ARTP Department of Physics and Astronomy

College of Natural and Social Sciences
Department of Physics and Astronomy
Date Approved: October 2008


Confidentiality of Personnel Deliberations

Composition of Departmental Personnel Committees (Probationary and Temporary Appointment, Retention, Tenure, and Promotion, and Evaluation of Temporary, Probationary and Tenured Faculty)

Composition of Departmental Personnel Committees

The department annually elects 2 personnel committees.

The probationary and tenured faculty members of the department or equivalent unit shall elect a peer review committee(s) of tenured faculty members. When there are insufficient eligible members to serve on the peer committee, the department shall elect members from a related academic discipline(s).

(The Committees, as a whole, must take responsibility for the following tasks: Probationary Appointment; Temporary Appointment; Retention, Tenure and Promotion; Range Elevation; Evaluation of Temporary Faculty; Evaluation of Probationary Faculty; Evaluation of Tenured Faculty (Post-Tenure review); Evaluation for Request to Emeritus status; and Collaboration on the Development of Individual Professional Plans. It is required that each unit indicate below which Committee is responsible for each of these tasks.)

Committee Titles and Responsibilities

Number of Members

(at least 3; all tenured full time)

(Indicate if must be (full) professor rank)

Number of Alternates

(1 or more; all tenured full-time)

(Indicate if must be (full) professor rank)

Faculty Affairs Committee

(All personnel matters including ARTP/Except Promotion to Professor) Probationary Appointment, Temporary Appointment, Retention, Tenure, Promotion to Associate Professor. Evaluation of Temporary Faculty, Evaluation of Tenured Faculty in Development of Individual Professional Plan, and Range Elevation.

4 voting members: 3 elected members plus the department chair who will be a voting member. At least 2 members at the rank of professor. (A separate election must be held for probationary appointment committees; 1 probationary faculty may be elected for recruitment) At least 3, two of whom must be at the rank of professor.

Promotion to Professor subcommittee

3 members at the rank of professor from the faculty affairs committee including the department chair, members will be the first 2 professors on the ranked election ballot who are available to serve. At least 2


The committee shall serve for one academic year, commencing with the Fall semester.

The Department Chair shall be a voting member of the full time Faculty Affairs Committee.

Eligibility for Committee Service and Balloting


The election of the committee shall be carried out by means of single transferable ballot on which all eligible department member's names shall appear. Alternates will also be selected from the same ballot.

Recruitment of Probationary Faculty

Appointment of Probationary Faculty

Personnel Action Files

Individualized Professional Plans

Eligibility for Tenure and Promotion

Area of Specialization Terminal Degree

Physics & Astronomy

and related fields


Evaluation of Permanent Instructional Faculty


  1.  Procedures for Evaluation of Instructional Performance

    1. Matters of records
The reviewing committee takes cognizance of objective facts concerning a faculty member's teaching records, teaching assignments, supervision of independent study, laboratory coordination, etc. Faculty members may submit additional material regarding their instructional performance. It is recognized that a variety of activities may be considered by the committee in addition to classroom performance in the lecture setting.
  1. Student Opinion Surveys
Administration of Student Opinion Surveys will be in accordance with current University procedures. All Tenured faculty members will be evaluated in at least two (2) lecture classes per year. All probationary faculty members will be evaluated in every lecture class each semester. If any faculty member wishes to be evaluated in any additional classes, he/she will make a request to that effect to the department chair no later than Friday of the 5th week of the semester during which the additional evaluations are desired.
  1. Other Considerations
The committee shall consider evaluation of teaching performance based upon classroom observation and at least two (2) additional instructionally related matters such as grading practices and academic advisement.
  1. Procedures for Evaluation of Professional Achievement
Faculty members under consideration for retention, tenure or promotion may place in their personnel file information and materials supporting their achievements in the category of professional development. The following items are considered by the Department Faculty Affairs Committee and its sub-committees in the evaluation of the faculty member's performance in their category.
  1. Publications
Relevant factors: type of publication (book, journal article, etc.), quality and quantity of work, journal in which article appeared. Publications considered are only those that have already been published or have been formally accepted for publication.
  1. Papers contributed to professional meetings or other professional seminars
Relevant factors: type of meeting (i.e. local, national, international), specialized conference, sponsoring agency, special recognitions (such as invited speaker).
  1. Research in progress including manuscripts submitted for publications

  2. Grants or awards

  3. Other professional achievements
Examples: refereeing (e.g., publications, grant proposals), service to professional societies, visiting academic appointments, consulting, appointments to panels, etc.
  1. Procedures for Evaluation of contributions to the University

    1. Contributions to academic governance:
      1. Physics & Astronomy Department committees
      2. College of Natural and Social Sciences committees
      3. University and System committees

    2. Administrative responsibilities (e.g., Department Chair, Associate Chair, administrative appointment outside the department)

    3. Interdisciplinary service, such as:

Assistance and service to the department or other institutions in academic and professional matters

  1. Participation in professional activities, such as:

Active membership in professional societies, attendance at professional meetings (other than those listed under item 2 of Professional Achievement). Grant applications.
  1. Community service, such as:

Activities based on professional expertise. Activities which bring credit to the University

  1. Exceptional service to the Department and University in areas such as: public relations, student recruitment, and other student activities

Committee Procedures


Action on promotion, retention and tenure will be taken only after the official file of each candidate has been reviewed.

