Chapter 11: Policies of Faculty Appointment, Promotion, Recognition, Reviews, and Aspects of Faculty Life

11.1 Appointment, Promotion, Review

11.1.A Gray Book

The Statement of Principles Governing Faculty Relationships ("Gray Book") contains the statement of principles governing faculty relationships with the university and standards regarding appointments, promotion, and tenure. The Board of Trustees updates and oversees this document. 

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11.1.B Policy on Cross-departmental and Cross-school Appointments

Faculty appointments across departments within schools and across schools within Emory University are possible. A variety of terms (e.g., joint, secondary, associated) are used to describe such appointments based upon the school(s) involved and the compensation agreements. The requirements for rank consistency between appointments also vary across schools. Cross-departmental and cross-school appointments require approval from the relevant chairs and dean(s). School policies on appointment, promotion, and tenure include each school's guidelines on these appointments. 

11.1.C Policy on Retirement and Emeritus Faculty Appointment

Faculty are eligible to retire if they work at least 20 hours or more per workweek, are at least 55, have at least 10 years of service of at least half time with breaks not to exceed a 12-month period or 24-month period if due to a reduction in force, and are retiring from a paid status or a disability leave of absence; and if their total years of age and service equal at least 75. The retirement date can be any day of the month as mutually agreed upon by the faculty member and his/her department, but retirement at the end of a semester is usually preferred. Retired faculty can access a range of benefits, which are described in the benefits section of this Faculty Handbook and on the Human Resources website. In addition, school-specific resources may be available to faculty upon retirement.

A retired member of the faculty who has reached age 55 and has served as a member of the Emory faculty for at least 10 continuous years, and whose total age and years of continuous service equal at least 75, may be considered for an "emeritus" title that reflects rank and appointment track at the time of retirement. Following rules and guidelines for academic titles, the Dean of the academic unit where the faculty member's appointment is housed may recommend a faculty member to the Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and the President, who shall inform the Board of Trustees, if awarded.

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11.1.D Current Faculty Titles and the Requirement for Approval of New Titles

Four faculty titles are available on the tenure-track: Instructor, Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, and Professor. Many more titles exist on the non-tenure tracks, some of which depend on the school and college in which the individual holds an appointment.

The addition of faculty titles and tracks requires a request to the Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs. Such a request must include a justification, budget impact, and faculty support within the academic unit, as well as benchmark data from other schools outside of Emory. A request will be reviewed by the Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs, in consultation with the deans, Tenure and Promotion Advisory Committee (TPAC), the Office of the General Council, Human Resources and other relevant parties. In addition, feedback is sought from the Faculty Council. Depending on the nature of the new title or track, the Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs will report to or seek approval of the Board of Trustees.

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11.1.E General Policy Statements on Faculty Appointment and Promotion

Recommendations and review for faculty appointment or promotion or conferring of tenure are based on qualifications without regard to race, color, religion, ethnic or national origin, gender, genetic information, age, disability,  sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, veteran status and cultural, socioeconomic, national and international backgrounds except where sex or religious status are bona fide occupational requirements, or where a specific disability constitutes a bona fide occupational disqualification. 

Individuals appointed to the faculty are subject to all departmental, school, and university policies, guidelines, and procedures as they exist at the time of appointment, as they may be changed during the period of the faculty appointment, and as new policies, guidelines, and procedures are made. They also are subject to any local, state, and federal laws and regulations that are applicable to their activities at Emory University. 

11.1.F Standard for Appointment, Promotion, and Tenure (Tenure track)

On the tenure track, standards for appointments at rank, for promotion, and for the grant of tenure reflect the expectations that a faculty holds of its members. Candidates for appointment or promotion to Associate Professor must show academic excellence, including meritorious scholarship, creative inquiry, and outstanding teaching, as well as have the demonstrated promise to become leaders and transform their field as their career progresses. Candidates for appointment or promotion to Professor must show scholarly excellence and be established, nationally or internationally, as among the most distinctive and recognized voices in their discipline, consistently examining and addressing their field's most pressing questions. (See Statement of Principles Governing Faculty Relationships ("Gray Book"), paragraph 3.(e).) 

Each Dean, in consultation with the faculty and chairs, will establish standards for scholarship, teaching, and service for appointment and promotion on the limited tracks that are published in the school's appointment and promotion policies and consistently applied. 

11.1.G University Procedural Guidelines for Candidate Files for Tenure Track Appointment, Promotion, and Tenure

The following University Procedural Guidelines for Candidate Files apply to all candidates for appointment or promotion to Associate Professor and Professor with tenure or for the grant of tenure at rank from any school within the university. 

