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 comprised of the tenured members of the Department. The annual review also provides each untenured faculty member opportunity to receive feedback from the members of the Department Ad Hoc RTP committee as to the ways in which her/his performance, strengths, weaknesses, and contribution to the department mission are perceived.
At least once before the 3rd year, the FAC, in consultation with the Chair, assigns two (2) faculty members to visit the classes of each probationary faculty member, interview students in the classes, and generally evaluate the 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 also create an updated file that is presented 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 reappointment. The Chair also independently assesses the accomplishments of each probationary faculty member. She/he informs the probationary faculty of the committee's recommendation and forwards her/his recommendation and that of the committee to the Dean. Probationary faculty members who are not to be reappointed must be notified according to the schedule established by the Office of the Provost. For faculty members, whose appointment is at 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, faculty reviewing a candidate for reappointment 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 of impact upon the discourse of her/his discipline. This record can be demonstrated through review of the candidate’s peer reviewed work including assessment of the impact (as measured by the quality of the journal publishing the paper) or citation indices such as Google Scholar. 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 must 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 is expected of all who seek reappointment in the Department. A candidate who fails to demonstrate likely success in the tenure process will be notified promptly that she/he will not be reappointed.
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.
From time to time, personal and/or family circumstances may arise that require an untenured faculty member to need 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)