Promotion, Tenure and Reappointment | Chemistry Faculty Handbook | Kent State University

Promotion, Tenure and Reappointment

Performance in scholarship, teaching and service constitute the primary considerations for promotion, tenure and reappointment.  We broadly define Scholarship in Chemistry as activity that yields new knowledge in the subject area regarding its scientific content or instruction and is subject to external evaluation.

Scholarship in Chemistry includes Discovery, Integration, Application and Pedagogy.  Discovery involves the advancement of knowledge through original research.  Such research includes the elucidation of phenomena and facts, the development of theory/methods and the extension of pre-existing knowledge.  The results of this scholarship are usually evidenced in the form of research papers/presentations and the submission/award of external research grants.  This scholarly work is expected to generate a measureable impact on the field.  Integration involves the assembly of disparate knowledge into a more unified whole. This area of scholarship involves the demonstration of new and seminal relationships of published research and not just simple compilation.  Normal outlets for this mode of scholarship are in the form of published monographs, review articles, and edited Proceedings Volumes.  Application in chemistry involves research that directly addresses practical societal/industrial concerns; such studies might consider problems of biomedical, environmental or manufacturing importance.  These activities are normally documented by the publication of papers and the submission/award of patents and external research grants.  Pedagogical scholarship in chemistry includes the transformation and extension of knowledge and research skills for their transmission to undergraduate and graduate students.  Evidence for pedagogical scholarship might include publications such as textbooks, pedagogical papers/materials, and papers/presentations of student research as well as the submission/award of external grants for instruction.

Serious consideration will also be given to other important Scholarly Activities that are not readily subjected to external evaluation, and these include: mastery of chemical knowledge in one or several research specialties and familiarity (at least) with modern chemistry as a whole; the act of teaching of chemical knowledge/practice in lecture/laboratory courses; and the personalized teaching of chemical knowledge, scientific thinking and laboratory skills through the direction of graduate and/or undergraduate research.

Consideration will also be given to Departmental, University, and Professional Citizenship for service activities within and outside the University that are not necessarily related to the candidate’s special field of knowledge.

  1. Reappointment

    The policies and procedures for reappointment are included in the University policy and procedures regarding faculty reappointment (See, University Policy Register 3342-6-16).  Each academic year, reappointment guidelines for Kent and Regional Campus Faculty are distributed by the Office of the Provost.  Probationary tenure-track Faculty members are reviewed by the Department’s Ad Hoc RTP Committee (See, Section I.B of this Handbook).  The FAC, in consultation with the Chair, normally assigns one or more Faculty members each academic year to visit the classes of each probationary Faculty member and generally evaluate the probationary Faculty member’s teaching performance.  A written report of the evaluation is submitted to the Chair for placement in the Faculty member’s reappointment file.  Probationary Faculty will create or update their reappointment file and submit the file to the Chair who will make these materials available to the Ad Hoc RTP Committee.  Each probationary Faculty member is discussed by the committee which then votes on the Faculty member’s annual reappointment.  The Chair independently assesses the accomplishments of each probationary Faculty member and forwards her/his recommendation and the committee's recommendation to the Dean.  The Chair informs each probationary Faculty member of the committee's recommendation and provides her/him with a copy of her/his recommendation to the Dean.  Probationary Faculty members who are not to be reappointed must be notified according to the schedule established in the Collective Bargaining Agreement.  For Faculty members whose appointment is in the Regional Campuses, recommendations on reappointment from the Chair are forwarded to the Dean and the appropriate Regional Campus Dean.

    For probationary Faculty, reappointment is contingent upon demonstration of adequate progress toward the requirements for tenure.  Moreover, the Faculty member must have established and articulated short- and long-term plans for achieving these goals.  For Faculty members following the traditional tenure clock for Assistant Professors, the review after completion of three (3) full years in the probationary period at Kent State University is particularly critical. Upon completion of the third year of the probationary period, the Ad Hoc RTP Committee should consider the record of the candidate’s achievements to date.  This record should be considered a predictor of future success.  The hallmark of a successful candidate is a record of compelling evidence.  This record can be demonstrated through review of the candidate’s grant proposals, peer reviewed publications, as well as an assessment of scholarly impact (as measured by journal impact factors, citation indexes, and other measures of journal quality).  Specific concerns expressed by the Ad Hoc RTP Committee and/or the Chair during this stage of the probationary period should be addressed by the candidate in subsequent reappointment reviews.  Finally, the overall evaluation of a candidate for reappointment should consider the Faculty member's professional integrity and behavior as recognized by the University community.  Ethical lapses have their greatest impact on students, but may also affect Departmental staff and Faculty colleagues as well as the larger research community.  Professional behavior and integrity shall be evaluated in the context of University Policy regarding the Faculty code of professional ethics (see University Policy Register 3342-6-17), the KSU Code of Conduct (see University Policy Register 3342-6-01), and giving consideration to any Faculty sanctions (see CBA Article VIII) that may have been applied.

