Promotion and Tenure Procedure, Film and Media Studies
To articulate the standards and procedures for promotion and/or tenure for the Department of Film and Media Studies.
Faculty within the Department of Film and Media Studies.
Scope and Purpose. The award of tenure and/or promotion in rank are among the most important and far-reaching decisions made by the department because an excellent faculty is an essential component of any outstanding institution of higher learning. Promotion and tenure decisions also have a profound effect on the lives and careers of faculty. Recommendations concerning promotion and tenure must be made carefully, based upon a thorough examination of the candidate’s record and the impartial application of these criteria and procedures, established in compliance with the Faculty Senate Rules and Regulations (FSRR) Article VI.
It is the purpose of this document to promote the rigorous and fair evaluation of faculty performance during the promotion and tenure process by (a) establishing criteria that express the department’s expectations for meeting University standards in terms of disciplinary practices; (b) providing procedures for the initial evaluation of teaching, scholarship, and service; (c) preserving and enhancing the participatory rights of candidates, including the basic right to be informed about critical stages of the process and to have an opportunity to respond to negative evaluations; and (d) clarifying the responsibilities, roles, and relationships of the participants in the promotion and tenure review process.
Each level of review, including the initial review, the intermediate review, and the University level review, conducts an independent evaluation of a candidate’s record of performance and makes independent recommendations to the next review level. Later stages of review neither affirm nor reverse earlier recommendations, which remain part of the record for consideration by the Chancellor. It is the responsibility of each person involved in the review process to exercise his/her own judgment to evaluate a faculty member’s teaching, scholarship, and service based upon the entirety of the data and information in the record. No single source of information, such as peer review letters, shall be considered a conclusive indicator of quality.
Academic Freedom. All faculty members, regardless of rank, are entitled to academic freedom in relation to teaching and scholarship, and the right as citizens to speak on matters of public concern. Likewise, all faculty members, regardless of rank, bear the obligation to exercise their academic freedom responsibly and in accordance with the accepted standards of their academic disciplines.
Confidentiality and Conflicts of Interest. Consideration and evaluation of a faculty member’s record is a confidential personnel matter. Only those persons eligible to vote on promotion and tenure may participate in or observe deliberations or have access to the personnel file (except that clerical staff may assist in the preparation of documents under conditions that assure confidentiality).
No person shall participate in any aspect of the promotion and tenure process concerning a candidate when participation would create a clear conflict of interest or compromise the impartiality of an evaluation or recommendation.
If a candidate believes that there is a conflict of interest, the candidate may petition to have that person recuse him/herself. If a committee member does not recuse him/herself, a decision about whether that person has a conflict of interest shall be made by a majority of the other committee members.
Promotion and Tenure Standards
General Principles. The University strives for a consistent standard of quality against which the performance of all faculty members is measured. Nonetheless, the nature of faculty activities varies across the University and a faculty member’s record must be evaluated in light of his/her particular responsibilities and the expectations of the discipline. These criteria state the department’s expectations of performance in the areas of teaching, scholarship, and service necessary to satisfy the University standards for promotion for the award of tenure and/or promotion to associate professor and for promotion to full professor, or equivalent ranks.
Teaching and scholarship should normally be given primary consideration, but the particular weight to be accorded to each component of a faculty member’s activities depends upon the responsibilities of the faculty member. The College has traditionally recognized the 40-40-20 formula for weighting research, teaching, and service, except when weight is differentiated for unclassified academic staff members pursuant to their job description.
Teaching. Teaching is a primary function of the University, which strives to provide an outstanding education for its students. The evaluation of teaching includes consideration of syllabi, course materials, and other information related to a faculty member’s courses; peer and student evaluations; a candidate’s own statement of teaching philosophy and goals; public representations of teaching; and other accepted methods of evaluation, which may include external evaluations.
High quality teaching is serious intellectual work grounded in a deep knowledge and understanding of the field and includes the ability to convey that understanding in clear and engaging ways.
The conduct of classes is the central feature of teaching responsibilities at KU, but teaching also includes supervising student research and clinical activities, mentoring and advising students, and other teaching-related activities outside of the classroom.
Under the University standards for the award of tenure and/or promotion to associate professor, the record must demonstrate effective teaching, as reflected in such factors as command of the subject matter, the ability to communicate effectively in the classroom, a demonstrated commitment to student learning, and involvement in providing advice and support for students outside the classroom.
