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Getting Tenure At Tulane: Guidelines and Advice from the SLA Dean’s Office. Carole Haber, Dean Kevin Gotham, Assoc. Dean Jeremy Jernegan, Assoc. Dean Mary Clark, Interim Assoc. Dean 102 Newcomb Hall. Presentation Topics. 1. Understand SLA and Departmental Expectations

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getting tenure at tulane guidelines and advice from the sla dean s office

Getting Tenure At Tulane: Guidelines and Advice from the SLA Dean’s Office

Carole Haber, Dean

Kevin Gotham, Assoc. Dean

Jeremy Jernegan, Assoc. Dean

Mary Clark, Interim Assoc. Dean

102 Newcomb Hall

presentation topics
Presentation Topics
  • 1. Understand SLA and Departmental Expectations
  • 2. Master the Skills of Time Management and Information Management in Your Research
  • 3. Learn to Write Grants to Support Your Research and Teaching Activities
  • 4. Understand Teaching Expectations and Responsibilities
  • 5. Learn to Balance Research, Teaching, and Service
  • 6. Establish Collegial Relationships with Senior Colleagues
  • 7. Learn About Resources to Help With Teaching and Research
  • 8. Learn to Use Criticism to Your Benefit
presentation topics1
Presentation Topics
  • 9. Make a Five-Year Plan and Organize a Tenure File
  • 10. Criteria: All Disciplines
  • 11. Criteria: Humanities and Social Sciences
  • 12. Criteria: The Fine Arts
  • 13. Role of the Chair (before tenure year)
  • 14. Role of the Chair (during tenure year)
  • 15. Early Tenure Request
  • 16-17. Negative Recommendations
  • 18-20. Information about Third-Year Review
  • 21-22. Final Points
  • 23. Key Links
1 understand sla and departmental expectations
1. Understand SLA and Departmental Expectations
  • Thoroughly study the SLA website concerning tenure and promotion. Understand the following:
    • The role of the Promotion and Tenure (P&T) Committee
    • The role of departments
    • SLA procedures and criteria
  • Meet regularly with the chair and senior faculty in your department
  • Ask questions about research productivity, teaching expectations, and service duties
2 master the skills of time and information management
2. Master the Skills of Time and Information Management
  • Establish a clear agenda, a consistent schedule, and make steady progress toward achieving your research goals
  • Understand what published scholarly work and creative activity “counts”
  • Past publications and creative work? Books? Articles? Textbooks? Book reviews? Encyclopedia entries? Publishing dissertation as a book? Single-authored vs. multiple-authored publications?
  • Be aware that for your book to count for tenure it must be in production with all revisions completed
3 learn to write grants to support research and teaching activities
3. Learn to Write Grants to Support Research and Teaching Activities
  • Why does Tulane want you to write grants?
    • Overhead or indirect costs helps balance the university budget
    • Contributes to visibility, prestige, and national ranking of the university
  • Why do you want to write grants?
    • Summer salary, course release, reduced teaching load, travel, funds for equipment
    • Raises your research visibility, opens doors to consulting, collaborative research, new research agendas
    • New opportunities for writing, national and international presentations, and shaping public policy
4 understand teaching expectations and responsibilities
4. Understand Teaching Expectations and Responsibilities
  • Understand what courses you are required to teach and how much student advising your department expects of you
  • Feel free to talk to your chair about courses you think would benefit the department
  • Look at other syllabi to see how your colleagues have organized their courses
  • Develop clear, rational, well organized syllabi that are SACs compliant
  • Investigate how service learning could add to your courses
  • Be aware that you will spend a great deal of time and effort the first time you teach a course
  • Do not spend huge amounts of time redesigning the same course each semester
5 learn to balance research teaching and service
5. Learn to Balance Research, Teaching, and Service
  • Newly hired assistant professors are neither required nor expected to serve on university or SLA committees
  • At the third year review, research productivity and creative activities, as well as teaching accomplishments are the most important criteria for successful evaluation
  • After you pass third-year review, it is assumed that you will serve on at least one university and/or SLA committee
  • Departments have different service expectations and you should find out what service work your department expects of you
6 establish collegial relationships with senior colleagues
6. Establish Collegial Relationships with Senior Colleagues
  • Recognize the influential people in your department
  • Understand that the senior professors in your department know all about the tenure review process and are eager to help and assist you if you ask
  • Request feedback on papers, grant proposals, and teaching; ask for suggestions for improvement
  • Ask colleagues if you may sit in on a class
  • Ask them if they would sit in on your class and offer feedback and comments on your teaching
7 learn about resources to help with teaching and research
7. Learn About Resources to Help With Teaching and Research
  • Investigate professional societies to find resources and guides to help junior faculty in teaching and research
  • Ask colleagues if they know of opportunities within the department and at Tulane to help with teaching strategies, grant writing, and other professional development issues
  • Familiarize yourself with the Center for Engaged Learning and Teaching (CELT) and utilize their resources and guides to improve teaching
8 learn to use criticism to your benefit
8. Learn to Use Criticism to Your Benefit
  • Get used to rejection and learn to face criticism and negative feedback on your teaching and writing
  • If your papers, book/grant proposals are not accepted, always revise and resubmit as soon as possible. Be persistent and tenacious
  • Ask senior members of your department for input and criticism on a book/grant proposal or paper you are writing
  • Take peer criticism seriously, especially at third-year review, and adjust your research plans and teaching accordingly
9 make a five year plan and organize a tenure file
9. Make a Five-Year Plan and Organize a Tenure File
  • Start a “research file” a “teaching file” and a “service file” in which you place anything that you may later use to support your case for third-year review and tenure and promotion
  • Study SLA P&T guidelines:
    • organize your five-year plan
    • organize your teaching dossier
    • organize your CV in Tulane format and style
  • Keep careful records of your activities and update your CV as soon as something new occurs
  • Do not overstate your accomplishments, especially at 3rd year review
10 criteria all sla disciplines
10. Criteria: All SLA Disciplines
  • High quality record of active, ongoing, continuous scholarship or creative productivity
    • Beware of multi-year gaps in productivity
    • Beware of the “tenure spurt” (burst of publications the year before coming up for tenure)
    • Beware of the “halo effect” (lots of publications in obscure, low-quality, and insignificant outlets)
  • Evidence of scholarly/creative work accomplished since joining SLA must be clearly presented. Work done prior to SLA should also be included
  • CV must reflect clearly the categories and status of written work and creative activities
11 criteria the humanities and social sciences
11. Criteria: The Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Single-authored publications (books/articles) in peer reviewed outlets
  • If dissertation produces a book, candidate must state how the book is different and submit a copy of the dissertation to P&T
  • For books, understand the difference between “under contract” and “in production”
  • Scholarship in addition to the book is expected in the candidate’s record
  • Where appropriate, grants to support research are encouraged
12 criteria the fine arts
12. Criteria: The Fine Arts
  • Overall - Professionally document the finished work, work and exhibition productivity, visibility, status of venues, reviews and response received
  • Document the number and scale of the works completed – e.g.: solo vs. group exhibition, theatrical / musical performance director vs. crew member, solo vs. ensemble performance, etc.
  • Invitational exhibits or performances speak to reputation, but juried exhibitions demonstrate selectivity and “peer review”
  • Be specific and be sure the chair and committee understands the actual nature of the work and venue
12 criteria the fine arts1
12. Criteria: The Fine Arts
  • The significance of the venue needs to be noted – commercial gallery in urban / cultural center, non-profit gallery, museum or workshop or music venue, symphony, alternative theater, etc. - as well as the documented reputation based on past shows and events
  • The range of possibilities is often great:
    • A group show in a prestigious urban gallery may be more important and influential than a solo show in a rural art center
    • A solo show of all new work is more important than a second or third venue showing the same body of work, though multiple shows document visibility and broad positive response
12 criteria the fine arts2
12. Criteria: The Fine Arts
  • Web based exhibition and performance requires thorough explanation of the significance of the site, likely audience and status
  • The scale of the venue and attending audience is important, e.g.: international / national , regional, local etc.
  • Evidence of the impact and recognition of faculty member’s work and reputation documented through published reviews and articles
13 role of the chair before tenure year
13. Role of the Chair (before tenure year)
  • Oversee all promotion and tenure cases in your department
  • Provide guidance to junior faculty in matters of teaching, service, and research and their progress toward promotion and tenure
  • Meet with the candidate and go over “the duties of the candidate” that can be found on the SLA P&T website
  • Communicate deadlines and the review schedule to the candidate
  • Make sure the candidate has a mentor
  • Consider appointing senior faculty to visit the candidate’s class to provide evaluations of teaching effectiveness
14 role of the chair during tenure year
14. Role of the Chair (during tenure year)
  • Make sure the candidate’s dossier sent to the Dean’s office is complete
  • Review the various sections of the file, checking that each has the correct information
  • Make sure that no more than half of the referees come from the candidate’s list
  • Provide detailed and conscientious letters to P&T
    • Explain the quality of the candidate’s publications
