Effective January 1, 2013
The College of Law's ability to achieve its educational, academic and professional missions requires a committed faculty dedicated to excellence in teaching, scholarship and service. The College regularly assesses faculty achievement in these areas through reappointment and promotion and tenure reviews. This document sets forth the criteria, standards and procedures for conducting such reviews of College of Law faculty. The policies and procedures contained in this document must be read in conjunction with the Georgia State University Promotion and Tenure Manual, as approved in January 2012, and the bylaws and policies of the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia.
As aptly noted in the University's Promotion and Tenure Manual, "promotion and tenure decisions are extremely important to the life of the institution," and "are also among the most important events in a faculty member's professional life." This document is meant to safeguard these interests and afford faculty members notice, fairness, and the opportunity and resources needed for successful promotion and tenure review and ongoing professional development.
A. Promotion to Associate Professor of Law
Pre-tenure: An assistant professor is eligible to apply and be considered for promotion to associate professor in the fourth year of service. Earlier application in the third year requires a showing of highly exceptional achievement. A promotion awarded under these time periods would not come with tenure.
With tenure: An assistant professor may elect to be considered for promotion to associate professor and the award of tenure concurrently. These concurrent applications would ordinarily occur in the fifth or sixth year of service.
Tenure may be awarded upon completion of a probationary period of at least five (5) years of service. A maximum of three years' credit toward the minimum period may be allowed for service in full-time faculty positions at other institutions. Such credit for prior service shall be defined in writing at the time of initial appointment and approved by the president.
A candidate for promotion and tenure may relinquish some or all probationary credit received, with the approval of the dean. When a candidate with probationary credit is first eligible for consideration for promotion and tenure, he/she must notify the dean if he/she will keep or relinquish some or all of the awarded credit.
The maximum time that may be served as a tenure track faculty member without the award of tenure is seven (7) years. However, a maximum of two (2) years' suspension of the probationary period may be granted due to a leave of absence based on birth or adoption of a child, or serious disability or prolonged illness of the employee or immediate family member. Such interruption must be approved by the president.
C. Promotion to Professor of Law
An associate professor is eligible to apply and be considered for promotion to full professor in the fifth year of service in rank. An earlier application for promotion in the fourth year of service in rank requires strong justification. A candidate hired initially as an associate professor may elect to apply for promotion to full professor and the award of tenure concurrently. These concurrent applications would ordinarily occur in the fifth or sixth year of service in rank.
Promotion and tenure recommendations of tenure track and tenured faculty shall be based on demonstrated excellence in teaching, scholarship, and institutional and professional service. It is necessary to meet the standards in each of these three areas. Promotion and tenure decisions entail not only an evaluation of a candidate's existing contributions and accomplishments, but a predictive assessment of the candidate's commitment to continued excellence and productivity in these areas.
Each year, the Associate Dean for Research and Faculty Development will convene a meeting to explain promotion and tenure policies and answer questions about any and all phases of the promotion and tenure process. This meeting shall be open to all interested faculty members.
B. Specific Standards
Central to the mission of the College of Law is educating students in the study of law and preparing them for entry into the legal profession. To achieve this mission the College of Law faculty is committed to teaching excellence. Accordingly, demonstrated excellence, commitment, and effectiveness in teaching will be a necessary component of promotion and tenure review.
Faculty members may be effective teachers in different ways, and it is not possible to define each of the essential components of teaching effectiveness. The following factors, however, are extremely important: ability to communicate; enthusiasm for teaching and for engagement with students; effective preparation for class; breadth and depth of relevant knowledge; thoughtful organization of both individual class sessions and overall course organization; ability to motivate students to engage with the subject matter of the course; and availability to students beyond the classroom environment for advisement and other academic purposes. Equally important are a faculty member's efforts to integrate professional values and skills with knowledge and doctrine, establish clear course objectives, and devise effective methods of assessing student achievement.
Assessment of teaching quality is based on three primary, though not exclusive, sources of information: 1) faculty peer evaluations based on class visits, 2) student evaluations, and 3) the candidate's own statement of pedagogical goals and methodologies.
The central mission of the College of Law also requires a faculty committed to scholarly pursuits directed to academic and professional audiences. These pursuits should lead to publications that make important contributions to the development of the law, such as scholarship relating to doctrinal analysis and policy, law reform, legal practice, the improvement of legal institutions, legal education, and research that ventures beyond the law and offers empirical and interdisciplinary perspectives.
Engaging in such research is important for two reasons. First, scholarship is a critical component of effective teaching. Teaching informs scholarship and scholarship informs the important ingredients of good teaching: rigorous analysis, creativity, and the lifelong development and enhancement of one's area of expertise. Second, scholarship is about the study of problems that result in the dissemination of knowledge. It is not enough for faculty to acquire knowledge and develop expertise if they do not apply it and share it both for further study within the academy and for the use and benefit of professional communities and institutions.
The quality of a candidate's scholarship, as judged by peers at this and other institutions, is thus a substantial factor in any promotion and tenure recommendation. Towards this end, it is a faculty member's responsibility to pursue, and the College of Law's responsibility to support, the development of a scholarly agenda that steadily gains significant recognition and standing in one's field of study. Factors relevant in demonstrating the recognition and impact of a faculty member's work include, without limitation, assessments in external review letters by leading peers in the field; invitations to present work at important conferences, workshops, symposia; citations to, or re-publication of, the candidate's work; scholarly and professional responses to articles; recognition of a candidate's work by scholarly, professional or governmental organizations; and impact on policy, practice or the development of the law.
Recognizing that legal journals are typically run by law students rather than academic peers, the quality of the candidate's scholarship is of primary importance in assessing whether standards under this section have been met. The identity of the journal in which a work of scholarship is published, although in some cases reflective of the particular distinction of the piece, is secondary. While the methodology and focus of legal scholarship varies widely, excellent work must demonstrate intellectual rigor, sophisticated analysis, and originality. Quality research that possesses these attributes may take a variety of forms, such as articles and essays in law reviews and other significant academic journals, books, book chapters, treatises, casebooks, high-quality professional journals, and the published results of grant-funded research. Relevant as well are quality publications resulting from law reform and policy work with government agencies, commissions and task forces.