In the department, the following teaching expectations to meet University standards apply for the award of tenure and/or promotion to the rank of associate professor:
An assessment of teaching and peer evaluations must demonstrate that a candidate’s teaching, to an adequate or greater extent, reflects knowledge of his/her field and the recent developments therein, and that the candidate is effective in encouraging students' interest, helping them to think critically and to apply their knowledge, pointing them toward the broader implications of their study, and generally encouraging their development as articulate writers and media makers. The record must also give indication of responsible fulfillment of all duties associated with teaching, including prompt and regular holding of class sessions and office hours, timely and sufficient grading and comments on assignments, acceptable and fair expectations and criteria for student work (as judged by disciplinary standards), adequate class preparation and effective use of class time, and reflection about pedagogy.
Under the University standards for promotion to the rank of professor, the record must demonstrate continued effectiveness and growth as a teacher, as reflected in such factors as mastery of the subject matter, strong classroom teaching skills, an ongoing commitment to student learning, and active involvement in providing advice and support for students outside the classroom.
In the department, the following teaching expectations to meet University standards apply for the promotion to the rank of professor:
For consideration to the rank of professor, the committee will evaluate the candidate based on the same criteria as above. However, the candidate, to be considered for promotion to professor should demonstrate seniority by advising more graduate students than their previous years; they must have taught courses or given lectures at other universities, both nationally or internationally.
Scholarship. The concept of “scholarship” encompasses not only traditional academic research and publication, but also the creation of artistic works or performances and any other products or activities accepted by the academic discipline as reflecting scholarly effort and achievement for purposes of promotion and tenure. While the nature of scholarship varies among disciplines, the University adheres to a consistently high standard of quality in its scholarly activities to which all faculty members, regardless of discipline, are held. In the Department of Film and Media Studies, each faculty member is expected to engage in scholarly and/or creative research. No absolute or rigid criteria can be established to measure research quality and quantity for all candidates. It is both necessary and reasonable, however, to establish general criteria and guidelines for promotion and/or tenure in the Department of Film and Media Studies and they are outlined below:
1) Publications must be sufficient in both quantity and quality to merit promotion. Criteria for evaluating publications include the following:
i. Books and refereed articles: Evidence of a developed, important research program in the form of academic books and/or peer-reviewed journal articles is needed. Anonymous peer review as a condition for publication shall be regarded as a sign of acceptance by colleagues in the candidate’s discipline when contribution to scholarship is the purpose of the journal and the criterion of refereeing. Scholarly books and monographs shall be considered important evidence of research capability.
ii. Creative work in filmmaking, television, museum multimedia exhibits, animation and visual effects, and other media in screenwriting, directing, cinematography, sound or other major technical collaborative roles. Creative artistic work may be achieved solely through the faculty member’s specialization, or by additional activities beyond those contractually defined. Faculty film/media artists who are candidates for promotion will be expected to demonstrate success in juried and/or refereed international/national, regional and local film/media festivals, academic conferences and competitions.
iii. Invited articles and chapters: Invited publications in significant journals and edited volumes also can be important scholarly contributions. The importance of an invited contribution can be established by the prominence of the editor who invites it, the publication in which it appears, or other indices of peer acceptance.
iv. Quality of publications: The reputation of a journal in which the candidate publishes will be taken into account by colleagues in making their judgments. Publication in a prestigious journal is evidence of peer acceptability of the candidate’s work. The quality of publications also may be evaluated by colleagues outside the Department. The prominence and reputation of a book’s publisher can serve as evidence of its contribution. Published reviews of a candidate’s book can be evidence of the importance of its contribution.
All creative work projects (films, screenplays, etc.) should be made available via standard formats for evaluation; peer and other external responses to, published critical reviews of the work and documentation of the candidate’s work should also be presented, along with a description of the candidate’s particular contribution to the projects submitted.
2) Other indicators of scholarly quality: Acceptance of a candidate’s work may be measured to some extent by the frequency which the work is cited by colleagues.
3) Narrative evaluations accompanying a citation can provide qualitative evidence of the impact of a candidate’s article, book, or research program. The reprinting of articles or excerpts in anthologies is a related form of acknowledgment.
Under the University standards for the award of tenure and/or promotion to the rank of associate professor, the record must demonstrate a successfully developing scholarly career, as reflected in such factors as the quality and quantity of publications or creative activities, external reviews of the candidate’s work by respected scholars or practitioners in the field, the candidate’s regional, national, or international reputation, and other evidence of an active and productive scholarly agenda.
In the department, the following scholarship expectations to meet University standards apply for the award of tenure and/or promotion to the rank of associate professor:
Scholarship that merits tenure is defined as a researched or creative monograph, or a combination of published articles, edited books, or research-based textbooks equivalent to a monograph in quantity and quality. Creative scholarship includes the refereed screening of feature length and short films, television, multimedia projects, animation, screenplays, work in cinematography and audio production, or whatever the candidate’s field of specialization is. The candidate’s record must demonstrate clear evidence of a scholarly or creative program that goes well beyond research or creative activity completed for the terminal degree, that has already resulted in products of high quality, and that exhibits promise of continuing productivity. Articles should appear in well-regarded journals or collections; books should be published from reputable presses, and films and other media should be screened at film festivals and other refereed venues.
