Policy 2113 – Tenure

WWW Posting Date: 1/15/2002

Responsible Office: Provost

Reference: Board of Supervisors

The uniform provisions for tenure provide that the Board of Supervisors has the ultimate responsibility for hiring academic personnel and for awarding or denying tenure to academic personnel within the colleges and universities under the jurisdiction of the Board. The precise terms and conditions of every appointment shall be stated in writing and be in the possession of both institution and employee before the appointment is consummated. Yearly operational budgets shall show tenure status of each employee.

The Board of Supervisors has adopted the following policy on tenure:

  1. Definition. Indeterminate tenure, hereafter referred to as tenure, is intended to ensure and enhance faculty members’ academic freedom and job effectiveness. Tenure assures the faculty member that employment in the academic discipline at the institution will be renewed annually until the faculty member resigns, retires, or is terminated for cause or financial exigency.

    1. Faculty members shall not be eligible for tenure at the instructor level. (Faculty members shall be on annual appointment at the instructor level.)

    2. Each recommendation by an institution to grant tenure to a faculty member shall be submitted to the Board of Supervisors at a time designated by the System President, which shall be no later than the date to submit annual budgets for approval.

  2. Eligibility for Tenure. The probationary period for tenure consideration in the Board of Supervisors system is six years. A tenure-track faculty member may apply for tenure during the sixth year. (For the purposes of determination of years of service for tenure eligibility and final data of tenure action, the following rule applies. Faculty members who begin employment with the University in a tenure-track appointment before January 1 of a given academic year will count that year toward the total number of years. Those who begin employment after January 1 of a given academic year will not count that year towards the total allowable.)

  3. Recommendation for Tenure. Recommendation for tenure of individuals who have completed the probationary period shall originate in the various structural units, with tenured faculty and unit heads initiating the recommendations. The recommendation shall be submitted to the institution President for his or her consideration. His or her action shall be submitted to the System President. Final authority for granting or denying tenure shall rest with the Board of Supervisors. Under no circumstances shall tenure status be achieved without specific action of the Board of Supervisors.

  4. Notification of Tenure Decision. At the end of the probationary period, the result of each individual’s evaluation shall be provided to that individual. In the event tenure is to be denied, 12-month advance written notice of termination shall be given. If tenure is to be awarded, the affected faculty member shall be informed in writing, and tenure will be effective with the next letter of appointment.

  5. Early Awarding of Tenure. In certain unusual cases, the institution may award tenure to faculty members of extraordinarily high merit prior to the end of the sixth probationary year. Any academic unit’s recommendation, with faculty input whenever possible, to award tenure before the end of the usual probationary period should be accompanied by an accounting of compelling reasons for this action.

  6. Decision Not to Grant Tenure. If the decision is made not to grant tenure in the sixth year, it shall result in a terminal appointment for the seventh year. The notice of terminal appointment shall be made in writing to the faculty member prior to concluding the sixth year.

  7. Credit for Prior Service. For the purpose of the probationary period, credit may be given for prior service at other institutions with the mutual consent of the individual institution and the Board of Supervisors.

  8. Faculty Initially Appointed as Professor or Associate Professor. Faculty members initially employed at the rank of professor may be granted tenure upon appointment or, at the discretion of the institution, may be required to serve a probationary period not to exceed four years. Faculty members initially employed at the rank of associate professor shall serve a probationary period of at least one year, but no more than four years.

  9. Limitation of Tenure. Tenure shall be limited to persons in the faculty ranks of assistant professor, associate professor, and professor. Administrators shall not earn tenure except as members of an academic discipline and only for a nine-month appointment.

  10. Duration of Tenure. Tenured faculty shall retain their status until they retire, resign, or are terminated for cause or as a result of financial exigency. Tenure shall be granted and held only within an academic discipline that is offered at the institution and assures renewed appointments only within that discipline.

  11. Termination for Financial Exigency. Termination is at the institutional level, as determined by procedures which include faculty participation.

  12. Policy. This tenure policy shall supersede all existing policies with the following exceptions:

    1. All persons holding tenure on the effective date of this policy shall retain their tenure.

    2. Any person in the employment of an affected institution on the effective date of this policy (August 1993) shall be eligible to earn tenure under the terms and conditions of the policy in force and in effect at the time of that person’s employment at that institution.

    3. This policy shall in no way affect any rights acquired by any person employed by an institution prior to the effective date of this policy.

University Procedures for Tenure Applications are presented in Policy 2114, Tenure and Promotion Procedures.