The use of online publication outlets also is becoming more prevalent as a form for discussion and dissemination of ideas among scholars and the professional community. As this trend advances, these vehicles also may be included in one's overall research portfolio, to be given weight commensurate with their length, scholarly content and rigor of the research outlet. Participation in forms of online publication also can serve to enhance a faculty member's visibility and the recognition of his or her work, much in the way it does through attendance at conferences and other forms of conventional networking.
3. Service and Professional Engagement
The success and effectiveness of the College of Law also requires the faculty to be engaged in the affairs of the law school and the university, and to contribute to the advancement of the legal profession and related academic/professional initiatives and organizations. With respect to the law school and university, faculty service includes such responsibilities as taking on an appropriate share of committee responsibilities, assisting and advising student organizations, attending an appropriate share of law school and faculty-related events, and performing other duties as assigned that relate to and further the mission of the college and university.
With respect to professional and academic activity, such engagement includes assuming leadership responsibilities in bar associations and other professional and academic organizations; participation in professional and academic meetings, conferences and workshops; and involvement in law reform, public policy, and pro bono work. These forms of professional and academic engagement not only serve to advance the college's connections to important constituencies, they further our teaching and research missions. They do so by reinforcing faculty efforts to be creative and relevant in their teaching and writing, and by helping to promote the recognition of their work among their academic peers.
4. Composite Measure Across the Faculty
The College of Law is strongest as an institution when its faculty as a whole is contributing significantly to the education of our law students, the production of scholarship, and to serving the University, professional and other external communities. While every faculty member must satisfy standards in each of these areas to achieve promotion and tenure, this does not require every faculty member to make an identical contribution to each of these endeavors every year. Thus, the promotion and tenure review process should take into account each individual's strengths and consider his or her portfolio development over the course of the promotional period, assessing his or her unique ability to contribute to the law school's holistic mission of excellence in all areas.
C. Standards for Evaluation by Rank and For Tenure
Each level of review for promotion and for tenure entails a comprehensive assessment of a candidate's performance, progress, and potential future performance with respect to teaching, scholarship and service. Standards and expectations are applied with greater rigor at successive levels of review. For pre-tenure faculty, teaching loads are adjusted to support both their ability to focus on their pedagogy and develop a research agenda and routine. Similarly, while pre-tenure faculty are expected to engage in institutional and professional service, institutional demands, to the extent possible, should be assigned in a manner that does not undermine the development of their teaching and scholarship.
With respect to scholarship expectations at each level of review, a faculty member's record should reflect the results of an ongoing and active research agenda that significantly contributes to the development of law or policy and that is consistent with the typical cycle necessary to produce a quality law review article or equivalent piece of legal or interdisciplinary scholarship. Given that, the quantitative expectations noted below reflect a productivity assumption, common in legal education, that faculty will produce at a rate that averages a quality publication per year, noting of course the need to make adjustments for books and other projects of different length and complexity.
2. Promotion to Associate Professor
Pre-tenure: To qualify for promotion from Assistant Professor to Associate Professor without tenure, the faculty member must demonstrate: 1) a high level of competence and effectiveness in teaching, or growth leading towards attaining such a level, including a demonstrated commitment to the students and the quality of his or her pedagogy; 2) a record of growing scholarly achievement and recognition in one's field, supported by publications of high quality; 3) a commitment to institutional and professional service at a level commensurate with the candidate's experience; and 4) a record overall that shows unmistakable promise of tenure.
Quantitatively, achievement of the scholarship standard for pre-tenure promotion to Associate Professor normally will require the completion and external review of at least three significant articles in law reviews, academic journals or equivalent products of research of substantial quality and academic merit. This is meant as a guide and not as a precise formula. The larger point is that candidates for promotion are expected to present a publication record that reflects sustained output, evidenced by a body of scholarly work commensurate with experience and rank. In determining the components of a scholarly portfolio under review, a work may be included when it has been published or accepted for publication in time to be included in the external review process.
With tenure: To qualify for promotion from Assistant Professor to Associate Professor of Law with tenure, the faculty member must satisfy the standards for tenure.
Because tenure represents a career-long commitment by the institution towards a faculty member, it carries with it the expectation of ongoing productivity and the continued pursuit of excellence on the part of a tenured faculty member. Thus, a tenure assessment under the standards that follow involves a judgment not only of a faculty member's performance to date but the likelihood of a continued upward trajectory in terms of work quality, scholarly productivity, teaching effectiveness, and professional growth.
To qualify for tenure, the faculty member must demonstrate: 1) a high level of competence in teaching, including a demonstrated record of commitment to the students and the quality of his or her pedagogy; 2) significant scholarly achievement supported by publications of high quality and which are recognized as contributing to the advancement and development of the candidate's area of research; and 3) significant service contributions institutionally and professionally.
Quantitatively, achievement of the scholarship standard for an award of tenure normally will require a body of work that consists of at least four externally reviewed, significant articles in law reviews, academic journals or equivalent products of research of substantial quality and academic merit. This is meant as a guide and not as a precise formula. The larger point is that candidates for tenure are expected to produce a body of work that reflects a sustained and ongoing scholarly engagement, evidenced by several examples of scholarly work commensurate with experience and rank. In determining the components of a scholarly portfolio under review, a work may be included when it has been published or accepted for publication in time to be included in the external review process.
A candidate who seeks tenure combined with promotion to full professor must also satisfy all full professor standards.
4. Promotion to Professor
Attainment of professor status is not simply the next step on the promotion ladder. It reflects recognition that a faculty member has attained a significant level of achievement and national/international standing in the profession as a scholar, teacher and engaged colleague. Both the quantity and quality of the record required for this review should substantially surpass that required for the rank of associate professor.