These guidelines exist in addition to the procedures of each school. Emory University, according to its Bylaws, grants continuous appointment by action of the Board of Trustees upon recommendation of the President. The ordinary process for moving a candidate's file for the award of tenure at rank or for appointment or promotion with tenure to the Board of Trustees begins in the school with its faculty and Dean, proceeds through the Provost and, in the case of the schools of health sciences, also through the Executive Vice President for Health Affairs before reaching the President. Upon recommendation of the President, the file is forwarded to the Academic Affairs Committee of the Board of Trustees and then to the Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees for final approval. 

To assist the President and Provost in promoting excellence across Emory and to ensure comparable quality while protecting school distinctiveness, the Tenure and Promotion Advisory Committee (TPAC), a group of senior faculty elected by the tenured faculty in each of the schools/colleges, conducts a university-wide evaluation of all tenure-track faculty candidates who are recommended for appointment or promotion to Associate Professor or Professor with tenure, or for the grant of tenure at rank, from all departments, if applicable, and from all schools and colleges. The full election process for TPAC can be found in Section 11.2.a of this handbook. After reviewing and discussing the candidate(s), TPAC, as an advisory body, makes recommendations based on its deliberations and provides an advisory vote on the outcome which is submitted to the Provost and President. 

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11.1.H Stopping the Tenure Clock

If a faculty member on the tenure track who has not yet been reviewed for tenure becomes a parent by birth or adoption, the faculty member will be granted an automatic extension of the tenure clock by one year. The faculty member should notify their chair (for those schools that have departments) and Dean in writing of this change in status at the earliest possible date. It is the responsibility of the Chair and Dean to secure substitutes for the faculty member's teaching and committee responsibilities. If a faculty member does not want to alter the tenure clock, then they must notify their Chair and Dean in writing of the desire to maintain the original tenure date, within one year of the birth or adoption. Deans and/or Department Chairs should make all untenured faculty members aware of this policy. 

A tenure-track faculty member may, under certain circumstances, receive a delay of the tenure review for a period not to exceed two years. Such circumstances may include among others, the birth or adoption of a child, responsibility for managing the illness or disability of a family member, or illness of the faculty member. 

Approved by the Board of Trustees 12 March 2009 

11.1.I Extension of the Tenure Clock

To obtain an extension of the probationary period for reasons other than childbirth or adoption the faculty member must make a written request showing that his or her ability to demonstrate his or her readiness for the grant of tenure has been substantially impaired. 

The petition, after in being submitted to the Chair, and if approved by the Dean, shall be submitted to the Provost. For faculty in the Woodruff Health Sciences Center the petition must be approved by the Executive Vice President for Health Affairs before submission to the Provost. In the event that the petition is denied before being submitted to the Provost, the faculty member shall have the right to appeal directly to the Provost. The Provost will report regularly to the Board of Trustees on the numbers of extensions requested, the reasons advanced in support of each request and the granting or denial of each request. 

11.2 Policies on Other Aspects of Faculty Life

11.2.A Tenure and Promotion Advisory Committee (TPAC) Election Process (Full Process)

The Tenure and Promotion Advisory Committee (TPAC) is a group of senior faculty elected by the tenured faculty in each of the schools/colleges, that conducts a university-wide evaluation of all tenure track faculty candidates who are recommended for appointment or promotion to Associate Professor or Professor with tenure, or for the grant of tenure at rank, from all departments, if applicable, and from all schools and colleges. 


In keeping with the Principles of University Governance, cited above, the TPAC includes ex-officio members from the senior administration and elected members from the senior faculty. The inclusion of ex-officio members respects the interdependence of university governance with regard to tenure and/or promotion and ensures transparency and good communication between the senior administration and the faculty. The election of faculty to TPAC reflects democratic faculty governance in university-level promotion and tenure reviews. 

Ex Officio Members 

TPAC will include four appointed and non-voting, ex-officio members, including the President, the Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs, the Deputy Provost for Academic Affairs, and a staff member designated by the Provost. 

Elected Members 

TPAC will include eight elected members, one each from the schools of Business, Law, Nursing, Public Health, Theology, Medicine, Oxford College and Emory College of Arts and Sciences. These TPAC members will be elected by the eligible voters in their respective school or college. The TPAC also will include four at-large members elected by all eligible voters across the university. These 12 members of TPAC will be voting members. 

