Reappointment, Tenure and Promotion

  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.

    Circumstances may arise that require extension of the probationary period. 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).

    In making a reappointment decision, each member of the Department’s Ad Hoc RTP Committee will render a judgment as to whether, “[g]iven the years of service to date and the number of years until mandatory tenure review, it is reasonable to expect that the probationary faculty member will eventually undergo a successful tenure review” (University policy and procedures regarding faculty reappointment, Section D). 

    1. Necessary Conditions for Annual Reappointment

      1. Documented evidence of suitable progress in scholarship, considering the accumulated years of service.
      2. Documented evidence of suitable progress in teaching, considering the accumulated years of service. 
      3. Documented evidence of suitable progress in service, considering the accumulated years of service.

      In addition to providing documented evidence for each annual reappointment review of suitable progress in scholarship, teaching and service, no later than the second annual review probationary faculty members must also articulate a plan for achieving tenure. For each annual review, candidates should also address any concerns expressed by the Ad Hoc RTP Committee and/or the Chair in previous reviews. Subsection D (below) offers guidelines and examples of acceptable documentation of scholarship, teaching and service, as well as criteria for evaluating achievements in each of the three areas.

  2. Tenure

    The policies and procedures for tenure are included in the University policy regarding faculty tenure (See University Policy Register 3342-6-14). Each academic year, tenure guidelines for Kent and Regional Campus faculty are distributed by the Office of the Provost.

    1. Necessary Conditions for Tenure

      1. Documented evidence that the candidate has achieved a significant body of scholarship and will continue and sustain a program of high-quality scholarship.
      2. Documented evidence that the candidate has achieved excellence as a teacher and will continue and sustain a program of high-quality teaching.
      3. Documented evidence that the candidate has provided effective service and will continue and sustain a program of high-quality service.

          
      Subsection D (below) offers guidelines and examples of acceptable documentation of scholarship, teaching and service, as well as criteria for evaluating achievements in each of the three areas. 

  3. Promotion

    The policies and procedures for promotion are included in the University policy regarding faculty tenure (See University Policy Register 3342-6-15). Each academic year, promotion guidelines for Kent and Regional Campus faculty are distributed by the Office of the Provost. 

    1. Departmental Criteria Regarding Academic Credentials and Experience

      a.   Assistant Professor: Normally an Assistant Professor must have the Ph.D. (or equivalent) in philosophy and will have served five years as Assistant Professor before becoming eligible for consideration for advancement.

      b.   Associate Professor: Normally an Associate Professor must have the Ph.D. (or equivalent) in philosophy and will have served five years as Associate Professor before becoming eligible for consideration for advancement.

      c.    Full Professor: Normally a Full Professor must hold a Ph.D. (or equivalent) in philosophy.

      d.   In extraordinary cases a faculty member may be considered for promotion to the next highest rank with fewer years at current rank. Exceptions to these usual or standard circumstances will be reviewed in accordance with University Policy.

      e.   A non-tenured faculty member applying for promotion in rank to either Associate or Full Professor must undergo a successful tenure review.

    2. Departmental Criteria Regarding Academic Performance and Service

      The Department observes the following as necessary conditions for promotion:

      1. Assistant Professor
        1. Documented evidence of scholarly activity such as an accepted Ph.D. dissertation. 
        2. Documented evidence of teaching, such as a statement of teaching aims and goals, technology utilized, comprehensive syllabi or class plans, peer review and/or student teaching evaluations (if available), and letters of recommendation attesting to teaching experience and effectiveness. 
      2. Associate Professor
        1. Documented evidence of achievement in scholarship beyond that achieved for the rank of Assistant Professor. 
        2. Documented evidence of achievement in teaching beyond that achieved for the rank of Assistant Professor. 
        3. Documented evidence of achievement in service beyond that achieved for the rank of Assistant Professor.
      3. Full Professor
        1. Documented evidence of achievement in scholarship beyond that achieved for the rank of Associate Professor. 
        2. Documented evidence of achievement in teaching beyond that achieved for the rank of Associate Professor.
        3. Documented evidence of achievement in service beyond that achieved for the rank of Associate Professor.

      For consideration of promotion to the rank of Full Professor, evidence must be provided that the candidate’s work has not merely made a positive contribution to scholarship in the area, but has had significant impact. 

      Subsection D (below) offers guidelines and examples of acceptable documentation of scholarship, teaching and service, as well as criteria for evaluating achievements in each of the three areas. 

