|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|
|Signature Page/PDF:||View Retention, Tenure, and Promotion (RTP) Standards - Department of Physics Policy|
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, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics (CSTEM) 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.
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.
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.
Evaluation of a candidate's performance in this area will be based on the following:
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
The PRC supports and follows the standards and criteria for service as written in the CSTEM 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.