The Complete FAQ

Complete FAQ as a PDF


A1 What is the best way to go about recruiting tenure track faculty?
A2 What aspects of the tenure process need to be discussed during the recruitment process?
A3 How should a recruit with incoming experience be advised about a reduced probationary period?
A4 When is it appropriate to hire someone at the associate-professor-without-tenure level?
A5 For joint hires, what factors need to be considered?
A6 What should be covered in the offer letter?

The Probationary Period

B1 Why is mentoring important along the tenure track?
B2 What is the difference between formal and informal mentoring?
B3 What should the mentor communicate to the mentee about research?
B4 What should the mentor communicate to the mentee about teaching?
B5 What should the mentor communicate to the mentee about service?
B6 How should the Chair handle a mentoring situations that are not going well?
B7 Should the conversations between mentor and mentee be private?
B8 Why are annual reviews important?
B9 How should they be structured?
B10 Why is it important to have a rigorous three-year review?
B11 What about switching to an RTE track?
B12 How do leaves affect the tenure clock??

Initiating the Tenure Review

C1 When is a tenure review normally initiated?
C2 What about staging an early review?
C3 What about delaying the review?
C4 What about discouraging the review?
C5 What should the CV include?
C6 What are some guidelines for writing a good research statement?
C7 What are the attributes of a good teaching statement?
C8 What are the attributes of a good extension statement?
C9 How should service contributions be documented?
C10 How should a commitment to diversity and inclusion be expressed?
C11 What are  the rules about updating the various documents that are supplied by the candidate?

External Reviewer Selection

D1 What is the purpose of the external letters?
D2 Who should be involved in the production of the external reviewer list?
D3 What are some of the key factors to consider when considering a possible external reviewer?
D4 What about having more than one reviewer from the same academic unit at another school?
D5 What about letters from Cornell faculty?
D6 What about letters from reviewers who are unfamiliar with the tenure system?
D7 How many external letters should their be in the dossier?
D8 How should the department produce the final list of external reviewers?
D9 How should the candidate go about producing a list of potential external reviewers?
D10 What about the candidate’s do-not-contact list?
D11 Should a template version of  the solicitation letter be publicized?
D12 Are there certain questions that should not be posed to the external reviewer?
D13 How much of the dossier should be made available to the external reviewer and in what form?

Letters from Students on Teaching and Advising

E1 How should peer review of teaching be organized and reported?
E2 How should course evaluation data be presented?
E3 Should some number of former students be asked to write?
E4 How should the candidate’s ability to supervise  projects and research be assessed?
E5 How should the candidate’s mentoring and advising  skills be assessed?

Department Deliberations

F1 How do you evaluate research?
F2 How do you evaluate teaching?
F3 How do  you evaluate service?
F4 How do you evaluate commitment to equity and diversity?
F5 How should the external letter rate-of-return be interpreted?
F6 When does the Chair call the first meeting and how should it be structured?
F7 Should “straw polls” be part of the deliberations?
F8 Should the final vote of the tenured faculty be by secret ballot?
F9 How should the votes of those unable to attend the meetings be assessed?
F10 How should the vote tally be interpreted?
F11 Should the results of the vote be known only to the chair and those downstream in the review?
F12 Should the Chair’s letter be shared with the tenured faculty before sending it to the Dean?

College Deliberations

G1 What is an ad hoc committee?
G2 What are the rules associated with  the size and make up of the ad hoc committee?
G3 Is the Dean obliged to form an Ad Hoc Committee?
G4 How might the Dean charge the Ad Hoc Committee?
G5 Can the Ad Hoc Committee request additional information?
G6 What happens if the Dean’s decision is positive?
G7 What happens if the Dean’s decision is negative?

University Deliberations

H1 What is FACTA?
H2 How does FACTA work if the Dean’s decision is positive?
H3 How does FACTA work if the Dean’s decision is negative?
H4 What does the case get to the the Trustee level?

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