The policy was adopted by the Faculty Senate in 1998 and implemented during the 1998-99 academic year. It was revised by the Senate in 2001 for 2002-03 implementation.
Post-tenure review (PTR) is a comprehensive, formal, periodic evaluation of cumulative faculty performance to ensure faculty development and to promote faculty vitality. The purpose of PTR is to support and encourage excellence among tenured faculty by recognizing and rewarding exemplary faculty performance; providing for a clear plan and timetable for improvement of faculty found deficient; and for those whose performance remains deficient, providing for the imposition of appropriate sanctions, which may, in the most serious cases, include a recommendation for discharge.
Just as an institution's policies governing the award of tenure must reflect the institution's mission, policies for PTR must also be guided by institutional mission, and the performance of each tenured faculty member must be evaluated in the context of the mission of the individual's college or school and department. While PTR is not a revalidation of the award of tenure, many characteristics of an institution's tenure policies remain relevant in judging the performance of tenured faculty. UNCW's Criteria for Reappointment, Promotion, and Award of Tenure states:
It follows that teaching effectiveness should be the primary evaluation area in the post-tenure review of a faculty member. The "Criteria" also states:
The most effective way to ensure that the importance of individual contributions is appropriately recognized, and to account for differences in the nature and mission of varied academic disciplines, is to base the post-tenure evaluation on peer review by departmental colleagues, and to have the department chair determine the quality of faculty performance and, when necessary, to guide the creation and implementation of a development plan. To effectively link the annual evaluation of faculty to PTR, the post-tenure review must take place at the departmental level, as do the annual evaluations.
PTR is an addition to an already elaborate process of faculty evaluation. Care must be taken to focus on the new features of evaluation that PTR brings, and to avoid redundancy of evaluation. The objective of PTR is to identify and reward exemplary faculty performance, and to identify and correct deficient faculty performance. PTR provides a new opportunity to identify sustained exemplary performance of faculty that may not be recognized over a period of only one year, and for which there has heretofore been no means of recognition. PTR provides a new constructive mechanism to correct deficient performance of faculty, in the rare event that it occurs. PTR should not be used to suggest ways that competent, conscientious faculty may merely improve their satisfactory performance—annual reviews already have that function.
PTR is required of all tenured faculty whose primary responsibilities (50% or more) are teaching and/or research and/or service. Tenured librarians shall be subject to PTR. For each chair or administrator within a college or school, the dean shall determine whether that person meets the criteria for mandatory review.
Faculty of whom PTR is required must undergo a review no later than the fifth academic year following the most recent of these review events:
Exceptions shall be made in the following cases:
A tenured faculty member may elect to undergo PTR during any academic year. No faculty member shall be compelled to undergo PTR as described in this policy earlier than as required by this timetable. At the beginning of each academic year, each dean shall provide a list of those faculty required to be reviewed during that year.
Performance shall be reviewed for the period since the prior review event or for the preceding five years, whichever period is less. A faculty member being reviewed shall provide a succinct report, for the period being evaluated, on professional activities in teaching, research/artistic achievement, and service. Each department shall establish the format for the report, except that it must include (where applicable) courses taught, theses directed, and all evaluations of teaching; publications, performances, and presentations; service activities; and all annual evaluations for the years under review.
PTR must include peer review of faculty professional performance. Each department shall establish a procedure for peer review, which must include an evaluation by at least three tenured colleagues of the faculty member's record in teaching, research/artistic achievement, and service. Peer reviewers shall present their evaluations in writing as advice to the chair, who will then write the evaluation relative to the mission of the university, college/school, and program. The chair's evaluation shall state whether the faculty member's overall professional performance has been satisfactory, exemplary, or deficient. The chair shall provide a copy of the evaluation to the faculty member and shall meet with the faculty member to discuss the review. The faculty member has the option of attaching a written response. The chair shall forward a list of the peer evaluators, a copy of the evaluation, and the faculty member's response, if any, to the dean for information. The faculty member and chair shall sign the evaluation in acknowledgment of its receipt by the faculty member. In the case of a finding of deficient, the faculty member has the right to appeal the finding on the basis of the four grounds stated to be impermissible (see Appeal from a finding of deficient or from a finding of non-compliance with a development plan below).