All members of the reviewing committee are required to sign the Personnel Report Form.

Actions regarding recommendation for retention, tenure, or promotion shall be taken by secret ballot of the Faculty Affairs Committee or the appropriate sub-committee.

Review of Faculty Holding Joint Appointments and of Faculty Active in Interdisciplinary Programs

Student Consultation in Academic Personnel Processes


The Department of Physics and Astronomy requires all of its part-time and probationary faculty administer student opinion surveys to each of their classes.

Tenured faculty will administer student opinion surveys as described in the policy.

In this section each class includes laboratories.

Oral Testimony

Role of Department/Division/School Chair or Director

Appointment of Temporary Faculty

Evaluation of Temporary Faculty


The report(s) of the classroom observation(s) shall be placed in the permanent personnel action file. As with all material being placed in the personnel file, the faculty member shall be given ten (10) days to respond before the placement occurs.

A written record of the evaluation at each level, which shall include the reasons for that evaluation, shall be given to the faculty member, who shall have the opportunity to submit a response within ten (10) days of receipt of the evaluation, and both the evaluation and the response shall then be placed in the permanent personnel file before it is forwarded to the next level.

If the evaluation at any level includes a recommended list of courses that the faculty member is - considered qualified to teach, then within ten (10) days of the receipt of such a list, the faculty member may request an explanation of why another/other specified course(s) have not been included. The faculty member shall then have a further ten (10) days to respond to that explanation, and/or may combine the response to the overall evaluation and the response to the explanation regarding the list in a single response submitted within the second ten day period.

Prior to the closure of the personnel file, the temporary faculty member shall be asked to update his/her personnel file, which may include the submission of a supplementary or working file in accord with the procedures set forth by the College and/or department/division/school.

A specific deadline shall be set by the Dean, or designee, for the closure of the personnel file.

Evaluations and recommendations on personnel action shall be based only upon materials in the personnel file.

Materials submitted for inclusion in the file after the personnel files are closed must be examined by an authorized College Committee to determine if the material is new and substantive. If so, the materials are added and the file is remanded to the department review committee.

The College and department/division/school polices concerning oral testimony in the RTP process shall apply to the evaluation of temporary faculty.

The faculty member being reviewed and/or those involved in any level of the evaluation process may request of the Dean that an external review be conducted. The external review of material requires the approval of both the faculty member being reviewed and the Dean; however, the selection of an external reviewer is the responsibility of the Dean.

Evaluation of Temporary Full-Time and Part-Time Faculty

  1. In all lecture and laboratory sections student opinion surveys will be administered every semester for all temporary faculty.

  2. All temporary faculty will be reviewed annually in the spring semester. The evaluation will be done by the Faculty Affairs Committee on "The Composition of Departmental Personnel Committees' policy, a written report will be prepared for each faculty member following review of his or her official personnel file, and it will be forwarded to the College Dean after the faculty member has been notified according to university procedures. The department chair will forward the committee's recommendation to the College Dean after the faculty member has been notified according to university procedures.

  3. Temporary faculty will have a classroom, observation conducted in at least one (1) classroom or laboratory in their first semester of teaching. Thereafter, it will be conducted once every two (2) semesters in at least once classroom or laboratory. Classroom observations for temporary faculty will be conducted by a member of the department Faculty Affairs Committee or by designees of that committee. There must be written notice of not less than five (5) University working days given the faculty member indicating the date upon which the observation will be made and indicating who will conduct it. If the faculty member desires, he/she may recommend someone to conduct the observation. The temporary faculty member may request additional classroom observations. When Observations are made, reports are included in the faculty member's permanent personnel action file. The temporary faculty member shall be given a copy of the report on the classroom observation. They, within ten (10) calendar days following receipt of the report, may submit a rebuttal statement of response in writing and/or request a meeting be held to discuss the report. A copy of the response or rebuttal statement shall accompany the Personnel File. Classroom observation must be done prior to close of Personnel File.

  4. For temporary faculty, currency in the field will be reviewed as part of the regular evaluation process. Currency will include an awareness and understanding of current knowledge in the field as appropriate for the course normally taught by the temporary faculty member. To determine currency the review may include the following: course syllabi; examinations; course and other materials in the supplemental file; publications, if any; and reports on classroom observations.

Consideration for Three-Year Appointments

Consideration for Range Elevation


The evaluation of satisfactory classroom performance shall be based upon student opm10n surveys, classroom visitations, review of course syllabi, exams and grading practices, Participation in course modification and curriculum development also will be considered, as appropriate. For elevation from range A to B, service to the University will be considered, as appropriate. This may include service on academic governance committee and outreach efforts on behalf of the Department, College or University. For elevation from range B to C or C to D, evidence of professional achievement will also be considered. Such achievement is indicated by, but not limited to, publication in peer-reviewed journals, books and book chapters, and oral and/or poster presentations at professional meetings.

Review of Department Personnel Procedures