Faculty Personnel Committee 1995/6

Martin Wybourne (Physics), Chair of the 1995/96 Faculty Personnel Committee (FPC) delivered the next committee report. A copy of this report can be found on pages 21 and 22 of these minutes.

The purpose of the FPC is to advise the Provost on all tenure and promotion cases. Last year's committee was comprised of 10 faculty members and one undergraduate student. The ASUO was unable to provide the name of a graduate student to serve on the committee in 95/96. However, it is the recommendation of the FPC that in the future the ASUO try to provide two student representatives to serve on this committee.

The committee met on at least a weekly basis from January until June, with more frequent meetings as the June 15th deadline approached. The committee reviewed a total of 39 cases: 5 for tenure only; one for promotion to Senior Instructor with tenure; 24 for promotion to Associate Professor with tenure; 8 for promotion to full Professor; and one new hire at the level of Professor with tenure. The FPC's recommendation to the Provost was favorable in 28 cases, and negative in 6. In 3 cases the committee was divided, and a mixed vote was recorded. In one of the remaining two cases, the FPC was unable to decide because of a lack of guidelines with which to judge the case, and in the other, there were issues that caused the committee to remain undecided.

The Provost agreed with all of the committee's favorable decisions, and with 3 of the 6 negative decisions. The Provost acted favorably in two of the three cases that received mixed votes from the FPC, and favorably in one of the two cases in which the committee remained undecided.

The main frustration the committee had--and one that has been expressed by the FPC previously--was the inadequate documentation of teaching performance contained in some of the files. The FPC would like to urge department heads to adhere to the new policies on teaching evaluations, which should help provide more uniform reporting campus wide.

One issue on which the University should provide definite expectations is on the promotion from Instructor to Senior Instructor with Tenure. This caused serious problems in one case during 95/96. There are at present no clear guidelines, and the expectations vary widely across the campus, which makes an objective review of these cases very difficult.

The Committee also discussed and in general supported the policy on Sexual Relations. However, the policy raised a serious issue for the FPC, that is, when a written reprimand is included in a faculty personnel file, how is it to be weighted with respect to the other evaluative components of teaching, research and service? The FPC believes that this is an area where the new policy will have a substantial and long-lasting impact on a person's career, and it is felt that the University should provide future committees with carefully crafted directions to assist them.

The FPC recommends no changes in procedures for this year's committee, and would like to publicly thank Vice Provost Lorraine Davis and her assistant, Carol White, for their considerable help as the FPC worked through its heavy caseload.

At the conclusion of Mr. Wybourne's committee report, the floor was opened for questions.

Senator Engleking asked to whom the FPC's recommendations were made. Mr. Wybourne answered that the recommendations are included in the committee's formal report, and they were also forwarded to Lorraine Davis.

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