Under the University standards for promotion to the rank of professor, the record must demonstrate an established scholarly career, as reflected in such factors as a substantial and ongoing pattern of publication or creative activity, external reviews of the candidate’s work by eminent scholars or practitioners in the field, the candidate’s national or international reputation, and other evidence of an active and productive scholarly career.
In the department, the following scholarship expectations to meet University standards also apply for the promotion to the rank of professor:
Candidates for promotion to full professor, in addition to demonstrated teaching excellence and an enhanced service profile, are expected to have produced and disseminated a body of creative work that is at least equivalent to the amount and quality required for their initial promotion, and are expected to have established a national or international reputation in their area of expertise in film/media production. The weight given to professional performance shall be determined by the particular responsibilities of the candidate.
Service. Service is an important responsibility of all faculty members that contributes to the University’s performance of its larger mission. Although the nature of service activities will depend on a candidate’s particular interests and abilities, service contributions are an essential part of being a good citizen of the University. The department accepts and values scholarly service to the discipline or profession, service within the University, and public service at the local, state, national, or international level.
Under the University standards for the award of tenure and/or promotion to associate professor, the record must demonstrate a pattern of service to the University at one or more levels, to the discipline or profession, and/or to the local, state, national, or international communities.
In the department, the following service expectations to meet University standards apply for the award of tenure and/or promotion to the rank of associate professor:
For promotion to associate professor, a candidate’s service contributions is expected to be focused at the departmental level, but also at the level of the School of the Arts, the College, and the University. Greater amounts of service to national or international professional organizations, and the larger community will be expected later in one’s career.
Under the University standards for promotion to the rank of professor, the record must demonstrate an ongoing pattern of service reflecting substantial contributions to the University at one or more levels, to the discipline or profession, and/or to the local, state, national, or international communities.
In the department, the following service expectations to meet University standards apply for the promotion to the rank of professor:
Greater amounts of service at the School, College and University levels, in national or international professional organizations, and the larger community will be expected later in a faculty member’s career. These additional service expectations are expected for promotion to the rank of professor.
Ratings for Performance. Using the criteria described above, the candidate’s performance in the areas of teaching, scholarship, and service will be rated using the terms “excellent,” “very good,” “good,” “marginal,” or “poor,” defined as follows:
(a) “Excellent” means that the candidate substantially exceeds expectations for tenure and/or promotion to this rank.
(b) “Very Good” means the candidate exceeds expectations for tenure and/or promotion to this rank.
(c) “Good” means the candidate meets expectations for tenure and/or promotion to this rank.
(d) “Marginal” means the candidate falls below expectations for tenure and/or promotion to this rank.
(e) “Poor” means the candidate falls significantly below expectations for tenure and/or promotion to this rank.
Absent exceptional circumstances, no candidate may be recommended for promotion or tenure without meeting standards in all applicable areas of performance.
Promotion and Tenure Procedures
The department conducts the initial review of the candidate pursuant to the procedures and requirements of section 5 of Article VI of the FSRR in connection with the candidate’s responsibility in the department.
Promotion and Tenure Committee. The department review committee shall evaluate the candidate’s teaching, research, and service. In the department the Initial Review Committee is made up of 3 members appointed by the department Chair as an ad hoc promotion and tenure committee of faculty that gathers and evaluates relevant material. Faculty members for the Initial Review Committee (ad hoc committee) are chosen in consultation with the candidate.
The recommendation shall be forwarded for consideration to a committee of the whole consisting of all faculty members holding the appropriate academic rank in the department.
No students or untenured faculty members, except unclassified academic staff with the rank equivalent to or higher than associate professor, shall serve on the Initial Review Committee or vote on any recommendation concerning promotion and/or tenure. Members of the committee must be of equal or higher rank to the rank for which the candidate is being considered.
Initiation of Review. Prior to the beginning of the spring semester, the Provost notifies all faculty whose mandatory review year will be the following academic year, with copies provided to the unit administrators. Upon receipt of this notice or if a faculty member requests it prior to the mandatory review year, the department shall initiate procedures for evaluating the candidate for the award of promotion and/or tenure.
