This page includes recent Faculty Senate updates to UW Faculty Code Section 24-54 (procedures for promotion), which went into effect January 13, 2021. Apply guidance to promotion and/or tenure reviews initiated after this date.

Candidate CV and Self-Assessment

As faculty members prepare for promotion (and tenure where applicable), they are responsible for assembling part of their promotion/tenure record, as outlined in the Faculty Code 24-54 B. Candidates and administrators should refer to the Promotion and Tenure Checklist to ensure inclusion of all necessary materials in their record for submission to Academic HR. Candidates and administrators must also familiarize themselves with published local level guidelines related to the promotion record.

Consistent with the University’s expressed commitment to excellence and equity, contributions in scholarship and research, teaching, and service that address diversity and equal opportunity should be included and highlighted in any of the relevant supporting materials.

As part of the record, the faculty candidate should submit a current curriculum vitae (CV), which at a minimum should include the following information:

  • Date when CV is prepared
  • Education — including institutions, degrees granted, dates
  • PhD dissertation title and primary PhD advisor
  • Employment — including institutions (UW, as well as others), appointments, dates
  • UW committees and other duties
  • Research projects, grants, contracts — including funding agencies, dates, amounts of funding, individual’s role (PI, co-PI, other)
  • Bibliography of publications with entries listed in full bibliographic format, including page number range where publication appears, or number of pages of publication
  • Professional offices and awards, with dates
  • Talks, papers, or presentations — including dates, type of presentation (invited, contributed, and/or refereed)
  • Any additional supporting information (e.g., election to office or committee status in national or international scholarly or professional organization; appointment as consultant or editor; invitation to review or evaluate the work of others; selection for grants, fellowships, or awards; achievements of former students; and significant service to the state or nation)

Self-Assessment

In addition to the CV, the candidate should prepare a written self-assessment of academic accomplishments as well as future plans and career trajectory. Candidates are referred to Faculty Code Section 24-32 and Executive Order 45, which outline pertinent scholarship and professional qualifications of particular importance at the University of Washington.

In the self-assessment, the candidate should reflect on the significance, independence, influence, and promise of completed and in-progress scholarship and/or creative work. The focus should be on achievements in rank or title at the University of Washington, but it is important to place those achievements in context with how it fits into a larger body of work or program. Candidates holding ranks or titles with a primary emphasis in research or teaching should particularly reflect upon accomplishments and experiences that are consistent with their rank or title. All candidates should outline contributions to the profession, the University, and public service.

Teaching Evaluations in the Promotion Record

The UW Faculty Code Section 24-57 A requires that recommendations for promotion and/or tenure include documentation of teaching effectiveness in 2 forms: student evaluation and collegial (peer) evaluation. This documentation is essential and required for making promotion and/or tenure recommendations for all faculty members whose track/rank/title and/or duties include instructional responsibilities.

Student evaluation of teaching

Each faculty member must have at least one student course evaluation for every year in which a course is taught. This number should be thought of as a minimum; additional course evaluations are especially encouraged for Assistant Professors and other faculty who are building their teaching records.

The timing of course buyouts also should be carefully considered so that there is an adequate number of student evaluations to inform teaching improvement plans, reappointment decisions, and promotion (and tenure) reviews. Student assessments of teaching typically use the standardized forms provided by the Office of Educational Assessment.

A unit may adopt an alternate procedure for formal student evaluations, using their own forms instead of the standardized forms. Copies of each course evaluation are to be included in the promotion record. A summary table of the evaluation ratings may be included, but does not substitute for the course evaluations themselves.

Collegial (peer) evaluation of teaching

Collegial (peer) evaluation of teaching must be conducted on the following academic year schedule:

  • Every year for assistant professors, faculty in the associate professor tenure track and professor tenure track titles, and artists in residence.
  • Every 3 years for associate professors.*
  • *In addition to the above requirements, all faculty who are being considered for promotion must have peer evaluations in the year prior to consideration for promotion.

