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Chapter 310: Academic Tenure Regulations

310.035 Non-Tenure Track Faculty

310.035 Non-Tenure Track Faculty

Executive Guideline No. 35, issued 11-16-06; revised 05-21-08, 04-12-10, 6-17-10, 02-04-11, 7-16-12, 5-1-13.

  1. Academic Appointments
    Academic appointments at the University of Missouri currently are divided into two main categories: regular and non-regular.  Under this executive guideline, regular faculty shall be referred to as “tenured and tenure track” faculty, and this group shall continue to include the traditional faculty of the institution.  Except with regard to the definitions listed herein, this guideline is applicable to full-time ranked non-regular faculty and is not designed to address academic appointments of any other type including, but not limited to, full-time unranked, part-time nonregular faculty, and tenured and tenure track faculty.

    Non-regular faculty shall be divided into three groups: (1) full-time, ranked, non-regular faculty (non-tenure track (NTT) faculty); (2) full-time, unranked, non-regular faculty; and (3) part-time, non-regular faculty (adjunct faculty) [1].

    The requirements distinguishing between a full-time, ranked non-regular faculty member and a full-time, unranked non-regular faculty member shall be made at the campus level.  While many of the full-time unranked non-regular titles will not be eliminated, it is implicit in this guideline that the individuals that meet the qualifications for NTT faculty should receive an appropriate NTT faculty title as described in the following section.  In most circumstances, non-tenure track faculty members who have primary authority in research, or teaching, or clinical/professional practice, or extension duties should receive title changes appropriate to ranked NTT positions at the time of such reappointments [2].

    This guideline applies to all newly-hired NTT faculty members and to those non-regular faculty who are reappointed into NTT faculty positions at the time of such reappointment.
  2. Categories of (Ranked) Non-Tenure Track Faculty Defined
    There shall be six main types of full-time, ranked NTT faculty.  Each should have primary responsibility in a single area: teaching, or research, or clinical/professional practice, or extension activities, or libraries.  The titles should identify the area.  Within each area, there shall be three ranks:
    1. Research faculty (Research Professor, Associate Research Professor, Assistant Research Professor)
    2. Teaching faculty (Teaching Professor, Associate Teaching Professor, Assistant Teaching Professor)
    3. Clinical/Professional Practice faculty (Clinical Professor, Associate Clinical Professor, Assistant Clinical Professor or Professional Practice Professor, Associate Professional Practice Professor, Assistant Professional Practice Professor)
    4. Extension faculty (Extension Professor, Associate Extension Professor, Assistant Extension Professor; Extension Professional, Associate Extension Professional, Assistant Extension Professional)
    5. Librarian faculty (Librarian I/II, Librarian III, Librarian IV) on campuses whose librarian faculty have opted for NTT status as a body, whose faculty council or faculty senate, as appropriate to the individual campus, has formally recognized librarian faculty as having NTT status as a body and whose Chancellor has approved such recognition.
    6. Clinical Department faculty [3] (Professor of Clinical Department, Associate Professor of Clinical Department, Assistant Professor of Clinical Department)
  3. Performance of NTT Faculty
    Unlike tenured and tenure track faculty, whose performance is evaluated based on their contribution to research, teaching, and service, the performance of NTT faculty should be evaluated on the primary responsibility of the NTT appointment as well as service and professional activities related to that primary responsibility.

    There is no prohibition for NTT faculty to be involved in multiple duties related to research, teaching, or service.  However, decisions regarding hiring, continuation of employment, and evaluation of NTT faculty performance should relate to the primary purpose of their appointment as defined by category and not be based on all three criteria.  Only tenured and tenure track faculty should be hired, evaluated, and promoted based on all three criteria.
  4. Nature of the Initial Appointment
    The nature of the initial appointment to a NTT position is important to both the NTT faculty member and the department [4].  Therefore the NTT faculty member’s primary department should be fully engaged in defining the nature of the NTT academic appointments.  Since the NTT faculty member is expected to contribute to the department’s core mission, specific job responsibilities and expectations should be explicitly stated in a written job description developed by the department chair in conjunction with an appropriate department committee.
  5. Searches for NTT Faculty Members
    Initial searches for NTT faculty should be conducted on a regional or national basis as appropriate with the involvement of a faculty-based search committee.  NTT faculty should be selected using a process somewhat similar to one used for tenure track faculty members with interviews/presentations to division faculty, staff and students, and a full review of candidates’ dossiers.  Student feedback is particularly important for all NTT teaching faculty. 

    Recommendations for hiring decisions remain under the purview of the department chair, dean or director [5].
  6. NTT Faculty Attributes
    Those appointed to a NTT academic position should hold an earned doctoral degree, OR the appropriate terminal degree, OR have appropriate professional experience (i.e., teaching, research, clinical/professional practice, extension or library) as defined by the faculty of the academic unit.  Evidence of the successful candidate’s abilities should be demonstrated through the resume, portfolio/dossier, reference letters, and through interviews with unit, department and/or college faculty members.  The successful candidates should demonstrate potential for excellence in the primary area of their appointments (e.g., teaching, research, clinical/professional practice, extension or library) as well as in the service and professional aspects related to their disciplines and their positions.
  7. Clearly Defined Expectations for Each Position
    Specific qualifications for each rank shall be determined by the department and/or college with approval by the provost.  The workload requirements for NTT faculty members should be spelled out in detail in advance.  For teaching appointments, there should be clearly articulated teaching assignments and teaching loads including adjustments made for large classes or courses with multiple sections.  Research appointments should spell out the specific roles, duties, grant projects and expectations for future funding.  Clinical/professional practice, librarian, clinical department faculty appointments should clearly articulate the specific roles, responsibilities and performance expectations for delivering clinical/professional practice, librarian or clinical department faculty services.  Extension appointments should describe the specific extension activities and outline relationships with the department.
  8. Contract Length
    NTT faculty appointments shall begin at a specified date and terminate at a specified date.  Such appointments are usually for a period of one academic year but may be for a longer or shorter period, except no single term appointment shall be for a period longer than three years.  Such three-year appointments should be reserved for the highest qualified, highest performing NTT faculty members. 
  9. Guidelines for Performance Evaluation
    Each academic school, college or unit [6], with approval from the provost, should develop specific guidelines for the evaluation of performance.  These guidelines should reflect the mission and needs of the school, college and university and cover only the primary area of the NTT appointment as well as service and professional activities related to that primary responsibility.