Each year the Provost shall establish deadlines for the completion of the PTR process.
Criteria for satisfactory faculty performance are professional competence; conscientious discharge of duties, taking into account distribution of workload as assigned by the department chair; and efforts to improve performance. Criteria for exemplary faculty performance are sustained excellence in teaching, research/artistic achievement, and service; and professional performance that is substantially above expectations and that significantly exceeds the performance of most faculty. Deficient faculty performance is performance that does not meet the criteria for being judged satisfactory, as stated above. Annual evaluations for the period under review shall be given great consideration during PTR; faculty whose annual reviews have indicated satisfactory performance or better during that period shall normally be expected to receive a satisfactory evaluation or better under PTR.
In the case of performance judged to be exemplary, the results shall be documented for university award consideration. Documentation of such performance shall also be forwarded by the chair to the dean, the Provost, and the Chancellor for appropriate recognition.
In the case of performance judged to be deficient, the chair shall forward to the faculty member a copy of the evaluation by the deadline set by the Provost. Within ten working days of receipt of the evaluation or within ten working days following the denial of an appeal of the finding of deficient, the chair and faculty member shall meet and, in consultation, begin to create a development plan. The plan shall include the following:
A development plan shall not be required of a faculty member who has received a satisfactory review.
The Code states: "A faculty member who is the beneficiary of institutional guarantees of tenure shall enjoy protection against unjust and arbitrary application of disciplinary penalties. During the period of such guarantees, the faculty member may be discharged or suspended from employment or diminished in rank only for reasons of incompetence, neglect of duty, or misconduct of such a nature as to indicate that the individual is unfit to continue as a member of the faculty" (VI: 603). Due process and the right of appeal as specified in The Code and UNCW's Policies of Academic Freedom and Tenure shall be guaranteed. The outcome of evaluation should be confidential—that is, confined to the appropriate university persons or bodies and the faculty member being evaluated—and released only at the discretion or with the consent of the faculty member.
A faculty member may appeal a finding of deficient, a finding of non-compliance with a development plan, or the imposition of sanctions other than discharge, suspension from employment, or diminishment in rank to the Faculty Professional Relations Committee (FPRC). A faculty member may appeal the imposition of serious sanctions (discharge, suspension from employment, or diminishment in rank) to the Hearings Panel as specified in Chapter VI of The Code.
A faculty member may appeal a finding of deficient or a finding of non-compliance with a development plan, by letter to the chair of the Faculty Professional Relations Committee, within ten working days after the faculty member has received the written evaluation from the department chair. The FPRC reviews the request of the faculty member in order to determine whether the decision may have been based upon any of the grounds stated to be impermissible. A finding of deficient or a finding of non-compliance with a development plan may not be based upon (1) the faculty member's exercise of rights guaranteed by either the First Amendment to the United States Constitution or Article I of the North Carolina Constitution; (2) discrimination based upon the faculty member's personal characteristics, such as age, color, handicap, national origin, race, religion, sex, or sexual orientation; (3) personal malice; or (4) procedural irregularities that cast reasonable doubt upon the validity of the decision and which may include but are not limited to the following:
Should the committee determine that the evaluation may have been based upon any of these impermissible grounds, it grants the faculty member a hearing and either sustains the appeal or else confirms the previous evaluation. The committee's decision is a recommendation to the Provost or the Provost's designee, whose decision is final.
If a mutually acceptable plan is not reached within one month after the initial meeting, the currently existing mediation process of the Faculty Professional Relations Committee shall be utilized. If a mediated settlement cannot be achieved under the auspices of the FPRC, the FPRC shall advise adjustment by the dean as the committee considers appropriate and the dean shall act as arbitrator in the development of a plan.
UNCW's PTR policy was initially developed by a committee of faculty, adopted by the Faculty Senate in the spring of 1998, and approved by the Board of Trustees of UNCW and by the Board of Governors of the University of North Carolina. The first academic year of its implementation was 1998-99.
Revisions in this PTR policy may be initiated at any time by action of the Faculty Senate. Non-editorial revisions require approval by both the Board of Trustees of UNCW and by the Board of Governors. Such revisions shall become effective in the academic year following their approval by the Board of Governors.
The policy was revised by the Senate in the fall of 2001 with implementation during the 2002-03 academic year.