The University of Connecticut is dedicated to excellence demonstrated through national and international recognition. Through freedom of academic inquiry and expression, we create and disseminate knowledge by means of scholarly and creative achievements, graduate and professional education, and outreach.
With our focus on teaching and learning, the University helps every student grow intellectually and become a contributing member of the state, national, and world communities. Through research, teaching, service, and outreach, we embrace diversity and cultivate leadership, integrity, and engaged citizenship in our students, faculty, staff, and alumni. As our state’s flagship public University, and as a land and sea grant institution, we promote the health and well-being of citizens by enhancing the social, economic, cultural, and natural environments of the state and beyond. – University of Connecticut Mission Statement (https://academicvision.uconn.edu/introduction/mission-statement/)
A central tenet of our mission at the University of Connecticut is the pursuit of knowledge and discovery, with the understanding that faculty members have the right to academic freedom. A clearly articulated promotion and tenure system defines expectations and procedures that enhance success and fairness. Faculty tenure is a foundational pillar of academic freedom and allows the individual to pursue scholarship at the frontiers of knowledge. It allows for the pursuit of activities in the classroom, research, and service to society without fear of retribution or reprisal. It is well established that security in this freedom is necessary to catalyze the creativity and innovation that are necessary to fulfill long-term benefits to society and to modulate emphases on short-term rewards. As conveyed in the 1940 Statement of Principles on Academic Freedom and Tenure: “Institutions of higher education are conducted for the common good and not to further the interest of either the individual teacher or the institutions as a whole. The common good depends upon the free search for truth and its free exposition … Freedom in research is fundamental to the advancement of truth. Academic freedom in its teaching aspect is fundamental for the protection of the rights of the teacher in teaching and of the student to freedom in learning.” With these freedoms comes the responsibility to advance the research, teaching, and service mission of the University and, as such, the faculty members are held accountable in their performance. Consequently, ideal characteristics in faculty members are scholarly creativity, professional competence and leadership, the ability and desire to teach effectively, and the willingness to cooperate with others in a collegial fashion.
Provost’s Policy on Promotion and Tenure Procedures
When considering faculty for promotion or tenure, the University applies the highest standards of professional achievement in scholarship, teaching, and service. Each case is evaluated on its own merits based on the candidate’s scholarship, teaching, and service since appointment. When specified in an appointment letter, work prior to joining the University may also be considered during an evaluation. In order to recommend that the University award tenure to a candidate, each Department and School or College must make a strong case that the candidate’s work in scholarship, teaching, and service since appointment merits permanent employment in their field of expertise. When considering a candidate for promotion to the rank of Professor, Departments and Schools or Colleges must consider the candidate’s accomplishments since the award of tenure. Time served in the rank of Associate Professor is, on its own, not sufficient cause for promotion.
All tenure-track candidates must annually update and submit dossiers using the PTR form that has been adopted by the faculties of the University of Connecticut (https://provost.uconn.edu/faculty-and-staff-resources/promotion-tenure-and-reappointment/). The candidate’s dossier will be reviewed by Departmental and School or College committees each year. Department Heads, or Deans in Schools without Departments, must annually meet with faculty members, including during their first year, to discuss past performance, appropriate goals, responsibilities, and expectations. In the case of joint appointments, both supervisors must meet annually with the candidate. At the conclusion of the third year, the candidate’s dossier is submitted to the Provost’s Office for comprehensive review. A second review by the Provost’s Office, usually for promotion and tenure considerations, is initiated at the conclusion of the fifth year and during the candidate’s sixth year. In some exceptional cases, early review for tenure and promotion is permitted. It should be noted, that faculty members who wish to be considered for promotion and tenure before the end of the probationary period, however, will be evaluated by the same standards applied to faculty who have taken the full probationary period. Each year, the Provost’s Office distributes timelines for the submission of dossiers and related materials.