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). Each academic year, tenure and promotion guidelines for Kent and Regional Campus faculty are distributed by the Office of the Provost. 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, 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. For tenure, evaluation may refer to (but not count) accomplishments prior to appointment at Kent State in order to establish consistency. Grant proposals submitted but not funded, proposals pending, creative works and papers “in review” or papers “in press,” graduate students currently advised, and any other materials that may reflect on the candidate’s potential for a long-term successful career may be considered. The tenure decision is based on all of the evidence available to determine the candidate’s potential to pursue a productive career. On the other hand, promotion is recognition based on a candidate’s accomplishments completed during the review period and promotion decisions are based on performances, exhibitions and installations reviewed, papers published, grants received and graduate students graduated during the review period, as well as teaching evaluations and service to the University. 


Consideration for promotion to Professor differs from consideration for promotion to Associate Professor. Promotion to Associate Professor is recognition for establishing a career likely to achieve national and/or international prominence as evidenced by performances, exhibitions and installations reviewed, extramural grants received, papers published in the refereed literature, students graduated, etc., as appropriate to the discipline. Promotion to Professor recognizes the highest level of university achievement and national and/or international prominence. Evidence for this prominence may include a record of sustained creative activity in highly significant venues, major extramural funding from highly competitive funding sources, and a record of increased prominence in and impact on the field, as appropriate to the discipline. 


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 shall include consideration of the faculty member's personal integrity and professional behavior as recognized by the University community. A sound ethical approach to all aspects of teaching, research, publication, and the academic profession are expected of all who seek tenure and promotion in the School.