Retention, Tenure and Promotion (RTP) Standards - Library

Definition:Standards governing retention, tenure, and promotion process for faculty in the Library.
Authority:The collective bargaining agreement between the California State University and the California Faculty Association.
Scope:Eligible Library faculty at California State University San Marcos.
Responsible Division:Academic Affairs
Approval Date:07/25/2013
Implementation Date:07/25/2013
Originally Implemented:02/28/2000
Signature Page/PDF:View Signatures for Retention, Tenure and Promotion (RTP) Standards - Library Policy


Procedure

I. PREAMBLE

This document sets forth general standards and criteria for retention, tenure, and promotion of full-time faculty in the Library. The provisions of this document are intended to be implemented in conformity with university-wide retention, tenure and promotion policies. The Library is guided also by the standards of the American Library Association (ALA) and Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL). 

II. DEFINITIONS OF TERMS AND ABBREVIATIONS

The Library uses the same definitions, terms, and abbreviations as defined in the University RTP document.

A. The University RTP standards require “Teaching, Research/Creative Activity, and Service.” The Library standards require “Professional Performance, Research/Creative Activity and Service.”

B. For clarity, the use of "is" is informative, "shall" is mandatory, "may" is permissive, "should" is conditional, and "will" is intentional.

C. A “standard” is a reference point or formalized expectation against which progress can be measured for retention, tenure, and promotion.

D. Tenure-track refers to all fulltime, permanent faculty librarians. More specific designations of status should use the terms untenured and tenured.

III. GUIDING PRINCIPLES

A) All standards and criteria reflect the University and Library mission statements and advance the goals embodied in those statements, including the following:

  1. Library faculty are active scholars.
  2. Enhance student learning through sustained excellence in professional performance, research, and service to the university and profession.
  3. Promote individual and cultural diversity and multiple perspectives.
  4. Value intellectual engagement, academic freedom, community, integrity, innovation, and inclusiveness.

B) The Library respects the intellectual freedom of their faculty by avoiding standards that are too prescriptive while emphasizing the unique nature of the library and information science discipline.

C) The performance areas to be evaluated include professional performance, research and service. While there will be diversity in the contributions of faculty members to the University, the Library affirms the university requirement of sustained high quality performance and encourages flexibility in the relative emphasis placed on each performance area. The relative weight given to the three criteria may vary over time as reflected in the librarian’s Assignment of Responsibility and as described in their curriculum vita and narrative. The faculty member must meet the minimum standards in each of the three areas.

D) These standards are designed to allow individual library faculty scope for achievement in various areas of library and information science and scholarship encompassing the values in the University and Library mission statements. While not expected to meet each and every criterion listed below, library faculty are required to progressively expand their contributions within the Library, the University, and the profession.

E) Library RTP Standards serve as guidelines for library faculty as they progress in their career and also to educate others outside of the discipline, including deans, university committees, and the provost, with respect to the practice and standards of library and information science.

F) Faculty have a right to clearly articulated performance expectations. Library RTP Standards provide consistency in guiding tenure-track faculty in the preparation of their working personnel action files (WPAFs).

G) Retention, tenure, and promotion decisions are made on the basis of evaluation of individual performance, and ultimate responsibility for meeting all standards and criteria rests with the candidate. Sound advice and counsel by tenured faculty can significantly contribute to the achievement of the highest level of individual performance and should be available. Candidates may choose whether to avail themselves of such advice and counsel.

IV. Working Personnel Action File (WPAF)

Items shall be cross-referenced in the CV, narrative statements, and WPAF to demonstrate connections across all three documents. Items submitted in one area of performance shall not be duplicated in any other area of performance evaluation.  However this does not prohibit the candidates from describing the interconnections between multiple performance areas.

Should a conflict exist between the Library document and the University document, the latter prevails. Library WPAF files shall contain the following:

  • Cover memo requesting review.
  • Complete index of material in the WPAF.
  • Current curriculum vitae.
  • Library Assignment of Responsibility (all successive documents for the review period).
  • Reflective statement[s] that addresses the standards for review (not to exceed 15 pages).
  • Evidence of success arranged and labeled to correspond with the standards for review (not to exceed 30 items).
  • All previous personnel reviews.
  • RTP Standards—Library.
  • Library mission statement.

V. ELECTION OF PEER REVIEW COMMITTEE

Election procedures are defined in the Library Faculty Council bylaws. Should a conflict exist between these procedures and the University's RTP (section IV Responsibilities of those involved in the review cycle, C. Election and composition of the Peer Review Committee), the University's RTP prevails.