Peer evaluations can provide positive benefits for the individual faculty member and the unit by identifying the individual’s particular teaching contributions, sharing teaching knowledge among colleagues, and supporting the improvement of teaching. While student ratings provide useful data on success in communicating with a class, peer evaluations allow a focus on course content as perceived by peers and can describe the unique expertise, types of instruction, courses, or other activities that the individual contributes to the unit’s curriculum or teaching program as a whole. Self-evaluation by the individual faculty member is encouraged as a helpful component in this process.

The diversity of school/college/campus programs makes it difficult to specify any particular method of peer evaluation. A unit, however, should use the same method(s) for a standard set of evaluations, which may be supplemented as appropriate. The department chair/director/campus dean/dean should not have sole responsibility for conducting peer evaluations, and evaluators need not all be faculty senior in rank or title, unless otherwise specified by the appointing unit or school/college/campus. Active participation by the individual being evaluated is encouraged.

Appropriate methods might include peer review of one or more of the following: teaching materials, student evaluations, classroom or clinical instruction, and student performance. Useful teaching resources are available from the University of Washington Center for Teaching and Learning.

For promotion and tenure recommendations, a written summary of the peer evaluation is required, and must include the date of the evaluation and the name of the evaluator. The results must be shared with the faculty candidate and maintained in their records.

External Letters of Review

All recommendations for promotion and/or tenure forwarded to the provost must include confidential evaluations by external reviewers, as prescribed in the UW Faculty Code Section 24-54 B. The specific selection process for external reviewers is determined at the local level. The following criteria should be used in soliciting external reviewers:

  • 3-5 external letters of evaluation are required. For courtesy clinical and affiliate faculty members, a reduced number of external letters may be required, as determined at the local level.
  • All external reviewers should be recognized contributors to their field, as indicated, for example, by tenure and/or an academic rank senior to the candidate at a major research university, frequent citation of their work, or major awards. In some circumstances, members of the professional or governmental community may also serve as appropriate external reviewers.
    • When evaluating assistant teaching professors, artists in residence, or those with courtesy clinical and affiliate titles, it may also be appropriate to solicit letters from experts who are external to the candidate’s academic unit, but who are internal to the UW.
    • For considerations of candidates from associate teaching professor to teaching professor, reviewers must be external to UW.
  • External reviewers should be able to provide an arm’s length assessment of the candidate’s scholarly achievements.
  • If a promotion/tenure recommendation has been postponed for one year, new external review letters must be obtained for the following year’s consideration.
  • The letter of solicitation should state that the unit is considering the candidate for possible promotion/tenure and request the following information:
    • Whether, and for how long, the reviewer has known the candidate.
    • The significance, independence, influence, and promise of the candidate’s research, scholarship or creative work (and in particular, work done since beginning an appointment at the University of Washington), as well as the candidate’s degree of national/international recognition.
    • The success of the candidate’s teaching, including consideration of curricular design and implementation, student mentoring, and service and leadership roles in the University and the field, as appropriate for the candidate’s rank and title.
    • A comparison of the candidate’s accomplishments with leading scholars or artists at a similar career stage in the same or related fields.
  • Each external reviewer should be provided with the same representative set of the candidate’s scholarly or artistic materials.
  • The external reviewer should not be asked to assess whether the candidate should be promoted (but a reviewer may, of course, volunteer such an opinion).
  • References to the UW Faculty Code (e.g., Faculty Code Section 24-32 and Section 24-34) and Executive Order 45 may be helpful for providing more context for external reviewers.
  • When the promotion recommendation is submitted to Academic HR, it should include one sample of the solicitation letter and a statement describing the qualifications of the external reviewers, their relationship (if any) with the candidate, the manner in which they were chosen, and the reasons for the choices.

Additional/Supplemental Materials

Supporting data or additional materials may be submitted if they are substantive and will be helpful in evaluating a candidate’s record. While this material is considered supplemental for AHR candidates and administrators should be aware that some units require a copy of each of the publications (or comparable evidence) listed on the CV (bibliography) as part of the promotion record. These publications and similar works will not be retained as a part of the central promotion record. Units may also require additional materials such as course syllabi and materials or examples of student assessment materials.

Next page: Part 2: Recommendations and Candidate’s Opportunity for Response