Eligibility for Membership 

Persons serving on TPAC will hold the rank of Professor with tenure. In addition, they will have had significant experience in evaluating candidates for tenure and/or promotion. This experience would ordinarily be evidenced by service on school-level committees that review files of candidates. Current Chairs of departments or areas, Division Directors, Deans of schools or colleges, Associate Deans of Faculty in schools or colleges, and any member of a school- or unit tenure and promotion committee and TPAC.  

Terms of Members 

Ex Officio Members 

An ex-officio member of TPAC will hold membership so long as they occupy the administrative position that entitles membership. 

Elected Members 

The term for an elected member will be three years, with one third of the membership elected in each year. A member will be eligible to serve a second consecutive term but may not be re-elected for a third term until that member has not been a member for a period of at least two years. Terms will commence on August 1 of any given year and expire on July 31. Elected members who leave the university or who become ineligible to serve on TPAC will be replaced by an interim election. The incoming elected member will serve for the duration of the remaining term. If the unexpired term is a single year, the incoming elected member will serve an additional full three-year term after completing the final year of the previous term. At that point, the member may be re-elected for a second full three-year term. 

Election Process for Eligible Faculty 

School-/College-Specific Nominations 

For open school/college positions on TPAC, the Dean of that school or college will consult with his or her appointment, tenure, and promotion committee (in schools that have one) and will nominate faculty who are eligible for membership on TPAC. The Dean will submit to the Office of the Provost the names of two qualified persons who are willing to serve in the open TPAC position and will provide all information needed to prepare the ballot. 

At-Large Nominations 

For open at-large positions, the Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs will solicit nominations directly from the tenured faculty. In consultation with TPAC, the Chair will develop a slate of all eligible candidates that takes into account the current composition of TPAC and ensures a continual balance across schools/colleges and discipline. Specifically, the four at-large positions will be distributed across broad areas of cross-cutting expertise, as follows: one in the STEM and health sciences, one in the social and behavioral sciences, one in the arts and humanities, and one unspecified at-large member. The ballot with the final slate of candidates will be sent to the Office of the Provost. 


The ballot for each school/college will contain the names of each person nominated for any open school/college position on TPAC and any open at-large position(s) on TPAC, with a brief biographical statement that describes the nominee's academic expertise and his or her experience evaluating candidates for tenure and/or promotion. 

Eligible Voters 

All tenured members of the faculty will be eligible to vote for an open position in his or her school or college and any open at-large position. 

Manner of Voting 

For all open positions on TPAC, the Office of Institutional Research and Decision Support (IRDS) will administer the election electronically via a secured website. The voting site will be open seven days from the time OIR has sent all email invitations to eligible voters. Once the deadline for voting passes or OIR has received all votes, whichever is sooner, the results will be tabulated and certified by OIR and communicated to the Provost and the Chair of TPAC. 

Report of Voting. The Office of the Provost will report the results of TPAC elections to the school/college Deans who will inform the candidates. 

TPAC Officers 

Chair and Vice Chair 

TPAC will have two officer positions, a Chair and a Vice Chair, elected from its voting membership. In addition to conducting the at-large nominations process, the Chair or, in the Chair's absence, the Vice Chair, will direct committee activities in communication with the Office of the Provost. The Vice Chair will draft the letters summarizing the deliberations of candidates by TPAC. The Chair or, in the Chair's absence, the Vice Chair, will communicate the committee's recommendations to the Provost and President. Both officer positions are normally held for one-year terms. If possible, the Chair and Vice Chair in any given year will not come from the same school or college. 

Election of Officers 

At the first meeting of the fall semester, the voting members of TPAC will elect the Vice Chair from among the voting members who are not in their final year of service. The Vice Chair will succeed the Chair in the following year, at which time a new Vice Chair will be elected. If the Vice Chair is unable to serve as Chair, the voting members will directly elect a Chair and a Vice Chair. If the Chair is unable to complete their term, they will be replaced by the Vice Chair, who will hold office for the unexpired term of the resigned Chair and for the year that they would in the normal course of events be Chair. To replace a Vice Chair who has resigned or who has assumed the office of a resigned Chair, the Committee will elect a replacement from among its voting members. The elected person will hold the office of Vice Chair for the unexpired term of the Vice Chair who is being replaced, and that of Chair for the following year. 

11.2.B Policy on Compensation of Faculty Leaving Administrative Positions

Compensation of faculty holding administrative positions is based primarily on the responsibilities of the particular administrative position held and on whether the administrative position is full or part time. When a faculty member ceases to hold an administrative position and is serving solely as an active faculty member, an appropriate salary adjustment will be made. The primary factor for such an adjustment will be the compensation received by other faculty with equivalent rank, experience, stature, and job assignment in the faculty member's department or school.