Specifically, to qualify for promotion to professor, the faculty member must demonstrate: 1) a sustained high level of competence and continued growth in teaching, including a demonstrated record of commitment to the students and the quality of his or her pedagogy; 2) sustained and significant scholarly achievement overall, focusing on the time period since the candidate's attainment of the rank of associate professor, that has achieved significant standing and recognition in the field for its high quality and its contributions to the area of study; and 3) regular and significant service both institutionally and professionally.
Achievement of the scholarship standard for promotion to professor will require a productivity record that reflects a continuing and active scholarly agenda during the current promotion review period. In addition, as with the tenure decision, assessment of one's application for promotion to professor entails not only a judgment about a faculty member's record to date but the ability to predict that the candidate will continue to perform at a professor level on into the future.
During their pre-tenure years, faculty members will be reviewed annually to determine their eligibility for reappointment. This review requires an assessment of the faculty member's incremental and cumulative progress toward satisfying the standards for tenure and promotion noted above.
A. Promotion and Tenure Committee
The Promotion and Tenure Committee (Committee) shall work with the dean in a cooperative system of faculty evaluation and make recommendations to the dean on matters of reappointment, promotion and tenure. The Committee shall consist of all tenure-track faculty members in the College except as follows:
1. In cases of promotion to the rank of Associate Professor, only those members of the Committee who hold the rank of Professor or Associate Professor shall participate;
2. In cases, of promotion to the rank of Professor, only those members of the Committee who hold the rank of Professor shall participate;
3. In cases where tenure is under consideration, only those members of the Committee who are tenured shall participate;
4. In cases of reappointment, only those persons who are tenured or who are not tenured but who are of higher rank than the rank of the person under consideration shall participate.
The Promotion and Tenure Committee shall be headed by two faculty co-chairs elected annually by majority vote of the faculty at a regularly scheduled faculty meeting in March or April of the academic year. The term of appointment, which is renewable, shall run through the ensuing academic year. Co-chairs must be tenured full professors. They shall convene meetings of the Committee, coordinate its proceedings, and serve as its representative with regard to all required and appropriate communications. The co-chairs also will serve as co-chairs of the Faculty Review Subcommittee.
C. Faculty Review Subcommittee
The college also will have a Faculty Review Subcommittee (Subcommittee) for promotion and tenure but not reappointment cases. This Subcommittee will be comprised of five members of the full Promotion and Tenure Committee as follows: (1) two members appointed by the Dean; (2) one general member elected by the faculty; and (3) the two co-chairs of the Promotion and Tenure Committee. The purpose of the Subcommittee is to aid the Promotion and Tenure Committee in presiding over the review process. Under the leadership of the co-chairs, the Subcommittee's responsibilities generally entail overseeing and managing the stages of the process as set out in the timeline in Appendix A.
The Subcommittee also will review each candidate's completed dossier under the applicable standards set forth in this document, and prepare a written report and recommendation to the full Promotion and Tenure Committee. This report and recommendation is advisory only and is not binding on the full Committee, which is ultimately responsible for making a recommendation on each candidate to the dean.
D. General Rules Governing Promotion and Tenure Committee Meetings
1. Meetings of the Committee shall be preceded by five business days' notice to all members eligible to vote on the matters raised at that meeting. When it is anticipated that a meeting will include a vote on reappointment, promotion, or tenure, the Co-Chairs shall make every effort to schedule that meeting at a time when all faculty eligible to vote are able to attend.
2. A quorum for all purposes shall be 80% of the members eligible to vote on the particular matter according to the membership criteria defined in Section II.A.1. In the absence of such a quorum, the Promotion and Tenure Committee may not act on that matter. Every effort shall be made to include faculty members who are on leave in reappointment, promotion, and tenure decisions on which they are eligible to vote. However, any faculty member who is on leave and is unavailable to participate in any reappointment, promotion, or tenure decision shall not be counted for quorum or voting purposes.
3. Voting shall be by secret ballot. In reappointment matters, a simple majority of yea and nay votes cast shall be sufficient, and in promotion and tenure matters, a two-thirds majority of yea and nay votes cast shall be sufficient to make a recommendation to the Dean. In promotion and tenure matters, when the number of members present and voting is not an integer multiple of three, the number of yea and nay votes cast closest to two-thirds shall be sufficient. Voting shall be by secret ballot.
A. Notification and Calendar within the College
The formal review, recommendation and decision-making process within the College of Law will be conducted primarily during the fall semester of the academic year. To meet the University deadline for the dean to submit materials to the provost, the information gathering process by the co-chairs and the candidates should begin the preceding spring and should conform generally to the calendar set forth in Appendix A.
B. Contents of the Dossier
All applications for promotion and tenure will be supported by a dossier that contains a record of the candidate's professional achievements relating to teaching, scholarship and service. The contents of the dossier will include:
1. Provided by the Candidate
2. Prepared or Solicited by the Subcommittee
C. Evaluation of Teaching
Evaluation of a candidate's teaching will be based primarily on: class visits and faculty review of the candidate's classes, student evaluations, the candidate's statement of teaching goals and methods, and any submitted materials or other submissions evidencing teaching dedication, effectiveness or innovation. Relevant as well is information relating to the faculty member's teaching load, student advisement, the creation of new courses, supervision of independent study, and where possible and practicable, teaching methods that integrate, or introduce students to, skills and professional values in their doctrinal courses.