    In the event that concerns about a candidate’s performance are raised during the reappointment process, the Ad Hoc RTP Committee and the Chair shall provide detailed, prescriptive comments to serve as constructive feedback.  If such concerns arise during a review that occurs after completion of three (3) full years in the probationary period, the Chair, in consultation with the FAC, will advise and work with the candidate on a suitable, positive plan for realignment with the Department’s tenure and promotion expectations; however, the candidate is solely responsible for her/his success in implementing this plan.  A candidate who fails to demonstrate likely success in the tenure process will be notified promptly that she/he will not be reappointed.

    Personal and/or family circumstances may arise that require an untenured Faculty member to request that her/his probationary period be extended.  Upon request, a Faculty member may be granted an extension of the probationary period which has been traditionally called “tolling” or “stopping the tenure clock.”  The University policy and procedures governing modification of the faculty probationary period is included in the University Policy Register. (See, University Policy Register 3342-6-13)

  2. Tenure and Promotion

    The policies and procedures for tenure are included in the University policy and procedures regarding faculty tenure (See, University Policy Register 3342-6-14) and the policies and procedures for promotion are included in the University policy and procedures regarding faculty promotion (See, University Policy Register 3342-6-15).  Tenure and promotion are separate decisions.  The granting of tenure is a decision that plays a crucial role in determining the quality of university Faculty and the national and international status of the University.  The awarding of tenure must be based on convincing documented evidence that the Faculty member has achieved a significant body of scholarship that has had an impact on her/his discipline, has demonstrated excellence as a teacher, and has provided effective service.  The candidate is also expected to continue and sustain, over the long term, a program of high quality teaching, scholarship, and service relevant to the mission of the candidate’s academic unit(s) and to the mission of the University.  Tenure considerations can include an evaluation of accomplishments prior to arrival at Kent State University to examine consistency, as well as grant proposals submitted but not funded, proposals pending, papers accepted for publication, graduate students currently advised, and any other materials that may reflect on the candidate’s potential for a long-term successful career.  The tenure decision is based on all of the evidence available to determine the candidate’s potential for and commitment to pursue a productive career.  Promotion, on the other hand, is recognition based on a candidate’s accomplishments completed during the review period and promotion decisions are based on papers published, and grants received during the review period, as well as teaching performance and service to the University.

    Many factors and criteria, both subjective and objective, are considered in recommending a Faculty member for tenure and advancement in academic rank. The overall evaluation of a candidate for tenure and promotion should consider the Faculty member's professional integrity and behavior as recognized by the University community.  Ethical lapses have their greatest impact on students, but may also affect Departmental staff and Faculty colleagues as well as the larger research community.  Professional behavior and integrity shall be evaluated in the context of University Policy regarding the Faculty code of professional ethics (see University Policy Register 3342-6-17), the KSU Code of Conduct (see University Policy Register 3342-6-01), and giving consideration to any Faculty sanctions (see CBA Article VIII) that may have been applied.

  3. Criteria for Tenure and Promotion

    The Ad Hoc RTP Committee shall consider the following areas of Faculty performance when making recommendations on tenure and promotion.  The tables and text below are designed to facilitate assessment of performance of those candidates who are being evaluated for tenure and promotion.  During the probationary period, these tools should be used for developmental assistance and projection of future success in achieving tenure and promotion.

    Tables 2A or 2B, 3A or 3B, and 4 provide guidelines for the assessment of a Faculty member’s performance and a rating scale for use in the evaluation of candidates.  For promotion from Assistant to Associate Professor the Faculty member must minimally meet the criteria for a rating of “very good” in both scholarship and teaching; promotion to Associate Professor also requires an assessment of “Satisfies Obligations” with respect to University Citizenship (Table 4).  Candidates for promotion to Professor must have an average rating of “excellent” (by meeting the criteria for “excellent” in both scholarship and teaching, or by meeting the criteria for “outstanding” in one category and “very good” for the other) in the categories of scholarship and teaching.  Promotion to Professor also requires an assessment of “Exceeds Obligations” using Table 4.  These same categories and assessment tools apply for tenure decisions on the Kent Campus.  Candidates for tenure on the regional campuses must satisfy the requirements for promotion or show potential for achieving the requirements for promotion to Associate Professor by having a rating of at least “excellent” in teaching and “good” in research.  All candidates for early promotion must significantly exceed the ratings required for on-time promotion.

