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Policy on Research Professorships

Policy Number T02-024
Effective Date May 01, 2002
Responsible Office/Person Board of Trustees
Related Policies
Additional History
Additional References

Doc. T02-024

Passed by the BoT
5/1/02

University of Massachusetts
Policy on Research Professorships

I. The titles of Research Professor, Research Associate Professor and Research Assistant Professor will be used for faculty members who meet all of the following criteria:
1. Their salaries are paid entirely from grant funds.

2. Their appointments are not considered probationary and they are not eligible for tenure.

3. Their responsibilities are primarily in the area of research.

II. The terms of such faculty members’ appointments would be consistent with the relevant portions (section 4.4 and 4.11) of the Academic Personnel Policy (Doc. T76-081); that is:

  1. For an appointment as a Research Assistant Professor, a candidate must possess the appropriate terminal degree, or equivalent professional experience. If the candidate has held a faculty appointment at another college or university, he or she must also have a record of achievement in the field of academic specialization. In addition, the candidate must show promise of continuing professional development and achievement. [See Doc. T76-081, section 4.4.b.]
  2. For an appointment as a Research Associate Professor, a candidate must posses the appropriate terminal degree, or equivalent professional experience, and must have had considerable academic or professional experience beyond the level which would warrant an appointment as Research Assistant Professor; must have a record of achievement sufficient to have gained recognition on and off campus from scholars or professionals in his or her field; and must show promise of continuing professional development and achievement. [See Doc. T76-081, section 4.4.c.]
  3. For an appointment as a Research Professor, a candidate must possess the appropriate terminal degree, or equivalent professional experience; and must have a record of achievement sufficient to have gained substantial recognition on and off campus from scholars or professionals in his or her field; and must show significant potential for continuing professional achievement. [See Doc. T76-081, section 4.4.d]
  4. The appointment of a research faculty member requires a recommendation from the personnel committee of the department in which the appointment is proposed, a recommendation from the department head or chair, and the approval of the dean. The appointment should be made using the same “offer and acceptance” and “notification of personnel action” forms that are used for regular appointments.
  5. In most cases, each term of the research appointment should not exceed one year, and in no case may a single term exceed five years, but the appointment may be renewed for additional terms. [See Doc. T76-081, section 4.11.e.]
  6. In the event that a research faculty member applies for and a regular academic appointment, the criteria and procedures for initial appointment to that rank shall apply. In this case, if the research faculty member is appointed to the regular academic position, research service, subsequent to the award of the terminal degree, or equivalent professional experience, may “count” toward the tenure decision year. [Doc. T76-081, section 4.11.e]
  7. At the time of appointment, the nature of the duties of a research faculty member will be specified in writing. Also, the rights and privileges of a research faculty member in such matters as participation in faculty meeting and service on faculty committees will be determined by the faculty of the department and will be specified in writing at the time of appointment.

III. Searches for such faculty members to be appointed to research professorships will be governed by University search procedures, including the affirmative action considerations and the standard provisions for waiver of the search requirement. Such faculty members will be bargaining unit members under terms to be negotiated with the Faculty Staff Union.

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