2. Class Visitation and Faculty Review
a. Class visitation and peer evaluation of a faculty member's classes are important vehicles for evaluating and promoting effective teaching. Annually, the co-chairs or their designees on the Subcommittee will assign two-person faculty teams to conduct class observations for all pre-tenured faculty as well as for candidates for promotion to professor.
b. Each faculty team will conduct observations of at least two full 75 minute classes of the same course. When a candidate is teaching different courses during the year, the two-person team will decide, after consultation with the faculty member, which course will be visited.
c. Prior to each class visit, the two-person team will meet with the faculty member to discuss the subject matter and goals of the upcoming class. The faculty member will furnish a copy of any material to be discussed in the class to the members of the team. After the team has made its class visits but before any final evaluation report is written, the team members will meet with the faculty member to discuss their observations and the faculty member's response.
d. The co-chairs will promptly provide a copy of the visitation report(s) to the observed faculty member who may promptly request that a second team be assigned for observation and report before any action is taken on the observed faculty member's reappointment, promotion or tenure. The original visitation report shall be filed in the observed faculty member's portfolio in the Dean's office, a copy being retained in a duplicate file kept by the Co-Chairs of the Promotion and Tenure Committee during the period prior to the faculty decision on the member's candidacy for reappointment, promotion or tenure.
3. Student Evaluations
The co-chairs or their designees on the Subcommittee are expected to review the student evaluations of a candidate's classes during the promotional period and prepare a summary report of the evaluations for the candidate's dossier. A copy of this summary will be provided to the candidate for review and comment prior to its finalization, and the candidate will have the opportunity to place a responsive statement in the file.
In addition, co-chairs or their designees on the Subcommittee will collect the student evaluations of the candidate and make them available in a secure location for review by any faculty member eligible to vote on the promotion or tenure decision.
D. Evaluation of Scholarship and External Reviews
To assist the Promotion and Tenure Committee in its assessment of a candidate's scholarship, the dean will solicit peer evaluations, both internal and external, from experts in the candidate's field. With respect to the number of external reviewers, a candidate's dossier generally should be supported by five external letters and at least two internal letters.
The names of the external reviewers should be drawn from lists of those recommended by the candidate and the dean (who may consult with the co-chairs and the associate deans). At least half of the external letters must come from reviewers on the dean's list. External reviewers from academic institutions must hold the rank of associate or full professor, and should be affiliated with law schools which have promotion and tenure standards that are as or more rigorous than those at the College of Law. The primary consideration in selecting reviewers should be their reputation and standing in the candidate's field of expertise. In appropriate circumstances, external reviewers may be drawn from relevant non-academic, professional settings. External reviewers cannot be closely affiliated with the candidate (e.g. co-author, co-worker, dissertation chair). Accompanying each external review letter should be a brief resume or bio showing the reviewer's accomplishments, standing in the field, and past relationship, if any, with the candidate.
In communicating with the external reviewers, the dean will provide the candidate's vita along with copies of the selected or multiple publications the reviewer has been asked to evaluate. External reviewers will be asked to evaluate the quality and significance of the scholarly work or works under review and the contributions it makes to the candidate's discipline.
External review letters shall be kept confidential from all persons other than those individuals involved in some aspect of the candidate's promotion or tenure application. Upon receipt of an external review, the co-chairs will provide a copy to the faculty member under consideration for promotion and tenure.
E. Evaluation of Institutional and Professional Service
Evaluation of a candidate's Institutional and Professional Service should consider: the nature and extent of the candidate's service activities, the candidate's engagement in an appropriate level of the faculty's institutional responsibilities, the candidate's capacity to assume leadership responsibilities, and the degree to which professional engagement has served to buttress the candidate's teaching and scholarly activities and enhance the candidate's reputation among his peers.
To evaluate these factors, the committee will review the candidate's own statement and solicit input from the chairs of faculty committees on which the candidate has served during the promotional period. The committee also may contact external constituencies associated with the candidate's public or professional service activities and make all other inquiries as the committee deems appropriate.
A. Subcommittee Review
Once the candidate's dossier is complete, the Subcommittee will carefully review the candidate's application and meet to discuss it.
Following its review and deliberations, the Subcommittee will prepare a written report of its assessment and recommendation. The report should assess the candidate's performance in the areas of teaching, scholarship, and service based on the dossier and the standards contained in this Promotion and Tenure Document. The purpose of the report is to aid the work of the Promotion and Tenure Committee and is advisory only.
C. Timing of Report
The report must be completed and made available to the candidate no later than 10 business days before the Promotion and Tenure Committee meeting on the candidate. The candidate may submit a written response to the report within seven business days of its receipt.
D. Availability to Faculty
The report, the candidate's response (if any), and the candidate's dossier must be made available to eligible faculty at least 5 business days before the Promotion and Tenure Committee vote on the candidate.
E. Promotion and Tenure Committee Meeting on Candidates
The Promotion and Tenure Committee will meet to discuss and evaluate the merits of each candidate's application in light of the dossier and the Subcommittee's report and recommendation. The co-chairs of the Committee will preside. In accordance with the voting rules set forth in Section V.D., the Committee will make recommendations to the dean on each candidate's application.
F. Dean's Review
Upon receiving recommendations for promotion and tenure and reappointment, the dean will conduct a review of the candidate's application based on the Promotion and Tenure Committee's recommendation and the candidate's dossier. The dean will make and independent assessment of whether to recommend favorable action, and forward all positive recommendations for promotion and tenure to the provost, accompanied by the dean's written letter in support of the recommendation and the candidate's file.
Candidates that are not recommended by the dean must receive a written decision and rationale no later than ten working days after the dean's decision. Candidates who are not recommended by the dean may appeal the dean's decision to the provost in the manner provided by the University Promotion and Tenure Manual.
G. Notice to Candidates
All candidates will receive timely notice in writing of the Committee's and the Dean's recommendations and a copy of any report(s) that are made of the candidate's credentials. All candidates have the right to respond in writing to these decisions. Copies of any such response will be included in the material reviewed at all higher levels.
Upon the arrival of each newly hired pre-tenure faculty member, the Associate Dean for Research and Faculty Development will designate a member of the tenured faculty to serve as a mentor for the new faculty member. Faculty mentors will provide support and guidance that will aid the new colleague in the development of his or her teaching, scholarship and service. At the same time, faculty mentors are not meant to be the only source of communication, but to facilitate the faculty's commitment to providing regular, constructive and candid advice.
Another source of support is provided by the Associate Dean for Research and Faculty Development. This office oversees a series of programs designed for junior faculty development and enrichment. Pre-tenure faculty members are encouraged to participate in these programs.
B. Annual Evaluation and Reappointment
1. Committee Review
Annually, each spring, the Promotion and Tenure Committee will meet to review the performance and progress of each pre-tenure faculty member and make a recommendation to the dean in support of or against reappointment.
This annual process requires the Committee to assess the pre-tenure faculty's incremental and cumulative progress toward satisfying the standards for promotion and tenure by the end of the probationary period. Thus, the promotion and tenure standards of Section C. of this document should guide faculty members in their planning and pacing during the pre-tenure period. Depending on the particular circumstances, the Committee may choose to recommend reappointment while also noting particular areas that need improvement.
All reappointment reviews will be supported by a dossier that contains a cumulative record of the faculty member's professional achievements relating to teaching, scholarship and service. The contents of the dossier will be similar but not identical to that described in section II.B. for promotion and tenure, and will not include external reviews of scholarship.
4. Notification of Renewal and Dean's Review
After receiving the Committee's reappointment recommendations, the dean will timely notify all pre-tenured faculty on the issue of their reappointment.
In addition, each spring the dean will meet with each pre-tenure faculty member to review the faculty member's performance and progress towards tenure, noting accomplishments, areas of strength, and any areas of concern. The dean will conduct these reviews based on the reappointment dossier compiled by the Promotion and Tenure Committee, and the annual report document that each faculty member is required to complete each year. The review will include discussion of any significant issues evident from the record or that surfaced during the Promotion and Tenure Committee's review.
A. Pre-tenure Review
Each pre-tenure faculty member will undergo a formal pre-tenure review during the spring of the third academic year of service. When a faculty member is hired with one or two years of probationary credit towards tenure and promotion, he or she also will undergo a pre-tenure review. A faculty member hired with three years of probationary credit may waive pre-tenure review with written approval of the dean.
The pre-tenure review will be more substantial than annual reappointment review. Its purpose is to assess progress toward tenure, and provide tenure track faculty members with a constructive evaluation of their progress. The review should identify strengths and accomplishments and pinpoint areas in need of improvement in which tenured faculty may provide assistance to tenure track colleagues.
Guidelines for this pre-tenure review process are set forth in a separate document entitled,"Guidelines for Cumulative Reviews of Tenure-track and Tenured Faculty,” which is attached here as Appendix B).
B. Post-Tenure Review
The Promotion and Tenure Committee will conduct a post-tenure review of tenured faculty. The primary purpose of the review is to assist faculty members with identifying opportunities that will enable them to reach their full potential for contributing to the College and University. Guidelines for this post-tenure review process are set forth in a separate document entitled,"Guidelines for Cumulative Reviews of Tenure-track and Tenured Faculty,” which is attached here as Appendix B).
A. Research and Writing Faculty
Each research and writing instructor shall hold a full-time, non-tenure track position in the College of Law. Such an instructor may be reappointed following an evaluation by the Promotion and Tenure Committee. No promotion may be made from the level of research and writing instructor to that of assistant professor or higher.
B. Clinical Faculty
1. In General
Clinical faculty may be hired on a non-tenure track basis to fill appointments in the College of Law's in-house clinics. These faculty members may hold faculty rank at the assistant, associate, and full professor level. While not eligible for tenure, non-tenure track clinical faculty may be eligible for a form of job security after serving a five year probationary period following their initial appointment.
Clinical faculty shall serve a five-year probation period during which time they will be reviewed annually for reappointment and contract renewal.
a. Criteria for Reappointment: To qualify for reappointment a clinical faculty member must establish that he or she is progressing reasonably toward meeting the standards for satisfactory completion of the five-year probationary period as described in Section 4.a. below.
b. Procedure and Evaluation Process: The procedure and evaluation process for reappointment shall generally follow the procedure used for tenure-track faculty, as supplemented by Section 5. below about clinic visitation and the process of acquiring information about a candidate's teaching and clinical performance.
Clinical faculty members are eligible for promotion from assistant to associate clinical professor and from associate to full clinical professor. Eligibility time periods for such promotions are the same as those for tenure-track faculty as set forth in Section II. C. above.
a. Criteria for Promotion: Promotion standards for clinical faculty are similar to those for tenure-track faculty as set forth in Sections IIC, except for certain adjustments that reflect differences in the nature and demands of clinical teaching and in scholarship expectations.
(1) Assistant to Associate Clinical Professor. To qualify for promotion from assistant to associate clinical professor, the review of the clinical faculty member must show that he or she is an effective clinical teacher; ably performs administrative responsibilities related to the operation of the clinic; is engaged in law school and/or university service; and is engaged professionally in developing expertise in, and in advancing, the field of skills and clinical legal education or substantive field of law related to the clinic.
(2)Associate to Full Clinical Professor. To qualify for promotion from associate clinical professor to full clinical professor, the review of the clinical faculty member must show that he or she is an excellent clinical teacher; is active in the management, operation and design of the clinical program and is engaged in the administrative responsibilities related to the operation of the clinic; is significantly engaged professionally in developing expertise in, and in advancing, the field of skills and clinical legal education or substantive field of law related to the clinic; and is a helpful participant in law school and/or university service or substantive field of law related to the clinic.
(3). Professional engagement for clinical faculty members may, but need not, include scholarship and the publication of scholarly research.
