Template for Biennial and Tenure Reviews


School of Liberal Arts Template for

Biennial Review, Tenure, and Promotion Applications

The template (linked above) is a suggested format for two-year and four-year reviews prior to tenure, and for applications for tenure and promotion to the Status Committee. The Status Committee makes recommendations to the President concerning all requests for tenure, promotion, sabbaticals, leaves of absence, part-schedule teaching, and emerita/us status. For official information, please see the Faculty Handbook and the Faculty Status web site. This document is a guideline only and does not supersede any information there.
Electronic Review
The Faculty Status Committee now requires one hard-copy binder and electronic versions of all other “essential documents.” The biennial review process requires only one hard copy binder and currently no electronic documents. However, since you will need electronic documents for tenure or promotion, it is best to collect them as you move through the tenure track. The required documents listed on the Faculty Status Committee web site as of July 2012 are:
  1. Table of Contents and Departmental Guidelines
  2. Narrative (10 page max.)
  3. Siena College Personal Data Record (from Sedona):  It is the responsibility of the faculty member to maintain the accuracy of their personal data in the SEDONA database. Update your Siena College Personal Date Record in the SEDONA database.
  4. Evaluations and annual observation letters by Department Head and School Dean (should have original signatures)
  5. Peer Evaluations (if you have any)
  6. Summaries of Student Evaluations
  7. For Tenure and Promotion: List of ancillary materials that will be on file in the Standish Library for review by the Committee (All documents from the Cover Sheet through List of Ancillary Materials should be scanned to the flash drive.)
    For Biennial Review: optional ancillary materials can be included with the dossier.  The dossier is reviewed by department and the dean--not by a Committee.
Teaching Observations
The Handbook requires that tenure-track faculty be observed in the classroom once each semester by the department chair and once each year by the Dean or Associate Dean. It is your responsibility to set up these appointments. It is then the observer’s responsibility to give you prompt, written feedback on the standard form (included in template). Both of you must sign the form.
Biennial Review
Departments must conduct a formal pre-tenure review in the spring of the second and fourth years of the tenure track. If you were granted time towards tenure when you were hired, that moves you forward in the tenure cycle. E.g. if you were granted 1 year toward tenure, you will begin at Siena in the second year of the tenure track. The Two-Year Review will be due during your first year at Siena. If you were granted two years, you will not have a two-year review; rather, your “four-year review” will occur in the spring of your second year at Siena. The tenure date is in your contract and cannot be changed.
The departmental review, signed by the department chair and the faculty member, must be forwarded along with the faculty member’s complete portfolio to the dean not later than April 1stWhen you take the portfolio to the dean’s office, please set up a half-hour appointment to discuss the material. The dean then writes a letter which must be submitted to the VPAA, along with the departmental letter, by April 20th (Handbook p. III.4).  The dean’s office will send the dean’s and department’s letter to the VPAA and will return a copy to you, along with your binder. The binder is not forwarded to the VPAA.
The department's letter will be written by the department chair and will summarize the department's evaluation of the faculty member according to the departmental and College criteria for teaching, scholarship/creative activity, and service. The statement will include a description of the process the department followed and will record the vote taken or describe consensus reached. The letter should clearly indicate one of the following positions:
1.      The faculty is making successful progress towards tenure.
2.      The faculty needs to remedy certain deficiencies before the department will be able to indicate that the faculty is making successful progress towards tenure (these deficiencies will be indicated in writing).
3.      The faculty has remedied previously indicated deficiencies and is now making successful progress towards tenure.
4.      The faculty's performance is not sufficient to meet the needs of the department and the department requests that a terminal contract be offered (with reasons given).
Dean's statement: this statement will evaluate the faculty member according to departmental and College criteria and will be informed by the departmental review. It will conclude with the dean’s view of the faculty member’s progress as outlined in the four statements above.
The date of your tenure application was established at the time of hire and is in your contract. Each year, the VPAA’s office publishes deadlines for applications to the Status Committee. Typically, materials are due to your department by the third week in September. The department has two weeks to review them and write your letter. You then forward the packet to the dean, who has a week to review it and write a letter and return the materials to you. You then have one more week to make sure that all is in order, with a typical deadline to the VPAA by the third week in October. Tenure recommendations are usually completed by the Status Committee before the end of December; promotion recommendations usually by March.
The tenure and promotion decisions are based on the same materials, but the decisions are distinct. The Status Committee has separate meetings and votes on tenure and promotion. Typically, Assistant Professors in the tenure track apply for tenure and promotion to Associate Professor at the same time. 

Frequently Asked Questions
If you have any additional questions about the process, please contact your department chair, Assistant Dean Allison Schultz, Associate Dean Vera Eccarius-Kelly, or Dean Janet Shideler.