    The Department recognizes that Chemistry Faculty at the Regional Campuses have a primary obligation for lower-division instruction.  The Regional Campus Faculty may not have access to suitable laboratory space and the specialized equipment necessary to conduct publishable research or submit competitive proposals.  Consequently, the guidelines for assessing the scholarship and teaching of Regional Campus Faculty are given in Tables 2B and 3B, while those for Kent Campus Faculty are given in Tables 2A and 3A.

    1. Scholarship

      Scholarship is an essential and critical component of University activity. The originality, quality, impact and value of the work must be assessed.  To assist this process, the candidate shall submit the names of at least five (5) experts in her/his field who are considered capable of judging the candidate's work; these individuals shall not include the candidate’s doctoral or postdoctoral mentors.  The Chair shall solicit letters from at least five (5) experts from this list.  In addition, the Chair shall solicit additional letters from experts not on this list.  Moreover, the candidate must provide the Ad Hoc RTP Committee with ample descriptive evidence of his/her scholarly activity.  A Faculty member's specific area of specialization may be a factor in the number and size of grants received and in the scope and time required for research and the resulting publications.

      In addition to funded research and scholarly publications, other scholarly activities including but not limited to serving on national grant review bodies, presenting at refereed professional meetings, chairing society committees, and presenting papers before learned societies should be considered.  These latter activities complement scholarly publications and grant funded research. Faculty members are expected to hold membership in professional societies, attend and participate in institutes and seminars, organize institutes, seminars, and workshops, insofar as such activities enhance their professional competency. 

      Standards for the Evaluation of Scholarship and Research:

      All Faculty of the department are expected to seek excellence in scholarly activity.  Indicators on which the assessment of the quality of scholarly activity is based are provided in Tables 2A for Kent Campus Faculty and 2B for Regional Campus Faculty.

      Indicators of the quality of a faculty member’s research record include the quality and quantity of published work as well as the Faculty member’s success in obtaining extramural funds.  All Faculty members in the Department are expected to produce records of scholarship that reflect their disciplinary focus, and the attributes of an individual Faculty member’s scholarly activity will vary across disciplines.

      To achieve “excellent” in the category of the scholarship at the time a Faculty member stands for tenure and promotion, she/he should have established a research program which demonstrates an impact upon his/her discipline.

      Within this context, during annual reappointment reviews, each Faculty member who will seek tenure or promotion is obligated to provide evidence supporting his/her scholarly record.  This obligation will be met by providing specific information about article and journal quality and impact, funding history and plans, and description in the Faculty member’s supplementary materials of any other evidence of scholarship that the faculty member deems appropriate.  Candidates for promotion to the rank of Associate Professor shall present three announced Departmental colloquia to demonstrate the progress of scholarly activities and plans in the Department; one colloquium is to be given in the second year of the probationary period and another shall be given in the academic year before the candidate plans to stand for promotion.  Candidates for promotion to the rank of Professor shall present one announced departmental seminar in the academic year before the candidate plans to stand for promotion.  The members of the Department’s Ad Hoc RTP Committee and the Chair shall evaluate a candidate’s record in light of the Department’s expectations for a successful tenure decision.    

      Publications include papers in peer-reviewed journals of recognized quality, monographs, books, and book chapters.  Evaluation of publication record will include an assessment of quality and impact on the field as well as quantity.  The publications shall arise from research conducted while at Kent State University during the time in rank (except for cases where credit for prior work was given in the original letter of offer).  Journals are expected to be comparable in quality to the journals of the American Chemical Society.  Papers of exceptional length, impact and quality are given particular consideration; the candidate for tenure and/or promotion is expected to provide compelling evidence to support any claims of exceptional quality.  Meeting abstracts are not considered to be publications.

      “Grants” refers to extramural funding where the role of the faculty member in securing the funding is clearly demonstrated and which are of sufficient magnitude to fully support research at a level and duration appropriate for the discipline, including funds for supplies, materials and personnel (graduate students, research technicians and/or post-doctoral associates).  “Starter Grants” are extramural grants that are not of sufficient magnitude to fully support doctoral students.  “Seed Grants” are internal Kent State University grants that are designed to lead to subsequent successful applications for “Grants.” Grantsmanship should be commensurate with the field of research with the recognition that the dollar amount of awards varies among fields. 