(4). Evaluation of a clinical faculty member's teaching will include an assessment of such factors as: 1) the quality of the supervision of students in all aspects of client representation, 2) the development of effective teaching and training materials; 3) the quality of teaching in small group settings or in a formal small class component of the clinic; and 4) the effectiveness of the clinical teacher's work as an attorney.
b. Procedure and Evaluation Process: The procedure and evaluation process for promotion shall follow the promotion procedure for tenure-track faculty as supplemented by Section 5. below about clinic visitation and the process of acquiring information about a candidate's teaching and clinical performance.
4. Five-Year Review and Continued Employment
In the fifth year of a clinical faculty member's probationary period, the faculty member will undergo a formal five-year review to determine if he or she will be eligible for continued employment and an annual contract that is presumptively renewable absent cause for non-renewal on specified grounds. No clinical faculty member may be reappointed beyond the probationary period without undergoing a successful five year review and being found eligible for the award of presumptively renewable annual contracts.
A clinical faculty member who undergoes a successful five year review shall be offered annual contracts that may cease only because of 1) dismissal for good cause, including cause related to the faculty member's job performance or fitness as a clinical teacher; 2) the closing or material modification of the faculty member's clinical program; or 3) other financial or budgetary exigency.
a. Criteria for Award of Presumptively Renewable Annual Contracts: To qualify for continued employment and a presumptively renewable contract following the 5-year probationary period, a clinical faculty member must demonstrate that he or she is an effective clinical teacher; ably handles the administrative responsibilities related to the operation of the clinic; is engaged in service to the law school and/or university community; and is actively engaged professionally in developing expertise in, and in advancing, the field of skills and clinical legal education or substantive field of law related to the clinic.
Such professional engagement may, but need not, include scholarship, as discussed in Section 3.a.3. above. Evaluation of the clinical faculty member's teaching effectiveness should include the specific factors set forth in Section 3.a.4. above.
In assessing a faculty member's performance in these areas, the record must demonstrate not only strong performance but that the faculty member will in all likelihood continue to meet or exceed these performance standards sufficient to justify the protections associated with annual job security contracts.
b. Procedure and Evaluation Process: The procedure and evaluation process for the five-year review shall be similar to that used for the tenure process (including the development of a review portfolio) as supplemented by Section 5. below about clinic visitation and the process of acquiring information about a candidate's teaching and clinical performance.
c. Reappointment After the Five-Year Evaluation Period: Following a successful five-year review, a clinical faculty member will be subject to annual evaluation conducted as part of the Dean's annual review of all faculty, and will be presumptively eligible for annual contract renewal absent cause for non-renewal on specified grounds. These annual contracts may cease only because of 1) dismissal for good cause, including cause related to the faculty member's job performance or fitness as a clinical teacher; 2) the closing or material modification of the faculty member's clinical program; or 3) other financial or budgetary exigency.
d. Non-Renewal for Unsatisfactory Job Performance After the Five-Year Review Period: If after successful completion of the five year review period, the Dean seeks to dismiss or non-renew a clinical faculty member for good cause related to the faculty member's job performance or fitness as a clinical teacher, the Dean shall notify the Chair of the Promotion and Tenure Committee so that the committee can review the Dean's assessment. For purpose of this review, the Promotion and Tenure Committee shall consist of the tenured members of the faculty. The Chair of the Promotion and Tenure Committee shall appoint a 3-person subcommittee consisting of the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and two tenured professors to conduct a review of the clinical faculty member's job performance and submit a written report to the Promotion and Tenure Committee.
Following receipt of the report, the Promotion and Tenure Committee will meet to consider whether good cause has been established to terminate the clinical faculty member and whether by majority vote to recommend to the Dean the renewal or non-renewal of his or her contract. The final decision on non-renewal shall rest with the dean.
e. Cumulative Reviews for Professional Development and Planning: Clinical faculty members shall be reviewed during their third probationary year to provide them with guidance on their progress in advance of their formal five-year review. The procedure for this review shall follow the process for pre-tenure review as set forth in the in College's Guidelines for Cumulative Reviews of Tenure-Track and Tenured Faculty.
Clinical faculty members who have successfully completed their five-year review shall undergo reviews thereafter similar to post-tenure review. The purpose of such a review is to examine the individual's contributions and achievements since his or her last review and to assist the faculty member in developing professional goals for the next five years. The procedure and intervals for these reviews shall follow the process for post-tenure review as set forth in the in College's Guidelines for Cumulative Reviews of Tenure-Track and Tenured Faculty.
5. Clinic Visitation and Observation of Candidate's Clinical Teaching and Performance
Consistent with the practice for review of tenure-track faculty, the Chair of the Promotion and Tenure Committee shall assign a team of two committee members to observe the teaching of a clinical faculty member who is the subject of reappointment, promotion, or a five-year review.
This two-member team shall visit the clinic, and, where applicable, observe the running of the clinic generally, observe small group teaching or a small class component of the clinic, schedule appropriate opportunities to observe instances of individual student supervision, and review clinical teaching materials. This two-member team also shall speak with current and former students about their clinical experience and shall gather information to evaluate the effectiveness of the clinical teacher's work as a lawyer. The team members' report to the Promotion and Tenure Committee shall address these aspects of the visitation.
The two-member team shall meet with the clinical faculty member both before and after the clinic visit and observation to provide him or her with the same type of consultation and feedback that applies to class visits of tenure-track faculty under Section II.6.
A clinical faculty member who is aggrieved by a negative final decision or recommendation of the Dean concerning reappointment, promotion, the five-year review, or non-renewal after the five year review period may exercise the applicable University or Board of Regents appeals and/or grievance procedures.
This document may be amended at any meeting of the faculty by a majority vote of the members present, provided there is a quorum and that the proposed amendment has been presented to the faculty at least seven days in advance of the meeting at which it is to be voted upon.
Calendar for Promotion and Tenure Review within the College
The timeline identified below is intended as a general guide only. The specific dates for promotion and tenure in any given year will be governed by the schedule issued by the Office of the Provost.
March-April: Associate Dean for Research and Faculty Development holds meeting regarding promotion and tenure policies for all interested faculty members. Co-chairs of the Subcommittee notify faculty members who are eligible to apply for promotion or tenure in the following academic year and seek confirmation of whether they intend to move forward with their application.
April: Candidates intending to apply for promotion or tenure in the upcoming academic year notify the co-chairs of their plans to do so.
April-May: Co-chairs meet with each of these faculty candidates to review the evaluation process and the materials that must be included in a candidate dossier. Co-chairs will solicit names of potential external reviewers from each candidate.
May: Co-chairs will provide to the dean a list of the names of all external and internal reviewers who will be asked to provide evaluations of the candidates' scholarship. Reviewers will be asked to submit their written evaluations no later than September 15.
Early September: All external and internal reviews of scholarship should be completed in in the dossier.
Early September: Candidates' written statements in support of their application for promotion or tenure are due.
Second Week in September: Candidate dossiers should be completed and made available to the Subcommittee.
Second Week in September – Second Week in October: The subcommittee should review the candidate's application and formulate its recommendation and written report.
Third week in October: The Subcommittee will provide the candidates with copies of its report. Candidates will have seven working days to submit a response.
Late October-early November: Completed candidate dossier made available to full Promotion and Tenure Committee
November: Full Promotion and Tenure Committee meeting to discuss and vote on the candidates for promotion and tenure. Candidates notified of Committee recommendations.
December-January: Dean completes written review of each candidate's application, notifies the candidates, and forwards all positive recommendations to the Provost for further review.
A. Time of Review
Each tenure track member of the faculty will be reviewed in the Spring Semester of the faculty member's third academic year at the College of Law. This review will coincide with the annual spring reappointment process. In the case of persons with prior teaching credit at other institutions, the cumulative review will occur in the spring semester one full year prior to the first year in which they would first be eligible to seek tenure. A faculty member hired with three years of probationary credit may waive pre-tenure review with written approval of the dean.
B. Reviewing Committee
The review will be conducted by a Committee of three tenured faculty members (the "Committee"). Two members of this committee will be elected by the Promotion and Tenure Committee at the same time the election for Chairs of the Promotion and Tenure Committee is held. The third member of the Committee will be the newly elected Chair or Co-Chair of the Promotion & Tenure Committee.
C. Purpose of Review
The review will provide each tenure-track faculty member with a clear idea of how adequately he or she is progressing toward successfully achieving promotion and tenure. The review should identify strengths and accomplishments and pinpoint areas in need of improvement in which tenured faculty may provide assistance to tenure track colleagues.
D. Scope of Review
The Committee will review the annual reports submitted by the faculty member to the Dean for the years in question and report on the faculty member's progress in the areas of teaching, scholarship, and service. The Committee will also review both the student evaluations and the annual faculty teaching evaluations of the tenure track candidate. No additional class visitation will be necessary for the cumulative review. The Committee will also consider internal faculty evaluations of the candidate's scholarship as well as any external letters that are available; provided that no external evaluation shall be required for pre-tenure review. The Committee will also interview the faculty member in order to gain information as to the faculty member's achievements and goals.
E. Report of the Committee
The reports generated for all tenure track faculty members under review from year to year will be uniform and in substantially the format which follows. The Committee is to compile the report after the discussion at the Promotion and Tenure Committee meeting. The report will be based on the review of annual reports (copies of which should be appended to the Committee Report), faculty teaching evaluations, scholarship reviews, the Promotion and Tenure Committee discussion and the interview with the faculty member. The faculty member will be given a copy of the draft report and be given the opportunity to suggest additions or corrections to the report. However, the content of the final report remains within the sole discretion of the Committee.
The form of the report shall be as follows:
1. Overview of the Review Period: Listing of the faculty member's activities for each semester (including summer semesters) during the period, limited to: full-time teaching at GSU College of Law; full-time teaching at another institution; research leaves (including whether paid or unpaid); reduced or expanded teaching loads; summer grants and summer teaching.
2. Evaluations of Teaching:
3. Scholarship: publications in press or published; manuscripts submitted; research in progress; grant applications pending.
4. University Service: at the College or University levels including committees, task forces, advising student organizations, etc.
5. Professional Service: including papers or presentations at conferences, advisory or drafting roles for public officials or entities, bar association participation and/or leadership roles, etc.
6. Public and Community Service: including appointive or elective office, leadership roles in community organizations, etc.
7. Grants and/or Fellowships Awarded
8. Awards and Honors
9. Other Evidence of Achievements
10. Committee Evaluation: Evaluation by the Committee, reflecting the Promotion and Tenure Committee's discussion of a faculty member's progress toward promotion or tenure, including strengths and achievements and suggestions as to areas of improvement for the faculty member. The suggestions for improvement should, in the spirit of the University Policy, identify areas in which a tenure track faculty member can change orientation and activity in pursuit of tenure.
11. Current vita of faculty member; copies of faculty member's annual reports for the review period; and copies of evaluations of classroom teaching based on annual class visitations that are conducted by other faculty members for the reappointment process in accordance with the College's Promotion & Tenure document.
F. Faculty Discussion of Report
Following the Committee's completion of the pre-tenure report, the Committee shall make it available for review and discussion by the tenured faculty. This review and discussion shall take place at the spring Promotion and Tenure Committee meeting in the year of the review after a vote on renewal of the candidate's teaching contract.
G. Role of Faculty Member
In addition to the faculty member's consultative role in the review process, if the faculty member disagrees with any portion of the Committee report or the Dean's review, he or she may submit a written response which will be attached to the report and made a part thereof. The faculty member is to be given a reasonable opportunity to prepare the response prior to submission of the report to the Dean and prior to the submission of the Dean's review and the Committee report to the Provost.
H. Role of the Dean
The Dean is to provide promptly a written review of the Committee report, copies of which are to be submitted to the Committee and the faculty member. The Dean is then to submit the report, along with the Dean's review, to the Provost of the University.
