Boston College

College of Arts and Sciences

Office of the Dean

 

October 2005

 

Guidelines for Appointment and Promotion of Full-time Non-tenure-track Faculty

The University Statutes, Chapter II, Section 2, Paragraph 3, provide for the appointment of Non-tenure-track faculty, but they do not specify the qualifications for different ranks or the procedures to be followed for promotion to higher ranks.  The present document describes the various categories of Full-time Non-tenure-track appointment, the qualifications for the ranks within each category, and the procedures for the promotion of Non-tenure-track faculty in the College of Arts & Sciences.

 

Full-time Non-tenure-track faculty members recommended for promotion by their departments or programs are reviewed each year by the "Non-tenure-tracks Promotion Committee," a committee that is appointed by the Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences.  Upon completing its review, the Committee makes its written recommendations to the Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences, who can then propose the promotion to the Provost.

 

Although the procedures for the promotion of Non-tenure-track faculty are less elaborate than those for the tenure and promotion of the tenure-track faculty, the review and decision-making procedures should be fair, respectful of the experience of the candidates, and adhere to https://collage.bc.edu:8443/servlet/frame_contribution_edit.jsp?assetid=12765&aType=HTML%20Documentappropriate high academic and professional standards as in all faculty reviews at the University. 

 

Types and Ranks of Non-tenure-track Faculty and Their Qualifications

Three categories (tracks) of Full-time Non-tenure-track faculty appointments are recognized in the College of Arts & Sciences. [1]  Within each category, the specified ranking system and the qualifications for each rank are based loosely on the "Qualifications for Faculty Rank" section of the University Statutes Chapter II, Section 3. [2]

 

Track I: Lecturer/Senior Lecture

This track is intended for Non-tenure-track faculty members without a terminal degree in their area of expertise.

Lecturer:  To qualify for the rank of Lecturer, the candidate must have a master's degree or appropriate professional  experience, and give promise of excellence as a teacher.

Senior Lecturer: To qualify for the rank of Senior Lecturer, the candidate must have a master's degree or appropriate professional experience, have six years of service at Boston College, and demonstrate excellence in teaching and either scholarship or service.

 

Track II: Non-tenure-track Assistant Professor/Non-tenure-track Associate Professor/Non-tenure-track Professor

This track is intended for faculty members with a terminal degree in their area of expertise who are not on a tenure track.

Non-tenure-track Assistant Professor: To qualify for the rank of Non-tenure-track Assistant Professor, the candidate must have a   terminal degree or equivalent experience, and give promise of excellence as a teacher.

Non-tenure-track Associate Professor:  To qualify for the rank of Non-tenure-track Associate Professor, the candidate must have a terminal degree or equivalent experience, have six years of service at Boston College, and demonstrate excellence in teaching and either scholarship or service.

Non-tenure-track Professor:  To qualify for the rank of Non-tenure-track Professor, the candidate must have a terminal degree or equivalent experience, demonstrate excellence in teaching and either scholarship or service, and have a national reputation.  Non-tenure-track Professor is an honorific title and should be reserved for faculty members of exceptional abilities and longstanding service to Boston College or another institution.

 

Track III:  Assistant Research Professor/Associate Research Professor/Research Professor

This track is intended primarily for faculty members in the natural sciences with a terminal degree, whose principal contribution to the University is in research rather than teaching, and who is not on tenure track.

Non-tenure-track Research Professor: To qualify for the rank of Non-tenure-track Assistant Research Professor, the candidate must have a terminal degree or equivalent experience, and give promise of excellence as a researcher.

Non-tenure-track Associate Research Professor: To qualify for the rank of Non-tenure-track Associate Research Professor, the candidate must have a terminal degree or equivalent experience, have six years of service at Boston College, and demonstrate excellence in research and either teaching or service.

Non-tenure-track Research Professor: To qualify for the rank of Non-tenure-track Research Professor, the candidate must have a terminal degree or equivalent experience, demonstrate excellence in research and either teaching or service, and have a national reputation.  Research Professor is an honorific title and should be reserved for faculty members of exceptional abilities and longstanding service to Boston College or another institution.

