Research Intensive Semester (RIS) in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences
To explain the RIS program and expectations.
Tenure-track faculty members in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences.
The College of Liberal Arts & Sciences offers all tenure-track faculty members in good standing a reduced teaching responsibility at some point during the faculty member’s pre-tenure employment. Faculty members will be released from classroom teaching duties for one semester, depending upon the relevant unit teaching expectations, and will be expected to concentrate on research/scholarly intensive activities. Such a semester is called a Research Intensive Semester (RIS).
The permissible timing of the RIS is related to whether a faculty member chooses to be evaluated for promotion and tenure earlier than their mandatory year.
- A faculty member who is evaluated for promotion and tenure in their mandatory year may take their RIS any time up to and including the spring semester immediately preceding the year in which they are evaluated.
- A faculty member who is evaluated for promotion and tenure earlier than their mandatory year may take their RIS any time up to and including the spring semester in the year in which they are evaluated.
The actual decision of which year/semester the individual is assigned an RIS will be made in consultation with the unit chairperson/director. We recognize the timing of these semesters will vary by disciplinary career cycles, but we recommend they occur after the first year if at all possible. For faculty members with split appointments, the decision about when to assign an RIS must be made in consultation with both units.
Once the unit chairperson/director approves the RIS for the tenure-track faculty member, the details concerning the RIS should be confirmed to the faculty member in writing. The unit chairperson/director 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 an RIS are expected to continue to meet their usual duties regarding unit advising and other service activities. The RIS is not a paid leave of absence from campus.
Units are expected to absorb this adjustment in teaching capacity from within their faculty ranks without losing significant enrollment capacity. It is important that units continue to offer courses that students need to maintain normal progress and/or graduate.
Faculty mentors and chairpersons are urged to make special effort to help tenure-track faculty maximize the value of an RIS.
Associate Dean for Administrative Affairs
College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, Dean’s Office
University of Kansas
200 Strong Hall
1450 Jayhawk Blvd.
Lawrence, KS 66045
04/24/2019: Revised to allow the RIS to occur during the year of promotion and tenure evaluation if that is earlier than the mandatory year; also, edited text and changed contact information.
06/22/2017: Updated contact information.
01/01/2011: Approved by the Dean of the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences.