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CONTACT INFORMATION
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115 Tillman Hall
Rock Hill, SC 29733
803/323-2220
803/323-4036 (fax)

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Academic Affairs

Policy Title
Tenure: Conditions and Procedures--Effective 2014-2015 Academic Year
Policy Description
Note: With the approval of the Faculty Roles and Rewards Document in 2011, faculty standing for tenure have a choice of using the old standards or the new standards if the review is in the 2012-13 or 2013-14 academic years. Effective in 2014-15, all faculty standing for tenure will follow this set of standards and procedures.


Tenure is of great importance to the life of the institution. Tenure decisions reflect the University’s recognition that the individual faculty member has demonstrated a level of performance that merits continued employment. The American Association of University Professors (AAUP) defines tenure as a ?means to certain ends; specifically: (1) freedom of teaching and research and of extramural activities, and (2) a sufficient degree of economic security to make the profession attractive to men and women of ability. Freedom and economic security, hence, tenure, are indispensable to the success of an institution in fulfilling its obligations to its students and to society (AAUP, 1940).

Tenure also indicates the expectation that the faculty member will continue appropriate involvement in the life and mission of the University and its faculty. Tenure systems, according to Nelson (2010) in No University is an Island, are essential to the continuation of environments that allow for shared governance and academic freedom. The AAUP further describes the awarding of tenure as ?a presumption of competence and continuing service. Thus, the tenure review and continued evaluations through post-tenure review should be rigorous, meaningful, and thoughtful.

A nominee for tenure is required to hold the appropriate terminal degree for the nominee’s discipline or to have professional achievements that the university recognizes as sufficient for tenure.

To be granted tenure, a faculty member must provide evidence of effective Student Intellectual Development that challenges students and promotes critical thinking skills through the exploration of knowledge. Furthermore, a tenure candidate must provide evidence of Scholarly Activity and the potential for sustained participation in activities associated with Professional Stewardship. Administrative reviews must also indicate a consistent record of academic responsibility.
Once tenure is granted, a faculty member must play an active role in the University and its mission by maintaining a consistent record of academic responsibility. The tenured faculty member must show continued growth and development in activities related to Student Intellectual Development and Scholarly Activity. In addition, the faculty member must show development in the area of Professional Stewardship.
 
Policy Procedures
Credit toward Probationary Period for Tenure
At the time a tenure track appointment is made, credit for prior service may be given toward the probationary period for tenure. The number of years of prior service credited toward the six years of probationary service will be stated in the Reasons/Remarks section of the Personnel Action Form. Policies for awarding credit are:
 a. Credit may be given for prior service as a temporary faculty member at Winthrop University if the appointment is  changed from restricted to regular service.
 b. Credit may be given for prior full-time academic service at another institution of higher learning at the rank of  Assistant Professor or above.
 c. Credit may be given for prior professional service, other than teaching at another institution of higher learning,  when such service is related to the faculty member's appointment at Winthrop.
 d. Credit will not exceed 3 years except in unusual circumstances.
 e. In determining the amount of prior service to be credited to a faculty member, no credit shall be given for summer  school teaching at Winthrop or elsewhere.

During the probationary period, a faculty member may be granted leaves of absence. The time spent in a leave of absence granted for medical or administrative reasons will not be counted toward the probationary period. The time spent in a scholarly leave of absence, as determined by the Vice President for Academic Affairs, for one year or less will count as part of the probationary period.

1. Pre-Tenure Review

A pre-tenure review shall be conducted in the third year for faculty hired with no credit for prior service. For faculty hired with one or two years of credit toward tenure, the review will take place in the second year of employment at Winthrop. If a faculty member is hired with three years’ credit toward tenure, a pre-tenure review will ordinarily not be conducted unless the review is requested by the faculty member. The pre-tenure review will be conducted by the appropriate committee as specified by the academic unit. This review shall be completed and the results will be given to the faculty member no later than May 15. Results of this review shall be discussed with the candidate in a conference with the department chair and the dean. Results of this review need not be included in the tenure portfolio unless the candidate chooses to include the results.

Timelines are provided by the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs in https://www.winthrop.edu/academic-affairs/default.aspx?id=22288 and updated annually to reflect changes in the calendar.

Portfolio Preparation
. A faculty member standing for pre-tenure review must submit a portfolio to his/her department chair/direct supervisor that follows academic unit guidelines and contains all materials indicated below. Further it is the responsibility of the faculty member to organize the portfolio in such a way as to facilitate review at all levels.

-A cover sheet containing the following information:
 • date employed at Winthrop,
 • rank at original appointment, and
 • prior service credit granted at employment.
-An application letter which includes an analysis/statement by the candidate explaining how he/she is progressing toward the qualifications of tenure and/or promotion.
-A table of contents.
 • Appropriate indexing tabs should be employed.
 • Indication of location of materials outside the original binder/notebook must be indicated.
-A current vita.
-Annual reports from all years since hire (including student evaluation data, chair/immediate supervisor evaluations, and dean evaluations).
 • Arrange in chronological order.
 • The semester/year should be clearly indicated on teaching evaluations.
-A Statement or report of activities associated with Student Intellectual Development, Scholarly Activity, and Professional Stewardship as defined by the college.
 • This should be accompanied by the additional departmental explanation (where applicable).
 • Evidence of the candidate’s scholarship should be included. This may include copies of articles, other publications,          video tapes, etc.
 • Each category should include tables or lists clearly outlining activities.
 • The faculty member is encouraged to describe any noteworthy accomplishments and to describe activity where the  impact or time needed may not be apparent to reviewers.
-Peer evaluations, if available.
-Supporting documents pertinent to the review.
-A statement of the faculty member’s goals and plans for involvement and development over the next six years. 

2. Tenure Review Process
Faculty will stand for tenure in the sixth year of probation, including credit given for prior service. A faculty member standing for tenure submits to the department chair a tenure portfolio prepared according to the guidelines of the University and the academic unit. The general University expectations are included in this document and academic units are responsible for providing faculty members additional expectations electronically on the unit website at least six months prior to the portfolio due date. Timelines for the review process are provided by the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs in https://www.winthrop.edu/academic-affairs/default.aspx?id=22288 and updated annually to reflect changes in the calendar.

When a faculty member is applying for tenure and for promotion concurrently, a single supporting portfolio for both processes will be used. The letters of application from the faculty member, recommendations from the chair and the dean, and all committee recommendations must be submitted separately, as the review processes for tenure and promotion will occur independently.

The membership of all reviewing committees upon formulation will be made known to the candidate and appropriate administrators. Each reviewing body, whether faculty or administrator, will forward its recommendations, along with the tenure portfolio, to the next level of review. 

The faculty member under review will submit the review portfolio directly to his/her direct supervisor (chair or dean). The process of review will follow a procedure established by the unit that is consistent with the general guidelines from the university.

In units that include department level review committees, a committee of no fewer than five tenured faculty, of whom a majority will be tenured within the faculty member's department or academic unit (if possible), will be formed (as specified by the academic unit) and convened at the request of the department chair to review the tenure portfolio and to determine whether to recommend the faculty member for tenure. If there is not a sufficient number of tenured faculty within the department or academic unit, then tenured faculty outside the department or unit will serve as members of the committee.
Once the portfolio is submitted, the department chair will forward the portfolio to the department committee or begin the review process as described below.

Neither the department chair nor dean may serve on a review committee for a faculty member for whom they are a supervisor. However, any committee may request to meet with the chair or dean for clarification of information. In the case of a department chair's consideration for tenure, the dean will appoint a committee of no fewer than five tenured faculty, one of whom must be a member of the faculty member’s department; but the committee may include a majority who are tenured outside the chair's department. Should there be no tenured faculty member in the department, the dean will appoint the committee members from tenured faculty outside the department.

The department level committee reviews and returns the portfolio with a report including a recommendation to the department chair. This report should outline reasons for the recommendation, addressing all appropriate areas of review (Student Intellectual Development, Scholarly Activity, Professional Stewardship, and academic responsibility) as appropriate for the rank held. When the decision of the committee is not unanimous, the report should indicate the areas of disagreement. If a single report cannot adequately represent the evaluation of committee members, a minority report must be submitted along with the primary report. All committee members must sign either the primary report or minority report. It is the role of the departmental committee to clarify any discipline-specific information concerning Scholarly Activity or Professional Stewardship that is provided in the faculty member’s portfolio for reviewers unfamiliar with the norms of the discipline. At this juncture, no material may be deleted from the portfolio. At any stage of the review process, no material may be added to the portfolio by the candidate without the approval of all prior review bodies.

The department chair reviews all materials and submits a report including a recommendation, along with all of the materials, to the academic unit committee. The chair’s report should outline reasons for the recommendation addressing all appropriate areas of review (Student Intellectual Development, Scholarly Activity, Professional Stewardship, and academic responsibility). The chair may clarify a faculty member’s claims with regard to the discipline and department norms that may not be evident to a reviewer from another unit or discipline.