 

Procedures for the Promotion of Full-time Non-tenure-track Faculty

Departments may develop their own specific procedures for reviewing Non-tenure-track faculty members for promotion.  Some may appoint an Non-tenure-track faculty committee, while others may assign the task to their existing promotion and tenure committee. [3]  It is important, however, that the same type of procedure be followed for all Non-tenure-track promotion cases from a particular department.  Department chairs are encouraged to be available to candidates for advice about how to prepare their credentials and to present their file in an accessible and reader-friendly manner.

 

Any Non-tenure-track faculty member recommended for promotion would be asked to prepare a file containing a personal statement, current curriculum vitae, and supporting materials as necessary to demonstrate excellence in teaching, research, and/or service.  External reviews of Non-tenure-track faculty are not required?with the notable exception of candidates for promotion to the rank of Non-tenure-track Professor and Non-tenure-track Research Professor.

 

Contents of a Complete Promotion File

A promotion file should include the following:

Application for promotion

The candidate's curriculum vitae

A brief report on departmental procedures followed in the review of the candidate and the Chair's own assessment of the candidate

While no letter from external referees are required for the purpose of the review (with the exception of candidates for promotion to the rank of Non-tenure-track Professor or Non-tenure-track Research Professor), the Chair or the candidate may include such letters if they deem them to be especially pertinent

Copies of the candidate's publications and other scholarship

?  Statement of the candidate?s teaching goals and activities at Boston College

?  Statement of the candidate?s current research

?  Statistical summaries of the candidate?s student course evaluations, along with departmental summaries for purposes of comparison

?  Evaluation of the candidate?s teaching based on class visits by departmental colleagues and, when feasible, from student committee(s); candidates are encouraged, although not required, to include the original student course evaluation forms, with the students? written comments, and are invited to provide other supporting materials.

?  The department?s evaluation of the candidate?s research, teaching, and/or service, the department?s recommendation regarding promotion, and the department chair?s own recommendation regarding promotion.

 

Evaluating Teaching

The University Statutes require excellence in teaching for promotion.  Assessment of teaching will be based upon the candidate?s statement on teaching goals and activities; submitted course syllabi; statistical summaries of course evaluations (as well as the original forms with students? written comments if supplied by the candidate); report on classroom visits by departmental colleagues; and, when possible, comments on the candidate?s teaching obtained from individual students or student committees within the candidate?s department or program.

 

Departmental Deliberations

In general, only tenure-track faculty members who are senior to the candidate should take part in the departmental deliberations and voting.  Non-tenure-track faculty members senior to the candidate may also participate in the departmental review and vote on the candidate at the discretion of the department chair.  It is essential that all who are privy to the departmental discussions and vote maintain strict confidentiality.

 

The Committee Hearing

The College of Arts & Sciences Non-tenure-tracks Promotion Committee is charged with the responsibility for making an independent judgment about the candidate?s past performance and future trajectory in the areas of scholarship, teaching, and service.  As part of its assessment process, the Committee may meet with the Chair of a department that is presenting a promotion case in order to give the Chair an opportunity to highlight  important dimensions of the case and the significance of the candidate?s contributions to the department?s or  program?s academic objectives and mission.

 

All who take part in the Committee proceedings have a responsibility to maintain the highest level of confidentiality.

 

 

 



[1]Temporary faculty members hired on a one-year contract could be distinguished from permanent Non-tenure-track faculty by adding the word "Visiting" to their titles.

[2] When appropriate, the Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences or the Non-tenure-tracks Promotion Committee may recommend exceptions to these qualifications to the Academic Vice President.

[3] In the special case of the Honors Program in the College of Arts & Sciences the Director shall form a three-person committee for the review of the candidate, consisting of the Director and two senior members of the Program. The Director may also invite all members of the Program to submit comments on the candidate's teaching, scholarship and service. The candidate, in turn, may solicit letters whether from within the Program or from A&S departments where the candidate has also taught.