Updated 15 June 2015 by R. H. Davis, Dean

This document covers (1) regular post-tenure reviews of faculty every five years, (2) annual post-tenure reviews due to an annual merit rating of below expectations, and (3) extensive posttenure reviews due to two annual ratings of below expectations in a five-year period.

Post Tenure Five-Year Review

According to the Laws of the Regents of the University of Colorado, each faculty member shall be subject to comprehensive peer review and evaluation every five years after the award of tenure. The purpose of post-tenure review is to facilitate continued faculty development, consistent with the academic needs and goals of the University and the most effective use of institutional resources. Appropriate peers within the institution will conduct the post-tenure evaluation. The criteria used in traditional tenure and promotion review (for teaching, research and service) will also be used in post-tenure review and will reflect the same indicators of quality that are used in tenure review. The following procedures have been adopted by the College of Engineering and Applied Science to facilitate the conduct of post-tenure reviews.

  • Every faculty member will be subject to post-tenure review every five years after the award of tenure. When a faculty member is reviewed for promotion to professor, this review will also be considered to satisfy the requirement for post-tenure review, and the next post-tenure review is to be scheduled for five years later. Any faculty member not reviewed for promotion to professor during the five years following the award of tenure will be subject to post-tenure review during the fifth year after tenure. The post-tenure review will be used to provide a constructive focus on ways to facilitate the faculty member’s professional development.
  • The faculty member undergoing post-tenure review should prepare a Faculty Professional Plan for the five-year period following the review. The plan is designed to communicate the faculty member’s teaching, research/scholarly work and service goals and to explain how these goals support the needs of the primary unit.
  • The head of the primary unit, with the assistance from the unit’s executive or personnel committee, should review the faculty member’s professional plan and also his or her performance since the previous review. Sources of information on teaching, research and service should be similar to those used in promotion and tenure reviews, except outside letters are not required. A Summary Evaluation, with narrative statements on the faculty member’s performance in research, teaching and service should be prepared. Any recommendations related to the faculty member’s professional plan development should be included, and an overall evaluation (Far Exceeds Expectations, Exceeds Normal Expectations, Meets Normal Expectations, Below Expectations, or Unsatisfactory) must be included.
  • The outcomes of the post-tenure review are the Faculty Professional Plan (prepared by the faculty member) and a Summary Evaluation (prepared by the Chair, Director or designee). The Summary Evaluation, Faculty Professional Plan, and any comments by the faculty member will be forwarded to the Dean of the College, in conjunction with annual merit reviews done in the spring semester. Post-tenure documents will be placed in the faculty member’s personnel file.
  • Normal University procedures will be made available to any faculty member who feels aggrieved by the post-tenure review process as applied to him/her.
  • Each October, the Dean’s office will inform the head of each primary unit in the College of all faculty members in the unit who are to undergo post-tenure review during that academic year.

Post-Tenure Annual Review

  • The Primary Unit will conduct its annual merit evaluation process according to existing practice, but in addition should consult the Professional Plan written by the faculty member for the year under review.
  • Each tenured faculty member should update his/her Professional Plan for the upcoming calendar year, if needed.
  • Faculty receiving an overall (or composite) annual performance rating of “Below Expectations” or “Unsatisfactory” must prepare a Professional Improvement Agreement (PIA).
    • The PIA is an agreement between the faculty member and the Chair, Director, and/or unit personnel or review committee. The PIA details a plan which the faculty member and the department or program will follow to improve performance in the problem area or areas. The PIA should be completed and submitted to the Dean’s Office on or before 15 July following the annual review in which the rating of “Below Expectations” or “Unsatisfactory” is received, unless the faculty member notifies the Dean of an intent to appeal the evaluation (see below).
    • There is not a prescribed format for the PIA, but it is recommend that it be about two pages in length and include a summary of areas where improvement is sought, specific goals, and the proposed actions or implementation plan to meet these goals. The Chair or Director should include a short note indicating his or her agreement with the PIA.
    • If the goals of the PIA are being/have been met, as evidenced in the next annual evaluation, the faculty member continues in the regular five-year post-tenure review cycle. If the goals of the PIA are not being/have not been met at the next annual merit evaluation, an extensive review process shall be initiated.
  • Faculty who receive a rating of “Below Expectations” or “Unsatisfactory” in any category (teaching, research, or service) should complete an improvement plan for the category rated 2 below expectations, and submit it to the Dean’s Office by 15 July following the annual review in which the rating of “Below Expectations” or “Unsatisfactory” is received. There is not a prescribed format for the improvement plan, but it is recommended that it be about one page in length, summarize the need for improvement, goals for the next evaluation cycle, and the steps that will be taken; it is recommended that the plan be reviewed with the unit Chair or Director. Repeat ratings of “Below Expectations” or “Unsatisfactory” in one category may lead to an overall annual performance rating of “Below Expectations” or “Unsatisfactory”, as tenure-line faculty members are expected to provide at least meritorious contributions in all areas: Teaching, Research, and Service.
  • Evaluations of “Below Expectations” or “Unsatisfactory” (either for the overall evaluation or for a single category) may be appealed by sending a request and justification to the Dean and the Department Chair or Program Director. In consultation with the Chair or Director, the Dean will appoint a faculty committee to review the appeal. Appeals of an evaluation of “Below Expectations” or “Unsatisfactory” must be submitted in writing by the first day of the following fall semester (one week before classes start), although sooner is better. A further appeal to the Dean may be submitted with additional justification by the faculty member or by the Department Chair or Program Director within one week of the decision of the faculty review committee. All appeals should be resolved by October 15, or sooner if feasible. When an overall evaluation of “Below Expectations” or “Unsatisfactory” is being appealed, the PIA will not be due until at least two weeks after the appeal is resolved, and the requirement of a PIA will be removed if the overall evaluation is increased to “Meets Expectations”, or higher. However, an evaluation of “Below Expectations” or “Unsatisfactory” in a single category (teaching, research or service) will require an improvement plan by 15 July, whether or not there is an appeal and whether or not it is successful, as our goal is to help faculty continuously improve and to provide for the implementation of improvement plans as early in the evaluation cycle as possible. A successful appeal, in which the evaluation is changed to “Meets Normal Expectations” or higher, will not provide for a retroactive salary adjustment but will factor into the faculty member’s career merit in future years.