      Table 2A.  Evaluation Components for Assessment of Scholarship for Promotion and Tenure of Kent Campus Faculty.1

      Scholarship 

      Definition

      Typical Accomplishments Corresponding to the Assessment Score

       

       

       

       

      Outstanding

       

       

       

       

       

      Internationally acclaimed research program

      Approximately three publications per year (or demonstration of exceptional publication quality within a substantial body of scholarship) in current rank (or in the most recent 5-year period in rank) and the award of extensive and substantive, nationally competitive extramural research grants as a principal investigator.  Continuous submission of proposals for research support from Federal or National agencies.  Other evidence of recognition may include invitations to give presentations, research-related service to federal/state organizations, awards and other recognition from scientific societies.2

       

       

      Excellent

      Nationally/Internationally recognized research program

      Approximately two publications per year (or demonstration of exceptional publication quality within a substantial body of scholarship) in current rank (or in the most recent 5-year period in rank) and the award of substantive, nationally competitive extramural research grant(s).  Continuous submission of proposals for research support from Federal or National agencies.  Other evidence of recognition may include invitations to give presentations, research-related service to federal/state organizations, awards and other recognition from scientific societies.2

       

      Very Good

      Emerging nationally

      recognized research program

      Approximately five publications based on work performed while in rank at KSU (or demonstration of exceptional publication quality within a substantial body of scholarship) and the award, either as PI or co-PI, of a nationally competitive grant of sufficient size to support the candidate’s research.  Continuous submission of proposals for research support from Federal or National agencies.

      Good

      Active research program

      Some peer-reviewed publications and internal KSU “seed” grant(s).  Active submission of proposals for funding from extramural agencies. 

      Weak

      Limited research program

      Occasional publications or meeting presentations; no grants supporting research

      Poor

      No research program

      No publications, presentations, or grants

      1These accomplishments are intended to be neither all-inclusive nor exclusionary.  2Recognitions from scientific societies include, for example, election to office, editorial board membership, editorship, etc.  Service to federal/state institutions includes service on federal proposal panels, site visits, and other research related activities. 

      Table 2B.  Evaluation Components for Assessment of Scholarship for Promotion and Tenure of Regional Campus Faculty.1

      Assessment of Scholarship

      Definition

      Accomplishments Corresponding to the Assessment Score

       

       

       

      Outstanding

       

       

       

       

      Highly recognized and consistently productive research program

      Approximately five (5) publications based on work performed while in rank at KSU (or demonstration of exceptional publication quality within a substantial body of scholarship) and the award, as PI or co-PI, of a substantial nationally competitive grant for research, pedagogy, or training.  Continuous submission of proposals for research support from Federal or National agencies.

      Excellent

      Established research program

      Approximately four (4) publications based on work performed while in rank at KSU (or demonstration of exceptional publication quality within a substantial body of scholarship) and the award of significant extramural funding. Oral or poster presentations of scholarly work at regional, national, or international meetings or venues.  Exceptional successes in either publishing or securing extramural funding may be given special consideration.

       

      Very Good

      Emerging research program

      A minimum of two (2) publications based on work performed while in rank at KSU and the submission of quality proposals for competitive grants to support scholarship. Oral or poster presentations of scholarly work at regional, national, or international meetings or venues.

      Good

      Active research program

      Presentations of scholarly work at local venues.  One publication.  Proposals for support of scholarship.

      Poor

      No research program

      No publications, presentations, or proposals.

      1These accomplishments are intended to be neither all-inclusive nor exclusionary. 
       

    2. Teaching

      Criteria for the evaluation of the teaching are listed in Tables 3A for Kent Campus Faculty and 3B for Regional Campus Faculty.  Course revision is defined as making a substantial modification to a course such as developing several new laboratory experiments, addition of distance learning options, formally proposing and implementing major changes in course content/format, etc.

      Other information, such as written comments from colleagues within and beyond the Department, College or University administrators, shall be considered when available.  Peer reviews and summaries of Student Surveys of Instruction (SSI; including all student comments) must be submitted as part of a candidate’s file for reappointment, tenure and promotion.  Copies of representative syllabi, examinations, and other relevant teaching material shall also be made available for review.  Documentation related to graduate student, undergraduate student, and post-doctoral student training should be included in materials provided by a candidate for reappointment, tenure and promotion.  It is anticipated that Kent Campus Faculty members will effectively mentor graduate students (particularly at the doctoral level) and/or postdoctoral students.  Evaluation of teaching will account for differences in missions and expectations across campuses.     

