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Retention, Tenure and Promotion (RTP) Standards - Department of Physics | Policies | CSUSM

Retention, Tenure and Promotion (RTP) Standards - Department of Physics

Definition: A policy for the evaluation of tenure track faculty within the Department of Physics.
Authority: CSU/CFA Unit 3 Collective Bargaining Agreement.
Scope: Tenure Track Faculty within the Department of Physics.
Responsible Division: Academic Affairs
Approval Date: 02/17/2017
Originally Implemented: 07/01/2017
Signature Page/PDF: View Signatures for Retention, Tenure and Promotion (RTP) Standards - Department of Physics Policy


Notes

  1. Introduction

    This document details the expectations for retention, tenure, and promotion of the Physics Department at California State University, San Marcos.

    The criteria for retention, tenure, and promotion are organized into three areas: (a) teaching, (b) research, and (c) service. Candidates for retention, tenure, and promotion shall be evaluated on all criteria as described in the College of Science and Mathematics (CSM) Retention, Tenure, and Promotion Standards and Procedures Policy; the University Retention, Tenure, and Promotion document; and in this document.

    Within the Department, review for retention, tenure, and promotion (RTP) is handled by the Peer Review Committee (PRC). Instructions for selection of the PRC are found in the College and University RTP documents.

    As part of the RTP process, faculty undergoing review or evaluation will receive feedback from the PRC, Dean, or Provost. It is expected that the reflective statement in the Working Personnel Action File (WPAF) should include a discussion of feedback from previous review cycles and, if relevant, evidence of efforts to address areas of concern.

  2. Standards for Each Level of Review
    1. A candidates activities while in their current rank are of primary relevance to promotion considerations.
    2. Retention. Retention at the rank of assistant professor requires increasing or sustained effectiveness in each area of performance and demonstrated consistent progress toward meeting the tenure requirements in the areas of teaching, research/creative activity, and service.
    3. Tenure and/or Promotion to Associate. Tenure and/or promotion to associate professor requires an established [a] record of effectiveness in teaching, research/creative achievements, and involvement in service activities that enhance the institution and the profession as per the College RTP Document.
    4. Promotion to Full. Promotion to the rank of full professor requires evidence of continued commitment to and effectiveness in teaching, service to the University and/or the profession, and evidence of substantial achievement in research/creative activities.
    5. Early Promotion and/or Tenure. Promotion and/or tenure prior to the normal year of consideration requires clear evidence that the Candidate has a sustained record of achievement that fulfills all criteria for promotion or tenure as specified in University, College, and Department standards.
  3. Departmental Priorities and Values

    The Physics Department faculty value highly the teacher-scholar model by which we embrace active participation in both instruction and scholarship, and integration of our scholarship in the classroom to create vibrant learning experiences for students.

    1. Teaching

      Effective teaching is central to the Department's mission, and is required for promotion and tenure. The PRC will consider the criteria described in the College and University RTP documents in addition, but not limited, to what is stated below in this document to evaluate a candidate's teaching.

      In general, it is expected that a candidate contribute across a wide range of departmental curricular needs and/or at different levels of instruction. However, the Department also commends faculty who are responsive to departmental teaching needs. These needs can vary greatly between academic years and, therefore, during a candidate's review period.

      1. Classroom teaching.

        Evaluation of a candidate's performance in this area will be based on the following:

        1. Student evaluations of teaching.

          Students evaluate instructors each semester using a standard CSUSM course evaluation form. The PRC will review these student evaluations as they provide some indication of the quality of a candidate's classroom teaching.

          The PRC will also review written comments made by students on the course evaluations. The candidate's reflective statement should discuss student comments from teaching evaluations and, if relevant, include evidence of efforts to incorporate appropriate suggestions. In considering student comments, the PRC will look particularly for patterns evident in multiple comments. The PRC will take into account the fact that student evaluations of teaching can sometimes be influenced by factors other than the instructor's teaching effectiveness, and that novel and innovative approaches often have implementation challenges.

        2. Submitted Curricular Materials and supporting items. The PRC will review course materials and supporting items, which may include student feedback other than course evaluations, concerning courses taught. The PRC supports and follows the standards and criteria for evidence of teaching success as written in the CSM RTP Standards and Procedures Policy (See Section IV.A).
      2. Directing student research and independent study.

        Connecting students with current research is vital for attracting students to the discipline and enhances the undergraduate experience. Thus, candidates who sponsor student research activities or projects or direct independent study (e.g. through PHYS 499, or 498) or topics courses [e.g. PHYS 490], make a significant contribution to our students' education. The Department values these types of activities.

      3. Curricular innovations.

        The PRC may consider curricular innovations such as the development of original academic programs or courses, new and effective pedagogical approaches, or instructional applications of new technologies as evidence of a candidate's teaching effectiveness. The Department recognizes that initial implementations of new approaches may encounter difficulties, but that potential student learning gains can justify initial difficulties. Rather than including this material as a teaching contribution, the candidate may choose to have such material be evaluated under research or service contributions, depending on the nature of the activity.

      4. Presentations at professional conferences.

        Professional conferences often address issues in physics and astronomy education such as appropriate course content, new teaching methods, or alternative assessment practices. The PRC may consider presentations at professional conferences or active participation in relevant workshops that result in classroom implementations as evidence of a candidate's dedication to teaching effectiveness. The candidate may choose, instead, to have presentations at professional conferences evaluated in the areas of research or service.

        The Department encourages all faculty members to be reflective practitioners of the craft of teaching. To this end, the reflective statement in the WPAF should address how they have improved and are planning to improve their teaching based on evidence from the classroom, such as student performance on formative or summative assessments, responses to surveys, and/or mid-semester evaluations.

    2. Research

      Candidates are expected to engage in research activities that enhance their professional achievement and growth. Evaluation of professional activities should be sensitive to standards appropriate to a candidate's area of expertise. We do not quantify the minimum number of publications required for tenure and/or promotion because of the varied nature of publication and dissemination opportunities within what comprises our diverse discipline. The quality of the work and its impact on the field will be given greater consideration than the work's quantity and publication venue. The reflective statement of a candidate should include a discussion of the impact of their accomplishments within the context of their subfield. The PRC will consider, but is not limited to, the evidence described below to evaluate a candidate's progress in the area of research.

      1. Research and publications. Candidates are expected to develop and lead an active research program that enhances the work of the department and of the college. Involvement of undergraduates in faculty research is strongly encouraged. The PRC considers papers published or accepted for publication in refereed research journals, conference proceedings, or monographs resulting from the candidate's research program as primary evidence of a candidate's research accomplishments. Lower ranking is given to other publications, publication of non-refereed papers and technical reports, and to unpublished manuscripts. Candidates should describe the context of these other publications and how they demonstrate research productivity, standing in the field, and an active research program. Other evidence of a candidate's research could include patents and research grant final reports. Since multiple authorship papers are common in Physics, candidates should discuss their contributions as an author in their reflective statements.
        The PRC may also consider presentations of current research at professional conferences as evidence of a candidate's research activity. Consideration will be given to the selectivity and prominence of the venue. While, the most important activity within this area would be as an invited speaker at a national or international symposium or conference, contributed talks, regional conferences, and colloquia are also valued.
        The Department supports and follows the standards and criteria for research as written in the CSM RTP Standards and Procedures Policy (See Section IV.B).
      2. Grant funding. The Department encourages candidates to apply for funding of their research activities. Since grant proposals for external funding of research are often very competitive and typically receive extensive outside peer review, the Department considers external grant funding as evidence of a candidate’s scholarly achievement. Candidates are encouraged to discuss the nature of the funding, and how it contributes to their research program. Unfunded and/or pending external grant proposals may also be included as evidence of research productivity. To effectively evaluate unfunded proposals, the WPAF should include all available reviews of the proposals. Internal grant funding is also valued. Grant funding of non-research projects may be evaluated under teaching effectiveness or contributions to campus or community service depending on the nature of the project.
      3. Curricular innovations. The PRC may consider curricular innovations such as the development of original academic programs or courses, new and effective pedagogical approaches, or instructional applications of new technologies as evidence of a candidat's research in the area of science education, provided the activities receive scholarly recognition outside the Department, such as through peer-reviewed articles and conference presentations. The candidate may choose to have material in this area be evaluated under teaching or service contributions, depending on the nature of the activity.

    3. Service

      The PRC supports and follows the standards and criteria for service as written in the CSM RTP Standards and Procedures Policy (See Section IV.C 1-4). In addition, the PRC will consider, but is not limited to, the evidence described below to evaluate a candidate's contributions to campus and community. A candidate's service should be commensurate with opportunities at their rank. It is expected that assistant professors will provide the majority of their early service efforts to the department and later transition to more college and university service. Associate Professors should expand their service commitments to include leadership positions within the department and on college and university committees.

      1. Service to the Department. Candidates are expected to contribute to the smooth functioning of the Department by serving on PRCs, advising students, supporting departmental related clubs and activities (such as the Society of Physics Students and Sigma Pi Sigma), and supporting other departmental initiatives.
      2. Service to the College or University. The PRC will consider activities such as administrative assignments, faculty governance, PRC work, special advising assignments, organizing seminar series, program development, obtaining of donations (including equipment and material donations), sponsorship of student organizations, or direction of non-instructional projects as evidence of a candidate's service to the University.
      3. Service to the community. The PRC will consider activities in which candidates use their professional expertise to enhance the relations between the community at large and the University or profession as evidence of a candidate's service to the community.
      4. Service to the profession. Candidates are expected to participate in professional organizations. The PRC will consider activities such as election to offices in professional organizations, honors and recognition by professional societies, participation on editorial boards, organization of conferences or symposia, or selection as a referee for manuscripts and grants as evidence of a candidate's service to the profession.