  4. Evidence

    The quality and merit of scholarship, teaching, and service is assessed in terms of the following criteria. In all cases, it is the responsibility of candidates for reappointment, tenure, or promotion to demonstrate, using the guidelines detailed below, that they have fulfilled the necessary conditions for reappointment, tenure and/or promotion detailed above, as applicable.  Candidates are required to present a thorough and reflective self-evaluation narrative without unduly inflating accomplishments or seeming to duplicate achievement within or across categories.  (See section G below.)

    1. Scholarship

      In evaluating scholarship activities, the Department takes into account factors such as the breadth and depth of the candidate’s knowledge and scholarship in the field; evidence of high-quality research activity; the significance of the candidate’s research to extending knowledge in the field; and the clarity of the candidate’s research project.  
          
      The Department recognizes that activities will vary considerably among individuals and that the quality and merit of these activities should thus be assessed within each candidate’s unique scholarly context, including area(s) of specialization, methodologies employed, and the extent to which the candidate’s work interfaces with other disciplines and with fields outside academe.  In particular, the Department recognizes that some faculty publish in a variety of modes, including single and multiple author books, edited books, book chapters, journal articles, and reviews; others focus upon a single mode, such as journal articles. A publication in a language other than English will be regarded as comparable to a similar English language publication. Furthermore, the ability to publish works in a language which is not native to the speaker provides additional evidence of the candidate's scholarship. 

      Members of the Ad Hoc RTP committee also take into account the specializations and concentrations specified in each faculty member’s letter of offer, if applicable.

      1. Books

        In philosophy, a book is not equal to a fixed number of articles, and a book of a certain number of pages should not be equated to the same number of pages published in a series of articles.

        There are no fixed criteria for assessing the quality of a book or a publisher in the discipline of philosophy. However, not all publishers are equal.  The characteristics of a quality press for the publications of books in philosophy include, but are not limited to, the following:

        • established university academic press, established non-university academic press, or press which serves as the publishing arm of an established academic society
        • external, blind review of the work by established senior scholars in the appropriate specialization, including the possibility of a second level of review by scholars of a similar stature if the book is being considered for inclusion in a series
        • a lengthy and rigorous review period in which the author responds to requests for revision from the reviewers

        Conversely, the following are some indicators that a press is not a quality venue for publishing in the field of philosophy:

        • the publisher conducts most of its reviewing in-house
        • the review process is brief and/or cursory, and/or the author is not required to address requests for revision from the reviewers
        • the press’ contributions to academic scholarship are uneven or questionable

        Works self-published by the author, or which the author pays a press to publish, are not considered evidence of scholarship.

      2. Journal Articles

        The following criteria apply to both traditional and purely electronic journals.

        It is understood that there is no generally accepted ranking of philosophical journals across the discipline. In subfields where official rankings of journals do exist, however, those rankings should be considered authoritative for journals within that subfield. Even in subfields where no formal rankings exist, however, not all journals are equal.  The characteristics of a quality philosophical journal, regardless of subfield, include, but are not limited to, the following:

        • a high number of annual submissions
        • a low acceptance rate
        • a high impact factor, in subfields where such measures exist (it is understood that, particularly in smaller subfields, even the most influential journals will not have a significant impact factor)
        • an editorial board composed of established senior scholars in the relevant specialization(s)
        • reviewers with expertise in the relevant specialization(s)
        • a rigorous and lengthy review process 
        • affiliation with a learned academic society 

        While journals that engage in blind review of submissions are generally preferred, it is understood that some top journals in some subfields publish only invited articles. In addition, journals committed to blind review may also publish special editions featuring invited submissions, or a combination of invited and blind-reviewed submissions. 

        Given that the typical length of journal articles varies significantly by philosophical subfield, it is inappropriate to simply count pages as a measure of a scholar’s output. 

      3. Book Chapters

        Publishing chapters in edited anthologies is a common form of scholarly activity in some subfields of the discipline of philosophy. In the case of scholarly book chapters, the quality of the publisher of the anthology will be evaluated based on the criteria in (a) above.  The language regarding the relative value of invited versus blind-reviewed journal articles in (b) above applies to book chapters as well. That a previously published essay is selected for inclusion as a book chapter or anthology is often an indication of its overall quality and lasting significance. 