      Table 3A.  Evaluation Components for Assessment of Teaching for promotion and tenure of Kent Campus Faculty.1

      Assessment of Teaching2

      Definition

      Accomplishments Corresponding to the Assessment Score

       

       

       

       

      Outstanding

       

       

       

       

      Outstanding teacher; provides leadership in instructional

      development

      Developed or significantly revised courses, outstanding student and peer evaluations across a breadth of courses and levels, award of a substantial pedagogical or training grant, instructional creativity, leadership in curricular revisions, development of research projects for students (undergraduate honors or individual investigation or graduate students). Other recognition may include teaching awards from outside the Department.

      Excellent

      Innovative teacher; provides leadership in instructional

      development

      Developed or significantly revised courses, excellent student and peer evaluations, instructional creativity, actively participates in curricular revisions. Other recognition may include teaching awards from outside the Department and development of research projects for students (undergraduate honors or individual investigation or graduate students).

      Very Good

      Innovative teacher

      Strong student and peer evaluations.  Other recognition may include the development of research projects for students (undergraduate honors or individual investigation or graduate students) and the Development or significant revision of courses.

      Good

      Meets obligations well

      Marginal student and peer  evaluations.

      Fair

      Substandard teacher

      Weak student and peer  evaluations.

      Poor

      Substandard, ineffective teacher

      Weak student and peer evaluations, pattern of complaints.

       

       

       

      1These accomplishments are intended to be neither all-inclusive nor exclusionary.  2The assessment of teaching involves an overall evaluation of teaching and is not solely derived from any single evaluative measure. 

      Table 3B.  Evaluation Components for Assessment of Teaching for promotion and tenure of Regional Campus Faculty.1

      Assessment of Teaching2

      Definition

      Accomplishments Corresponding to the Assessment Score

       

       

       

       

       

      Outstanding

       

       

       

       

       

      Outstanding teacher; provides leadership in instructional

      development

      Outstanding student and peer evaluations, award of a substantial pedagogical or training grant, demonstrated instructional creativity, active participation in curricular revisions, development of research projects for students (undergraduate honors or individual investigation students). Other recognition may include teaching awards from outside the Department.

      Excellent

       

      Innovative teacher

       

      Excellent student and peer evaluations, instructional creativity. Other recognition may include teaching awards from outside the Department and development of research projects for students (undergraduate honors or individual investigation students).

      Very Good

      Innovative teacher

      Strong student and peer evaluations.  Other recognition may include the development of research projects for students (undergraduate honors or individual investigation students).

      Good

      Meets obligations well

      Marginal student and peer evaluations. 

      Fair

      Substandard teacher

      Weak student and peer evaluations.

      Poor

      Substandard, ineffective teacher

      Weak student and peer evaluations, pattern of complaints.

       

       

      1These accomplishments are intended to be neither all-inclusive nor exclusionary.  2The assessment of teaching involves an overall evaluation of teaching and is not solely derived from any single evaluative measure.

    3. University Citizenship

      A faculty member's contributions as a University citizen include collegial and productive service to the Department, the Campus, the College, and the University as outlined in Table 4.  Candidates should list the administrative assignments completed, the Departmental and University committees that they chaired, and other committee participation.  The candidate’s documentation of service should provide some indication of the candidate’s role and duties in each assignment.  Less tangible components of citizenship include active participation in department events such as faculty and student recruitment, colloquia and seminars, department meetings, etc., as well as public outreach and public and professional service.

      Being an active and useful citizen of the Department, Campus, College and University is expected and valued; however, service of any magnitude cannot be considered more important than a candidate's research and other scholarly activity and instructional responsibilities.  Service expectations for promotion to Professor are higher than for promotion to Associate Professor.  

      Table 4. Assessment of University Citizenship for promotion and tenure.

      Citizenship Assessment

      Examples of Accomplishments Corresponding to the Assessment Score

      Exceeds obligations

      Significant role in Department, Campus, College and/or University as evidenced, for example, by productive service on committees, demonstration of leadership by effectively chairing important committees, active participation in significant events, effective service in specific administrative assignments, meaningful public outreach.

      Satisfies obligations

      Meets the minimal Department/Campus obligations by effectively participating in assigned committees.

      Does not meet obligations

      Does not meet Department/Campus obligations in a timely manner or does not actively participate in significant departmental/campus events.