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Tenure-track faculty and planning for tenure

Many universities request that junior tenure-track faculty develop written tenure plans. While the New Faculty Institute does not require you to engage in a formal written process, it is suggested that tenure-track faculty carefully consider their research, teaching, and service plans for the next four to five years as they work toward tenure. New faculty are also encouraged to read the Faculty Federation Agreement carefully, especially the sections regarding contract renewal and tenure. You will see there that the primary focus is on scholarship and teaching. As new faculty go about the tenure process, they are also urged to remember that they were hired through a selective, time-intensive process; your department selected each of you for good reasons, and your colleagues are here to help you achieve tenure and be a successful contributor to the campus.

What does a tenure plan do?

A tenure plan sets up your goals in teaching and research, as well as service. There are key questions that underlie such a plan:

  • Do you view yourself as a teacher-scholar or scholar-teacher?
  • In what ways does your research make a contribution to your field? To regional and national conversations?
  • How are you going to create a sustained, continually developing research agenda?
  • What goals do you have as a researcher/scholar? As a teacher?
  • How do your teaching and research inform one another?
  • How do you plan to demonstrate your teaching effectiveness?

Initial steps to create your tenure plan

1. In the fall, we will provide you with a tenure timeline document. If you lose this document or need clarification, May Matsumoto in the Faculty Federation Office can help you. 

2. Each tenure-track faculty member should access a copy of his/her department's standards document. By now, every department should have a "standards" document for tenure and promotion. This document outlines the expectations for each pre-tenure faculty member. 

3. After reviewing your department's standards document, map out a plan for how you think you might achieve the expectations listed there for research and creative activity.


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