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Faculty Promotions

Promotion General Procedures

Each mandatory promotion consideration goes through four steps:

  1. a departmental faculty recommendation
  2. an independent recommendation by the chair
  3. a recommendation by the Dean with the advice of the College Council
  4. a final decision by the President.

Non-mandatory considerations ("early" recommendations to the Associate Professor level, recommendations to the Professor level, and recommendations concerning affiliate or clinical titles) that are not approved by the Dean are not forwarded to the President.

Departmental recommendations for promotion to the Associate Professor level are due in the Dean's Office in mid-October and recommendations for promotion to the Professor level are due in mid-December.

Candidate preparation of materials

The candidate is responsible for assembling his/her promotion record and must include:

  1. CV (SPHCM outline)
  2. UW Biography Form
  3. self-assessment of qualifications for promotion
  4. 3 to 5 publications with a statement of impact for each publication
  5. Student Evaluations

The department should put together the final recommendation packet, which will contain additional materials that are not given to the candidate. External letters of review are kept confidential from the candidate.

Summaries of departmental deliberations

A departmental committee is established to review a candidate's qualifications for promotion; the committee must produce a written report.  The chair must provide the candidate with a written summary of the voting faculty's deliberations, and the candidate may respond in writing within seven days. If the candidate does not wish to provide a written response to the summary, he/she must at minimum provide an acknowledgment that the summary was received. All documents produced in this process are to be included in the final recommendation that is forwarded to the Dean's Office.

Teaching evaluations for promotion

Both student and collegial evaluations of teaching effectiveness are required in a promotion recommendation (except for research faculty); see Teaching Evaluation

External evaluations for promotion

A recommendation for promotion must include evaluations of the candidate's scholarly or creative work by external experts in the field. These should be in the form of letters solicited by the chair.
The external evaluations should be available at the faculty meetings when the candidate's record is discussed and the final vote on the promotion recommendation is taken. It is not necessary to obtain external evaluations for preliminary stages.
Four to five external (original) letters are required, with a minimum of four letters strongly recommended. All letters received by the department must be forwarded with the recommendation.

The evaluators should be chosen by the departmental chair, promotion committee and faculty. All evaluators should be recognized contributors to their field, as indicated, for example, by tenure at a major research university, frequent citation of their work, or major awards. When selecting evaluators, their relationship to the candidate must be considered. At least three of the reviews should be from persons who have no substantial personal connection or professional collaboration with the candidate

  1. At least one reference letter from the list of the candidate
  2. At least one reference letter from a person not on the candidate’s list
  3. One letter from UW or UW affiliated institution (FHCRC, SBRI, etc.)
  4. At least three of the letters are from persons at academic institutions
  5. For PHP faculty:  four letters required, two may be from outside academic institutions and two from government or practice-related organizations
  6. Lecturer promotions – three letters are required

The solicitation letter should be signed by and should request return to the chair. It should state that the department is considering the candidate for possible promotion and request the following information:

  • how and for how long the referee has known the candidate
  • the significance, independence, influence, and promise of the candidate's scholarship or creative work (particularly that done since coming to the University of Washington) and the degree of national/international recognition
  • a comparison of the candidate's accomplishments with leading scholars or artists at a similar career stage in the same or related fields.

Each evaluator should be provided with the same representative set of the candidate's scholarly or artistic materials. When the promotion recommendation is submitted to the Dean's Office, include one sample of the solicitation letter in the packet.


Updated on June 23, 2008