    • Explain selection of referees
    • Explain incomplete or negative external evaluations from referees
    • Explain choice of the press/publishers for the book
    • If publications are in a foreign language, explain impact on the field
  • Do not pay referees for their reviews
15 early tenure request
15. Early Tenure Request
  • An assistant professor may be considered for promotion and tenure in any year before the sixth year of the probationary period
  • Early consideration requires evidence of truly outstanding accomplishments and extraordinary potential
  • Individuals are advised to consult with senior faculty and take their advice seriously
  • Candidates who receive a negative tenure decision can ask for reconsideration the next year following the SLA process
  • A reconsideration may be considered on the basis of significant new evidence of excellence
  • The tenure clock, however, does not revert to its original timetable
16 negative recommendations
16. Negative Recommendations
  • Candidates who receive a negative decision for tenure may be granted a subsequent consideration by P&T
  • This consideration is only on the basis of significant new evidence of scholarly, teaching, or service excellence
  • The new material and a letter from the candidate requesting the subsequent consideration must be submitted no later than the last day of the penultimate semester in the candidate’s final probationary year
  • Letter should only address new material, it should not rehearse the old case. This is a reconsideration not an appeal
  • If the P&T Committee decides not to accept the case, then it goes no further in a review process
  • If, however, a majority of the P&T Committee decides to accept the case for consideration, the case begins over. The new dossier will be forwarded to the home department for evaluation, then P&T, and so on
17 negative recommendations
17. Negative Recommendations
  • In instances of new evidence for scholarship, both the department and P&T will obtain new letters from external reviewers
  • All pieces of scholarship in the newly presented dossier must be accompanied by a letter provided by the editor of the press or journal by which it has been accepted for publication and establishing the date of acceptance of the piece in question
  • In cases of an unsatisfactory teaching record, new evidence of significant improvement in that record must be submitted
  • In cases of a scant record of service, evidence must be presented that the record has measurably improved
  • The departmental report and vote will be submitted to the P&T committee as usual, and the P&T committee’s report and vote along with the dean’s recommendation will be submitted in normal fashion to the provost
18 third year review guidelines for faculty
18. Third-Year Review: Guidelines for Faculty
  • Purpose of third-year review is to obtain a “mid-course” judgment on the candidate's progress toward tenure
  • Candidates must demonstrate “a well-defined trajectory indicative of promise of an upcoming successful evaluation for promotion to associate professor with tenure"
  • Rigorous review of scholarship and teaching:
    • Published work and/or creative works performed or in progress
    • Five-Year Plan
    • Teaching performance
19 third year review procedures
19. Third-Year Review: Procedures
  • Third-year review is an evaluation of the candidate’s first two years at Tulane. It takes place at beginning of candidate's third year
  • Tenured members of the home department review the candidate's scholarship and teaching
  • No outside or external evaluations are required
  • No university service is expected of faculty at this stage beyond normal department service
20 third year review expectations
20. Third-Year Review: Expectations
  • Candidates must show evidence that they have begun independent work that is not co-authored with dissertation chair
  • Candidates must provide evidence that they have produced scholarly and/or creative works since joining SLA
  • Candidates are expected to participate in scholarly meetings and present papers at conferences
  • Where appropriate, candidates should show evidence of applying for grants and pursuing external funding
  • Candidates should not overstate their accomplishments; they will be compared to the tenure file
21 final points
21.Final Points
  • Take charge and be responsible for educating yourself about what SLA and your department expect from you
  • Don't wait until the end of the first semester or first year to ask questions about tenure and promotion
  • Be sure to let senior colleagues know when you publish
  • Ask for advice and take advantage of opportunities and resources
22 final points
22. Final Points
  • Prepare to spend much time and effort getting your dossier ready for Third-Year Review and Promotion and Tenure Review
  • Part of being responsible is putting together your own dossier (do not ask your department secretary)
  • The following tasks will take time:
    • Organizing your CV according to Tulane format and guidelines
    • Photocopying and labeling your publications
    • Writing your five-year plan
    • Organizing your Teaching Dossier
23 key links
23. Key Links
  • Your CV must be in correct format for submission with Third-Year Review and Promotion and Tenure Dossier (
  • Promotion and Tenure Guidelines for the School of Liberal Arts (SLA) (
  • General guidelines on promotion and tenure policies for all schools at Tulane from the Provost's website: