Promotion and Tenure FAQs

by Faculty Association | Filed under June 2015.

I have applied for tenure, but I’m having second thoughts. Is it okay if I withdraw my application?

If this is your ‘normal time’ to go for tenure, if you withdraw you will not automatically be given a future opportunity to apply for tenure. To extend the tenure clock and apply again in the future, you need to get a deferral. There are four kinds of deferrals as listed in the Agreement. Generally, if the reason you are deferring is outside of your control (e.g. illness, tragedy in the family, etc.) then the Dean may be willing to provide you with a deferral. If the reason is of your own choice (you don’t feel ready, you want to wait until a major work is published, etc.) this would be a personal deferral. If this is not your ‘normal time’ tenure, you can withdraw and apply again at the regular time, but if you withdraw later than November 25 it will count as one of your two applications for tenure.

I have applied for promotion (tenure is not involved), but I’m having second thoughts, Is it okay to withdraw my application?

You can withdraw an application for promotion at any time, without consequence, so long as tenure is not a factor. A withdrawal one year does not affect your ability to apply for promotion again in the future when you believe you are ready.

How many times can I apply for promotion?

If tenure is not an issue, there is no restriction on the number of times you can apply for promotion. That being said, keep in mind how you will appear to the committee, your Head and Dean. So if you were turned down for promotion one year, unless you have significant new accomplishment, you may not want to immediately apply for promotion the following year.

Is it the case that only my work at the U of C counts?

No, your entire career counts for both tenure and promotion. That includes work you did at the U of C, at any other university, or in other places, so long as it is relevant to the criteria being considered.

The rules talk about a “head”, but I’m in a non-departmentalized Faculty. Who is the “head”?

In non-departmentalized faculties, the Dean is to select one person to act as the Head and perform those functions listed in the Agreement (e.g. make the recommendation about your application for tenure or promotion).

In my Faculty, the role of Head has traditionally been shared by three Associate Deans, will that continue?

For each candidate there can only be one person acting as Head, so the idea of a joint recommendation is no longer permitted. However, the Dean might assign one Associate Dean to take care of certain applications and another Associate Dean to take care of other applications.

Will the Head’s recommendation be discussed by a Departmental Committee?

Departmental Committees are not permitted. All tenured academic staff in the department will be consulted as part of the process, and can submit their written comments through the Dean.

I am going up for tenure with promotion to Associate. Can they grant one but not the other?

No, tenure and promotion to Associate (or equivalent) are now linked for academic staff members who are on the tenure track.

Once I submit my CV and other materials, can I make changes to them?

Yes, you can make changes to the materials at any point if you believe there is new information that will have a significant impact on the review of your case. Make sure that the change is significant; repeated insignificant changes may make you appear desperate.

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