VI. STANDARDS AND CRITERIA

A) Retention: A positive recommendation for retention requires that the candidate’s record clearly meets the articulated standards for the granting of a retention decision in each of the three areas: professional performance, scholarly research/creative activities, and scholarly service.

B) Tenure and/or Promotion: A positive recommendation for tenure or promotion requires that the candidate’s record clearly meets the articulated standards for the granting of a tenure/promotion decision in each of the three areas: professional performance, scholarly research/creative activities, and scholarly service.

C) Early Tenure is considered an exception.  A positive recommendation for either early tenure or early promotion requires that the candidate’s record clearly meets the articulated standards for the granting of a tenure and/or promotion decision in ALL areas. To be eligible for either early tenure or early promotion, a candidate must show a sustained record of successful experience at California State University San Marcos.

D) Professional Performance: The primary area for evaluation is the library faculty member's success in professional performance. Because the Library faculty position is flexible enough to potentially include professionals with varied responsibilities within the Library, the standards that apply to Professional Performance stem from each employee’s Assignment of Responsibility. The candidate develops their Assignment of Responsibility in consultation with the Dean with a view to articulating the faculty member’s individual approach to the goals of the Library Mission Statement.

The library’s primary role is to support the teaching and learning mission of the university. Librarians facilitate and enhance student learning through their individual areas of librarianship. All aspects of academic librarianship ultimately support teaching and learning, even when direct contact with students and faculty is not immediately apparent.

  1. This section provides guidance on professional performance responsibilities for the retention, tenure and promotion of library faculty. In addition, it serves to define library faculty work to an external audience. Professional Performance activities may include but are not limited to:
    • Accomplish professional objectives and effectively fulfill responsibilities as described in the candidates' Library Assignment of Responsibility.
    • Assess use of library services and analyze changing research trends in order to anticipate user needs and future library directions.
    • Initiate new ideas, technological innovations, or alternative approaches in library programs.
    • Communicate and collaborate with colleagues and users, such as developing productive liaison relationships with faculty and students and outreach programs to the community, and demonstrate versatility and teamwork, including the ability to work effectively in a range of Library function and subject areas.
    • Develop and implement instruction, reference/point-of-use instruction, and other means to support the development of students’ information literacy throughout the CSUSM curriculum.
    • Develop library collections in assigned subject areas that support the curricular needs of the campus.
    • Plan technology, develop systems, and evaluate effectiveness of automated systems designed to support student research, provide access to library resources and services, and facilitate library processes.
    • Establish and manage bibliographic systems that facilitate the organization and control of information resources.
    • Establish and manage effective acquisition of information resources.
    • Establish, manage and facilitate user access to library collections and resources and provide resource sharing to external collections.
    • Demonstrate professional growth by systematically updating knowledge of and skills in current practices, trends, research and technology in assigned area of responsibility.
    • Possess and share a level of expertise and knowledge of current practices that are acknowledged and sought by colleagues and other professionals.
    • Demonstrate effective leadership as coordinator of a library area including establishing and achieving goals in area of responsibility, planning and coordinating resources, and collaborating across the library. Demonstrate effective communication and management in the supervision and evaluation of library staff and operations.
    • Demonstrate growth in leadership in identifying and solving problems, managing projects, and initiating programs and services.
    • Mentor and encourage the professional development of faculty, staff, students, interns, and others as appropriate.
    • Effectively represent and advocate for the library to the rest of the university. Promote efforts for cooperation and collaboration with other campus entities, the community, and professional groups.

  2. Criteria for the evaluation of professional performance includes:
    • Effectiveness, impact, and/or expertise in fulfillment of the candidate’s Assignment of Responsibility.
    • Effectiveness, impact, and/or expertise regarding the candidate’s leadership, supervision, administration, and/or mentorship.
    • Impact of professional development and growth towards advancing the candidate’s disciplinary knowledge and/or expertise in their area of responsibility.

  3. Evidence for professional performance: It is the responsibility of the candidate to provide effective evidence and documentation of their professional performance. The candidate will articulate the relevance of submitted items in the narrative.
    For librarians who provide instruction as articulated in their Assignment of Responsibility, student evaluations of instruction are required in the WPAF, as per the Library’s policy.  Student evaluations are not included in the 30 item limit for WPAF evidence.
    Selected items representing professional performance, such as:
    • Samples of work demonstrating effectiveness, impact, and/or expertise in fulfillment of the candidate’s Assignment of Responsibility.
    • Materials resulting from or demonstrating leadership, supervision, administration, or mentorship.
    • Materials illustrating professional development and growth.
    • Other relevant materials as listed in the University’s Retention, Tenure, and Promotion document (Section II.E.3.c of Faculty Personnel Procedures for Retention, Tenure, and Promotion).

