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Progress Toward Tenure Review Evaluation Procedures, Department of English


To outline processes used in the English Department for Progress Toward Tenure Review.

Applies to: 

All untenured, tenure-track faculty in English who must have a PTTR.

Policy Statement: 

Procedures for Evaluation of Teaching
Each tenure-track assistant professor is assigned a teaching mentor by the chair of the department. This mentor aids the assistant professor with teaching issues, observes one or more of the candidate’s classes, examines course materials, and has frequent discussions with the candidate about teaching goals and progress. As the person best informed about the assistant professor’s teaching, the mentor becomes a part of the Promotion and Tenure Committee when the assistant professor comes up for Progress Toward Tenure Review and, eventually, for Promotion and Tenure.
Teaching and advising are assessed through multiple sources of information including 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; engagement in pedagogical workshops, seminars, or conferences; record of graduate advising on dissertations, theses, and exams; record of advising undergraduate theses; and other accepted methods of evaluation, which may include external evaluations.
Procedures for Evaluation of Research
Soon after a tenure-track assistant professor arrives on campus, the department chair assigns a more advanced scholar in the candidate’s field, or in one closely related, to serve as a research mentor. The mentor then becomes the member of the candidate’s Promotion and Tenure Committee who assesses the candidate’s scholarship. This colleague synthesizes the information drawn from the candidate’s curriculum vitae, professional reviews and/or citations, the comments of outside reviewers, the colleague’s own knowledge of the field and its expectations, and his/her assessment of the candidate’s research. Major publications in English include books and peer-reviewed articles or book chapters (or the creative equivalent, published short stories or poems), and minor publications generally include book reviews or encyclopedia entries.
The factors that lead to a specific judgment about progress toward tenure include the quality of the publications (extensiveness of research, innovative thinking, contribution to the field, effectiveness of the writing, etc.) and the status of the journal or press (based on scholarly reputation, appropriateness to a field, and rigor of review process). More weight is given to major publications.
Procedures for Evaluation of Service
The chair of the department serves as a member of the candidate’s Promotion and Tenure Committee. (In the case that the Chair is already serving on the candidate’s Promotion and Tenure Committee as either research or teaching evaluator, the Associate Chair is asked to serve as service evaluator.) The Chair (or Associate Chair) evaluates the candidate’s service record based on examination of the candidate’s CV, annual evaluations, solicited and unsolicited letters regarding service, departmental records, and personal knowledge of service contributions. The Chair considers the workload and time-commitment of the service, the quality of the service contribution, the different levels of contribution (Department, Institution, and National / International), and the ways in which the service might enhance the Department’s and KU’s national reputation. The minimum expectation for English Department faculty is at least two, and normally three, significant forms of departmental service each year, including department administrative roles, standing committees, and/or search committees, except in the case of especially heavy service elsewhere or exceptional circumstances, which shall be approved by the Chair. 


Department of English
University of Kansas
1445 Jayhawk Blvd., Room 3001
Lawrence, KS 66045

Department Chairperson

Approved by: 
Vice Provost of Faculty Affairs
Approved on: 
Thursday, July 20, 2023
Effective on: 
Thursday, July 20, 2023
Review Cycle: 
Annual (As Needed)
english, tenure review
Change History: 

08/14/2023: New policy added to the Policy Library. 

Personnel: Faculty/Academic Staff Categories: 
Promotion & Tenure

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