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1. Purpose and Objectives

The purpose of this procedure is to outline the process for promotion for Academic Level A to D staff members within faculties and institutes.

2. Definitions, Terms, Acronyms

Academic category – academic appointment type i.e. Teaching and Research (T&R), Teaching Focused (TF) Research Focused (RF) or Clinical Academic (CA).

Academic role - main academic functions such as teaching, scholarship of teaching and learning, research, creative work, clinical innovation, service and engagement.

Authorised Officer – the officer authorised to exercise certain HR powers and functions as outlined in the HR Authorisation Schedule.

CaPC – Confirmation and Promotions Committee.

Committee – CaPC or LCPC as appropriate.

Director – Director of any University-level Centre or Faculty-level Centre (but not School-level Centre within the Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences).

Head – Head of School (or equivalent).

LCPC – Local Confirmation and Promotions Committee.

SECaT - Student Evaluations of Course and Teaching.

TEVALs - Teacher Evaluations.

3. Procedures Scope/Coverage

These procedures apply to academic staff across the four academic categories - Teaching and Research, Teaching Focused, Research Focused or Clinical Academic - seeking promotion from Level A up to and including Level D.

This procedure also applies to conjoint appointees and Academic secondees who seek promotion up to and including Level D.

4. Procedures Statement

The principles that apply to academic promotion across the University are outlined in PPL 5.80.12 Promotion of Academic Staff Levels A - D - Policy.

In accordance with this policy, academic promotion at the University is based on merit and is not constrained by quota.

For a promotion application to be successful, applicants must demonstrate that they have reached the required academic standards for the academic level to which they seek promotion. In some instances, recognition of trajectory, based on available evidence, may be appropriate.

The Criteria for Academic Performance Policy outlines the criteria and standards required for each academic level and Category within the University.

4.1 Eligibility

The eligibility criteria are contained in PPL 5.80.12 Promotion of Academic Staff Levels A - D - Policy.

4.2 Timelines

Academic Level A applicants seeking promotion to Academic Level B may do so at any time.

The University conducts an annual promotion round for staff members seeking promotion to Academic Level C and D in accordance with the Academic Submission Timeline.

Staff members who receive a temporary, higher-level variation due to the award of a Fellowship of high standing may apply for promotion out-of-round, within six months of the commencement of the Fellowship.

In addition, in exceptional circumstances, an applicant for promotion to Academic Level C or D may apply to be considered for promotion out-of-round, subject to the consideration and approval of the Executive Dean. Applications for consideration of exceptional circumstances should be made to the relevant Head/Director who will consider the application and provide a recommendation to the Executive Dean for decision.

5. Application Process

5.1 Preliminary considerations for applicants

The decision to apply for promotion rests entirely with the applicant.

It is imperative, however, that a staff member who is considering applying for promotion discusses their ‘readiness for promotion’ with their Head (or Director, in the case of applicants from a university or faculty-level centre). This initial discussion provides applicants with an opportunity to discuss their prospective application with the Head/Director and to ascertain the Head’s/Director’s view on the maturity of their case.

It is recommended that prospective applicants also discuss their ‘readiness for promotion’ with their academic supervisor (in the case where this is someone other than the Head/Director) and with other senior staff in their Faculty/School and/or discipline.

5.2 Application

Where a staff member decides to progress an application for promotion, the academic promotions process (up to Level D) will be managed through UQ Jobs.

If the applicant is also applying for final review, the promotion application should clearly state that the candidate is applying for both confirmation and promotion.

5.2.1 Applicant considerations

Consideration of Relative Strengths

While all applicants must meet the expectations outlined in the Criteria for Academic Performance Policy for the applicable academic category and level, it is recognised that few individuals will be able to demonstrate excellent achievement across all criteria and that higher achievement in some areas may, in some cases, compensate for lesser achievement in others.

Applicants for promotion can accentuate different parts of their Academic Portfolios within their Case for Promotion to highlight the relative strengths of their various Academic Roles. Statements regarding relative strengths should reflect the applicant’s judgement about their overall contribution, based in particular on their assessment of the quality, quantity and impact of their work. Applicants should refer to the Academic Categories Procedures and the Guidelines on Evidencing Academic Achievement which provide a broad description of academic categories. The Guidelines also provide examples of evidence of academic activities, outcomes, quality and impact.