  4. Standards and Expectations for Professional Performance for retention, tenure and promotion
    • For Retention at the rank of Senior Assistant Librarian or Associate Librarian, untenured library faculty shall demonstrate increasing effectiveness in professional performance in fulfillment of the candidate’s Assignment of Responsibility; professional development and growth; and leadership.
    • Granting of Tenure at any rank recognizes accomplishments and services performed during the probationary years. Further, the granting of tenure is an expression of confidence that the faculty member has both the commitment to and the potential for continued development and accomplishment throughout their career. Tenure will be granted only to those individuals who meet the standards required to earn promotion to the rank at which tenure will be granted.
    • For Promotion to Associate Librarian, library faculty shall demonstrate sustained and significant effectiveness, beyond that required for retention, in professional performance in fulfillment of the candidate’s Assignment of Responsibility; professional development and growth; and leadership.
    • For Promotion to Librarian, library faculty shall demonstrate sustained and significant effectiveness, beyond that required for promotion to Associate, in professional performance in fulfillment of the candidate’s Assignment of Responsibility; professional development and growth; and leadership and initiative. As more experienced faculty, associate librarians being considered for promotion to librarian are held to a higher standard.

E) Research/Creative Activity: Research/Creative Activity (“scholarship”) is the second area of evaluation for the retention, tenure and promotion of library faculty. It is essential to the University's mission that each Library faculty member demonstrates continued commitment, dedication, and growth as a scholar.  The criteria emphasize quality and sustained scholarship over the entire period of review. 
For Librarians, scholarship may be basic, applied, theoretical, integrative, and/or related to pedagogy. In all cases, scholarship results in an original contribution to the discipline and practice of library and information science and includes dissemination and scholarly communication beyond the university. Individual or collaborative research is valued by the Library. Scholarly contributions in other subjects may be considered when they are directly related to the Library Assignment of Responsibility. 

  1. Research/Creative Activity may include but is not limited to the following three categories. Instructions on using the categories appear in section B.4.:
    Category A:
    - Peer-reviewed articles published/accepted by refereed journals.
    - Peer-reviewed published/accepted book chapters.
    - Books published in/accepted for publication.
    - Papers published in/accepted for refereed conference proceedings.

    Category B:
    - Editorially reviewed articles and book chapters.
    - Paper presentations panel presentations, or poster sessions (other than Category A work[s] accepted for refereed conference proceedings).
    - Creation of significant and innovative electronic resources.  
    - Refereeing a book, journal article, monograph, or conference paper.
    - Editing a journal, book, or monograph.
    - Funded external research grants, university research grants, or research fellowships.

    Category C:
    - Proposals for external research grants, university research grants, or research fellowships.
    - Submitted manuscripts.
    - Manuscripts in progress.
    - Research in progress.

  2. Criteria for the evaluation of Research/Creative Activity include, but are not limited to:
    • Type of publication (e.g. peer-reviewed; selected by editor; mainstream press).
    • Extent of research dissemination and contribution to the discipline.
    • Type of presentation (refereed, invited, etc.), level of presentation venue (i.e. local, regional, statewide, nationwide, or international), and the sponsoring organization.
    • Competiveness, selectivity, and prestige of grants, fellowships, or awards within the discipline.
    • Impact on student learning and university’s mission.
    • Specific contribution to multiple authored pieces.

  3. Evidence of Research/Creative Activity includes, but is not limited to:
    • Published article, book chapter, book, software/creative activity.
    • Acceptance letter for publication (e.g. journal, edited work, etc.).
    • Conference proposal, invitation, and accepted materials (paper, presentation, poster, refereed proceedings, etc.).
    • Institutional Review Board (IRB) documentation.
    • Results of research including data, reports, etc.
    • Documentation of completed or in-process research.

  4. Standards and expectations for Research/Creative Activity for retention, tenure, and promotion:
    (a) Retention (tenure-track Senior Assistant and Associate Librarian ranks)
    - For retention at the Senior Assistant Librarian rank, the librarian shall develop a research agenda and build evidence of research such as acceptance of publications and/or conference presentations.
    - For retention at the probationary Associate Librarian rank, the librarian shall provide evidence of research such as a focused research agenda, publications, and/or conference presentations.
    - Candidates for retention at the Senior Assistant and probationary Associate Librarian ranks should at a minimum include: 2nd year retention: evidence from Category C, 4th year retention: evidence from Category C and evidence of progress toward fulfillment of tenure and promotion requirements in Categories A and B. 