The unit committee reviews all materials and submits to the dean a report including a recommendation, along with the portfolio and all previous reports. The unit committee’s response must include a clear statement indicating the recommendation and must highlight pertinent information or clarification for subsequent review bodies. The unit committee’s recommendation can refer to previous recommendations and documents from the department committee and chair. When the decision of the committee is not unanimous, the report should indicate the areas of disagreement. If a single report cannot adequately represent the evaluation of committee members, a minority report must be submitted along with the primary report. All committee members must sign either the primary report or minority report. In the case of academic units without department level review committees, the unit committee may clarify faculty member claims with regard to the discipline that may not be evident to a reviewer from another unit or discipline.

The dean reviews all materials, creates a written response, and forwards all materials to the Vice President for Academic Affairs. The dean’s response must include a clear statement indicating his/her recommendation and must highlight pertinent information or clarification for subsequent review bodies. In most cases, a rationale pointing to previous reports is sufficient. In cases of disagreement within and among the review bodies, the dean must clarify and address the issues of disagreement.

The Vice President for Academic Affairs provides all portfolios and reports/recommendations received from the deans to the University Personnel Committee for review. The University Faculty Personnel Committee reviews all materials and submits its recommendations to the Vice President for Academic Affairs. Upon receipt of the recommendations, the Vice President for Academic Affairs shall convene the University Faculty Personnel Committee to discuss the granting of tenure. The recommendations of the Vice President for Academic Affairs are forwarded to the President along with recommendations from each level of review.

Portfolio Preparation. A
faculty member standing for tenure review must submit a portfolio to his/her department chair/direct supervisor that follows academic unit guidelines and contains all materials indicated below. Further it is the responsibility of the faculty member to organize the portfolio in such a way as to facilitate review at all levels.
-A cover sheet containing the following information:
 • date employed at Winthrop,
 • rank at original appointment,
 • date(s) promoted and years in each rank, and
       • prior service credit granted at employment.
-An application letter which includes an analysis/statement by the candidate explaining how he/she met the qualifications of tenure.
-A table of contents.
 • Appropriate indexing tabs should be employed.
 • Indication of location of materials outside the original binder/notebook must be indicated.
-
A current vita.
-Annual reports from all years since hire (including student evaluation data, chair/immediate supervisor evaluations, and dean evaluations).
 • Arrange in chronological order.
 • The semester/year should be clearly indicated on teaching evaluations.
-A Statement or report of activities associated with Student Intellectual Development, Scholarly Activity, and Professional Stewardship as defined by the college.
 • This should be accompanied by the additional departmental explanation (where applicable).
 • Evidence of the candidate’s scholarship should be included. This may include copies of articles, other publications,          video tapes, etc.
 • Each category should include tables or lists clearly outlining activities.
 • The faculty member is encouraged to describe any noteworthy accomplishments and to describe activity where the              impact or time needed may not be apparent to reviewers.
-Peer evaluations, if available.
-Supporting documents pertinent to the review.
-A statement of the faculty member’s goals and plans for involvement and development over the next six years.

3. Notification of Tenure Decision
The President, acting as agent of the Board of Trustees, shall then determine whether to grant tenure to the faculty member in question. If tenure is to be granted, the faculty member shall be notified in writing no later than May 15 of the faculty member's sixth probationary year. The faculty member to whom tenure is to be granted will receive a tenured appointment for the seventh year of service, or its equivalent, at Winthrop. The President or designee reports to the faculty on the status of tenure by submitting for publication the names of those faculty who have been granted tenure. The names will be published by the University.

A faculty member who is denied tenure shall receive written notice by certified mail postmarked no later than May 15 to allow for notification at least twelve months before the expiration of the appointment. This permits a faculty member to serve a final year after being denied tenure. (See Notification of Nonrenewal of Appointment.) A faculty member may appeal denial of tenure only if he/she considers that improper procedure has been followed. Any alleged improper procedure must have had a substantive impact on the outcome of the tenure denial decision. Such appeal must be filed with the Academic Freedom and Tenure Committee.

I
n the case where tenure is denied, the tenure portfolio will remain in the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs for one year.

The Board of Trustees delegates to the President the managerial and administrative authority for the ongoing operations of the University commensurate with the policies of the Board. Decisions made by the President may not be appealed to the Board of Trustees.

Any candidate who has reason to suspect discrimination as defined by South Carolina Code in 8-17-320 may file a grievance. 
Internal Control Considerations
Policy Author(s)
Board of Trustees, Academic Affairs and Faculty Conference
Effective Date
August 2012
Review Date
June 2012