    All NTT faculty should be reviewed annually by the appropriate unit supervisor.  The standards for performance should be based on specific criteria outlined by the academic division in advance.  The performance reviews should be a formal, documented process.  Annual written evaluations should be provided to all NTT faculty members.

    NTT appointees should compile a dossier of their activities, productivity, creativity and professional development to be reviewed on an annual basis.  This material could also serve as the foundation for a dossier that could be used during the promotion process.
  10. Reappointments
    Reappointments should be based, in part, on the performance expectations communicated at the time of appointment by the chair with the concurrence of the dean [5] and the provost.

    Decisions to reappoint NTT faculty should generally be made in advance of the appointment end date.  NTT faculty who will not receive a reappointment should be informed in writing at least three months in advance of the appointment end date unless extenuating circumstances exist.
  11. Promotion of NTT Faculty
    Specified criteria for promotion and description of the process used for promotion in rank should be spelled out by the school, college or academic unit and approved by the provost in advance.  The development of specific criteria and guidelines used to determine standards of excellence for promotion purposes should be the responsibility of the department/unit, subject to approval by a dean or director [5] and the provost.

    Evaluation areas should be consistent with the established academic standards for each discipline.  The decision to apply for promotion would be one the NTT faculty member could elect or not; annual reviews should be valuable indicators of the applicant’s readiness for promotion.  The decision on a promotion application of a NTT academic appointment should not carry automatic rewards (apart from change in title) or penalties from the college, school or academic unit provided, however, that a Librarian I considered for promotion to Librarian II during his or her sixth year of employment as a Librarian I and who is not promoted to Librarian II may be subject to automatic nonrenewal.

    Evaluation of the candidate’s application for promotion should focus on the specific area of appointment – teaching, research, clinical/professional practice, extension or library – as well as service and professional activities related to that primary responsibility.

    In promotion considerations, the total contribution of the faculty member to the mission of the school, college or academic unit over a sustained period of time should be taken into consideration.  This includes comprehensive documentation of the position, including a letter of appointment identifying home department or unit and the initial position description, communications detailing changes in position responsibilities, and any other statements regarding expected performance.

    Each campus shall adopt a promotion process that involves at least one faculty committee composed of one or more NTT faculty, at the promotable rank or above, and one or more tenured faculty, if such NTT faculty and tenured faculty exist.  The committee or committees shall make recommendations to the Chancellor or designee who shall make the final decision.
  12. Academic Freedom
    Prior to the stated ending date of their term appointments, NTT faculty members have the same academic protections regarding academic freedom as tenured and tenure track faculty.

    Accordingly, adequate cause for dismissal prior to the stated ending date of their term appointments must be related directly and substantially to the faculty member's fitness or performance in the professional capacity as teacher, researcher, clinician, extension, librarian or clinical department faculty.  More information can be found in CR&R 310.020 and related sections in the campus bylaws.
  13. Participation in Faculty Governance
    NTT faculty members’ role in faculty governance shall be articulated by the individual campus within the limits of the University of Missouri Collected Rules and Regulations.  The goal is to identify ways for the NTT faculty members to have a voice within their campus and college, school or academic unit and to be involved in faculty governance where appropriate. 

 

[1] The categories of NTT, unranked, non-regular faculty, and part-time, non-regular faculty include different faculty titles associated with each category. Section B of this document lists the faculty titles associated with the NTT group.  Titles associated with the unranked, non-regular faculty group include, but are not limited to, instructor, lecturer, senior lecturer and visiting professor.  The title of visiting professor shall only be used for those faculty on temporary appointments.  Part-time or courtesy appointments shall be considered adjunct appointments and include such titles as adjunct professor, adjunct instructor, etc.

[2] All other non-regular faculty members would receive the title of instructor (or equivalent full-time title), adjunct instructor (or equivalent part-time title), or other non-regular academic appointment titles that are not faculty titles (i.e., post doc, resident, etc.).

[3] Clinical Department faculty are titles limited to the Schools of Medicine at MU and UMKC.

[4] For purposes of this Guideline only, the term "department" shall be interpreted broadly to encompass any of the following: school, college, department, division, unit, center, institute or any other campus approved academic organizational unit for which the campus has approved the assignment of NTT faculty.

[5] On campuses with no schools or colleges and, therefore, no deans, there is no requirement for approval by the dean.

[6] As used in these Guidelines only, on campuses with no schools or colleges, the terms "school" or "college" shall be interpreted to mean the provost or such subordinate academic unit as specified by the provost.

 

 


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