    (b) Tenure and/or promotion to Associate Librarian rank:
    Library faculty at this rank shall demonstrate an established research agenda and continued scholarship. Only items published after appointment may be considered. If service credit was awarded, the candidate should include evidence of accomplishments from the service credit time period specified. The following describe the research standards for a faculty member to be promoted from Senior Assistant to Associate Librarian rank and/or receive tenure:
    - A minimum of one item from Category A.
    - A minimum of two additional items from Category A and/or B.
    - Items from Category C, if applicable.

    (c) Promotion to Librarian rank:
    Library faculty at this rank shall provide evidence of an established research agenda, sustained and significant research, and nationally recognized expertise. Only published items not considered in the last promotion may be considered. The following describe the research standards for a faculty member to be promoted from Associate to Librarian rank:
    - A minimum of two items from Category A.
    - A minimum of four additional items from Category A and/or B.
    - A minimum of four additional items from Category A and/or B.

F) Service:  Service is the third area of evaluation for the retention, tenure and promotion of library faculty. The Library faculty defines service activities as activities that are informed by one’s Professional Performance and Scholarship but are clearly beyond the scope of the Assignment of Responsibility. For academic librarians service is essential to understanding educational needs, impacting student learning and influencing information policies locally, nationally, and internationally.

The Library faculty views activities that enhance the institution and the profession, locally, nationally and internationally as integral components of the faculty service responsibility. While the mix and magnitude of service may vary, an appropriate level of service to the library, profession and university is expected. A librarian will participate actively in shared governance in the library, campus, and university system. It is also expected that a librarian will participate in some manner of service to the profession. Professional service at the local, state, national or international level contributes to advancing the discipline of librarianship and to staying current on issues and trends. Alternative forms of service should clearly involve expertise, disciplinary knowledge and experience.

  1. Service activities may include but are not limited to:
    • Serving as chair or member of a Library, Senate, Academic Affairs, or CSU committee
    • Organizing meetings, conferences, workshops.
    • Organizing meetings, conferences, workshops.
    • Contribution to professional newsletters.
    • Accepting administrative activities or special assignments above and beyond the outlined duties of the position.
    • Presenting through seminars, conferences, and lectures in area of expertise to community and non-expert groups.
    • Developing exhibits or bibliographies in area of expertise.
    • Serving as a subject expert or consultant.
    • Providing content expertise to develop a program, conference, workshop, or seminar.
    • Writing or speaking on area of expertise for community, media and other general audiences.

  2. Criteria for the evaluation of each type of service are:
    • Depth of the expertise and preparation.
    • Contributions that relate directly to Professional Performance or Scholarly activities.
    • Impact of the service.
    • Relevance to the library and university mission.

  3. Evidence: The reflective statement should discuss the goals of the service and reflect on the quality of the contribution. A complete list of achievements in service should be effectively delineated in the comprehensive CV, and items presented as evidence should be discussed in the reflective statement.
    Examples of evidence:
    • Documents, reports or other evidence of the impact of the librarian’s service achievement.
    • Letters showing extent and level of contribution from appropriate organizers, officers, panel chairs, editors or similar officials of regional or national organizations.
    • Documents describing candidate involvement as an officer, speaker, panelist, external reviewer, referee, consultant, visiting lecturer, etc.
    • Programs or flyers describing the event and/or listing the candidate’s contribution.
    • Awards earned for the service (e.g., certificates, plaques).

  4. Standards and expectations for service for continuation or promotion at each rank:
    • For retention at tenure-track Senior Assistant and Associate Librarian ranks, the librarian shall provide evidence of active participation in shared governance. Typical service includes participation in library and senate committees and beginning to be active in professional organizations and/or developing their expertise.
    • For tenure and/or promotion to Associate Librarian rank, the librarian shall provide evidence of service through sustained contribution and or by taking a leadership role within the library, university, and/or profession in responding to the needs of the academic community. A library faculty member at this rank will apply her/his expertise to appropriate service activities where their impact is manifest.
    • For promotion to the Librarian rank, the librarian shall provide evidence of service and of its recognition beyond the university that demonstrates substantial and sustained service contributions to the university, to the community and/or to the discipline of library and information science