As part of the annual faculty evaluation process, the department shall consider the qualifications of all tenured faculty members below the rank of full professor, with a view toward possible promotion in rank during the following academic year. After considering a faculty member’s qualifications, if the department determines that those qualifications may warrant promotion in rank, it shall initiate procedures for reviewing the faculty member for promotion. After seven years in the rank of associate professor, a faculty member who believes he or she has the qualifications for promotion may initiate the promotion review process him/herself.In such cases the unit will treat the candidate in the same way that it treats other candidates for promotion to the rank of full professor.
Preparation of the Promotion and/or Tenure File. NOTE: Candidates who hold joint appointments prepare only one set of promotion and tenure materials for review by both units in which they hold an appointment. The initial review units (i.e., departments, centers, etc.) shall consult with each other on their evaluations and the evaluation process, but each initial review unit must provide a separate evaluation of the candidate’s performance in the unit. Please refer to the College’s Promotion and Tenure Statement for detailed instructions. It is the responsibility of the candidate to complete the appropriate portions of the form and provide necessary documents and information in accordance with the Provost’s guidelines, with assistance from the department.
The Initial Review Committee shall receive the form and accompanying materials from the candidate and finish compiling the record of the candidate’s teaching, scholarship, and service in accordance with the Provost’s guidelines.
The Initial Review Committee shall provide for the solicitation of outside reviewers to assist in the evaluation of a faculty member’s scholarship and in accordance with College procedures. Emphasis shall be placed on selecting independent reviewers in the same or related discipline who hold academic rank or a professional position equal to or greater than the rank for which the candidate is being considered. The committee shall give the candidate the opportunity to suggest individuals to be included or excluded from the list of reviewers. The committee, however, is responsible for using its judgment in the final selection of reviewers.
When soliciting external reviews of a candidate’s scholarship, the Initial Review Committee shall inform prospective reviewers of the extent to which the candidate will have access to the review. The College's confidentiality policy regarding soliciting external reviewers for the promotion and tenure review process is as follows:
"As a part of the promotion and/or tenure review process, we are soliciting assessments of Professor ____’s research contributions from academic colleagues and distinguished professionals. These letters will become part of the candidate's promotion and tenure dossier and are treated as confidential by the University to the extent we are permitted to do so by law."
Recommendations. Upon completion of the record, the committee conducting the initial review shall evaluate the candidate’s record of teaching, scholarship, and service in light of the applicable standards and criteria and make recommendations in accordance with the voting procedures detailed below. The committee will evaluate the rating of performance and determine the rating by secret ballot and requires a majority. The committee recommendation on promotion and/or tenure shall be forwarded for consideration to a committee of the whole consisting of all faculty members holding the appropriate academic rank.
In the department, voting procedures are as follows: a) the Initial Review Committee compiles all the appropriate materials for review by the committee of the whole b) the committee of the whole votes by secret ballot. The vote needed for a favorable recommendation is a simple majority of all members holding the appropriate rank. The committee of the whole does not vote on the rating of performance.
The committee shall prepare the evaluation and summary evaluation sections of the promotion and/or tenure forms. The forms and recommendations shall be forwarded to the chair, who shall indicate separately, in writing, whether he or she concurs or disagrees with the recommendations of the committee of the whole. The department chair shall communicate the recommendations of the initial review, and his or her concurrence or disagreement with the recommendation, to the candidate and provide the candidate with a copy of the summary evaluation section of the promotion and tenure form. Negative recommendations shall be communicated in writing and, if the review will not be forwarded automatically, the chair shall inform the candidate that he or she may request that the record be forwarded for further review.
Favorable recommendations, together with the record of the initial review, shall be forwarded to the College Committee on Appointments Promotion, and Tenure conducting the intermediate review. Negative recommendations resulting from an initial review shall go forward for intermediate review only if it is the candidate’s mandatory review year or if the candidate requests it.
The candidate may submit a written response to a negative recommendation by the department, or to a final rating of teaching, research, or service below the level of “good” included in the evaluation section of the recommendation. The written response is sent separately by the candidate to CCAPT.
A request for information by CCAPT and/or UCPT shall be sent to the department chair who shall immediately provide a copy to the candidate and inform the Initial Review Committee. The chair and/or committee shall prepare the department’s response in accordance with the initial review procedures.
The candidate shall be afforded an opportunity to participate in the preparation of the department’s response and/or to submit his/her own documentation or comment to the CCAPT and/or UCPT as applicable.
Film and Media Studies Department
University of Kansas
1621 W. 9th St.
Lawrence, Kansas 66045
Film & Media Studies Chairperson
09/04/2015: Made updates to boiler plate text
04/01/2012: Approved by The Faculty Senate Committee on Standards and Procedures for Promotion and Tenure
02/28/2012: Approved by the Department of Film and Media Studies