Post-Tenure Extensive Review

An Extensive Review is required whenever a second overall (or composite) annual rating of “Below Expectations” or “Unsatisfactory” is received in a five-year period.

  • The Primary Unit Review Committee (usually the executive or personnel committee) will examine:
    • Five-year Annual Review history
    • Five-year FCQ history
    • Peer evaluations of teaching
    • Professional Plan(s) and the PIA from the prior cycle
    • Any differentiated workload agreements
    • Faculty member’s written self-evaluation of performance
    • Any other material submitted by the faculty member
    • An assessment of research or scholarly work may include use of reviews external to the University, if either the primary unit or faculty member requests external reviews.
    • When external reviews are used, the primary unit and the faculty member will recommend a list of reviewers, which will be invited by the Primary Unit Review Committee. External reviews shall remain confidential, i.e., the faculty member shall not have access to this part of the file.
  • The Primary Unit Review Committee shall write a summary Evaluative Report of teaching, research and service and it shall share this report with the faculty member. This report should be completed and submitted to the Dean for review by the end of the August following the evaluation period in which the second “Below Expectations” or “Unsatisfactory” rating is received. In the event the faculty member appeals the evaluation of “Below Expectations” or “Unsatisfactory”, the deadline will be extended to the end of October.
    • The report must contain an enumerated list of deficiencies.
    • This report is not subject to approval by the faculty member.
    • Please contact your department HR liaison for the form.
  • Within 20 calendar days of receiving the Evaluative Report, the faculty member must write a Development Plan, covering one or two years, which must:
    • Describe performance goals, strategies for attaining goals, and a timeline for attaining goals for each deficiency listed in the Evaluative Report.
    • Describe specific means of measuring progress towards or achievement of goals.
    • Please contact your department HR liaison for the form.
    • The Primary Unit Review Committee must review a draft of his/her plan and provide written feedback to the faculty member and to the primary unit head.
    • The Primary Unit Review Committee shall review a second draft (if necessary) and make a recommendation to the primary unit head to accept or not to accept the Development Plan.
    • The primary unit head shall accept the plan, or work with the faculty member to develop an acceptable plan. In the case where either the primary unit head or the faculty member feel that an impasse has been reached, both parties shall be subjected to the provisions defined in D, below.
    • This Development Plan should be submitted to the Dean by the end of September following the evaluation period in which a second “Below Expectations” or “Unsatisfactory” rating is received (or the end of November, if the rating is appealed). Both the faculty member and the head of the primary unit should sign approval of the Development Plan.
  • Disagreements between the faculty member and either the primary unit review committee or the primary unit head will be subjected to the following arbitration process:

    When either the primary unit head or the faculty member feel that an impasse has been reached after following the steps describe in C, above, the matter shall be referred to the College’s Personnel Committee (i.e., the First-level Review Committee). The College Personnel Committee shall consider the materials assembled for the extensive review, the recommendation of the primary unit review committee, and any additional materials submitted by the two parties or requested by the Personnel Committee, and issue a binding set of findings which will constitute the approved “Development Plan.”

  • At the completion of the Development Plan period (1 or 2 years),
    • The head of the primary unit, in consultation with the Primary Unit Review Committee, will assess the progress of the faculty member toward meeting the goals of the Development Plan and then shall submit an Assessment Report and recommendation to the Dean as to whether or not the Development Plan goals have been satisfactorily met. This report shall be due to the Dean by the end of the month following the completion of the Development Plan.
    • The College Personnel Committee (i.e., First-level Review Committee) shall review the Evaluative Report, Development Plan and Assessment Report, then write a recommendation to the Dean on whether or not the goals have been satisfactorily met and make recommendations for further actions to improve performance, if appropriate.
    • Following input from the College Personnel Committee, the Dean shall make a recommendation to the Provost.
    • The Provost, following consultation with the Vice Chancellor's Advisory Committee (VCAC), shall determine whether or not the faculty member has met the Development Plan goals. If the goals have been met, the faculty member shall prepare a new Professional Plan and begin a new five-year PTR cycle.
  • In cases where the faculty member is judged by the Provost not to have attained the goals of the Development Plan, the Provost will recommend appropriate sanctions to be applied to the faculty member by the Chancellor. Possible sanctions are defined the Administrative Policy Statement on post-tenure review (dated 7/1/1998) and include reassignment of duties, loss of eligibility for sabbaticals or for campus travel funds, salary freeze, salary reduction, demotion of rank, and revocation of tenure and dismissal. The Laws of the Regents provide the faculty member with an opportunity for a hearing and set other conditions for handling such cases (See Laws, Article 5.C.1 and 5.C.4; and Regent Action 8/27/86). See also the laws and policies set forth by the CU Regents
  • The Chancellor will review the recommendations of the Provost and impose appropriate sanctions.