      4. Scholarly Translations

        Scholarly translations are crucial to making important research available to a wider audience, both within and outside the academic world. They require a deep understanding of the work in its disciplinary and cultural context. Book translations published by quality academic presses typically undergo the same blind review process as the original manuscript. Because of their importance, translations of previously published philosophical essays and book chapters should be accorded roughly equal weight as a publication in a journal of that quality would be given. A book translation, while generally not equivalent to a single-authored book, should still be regarded as a major accomplishment. 

      5. Scholarly Presentations

        For many, but not all, faculty members in philosophy, a record of invited and/or refereed presentations at academic conferences, symposia, and workshops, and/or lectures at academic institutions, is an important component of their scholarly record.  However, such presentations should be supplemented by an ongoing program of scholarly publication.

        The characteristics of a quality academic conference, workshop, or symposium include, but are not limited to, the following:

        • a high number of submissions
        • a low acceptance rate
        • a blind review process 
        • prominent invited and/or keynote speakers, if applicable
        • affiliation with an established academic society

        The geographical location of a conference should not be taken into account when determining the quality of the conference, or whether the conference is local, regional, national, or international in scope.  For example, a conference held in NE Ohio in which scholars from several countries are participating is an international conference, not a local one.

        In the case of presentations which are not subject to blind review, it is important to distinguish between invited presentations which are based on a scholar’s record and scholarly reputation, and which are thus indicators of the scholar’s impact, and venues at which all submissions are simply accepted without review.

      6. Other Scholarly Accomplishments

        In addition to the categories discussed above, scholarship in the discipline of philosophy can take on the following forms.  While valuable as evidence of scholarly achievement, none of the below are necessary for a successful reappointment, tenure, or promotion application.

        • election to office in scholarly organizations and societies
        • editorial board membership on journals
        • editorship of journals or of special editions of journals
        • requests to serve as an external reviewer for tenure or promotion files
        • request to serve as an external reader for theses and dissertations, either at KSU or elsewhere
        • invitations to serve as an organizer, steering committee member, or reviewer for academic conferences  
        • acknowledgment as a specialist by federal, state, or private institutions outside academe in fields related to the faculty member’s research, by, for example, invitations to serve as a leader or member of a panel, to conduct site visits, or to serve as a consultant for the institution
        • grants (while external grants generally represent a  more significant scholarly achievement, even internal grants can be competitive; given the difficult and time-consuming nature of grant applications, some credit should be given even for grant applications which are not funded) 
        • fellowships (the language above concerning grants is also applicable to fellowships
        • academic awards (other than grants and fellowships)
      7. Evidence of Impact

        Once a scholarly work has been published, indicators of its influence may include, but are not limited to, the following. It is understood that, in many cases, it can take time for a scholar’s work to achieve such influence.

        • citations and discussions by other scholars
        • indexing in research databases, including those focusing on disciplines other than philosophy, if applicable
        • reviews in scholarly journals (while reviews in more prominent venues carry more weight, all reviews should be considered signs of a work’s influence)
        • translations into foreign languages
        • reprints and subsequent editions
        • awards 
        • invitations the author receives to give lectures and presentations at universities and scholarly gatherings
        • invitations the author receives to contribute to, or to serve on the editorial board of, scholarly journals
        • requests the author receives to review submissions for academic presses, journals, and conferences
    2. Teaching

      Teaching includes instruction at all levels of the undergraduate and graduate curriculum in philosophy, and all other viable forms of instruction. The following are some examples of evidence of successful teaching, not an exhaustive list. All candidates for reappointment, tenure, and promotion are required to provide the items marked with an asterisk in their file for each class taught.

      1. Instruction and Delivery

        1. Representative syllabi from each course (e.g. PHIL 11001), indicating scope of class, class requirements, exam and paper schedule, grading procedure, reading assignments. *
        2. Copies of examinations given in each course, requirements for papers, and any course handouts. * 
        3. Student evaluations, including all numeric data and student comments contained in the SSI Report to the department, from each class the candidate has taught. *
        4. Peer review and evaluation of teaching, including visitation of the instructor’s classes during the time he or she is a candidate for tenure.
        5. Evidence of outstanding achievement, such as teaching awards. The value or weight of any one award will depend upon the review process, and the level of competition (college, university, state, region, or national award).
        6. Honors course contact-hours and additional requirements added to non-honors courses. 
        7. Experiential Learning Requirement (ELR) contact-hours and additional requirements added to non-ELR courses.  

        Teaching Excellence Committee Reports will be included in each candidate’s file by the Chair.

