Usually in the spring semester, prior to the beginning of the academic year, the office of the Provost initiates the review process by circulating a document outlining procedures and deadlines to Schools, University departments/colleges and Deans of Regional Campuses.
All regular, full- time probationary, tenure-track faculty are eligible at certain times for tenure review according to years of service and rank differentiations. Departments will notify prospective candidates, by the end of the spring semester of the previous academic year, of their nomination for promotion eligibility. The procedures are described by the materials distributed by the Office of the Provost and other documents which have been developed departmentally and collegially, and elaborated in the respective faculty handbooks. Faculty should consult their departmental handbooks for such procedures. University guidelines have also been developed which must be observed.
Although a faculty member may stand for both promotion and tenure at the same time, it should be remembered that these are two distinct personnel actions requiring separate procedures, timetables and guidelines.
The University establishes a timetable for personnel actions for faculty. This varies from year to year and is specified in a document published by the Provost. Faculty seeking reappointment, tenure, or promotion should consult the schedule in this document upon publication. As a practical matter, preparation of materials and consultation with the department chairperson and campus dean should begin with nomination the preceding spring. All materials must be submitted to the FlashFolio system at Kent State University.
Tenure Track Faculty Reappointment Review
Annual review of probationary, tenure-track faculty for reappointment shall be undertaken each year until consideration for tenure. Non-tenure track faculty are subject to separate review. Annual review is often undertaken at approximately the same time as tenure and promotion decisions, but specific time tables are established annually for each type of review. Candidates for reappointment should consult the Annual Reappointment, Tenure and Promotion Guide published by the Office of the Provost.
Faculty who are eligible for tenure review are notified by department chair/school directors/college deans (henceforth, Chair). Faculty prepare a file of evidence in support of their review. The file is submitted electronically to the FlashFolio system at Kent State. Candidates meet with their department chairs or equivalents to assure that the file contents are complete. The candidate and the chairperson must both sign the Certification of File Completeness, and a copy of the certificate is placed in the electronic file.
- All tenured faculty assigned to the Campus Reappointment, Tenure, and Promotion Committee will read each of the files, and make appropriate notes for recommendation to be written at a later time.
- A meeting of the committee will be announced by the Chairperson of the Faculty Council, who will be the presiding officer during all discussions. Each of the candidates will be presented for discussion by the chairperson. The discussion of the committee will focus on the efforts of the candidate in all areas of review, with the understanding that teaching carries more weight for regional campus faculty. A statement reminding the various administrative levels of review and assessment of the weighting criteria in Section C should be presented to the committee at the beginning of the review.
- Each member of the committee will complete an evaluation form for each candidate and submit it to the Faculty Council Chair. The Chair will prepare a summary evaluation (that includes the weighting criteria in Section C) and recommendation to be forwarded to the Dean and Chief Administrative Officer of the Columbiana County Campuses, with copy to the Departmental Chairperson, College Dean, and Vice President for Kent State System Integration. The Faculty Council Chair will also notify the candidate of the committee’s recommendation.
- The Campus Dean and Chief Administrative Officer then reviews the materials for each candidate and with consideration of the recommendation of the Faculty Council Chair and the members of the Committee makes an independent recommendation to the College Dean, with copies to the Departmental Chair/Dean/Director, the Candidate, the Vice President for Kent State System Integration and the Provost.
For complete guidelines see the timetable of the Tenure Review in the Annual Reappointment, Tenure and Promotion Guide which is published by the office of the Provost.
The Provost, initiating the promotion process, identifies those faculty eligible for promotion review and notifies appropriate departmental chairs and Regional Campus Deans. The Departmental/School/College FAC will formalize the list of potential candidates for promotion by a simple majority vote. The departmental chair then notifies the candidate that he/she has been nominated for promotion. This notification will take place during the Spring Semester, for consideration of promotion during the following academic year. This nomination does not confer favor or approval of the candidate, but only serves as notification. Faculty also may self-nominate or have their names entered by other faculty. Individual faculty have the right to remove their names from candidacy. All faculty nominees have the responsibility of providing all information pertinent to the nomination.
Although promotion may be granted at any time, as recognition of outstanding performance, there are conventional expectations of years of service. Promotion sought prior to the conventional expectation to a particular rank is considered early promotion. Early promotion is unusual and is granted only under compelling and/or extraordinary circumstances.
Regional Campus faculty nominees for promotion are to provide an electronic file of evidence. The file is to be reviewed with the candidate and the department chair/school director/college dean for completeness. The candidate and the chair must both digitally sign the Certification of File Completeness, and one copy of the file is sent to the Campus Dean and Chief Administrative Officer.
The process for the review of those candidates to be considered for promotion is the same as for tenure and reappointment, with the following exceptions:
- Candidates for promotion will be assessed by those who hold the rank for which they are applying or a higher one.
- The faculty discussion about those who have applied for promotion will be limited to those who hold the rank or higher.
- Promotion review to full professor requires that three letters from outside reviewers be added to the promotion file. These letters are solicited by the Chair of the Department/School Director/College Dean, from names submitted by the candidate. Copies are placed in the electronic FlashFolio. Also in compliance with the voting procedures, the Dean and Chief Administrative Officer of the Regional Campus may ask for approval of the Provost to augment the Promotion Committee to bring the voting membership to four or more.
- The Faculty Council Chair, regardless of his/her rank, will summarize the recommendations from the faculty who evaluated the candidates and send the summary to the Dean and Chief Administrative Officer and to the Department Chair/School Director/College Dean, along with a letter to the candidate, and the Provost.
Reappointment, Tenure, and Promotion Review Committee
The campus reappointment, tenure and promotion committee (RTP) will consist of all full-time tenured faculty whose primary assignment is the Columbiana County Campus at East Liverpool. The FC chair will convene the committee. After reviewing candidates’ files, the RTP members will discuss the strengths and weaknesses of each candidate. The chair will take a straw vote of the RTP members regarding support or nonsupport of the candidates. Members will submit their written evaluation of each candidate to the chair. The chair will express these views in a letter which will be sent to the campus Dean and Chief Administrative Officer, the candidate, and the appropriate Kent Campus administrator. Copies of the written evaluations will also be included with the letter to the candidate and placed in the FlashFolio document.