Promotion Record Assembly: Public Statement

In January of 2021 the UW faculty amended our faculty code to add the word "published" to faculty code section 24-54B paragraph 1.  This requires that the university publish the guidelines for the assembly of a faculty member's promotion packet.  Each school or department must do this independently.  This is the School of Oceanography's published statement.

Through 2022, the School of Oceanography deferred to the College of the Environment regarding guidelines for assembling the promotion packet and used the college checklist.  In 2023 the university establised a university-wide checklist for all faculty promotions and the School of Oceanography now uses that checklist.  The embedded link provides all Oceanography faculty access to the published university-wide guidelines for the creation of their promotion record/packet.

The areas used in evaluating the record of a candidate prior to promotion are also held above the School of Oceanography.  These areas are research, education and service. This information is unfortunately spread across the faculty code and the Academic Human Resources pages, but for the interested party you can begin at the excellent college page about promotions and then work your way to the faculty code and to AHR.


Course Evaluations and Promotions

The one area where the School of Oceanography has activated a school-specific policy is in the creation of, and sharing of, course evaluations.  The faculty code on the subject states this:

the standardized student assessment of teaching procedure which the University makes available may be used for obtaining student evaluation of teaching effectiveness, unless the college, school, or department has adopted an alternate procedure for student evaluation, in which case the latter may be used. 

In the School of Oceanography we use the UW evaluations sheets in full (aggregated scoring and individual comments) on an annual basis to improve teaching.  These two components are made available to the instructor and director, and are sometimes discussed at annual faculty-director meetings.  However, during the promotion process we typically do not share the individual student comments, only the aggregated comments.  We do this for the following reason: the individual comments of a single student can sometimes be non-representative of the entirety of a faculty member's teaching, and can be hurtful in nature, especially post-summer 2020. 

The faculty of the School of Oceanography objected to UW AHR mandating the inclusion of the student comments beginning in 2022 because this was not brought to a faculty vote.  It is a decision that impacts faculty promotion yet it was not vetted by faculty.  Prior to 2022 only the aggregated scores were used for promotion purposes. At the October 2022 faculty meeting the faculty of the School of Oceanography approved a motion calling that we would not use individual comments from students during promotion review.  This is to protect from "black ball" comments and also as a form of protest against a system that seems to arbitrarily change the promotion process for faculty without faculty input.



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