Faculty Evaluation Plan, Department of French and Italian
To articulate the standards and practices for the annual evaluation of faculty within the Department of French and Italian.
Faculty within the Department of French and Italian
The Department of French and Italian has a long tradition of evaluation of faculty dating back to a time well before it was required other than for promotion and tenure procedures or for merit salary recommendations. Student evaluations have been used in various forms since before 1950 (when French was a part of the Department of Romance Languages). Chairs and/or committees have reviewed faculty performance in all areas, and chairs have discussed ways for improving performance with their colleagues as a matter of professional collegiality. This document codifies and makes explicit procedures already in place and adds others to conform to current University regulations.
The Department of French and Italian expects its faculty to excel in a traditional balance of professional activities: research, teaching (including advising), and service to the department, College, University, profession, and community. All faculty members are expected to excel in all three areas. The expected distribution of effort for the department faculty other than Assistant, Associate, and Senior Specialists is 40% teaching, 40% research, and 20% service. The expected distribution of effort for Assistant, Associate, and Senior Specialists is 40% teaching, 10% research, and 50% service.
The minimal acceptable level of performance for a faculty member is quantitatively meeting the agreed upon allocation of effort for each year and being evaluated as “good" in each of the three categories.
If a faculty member fails to meet the agreed upon allocation of effort in a given year in each of the three categories, or if the faculty member does not receive an evaluation of at least “good” in all three categories, the department chair and the individual will develop a plan to address the areas of difficulty. Continued failure to demonstrate progress following development of an intervention plan will result in the Chair initiating a recommendation of dismissal. In a given review year, a faculty member’s work may be assigned an evaluation designation of Marginal or Poor in any of the three areas of evaluations (Teaching, Research, and Service.) At such a point, the faculty member will be offered remedial support in written and verbal form to improve performance. If the faculty member’s evaluation scores remain Marginal or Poor over a sustained period of three years following the review year in which the initial designation of Marginal or Poor was given, in any of the areas of evaluation, then the faculty member’s appointment will be recommended for termination.
If a faculty member receives a rating of Marginal or Poor in any one of the three categories, the department chair and the faculty member shall develop a written plan of methods to improve the faculty member’s performance. The department chair may call upon the University administration for assistance in constructing a plan, including provision for additional resources, where needed. The plan may include provisions for faculty development or for other interventions, such as counseling, medical leave, or a change in teaching assignments. A faculty member may reject any plan recommended to aid performance levels, but the faculty member must understand that a sustained overall failure to meet academic responsibilities, over a period of three years, is a basis for dismissal.
Evaluation procedures are described below, under "Portfolio Review and Evaluation." Current goals are, for each category:
Quantitative. The normal load at the 40-40-20 formula is four courses per academic year (two per semester). Exceptions may be made for those in administrative roles. Teaching assignments (specific courses) are made by a scheduling committee of the whole of the Faculty, headed by the Chair, who is the department’s Scheduling Officer. The committee attempts to maintain balance in the assignment of graduate and undergraduate courses while being guided by the needs of our students for particular courses.
Qualitative. We expect faculty to score 3, on average, overall on the attached student evaluation forms (by long experience, we recognize that there will be some individual students who rate a faculty member lower than 3, and that there will be some items on which the person is not rated above 3 by any student: we look for a pattern) and to be described by students in the comments section as a person who embodies the qualities specified in that form. When requested by a faculty member, peer evaluations are considered in assessing his or her overall teaching performance.
Additional explanation of criteria: A faculty member is expected to know his/her field thoroughly and to keep abreast of developments in that/those fields. S/he is expected to motivate students in a positive way and to provide students with timely and practical feedback through exams, papers, and other instruments (with comments, not just grades). Faculty members are expected to be available for consultation at office hours (OH) (an OH list is maintained by the administrative assistant and OH are to be announced in the syllabus and posted on office doors) and/or by appointment.
Specific teaching criteria for Assistant, Associate, and Senior Specialists in French or Italian, in addition to those outlined above for all faculty, include (1) effective and high-quality teaching at the basic and intermediate language level, and (2) ability to teach at various levels, and to be familiar with the whole departmental undergraduate curriculum in French or Italian.
Thesis/Dissertation Direction is an important contribution to the graduate teaching function of the department. Faculty members are expected to maintain expertise in their field so that they may direct students in an informed way as they develop a topic, do their research, and write their dissertation. Timely return of drafts and efficient coordination with second and third readers (and as second and third readers) is part of appropriate performance of this duty. Unclassified Academic Staff are exempt from these duties.
Advising is considered an essential part of teaching and each faculty member is expected to contribute to the departmental advising effort, either in graduate advising, undergraduate major advising, freshman-sophomore advising, placement advising, or some combination of the above. All faculty members are expected to be aware of the rules for completion of requirements, etc., but emphasis is placed on advising students as persons interested in a liberal arts education, not simply on fulfilling requirements for graduation.
Faculty members are expected to remain active in their fields by keeping abreast of current developments and maintaining an ongoing, continuous record of scholarly productivity. In the Department of French and Italian, scholarship is defined as research conducted, the results of which are submitted for professional evaluation, review, and criticism to peers through recognized media. The most significant measure of scholarly productivity includes: publication of books, monographs, articles in refereed journals and venues, critical editions, translations, or anthologies with scholarly critical apparatus, and critical biographies. Publication in in-house media and in non-refereed journals is also valued but does not carry as much weight. Competitive awards and grants from agencies of national standing are another useful index of an individual’s success in obtaining recognition for research. Participation in symposia, conferences, and professional meetings is another outlet for publicizing and testing the results of one’s research. The presentation of papers often lacks the formal review procedure and critical response provided by publications, and in those cases such activity is not sufficient in itself as evidence of scholarly productivity. Both the quality of research and the quantity of research will be valued.
In the case of faculty in the field of French language pedagogy, applied linguistics, and Romance linguistics, the publication of refereed books, book chapters, and journal articles is evidence of scholarly productivity. Textbooks, sourcebooks, instructional software, and other audio/visual media that incorporate and present theoretical ideas or advances in pedagogy are also evidence of scholarly productivity, provided they are refereed and published by nationally or internationally recognized publishers.
In the case of Unclassified Academic Staff in the department, participation in professional organizations; presentations at the University of Kansas, or for regional/national professional organizations; writing published textbooks, sourcebooks, workbooks, testing programs, instructional software, and other audio/visual media that incorporate advances in pedagogy (provided they are refereed and published by nationally or internationally recognized publishers); and writing scholarly work that will keep the language specialist current with recent developments in the field of second-language acquisition, constitute evidence of scholarly productivity.
All faculty members are expected to contribute to the functioning of the department, the College, the University, and the community by serving on committees, fulfilling administrative duties, serving in professional organizations, etc. Tenured professors are expected to make more substantial contributions in this area than tenure-track professors.
Specific service criteria for Unclassified Academic Staff in French or Italian, in order of importance, include:
Excellence in organizing, scheduling, administering, and supervising the sequence of first and second year French or Italian courses offered by the department; effectiveness in selecting, training, supervising, and evaluating the teaching staff of those courses; successful handling of student issues and grievances arising in these courses; effective coordination of the basic language program with the French or Italian major and minor, and with the literature and culture courses in the department.
Ability to translate recent developments in the field of second-language acquisition into curricular modifications of our program.
Service to the Department and the University, especially in matters related to second-acquisition and the improvement of instruction.
[The Faculty Self-Evaluation Report Form (see Appendix B), completed each year by each faculty member, indicates how each of these categories is covered in the evaluation process.]
Individual differential allocations of effort will be reviewed each year for tenured faculty to allow for individual flexibility and to assure equal opportunity to each faculty member for new allocations while maintaining the ideal balance of 40-40-20 for the department faculty members as a whole, with the exception of Unclassified Academic Staff who will maintain a balance of 40-10-50.
The Department of French and Italian expects faculty to devote equal attention to teaching and research. When evaluating faculty performance for positions other than Assistant, Associate, or Senior Specialist, the department applies the weights of 40 percent for teaching, 40 percent for research, and 20 percent for service to the university, community, and profession. In the case of Unclassified Academic Staff, the department applies the weights of 40 percent for teaching, 10 percent for research, and 50 percent for service. These weights are the same for tenured and non-tenured faculty, although the department recognizes that the specific contributions of faculty members to the department’s mission will differ depending on career stage.