A. Time of Review
With the exception of tenured administrators whose majority of duties is administrative, each tenured member of the faculty will be reviewed in the spring semester of the fifth anniversary of the academic year in which the faculty member's most recent promotion or tenure decision became effective. Subsequent reviews will occur on every fifth anniversary of the first review unless interrupted by a further review for promotion or leave of absence.
B. Reviewing Committee
The review will be conducted by committee of three Full Professors. Two Full Professors will be elected by the full Promotion and Tenure Committee each spring to serve on the review committee for all post-tenure reviews scheduled for the upcoming academic year. The third member of each reviewing committee will be appointed by the individual faculty member who is being reviewed. No faculty member who has been the subject of a post-tenure review within the previous two years shall serve on a Committee to conduct a post-tenure review of any member of the Committee which reviewed such faculty member.
There are two purposes to the five-year review of tenured faculty: first, to assess and summarize the faculty member's contributions and achievements since his or her last review; and second, to assist the faculty member in creating a statement of professional goals for the next five years. The review is intended to assist faculty members with identifying opportunities that will enable them to reach their full potential for contribution to the University and College of Law.
D. Review Process
The review period will cover the years since the faculty member's last post-tenure review or, in case of initials reviews, the years since the last promotion or tenure decision regarding the faculty member. There are six stages to the review:
1. Summary of Review Period: The faculty member will prepare a report listing:
2. Report of the Committee
Using the faculty member's report as well as other sources of information, the Committee will compile its own report. The form of the report shall be as follows:
a. Overview of the Review Period: Listing of the faculty member's activities for each semester (including summer semesters) during the period, limited to: full-time teaching at GSU College of Law; full-time teaching at another institution; research leaves (including whether paid or unpaid); reduced or expanded teaching loads; summer grants and summer teaching.
b. Evaluation of Teaching:
The College of Law is dedicated to maintaining the highest levels of classroom performance and teaching standards. Apart from any post-tenure review process, faculty members are encouraged to continually improve their teaching through ongoing, long term collaboration with other faculty and responsiveness to student comments. In evaluating teaching proficiency, the Committee shall consult, in addition to the candidate's report:
c. Scholarship: publications in press or published; manuscripts submitted; research in progress; grant applications pending.
d. University Service: at the College or University levels including committees, task forces, advising student organizations, etc.
e. Professional Service: including papers or presentations at conferences, advisory or drafting roles for public officials or entities, bar association participation and/or leadership roles, etc.
f. Public and Community Service: including appointive or elective office, leadership roles in community organizations, etc.
g. Grants and/or Fellowships Awarded
h. Awards and Honors
i. Other Evidence of Achievements
j. Committee Evaluation: Evaluation by the Committee, reflecting the Promotion and Tenure Committee's discussion of a faculty member's progress toward promotion or tenure, including strengths and achievements and suggestions as to areas of improvement for the faculty member. The suggestions for improvement should, in the spirit of the University Policy, identify areas in which a tenure track faculty member can change orientation and activity in pursuit of tenure.
If the Committee believes there may be a teaching problem, at least two members of the Committee shall visit the faculty member's classes. The Committee shall review any potential problems with the faculty member and identify how to address such problems.
k. Current vita of faculty member; copies of faculty member's annual reports for the review period; and copies of evaluations of classroom teaching based on annual class visitations that are conducted by other faculty members for the reappointment process in accordance with the College's Promotion & Tenure document.
3. Faculty Member's Report
Within two weeks of receiving a copy of the Committee's Summary of the Review Period, the faculty member shall submit a report to the Committee including: any corrections or additions to the Committee's report. The Committee shall incorporate any additional relevant information provided by the faculty member in its Summary of the Review Period.
The Committee shall meet with the faculty member to discuss the report and the faculty member's plans for the next five years. The Committee should share their general assessment of the faculty member's contributions in the areas of teaching, scholarship, and service and the faculty member's five-year plan.
5. Faculty Member's Professional Plan
Within one week after meeting with the Committee, the faculty member will send the Committee a final statement of his or her professional plan for the next five years. The statement should cover current projects and responsibilities and whether the faculty member plans to continue them, as well as new projects and specific scholarship, teaching, and service goals for the next five years. The faculty member's plan also should address any deficiencies in scholarship, teaching, or service that were raised by the Committee. If the Committee identified significant deficiencies in teaching, the faculty member will include in his or her five-year plan a specific course of action for addressing the identified deficiencies.
6. Committee Report to the Dean
The Committee shall send to the Dean its Summary of the Review Period and the faculty member's five-year professional plan.
For each faculty member, the Committee shall prepare a written review summarizing the strengths and accomplishments or weaknesses and plans for improvement in teaching, scholarship and service. The Committee may incorporate relevant sections of the Summary of Review Period and the faculty member's professional plan where relevant to its summary.
E. Role of Faculty Member
In addition to the faculty member's consultative role in the review process, if the faculty member disagrees with any portion of the Committee report or the Dean's review, he or she may submit a written response which will be attached to the report and made a part thereof. The faculty member is to be given fifteen (15) calendar days to prepare the response prior to submission of the report to the Dean and prior to the submission of the Dean's review and the Committee report to the Provost.
F. Role of the Dean
The Dean is to provide promptly a written review of the Committee report, copies of which are to be submitted to the Committee and the faculty member. The Dean is then to submit the report, along with the Dean's review, to the Provost of the University.
G. Impact of Post-Tenure Review
1. The results of post-tenure review will be linked to rewards and professional development. Faculty members who are performing at a high level should receive recognition for their achievements. This may include merit pay increases, and study and research leave opportunities.
2. When a faculty member's review reflects that he or she has not met or maintained the standards of teaching, research and service expected of that rank of professor, the dean will work with the faculty member to create a formal plan for faculty development that identifies clearly defined goals and outcomes, an outline of activities to be undertaken, timetables, and an agreed-upon monitoring strategy.