      2. Curriculum Design and Review

        1. Demonstrated significant involvement in curricular development and/or review beyond participation in routine Curriculum Committee or other Departmental service activities.
      3. Advising, Mentoring and Supervision

        1. Participation on Honors and M.A. thesis committees within the Department, as well as Honors, MA, and Doctoral theses outside the Department. 
        2. Other significant student research and career advising.
      4. Professional Development

        1. Publication of instructional software, computer-based instructional materials, or instructor's manuals for software or textbooks.
        2. Organizing and conducting workshops and/or seminars on pedagogy.
        3. Participation in faculty development programs for teaching.
        4. Manuscript reviewing/refereeing for pedagogy journals and/or publishers.
        5. Grant proposal reviewing/refereeing for external granting agencies and foundations focusing on pedagogy.
        6. Seeking professionally reviewed pedagogy research and/or instructional grants.  Extra weight is placed on successfully receipt of grants.
    3. Service

       

      Service activities make significant contributions to the advancement of the educational, scholarly, governance, and collegial goals and missions of the University, College, Campus, Department, or community.  These activities may or may not be tied to a faculty member’s specialization within philosophy.  The following are examples of service and are not an exhaustive list.

      1. Outstanding service to the Department, College, Campus, or University. The activities may include: 
        1. Committee membership or committee Chair positions beyond routine participation in Departmental committees of the whole such as FAC, Grad FAC, Curriculum Committee, search committees, and graduate conference attendance. These additional activities may include MA advising and thesis reading, participation in ad hoc committee assignments or student advising beyond routine assignments.
        2. Participation in undergraduate or graduate student recruitment activities. 
        3. Service to the Department, such as Graduate and Undergraduate Coordinator, or CAC Representative.
        4. Guest lecturing, thesis and dissertation reading outside the Department, or serving as an ad hoc RTP reviewer for other departments.
        5. Serving on university-wide committees or organizations, including (but not limited to) advising for student organizations beyond the Department, Faculty Senate, Regional Campus Faculty Council, IRB, IACUC, Provost’s Advisory Boards, AAUP leadership, and ad hoc University-wide hiring or review committees.
      2. Outstanding service to the community beyond the university which is not representative of the Department, College, Campus, and University including but not limited to:
        1. Service, including membership or leadership in service learning organizations.
        2. Service, including membership or leadership in community organizations such as museums, hospitals, and other organizations.
        3. Service, including organization of regional, national, or international conferences.  
        4. Service, including membership or leadership in national and international professional bodies such as learned societies and federal review panels.
        5. Service, including program review boards, panels, professional mentoring and assessment or student advising activities that take place at other institutions.  

      It is incumbent upon each faculty member to explain the scope, effort, contributory value, and (when necessary) professional contribution of each service activity. 

  5. External Letters of Evaluation

    Beyond the perusal of the candidate’s published works and other documented evidence of scholarship activities by the members of the Ad Hoc Promotion and Tenure Committee, further evaluation of the candidate’s publications and scholarly activities will be solicited by the Chairperson in the form of external (outside the university) letters of evaluation. The Chair will solicit letters according to University policies and procedures.

  6. Regional Campus Application

    These criteria for promotion, tenure, and reappointment obtain for both Kent Campus Philosophy faculty and Regional Campus Philosophy faculty; the Department’s Ad Hoc Promotion and Tenure Committee/Ad Hoc Advisory Committee makes recommendations for promotion, tenure, or reappointment of all members of the Department – the Regional Campuses faculty as well as the Kent Campus faculty. The Department of Philosophy recognizes that in evaluating Regional Campus faculty for tenure and promotion greater consideration may be given to teaching and service as indicated in the appropriate campus handbook. 

  7. Self-Evaluation Narrative

    Each candidate for reappointment, tenure or promotion should submit a self-evaluation narrative, along with the other materials required by university policy and the departmental handbook to constitute a reappointment, tenure or promotion file. A basic purpose of the self-evaluation narrative is to allow a candidate the opportunity to present a composite assessment of the candidate’s accomplishments in scholarship, teaching and service under consideration. This narrative should describe and delineate the candidate’s achievements and contributions, strengths and weaknesses, in the respective areas of scholarship, teaching and service. In this narrative, the candidate is expected to make the case concerning the quality of his/her accomplishments in scholarship, teaching, and service using the criteria in section D above. Candidates are required to present a thorough and reflective narrative without unduly inflating accomplishments or seeming to duplicate achievement within or across categories.