Changes in the standards 40/40/20 allocation of effort for a set period of time can be initiated by the tenured faculty member or department chair. (In the case of Unclassified Academic Staff, the 40/10/50 cannot be changed.) In the case of eligible faculty, these changes can be short- or long-term and must correspond to changes in work-load not just evaluation criteria. Reasons for alterations can include short-term items such as funded research or longer term career-stage issues. Faculty members in the Department of French and Italian are not allowed to reduce their teaching or research to less than 10 percent on permanent DAE agreements. Departmental needs take precedence over individual needs when making decisions to alter a faculty member’s allocation of effort; such redistribution must be consistent with the best interests of the unit. The most likely occasion for consideration of such changes is in discussion between the chair and the individual faculty member following annual performance evaluations, or sooner so that appropriate arrangements may be made at the unit level for the coverage of course offerings. Changes in faculty effort are to be negotiated and agreed upon before the start of the next academic year. Any individualized changes in faculty allocation of effort will be negotiated with the chair and documented in the faculty member's personnel file.
For temporary DAE agreements (one academic year or less), the DAE is ultimately approved by the chair of the unit. For permanent DAE agreements (lasting one year or beyond), approval must also be sought from the appropriate contact dean in the College. All Differential Allocation of Efforts are reported annually to the College Dean's Office. For permanent DAEs, the supporting documentation is also provided to the College and the Provost's Offices. Agreements for long-term DAEs must be reviewed every three years.
For additional information, please see the University Policy on Differential Allocation of Effort (DAE).
Evaluations are conducted at the beginning of the spring semester for the previous calendar year. The Chair is responsible for informing faculty that self-evaluations are due on a given date (usually in January). At the beginning of each evaluation period, the Chair will consult with each faculty member and determine the goals and expectations for that person, including any differential allocation of effort in the three categories for the upcoming academic year. The department’s Faculty Evaluation Board through reviews those self-evaluations plus all other documentation typically during February through mid-March. Following the Faculty Evaluation Board’s deliberations, the Chair prepares a written evaluation for each faculty member typically at the end of March. A minimum of a full week is allowed for the faculty members to review the Chair’s statements and, if they choose to do so, to make appointments to discuss the evaluation. All of this takes place well before the time usually set for merit salary decisions, allowing for sufficient time for the opportunity for discussion of the evaluation.
NOTE: Faculty are responsible for annually maintaining their PRO record, which is also accessed by administration for reports such as the College snapshot of departmental productivity. PRO provides an annual activity report and faculty are advised to view and update their PRO reports before submission of the faculty member’s portfolio to the unit. In classifying your work as major and minor, please bear in mind the definitions in the unit’s Promotion and Tenure Guidelines.
The portfolio will consist of the “Faculty Self-Evaluation Report Form” (see Appendix B) that each faculty member submits to the Faculty Evaluation Board for review and of documents that the Chair adds as they are received during the year. The self-evaluation will contain, in addition to a current CV and a detailed outline of what has been accomplished in the previous calendar year, all relevant materials documenting teaching/advising, research, and service including, but not restricted to: copies of all published research, any supporting documentation regarding the quality of publications (reviews of and/or references to the work), student evaluations for each course taught (both numerical results from the current University’s “Student Survey of Teaching” form and written comments from the department’s separate Written Comments Questionnaire (see Appendix A)), unsolicited letters from students, and supporting documentation regarding quality of service. The documents added by the Chair may include peer evaluations and letters addressed to the Chair. The Chair will inform the faculty member of the number and type of those additions, as is done in the promotion and tenure process.
The Faculty Evaluation Board will review the portfolio, as described above in “Overview.” In assessing quantity, the Board will take into account (1) the elected percentages for the year in question, (2) the department’s statement of criteria for evaluation produced for that year (e.g., number of active committee memberships for service, number of publications for research, and number of courses taught for teaching). In assessing quality, the Board will take into account the department’s statement of criteria and a review of the data provided (e.g., publications, student evaluations and peer evaluations for teaching, reviews and significant references to works for publications, and specific comments from colleagues on service). The significance and impact of the faculty member’s contributions will be evaluated globally, as a function of both quantity and quality of performance, viewed in the context of departmental expectations. The rating system will be that used in promotion and tenure procedures: Exceptional, Very Good, Good, Marginal, and Poor.
As stated in the overview, each faculty member will receive first a written letter from the Chair conveying the evaluation made by the Faculty Evaluation Board; faculty will then have the opportunity for a personal discussion with the Chair regarding that evaluation. The faculty member may then also request to meet with the Faculty Evaluation Board. The meeting with the Faculty Evaluation Board should take place within three weeks of receipt of the Chair’s letter conveying the initial evaluation.
The written evaluation by the chair will be as explicit as possible, with--as appropriate--recommendations for improvement, based on recommendations by the Faculty Evaluation Board. The format will follow the same format as in previous years, including a separate section on each category of responsibility and referring to both quantity and quality of performance in each one. Ratings will be given, as indicated above. In addition, any information on progress toward tenure and/or promotion is also provided. A copy of the written evaluation is maintained in the faculty member’s personnel file.
Departmental and Individual Professional Goals. The annual evaluation process yields multiple outcomes. The Chair will work with each faculty member at the annual review (and thereafter) to assure that the review process fosters professional growth for that individual. The Chair will also apply the discussion and results of the evaluations to her/his efforts to build on the strengths of the department, to address weaknesses, and to set new or revised goals.
Differential Allocation of Effort. Individual differential allocations of effort will be reviewed each year for tenured faculty to allow for individual flexibility and to assure equal opportunity to each faculty member for new allocations while maintaining the ideal balance of 40-40-20 for the department as a whole.
Personnel Decisions. The Chair will refer to annual evaluations as s/he reviews a faculty member’s application for sabbatical leave and the department committee’s recommendation for promotion (and, as applicable, tenure) for a faculty member. As appropriate, the Chair will consult the evaluations over a period of years in considering possible reassignment of responsibilities; performance evaluations provides data for the selection of departmental officers, award recipients, directors of the summer abroad programs, etc.
Merit Salary Decisions. The Faculty Evaluation Board’s recommendations for merit salary allocations will take into account explicitly the results of the annual evaluation.
If the chair ascertains that a faculty member's performance seems to be failing to meet academic responsibilities, the administrator and the faculty member shall develop a written plan of methods to improve the faculty member's performance. The plan may include appropriate provisions for faculty development, such as campus opportunities for faculty continued renewal and development, or for other appropriate interventions. Continued failure to demonstrate progress following development of an intervention plan will result in the Chair initiating a recommendation of dismissal.
In a given review year, a faculty member’s work may be assigned an evaluation designation of Marginal or Poor in any of the three areas of evaluations (Teaching/Advising, Research, and Service) by the Faculty Evaluation Board. At such a point, the faculty member will be offered remedial support in written and verbal form to improve performance. If the faculty member’s evaluation scores remain Marginal or Poor over a sustained period of three years following the review year in which the initial designation of Marginal or Poor was given, in any of the areas of evaluation, then the faculty member’s appointment will be recommended for termination.
If a faculty member receives a rating of Marginal or Poor in any one of the three categories, the department chair and the faculty member shall develop a written plan of methods to improve the faculty member’s performance. The department chair may call upon the University administration for assistance in constructing a plan, including provision for additional resources, where needed. The plan may include provisions for faculty development or for other interventions, such as counseling, medical leave, or a change in teaching assignments. A faculty member may reject any plan recommended to aid performance levels, but the faculty member must understand that a sustained overall failure to meet academic responsibilities is a basis for dismissal.
As stated earlier, each faculty member is expected to submit a self-evaluation with all relevant supporting documentation, and the Chair may add other relevant documents, informing the faculty member of the nature and quantity of such documents. In response to the Faculty Evaluation Board’s evaluation, a faculty member may provide further documentation and comments. In case of disagreement with the evaluation, the faculty member may appeal for reconsideration to the Faculty Evaluation Board.
If a faculty member has been informed that his/her performance still fails to meet academic responsibilities, the faculty member may request a review by a faculty committee designated to hear such matters in the College. The review committee will issue a non-binding recommendation on the appropriateness of this conclusion to the unit administrator. The administrator may change the evaluation after receiving the committee's decision, or may choose not to do so. In any event, the report of the committee will become a permanent part of the faculty member's personnel file within the academic unit and shall be available to the faculty member.
Department chairs shall consult annually with the dean, and the dean shall consult annually with the Provost on the progress of any faculty member who fails within this category of failure to meet academic responsibilities.
Based upon the judgment that there has been a sustained failure to meet academic responsibilities, the Dean may recommend to the Provost that a tenured faculty member be dismissed. In making this determination, the Dean shall consider the nature of the failure to meet academic responsibilities, the reason or reasons for this failure, the number of years that the faculty member has failed to meet academic responsibilities, the level of discernible improvement in the faculty member's performance after being notified of any failure in performance, and the extent to which the faculty member has complied with the terms of any plan developed to improve the faculty member's performance. The Provost will review the case and, if the Provost agrees with the Dean's recommendation, the Provost will recommend to the Chancellor that the faculty member be dismissed. If the Chancellor agrees and recommends dismissal, this recommendation will go to the Faculty Rights Board.
Should any recommendation to dismiss be brought against a tenured faculty member based exclusively or in part on grounds of sustained failure to meet academic responsibilities, both the report(s) of the review committee(s), the annual written evaluation(s) of the unit administrator concerning the faculty member, any outside evaluations, and any germane written response by the faculty member to the charges shall be made available to the Faculty Rights Board.
Mentoring of probationary faculty members is formalized as follows:
The Department, in the spirit of collegiality and in order to ensure effective mentorship, will annually review the progress toward tenure of probationary (untenured but tenure-track) faculty and the progress of all Unclassified Academic Staff. This advisory review will be completed by April 10th, typically in years one, two, and four of the tenure-track appointment. To conduct the review, the Chair will appoint a subcommittee of the Departmental Committee on Promotion and Tenure (DCPT), consisting of the faculty member’s official mentor and two other tenured professors from the Department. Membership of the subcommittee will rotate among tenured faculty members from year to year, with the exception of the faculty mentor, who will remain a member of subcommittee. The subcommittee will be appointed by October 1st of the review year. Members of the subcommittee should meet informally with the untenured faculty member throughout the year, as the need arises. By April 10th of the review year, the subcommittee will meet with the probationary faculty member to review his or her progress toward tenure, using the dossier or dossiers submitted for the annual evaluations, as well as the formal “Progress Toward Tenure Review” form.
Peer evaluation of a probationary faculty member’s teaching will be accomplished by classroom visitations. At least one visit every academic year by an Associate Professor or Professor will be made to one course taught by every Assistant Professor. A brief written report will be given to the instructor by the visiting faculty member within three weeks of the visit. A copy of this report will be filed by the chair. Peer evaluations of teaching should reflect multiple sources of information, including review of course materials. Peer evaluators should examine a syllabus and samples written assignments for the class to be observed. Over time, peer evaluators should include a variety of class sizes and instructional levels (e.g., undergraduate, graduate, survey, upper division course, etc.) as appropriate to the candidate’s instructional responsibilities. The resulting evaluations should address both strengths and weaknesses. The DCPT will assign peer evaluators for probationary faculty members.
It will be the responsibility of the Chair to guide all faculty members in considering committee memberships and in running for elected positions. Furthermore, the Chair will be expected to encourage collegial recognition of the importance of various kinds of service, helping to create an atmosphere conducive to participation in the important activities of University Governance, fellowship committees, etc.
Research Intensive Semesters (RIS): CLAS offers all junior faculty members in good standing a reduced teaching responsibility at some point during the faculty member’s pretenure employment. Faculty members will be released from classroom teaching duties for up to one semester, depending upon the relevant departmental teaching expectations, and will be expected to concentrate on research intensive activities. Faculty members are eligible for a research intensive semester assignment up to and including the spring semester before their publication dossiers are sent out to external reviewers in June, with the latest possible Research Intensive Semester (RIS) assignment typically being the second semester of the fifth year. Faculty members in good standing who have stopped their tenure clock remain eligible for a RIS assignment. The actual decision of which year/semester the individual is assigned a research intensive semester will be made in consultation with the department chair. Note that paid leaves and fellowships do not take the place of a RIS. Once the Chair approves the RIS for the junior faculty member, the details concerning the RIS should be confirmed to the faculty member in writing and documented in their personnel file. The Chair also provides a copy of this authorization to the College Dean’s Office so that RIS data can be tracked. Faculty members who are granted a RIS are expected to continue to meet their usual duties regarding departmental advising and other service activities.
Faculty can also avail themselves to the services of the Center for Teaching Excellence and the hall Center for the Humanities for teaching and grant-related assistance and support.
For information about additional faculty development opportunities, see http://facultydevelopment.ku.edu/programs.
Appendix A: Instrument(s) used in the evaluation of student teaching. The Department utilizes the University’s “Student Survey of Teaching” form and the Department’s “Course Evaluation Form: Written Comments Questionnaire” for this purpose. The department has voted to use these comments in the evaluation process.
Appendix B: Faculty Self-Evaluation Report Form.
Appendix A: Department of French & Italian
Course Evaluation Form: Written Comments Questionnaire
Department and Course Number ____________________________________________
Instructor ________________________________ 5-digit class number __ __ __ __ __
Semester and Year ________________________________________________________
The purpose of this supplemental form is to give you an opportunity to address in written comments the effectiveness of this course and the instructor. This evaluation, along with those of your fellow students, will be used in annual faculty, instructor, and GTA evaluations. Your comments will remain anonymous.
A. What aspects of the course particularly heightened or diminished your motivation, interest, and ability to learn?
B. What aspects of the instructor’s teaching particularly heightened or diminished your motivation, interest, and ability to learn?
C. Constructive suggestions for the course and/or instructor:
Appendix B: Faculty Self-Evaluation Report Form
N.B. 1) To be done in CV form; that is, in outline, rather than narration; please follow this form as closely as possible, including blanks where appropriate.
2) Information should be for the calendar year __________.
I. TEACHING AND ADVISING
a. Courses taught; number of students; brief statement of unusual circumstances (heavy grading, new course, team-taught courses, overload, etc.)
b. Dissertations directed (completed, in progress; for the latter, indicate whether active or inactive); Investigation and Conference (numbers, subjects).
c. Teaching honors and awards.
d. Advising (nature of; brief indication of number of students).
e. Evaluations: for each course, append results for “Student Survey of Teaching” and for Department of French and Italian “Written Comments Questionnaire.”
II. RESEARCH AND PUBLICATION
a. Publications appeared and papers given. Full bibliographical information, including pagination. Distinguish between books, articles, notes, papers, and book reviews.
b. Publications invited, accepted, or in press, papers accepted or invited; note date of acceptance.
c. Reviews of and citations to your work.
d. Research grants received; other honors and awards related to research.
a. Administrative service.
b. College/University committees, with brief indication of responsibilities and workload.
c. Departmental committees (same indications as in "b" if needed).
d. Community service (concerts, exhibits, etc.)
e. Dissertations (committee membership, other than a director).
IV. HONORS (elections, awards, bibliographical listings, etc. not listed under another category).
V. PROFESSIONAL ACTIVITIES
a. Professional meetings attended.
b. Lecture and talks to other courses, community, and other groups.
c. Editorial work; briefly indicate nature and demands of such work and whether paid or unpaid. List also evaluation of grant proposals, etc.
d. Professional organizations (membership in, officer of).
e. Professional service outside of KU; any service activities not listed in III. a.-e. or in V. a.-d.
VI. RESEARCH IN PROGRESS
List research actually in progress (not just planned for the future); give a few words to explain the present stage of research.
Department of French & Italian
University of Kansas
Wescoe Hall, Room 2080
1445 Jayhawk Blvd.
Lawrence, KS 66045-7590
09/28/2015: Fixed Promotion and Tenure Guidelines link to open in new window.
09/25/2015: Added PRO statement to Section III.B. Portfolio or Annual Report Preparation
07/20/2015: Approved by the Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor
06/24/2015: Approved by the Dean of the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences
11/19/2014: Approved by the faculty of the French & Italian Department