Faculty Excellence Awards

  1. Overview

    Faculty Excellence Awards (FEAs) are established pursuant to the applicable Collective Bargaining Agreement. Procedures and timelines for determining Faculty Excellence Awards for any given year shall be conducted in accordance with guidelines issued by the Office of the Provost.

    According to the 2015 Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), FEAs are considered in: (a) documented meritorious performance in research and/or creative activities; (b) documented meritorious performance in teaching, and (c) documented meritorious service.

    Each time there are FEAs, existing award criteria and School procedures are to be reviewed and modified, if desired, by the FAC, subject to the approval of the Director. Existing criteria and procedures will also be modified to reflect changes in the CBA. The basic procedures for FEA are as follows:

    1. Within one week of receiving notification of dates and deadlines for FEAs from the Provost’s Office, the School Director will notify Faculty of the upcoming review.
    2. Faculty who wish to be reviewed for an FEA are responsible for submitting their documentation materials, in accordance with School guidelines, to the School Director by the due date. Each FAC member is responsible for evaluating the materials submitted by each Faculty member for excellence consideration following the objective procedures established by the School. The FAC will collectively recommend to the School Director whether monies should be awarded and number of points (ratings) for each applicant.
    3. The School Director will, after consideration of FAC recommendations, make a preliminary determination of FEAs and will notify Faculty of the preliminary determination.
    4. Faculty members have the right to request reconsideration of the preliminary determination. Such requests will be considered by the FAC, which will, on the merits of the request, make a recommendation to the School Director.
    5. The School Director will, after review of any reconsideration materials, transmit the final recommendation to the Dean. The School Director’s final recommendation shall be distributed to each Faculty member concerned.
  2. Criteria

    FEA evaluation is based on criteria similar to those used for reappointment, promotion, and tenure review outlined in this Handbook. To be considered for FEA review, publications, presentations, and other scholarly products must be completed, and grants and awards must be received during the review period. Materials will not be considered for more than one excellence award period (i.e., articles in press in one FEA cycle may not be counted as published articles in a subsequent FEA review).

    Faculty members submitting materials for an FEA should consider their work to consistently exceed expectations of what is typically expected of a Faculty member, as outlined in this Handbook. Therefore, Faculty members should not submit their materials for an FEA if they perceive their work as meeting basic expectations.

    Within the School, the percentage of funds available to the School for FEA awards will be designated in the following manner:

    • 35% of the award pool will be distributed across Research;
    • 35% of the award pool will be distributed across Teaching; and
    • 30% of the award pool will be distributed across Service.
  3. Documentation Required for Application

    With regard to documentation, the desire is to gather enough material to have a fair and adequate evaluation and yet not submit material to the extent that applying for such Faculty excellence funds becomes unduly burdensome. To best meet such desire, documentation materials are to be organized as a concise summation of a Faculty member’s activities that have occurred during the FEA period. As such, Faculty members who wish to be reviewed will prepare a succinct application that provides objective justification for each FEA request. Faculty may apply for an FEA in: (a) Research and/or Creative Activities, (b) Teaching, and /or (c) Service, consistent with the Collective Bargaining Agreement. The application will consist of three or fewer pages for each FEA request (i.e., one application for Research FEA, one application for Teaching, and one application for Service, not including vita.

    Within the three-page application, a Faculty member will provide brief documentation of his or her activities using a combination of short narratives, bulleted inventories, and/or tables, which allow for quick review. As general guidance, no achievement may be listed across all three categories. The FAC reserves the right to seek additional materials or clarification if they believe doing so is important to making an adequate and fair recommendation. Specific recommendations for each FEA request are provided below.

    1. Research/Creative Activities FEA

      A summary and/or list of publications, presentations, various editorial activities, applications for extramural funding, consultancies within school districts or other evidence of research or creative contributions that occurred during the award period shall be provided. It is encouraged that documentation of such activities be prepared using tables and/or direct citations from the Faculty member’s curriculum vitae.

    2. Teaching FEA

      A summary and/or list of courses taught, advising load, graduate committees served, peer reviews, or other evidence of excellent teaching that occurred during the award period shall be provided. Applications for a Teaching FEA are required to contain the following: (a) mean scores from item #19 of the Student Survey of Instruction (SSI) for each class taught during the time period for which the FEA is given.  

    3. Service FEA

      A summary and/or list of service responsibilities to the program/School/College/and or University and one’s discipline or profession shall be provided. Examples include, but are not limited to serving as a Program Coordinator, Director of a Center, or executive officer in a professional society. In addition, student advisement and efforts in support of student recruitment and retention activities may be summarized or listed.

  4. Review of FEA Applications

    Upon receipt of applications, the FAC will review each file and individually rate the applicant’s file on a three-point scale

    0 = Work is perceived to be meeting basic job expectations

    1 = Work is perceived to exceed basic job expectations

    2 = Work is superior and perceived to far exceed basic job expectations

    Each FAC member will turn in their ratings to the School’s Special Assistant, who will then add the total points for all Faculty in each of the two categories. The Special Assistant also will prepare a matrix of total points awarded to each candidate for each category. The School’s Special Assistant must keep the raw data (i.e., each FAC member’s ratings) in case appeals are made.

    The FAC will meet and discuss the ratings of the pool. (Faculty names will be removed from the ratings). Clusters within the distribution of ratings will be agreed upon by the FAC. The same dollar allocation will be made to Faculty who fall within the same cluster. Allocations for each Faculty member within a cluster will be based on the number of clusters within the total distribution; e.g., in a three-cluster distribution within a category, each Faculty member with the highest merit would receive 3 units of the total allocation. A cluster at the bottom of the ratings may be deemed by the FAC as work that is not viewed as being above average and, therefore, not warranting an FEA.