The full portfolio should be used to record contributions. For a Teaching Focused academic, contributions to original research complement both the teaching portfolio (as currency in the discipline) and Scholarship of Teaching and Learning portfolio (as further evidence of scholarship). For a Teaching & Research academic, contributions to Scholarship of Teaching and Learning complement mainly the teaching portfolio (as evidence for leadership, quality, impact and quantity) and, to a lesser extent, the research portfolio (as further scholarship contributions).

Consideration of Performance Relative to Opportunity

The quality of a staff member’s performance will be assessed against the standard for that level however in terms of expectations for activity and output, consideration will be given to the fraction at which they are employed, periods of absence and/or personal circumstances.

5.2.2 Academic Portfolio submission

Promotion applicants are required to submit the following items through UQ Jobs:

  1. Case for Promotion
  2. Form A – Academic Portfolio of Achievement
  3. Complete set of at least the three most recent semesters of Teacher evaluations (course evaluations also encouraged)

The relevant Head/Director is required to submit the following items via email by the due date:

  1. Form D – Head’s/Director’s Assessment and Recommendation
  2. Form E – Head's/Director’s Nomination of Referees

Further information regarding these submission items is contained below:

  1. Case for Promotion

A Case for Promotion of no more than 800 words is required. The Case for Promotion should clearly demonstrate the applicant's suitability for promotion and concisely outline the applicant's achievements and career goals.

It is recommended that the Case for Promotion includes:

  • A summary of achievements to date with a focus on the period since appointment/promotion to the current level against PPL 5.80.12 Criteria for Academic Performance (evidence should be contained in the Academic Portfolio of Achievement);
  • An outline of contributions to academic roles, including relative areas of strength (see 5.2.1);
  • Explanation of any special considerations in relation to performance relative to opportunity.
  1. Academic Portfolio of Achievement

The following items are to be submitted, as relevant:

Folio Item

 

1 – Curriculum Vitae

All sections are to be filled in.

2 – Teaching

All sections are to be completed (TF), T&R and CA appointments). RF academics are to complete the section on Research Higher Degree supervision and others as applicable.

3 – Scholarship of Teaching and Learning

TF applicants are to complete all sections.

4 – Research and Creative Work

All sections are to be completed for T&R, RF and CA staff.

5 – Grants, Contracts and Bibliography

All sections are to be completed.

6 – Service and Engagement

All sections are to be completed.

7 - Professional Development and Other Activities

Sections are to be completed as applicable.

8 – Special Studies Program

Not applicable.

9 – Nomination of Referees for Final Review for Continuing Appointment

Not applicable.

 

  1. Teacher evaluation forms

University approved teacher evaluations (TEVALs/SECaTs) must be submitted for all courses to which a substantial teaching contribution has been made during at least the three most recent semesters. Course evaluations are also encouraged, particularly where the applicant is the Course Coordinator.

Staff members can access their SECaTs back to the year 2010 here. The Institute for Teaching and Learning Innovation can also supply evaluations for the period 2000 to 2010 upon request.

  1. Head of School/Director of Centre Recommendation 

Applicants for Promotion to Academic Level B

The Head/Director will consider the application and provide a recommendation to the relevant Executive Dean regarding the applicant’s case for promotion (through Form D).

The Head’s/Director’s consideration will include consultation with other senior staff of the Faculty/Institute/School and Discipline.

The Head/Director will meet and discuss their recommendation with the applicant prior to forwarding the application, including the Head’s/Director’s recommendation (Form D) and the Head’s/Director’s Nomination of Referees (Form E), to the Executive Dean for consideration and decision.

Applicants for Promotion to Academic Level C and D

The Head/Director is required to submit a formal recommendation to the Committee regarding Academic Level C and D promotion applicants.

The Head/Director must consult with other senior staff within the School/Centre regarding the applicant’s progress and the case for promotion (where the Head/Director is not the direct supervisor of the applicant, the direct supervisor must be one of those consulted).

The Head/Director will hold a formal meeting with the applicant to discuss their promotion application and to advise the applicant of the Head’s/Director’s formal recommendation and rationale. This advice must be provided to the applicant by the Head/Director in sufficient detail so that the applicant is fully aware of the basis of the recommendation made and has the opportunity to address at interview any areas of weakness identified by the Head/Director.

At the completion of the meeting between the Head/Director and the applicant, Form D – the Head’s/Director’s Recommendation, must be completed and signed by both parties. In the event the Head/Director is not the direct supervisor, the Head/Director must consult with the supervisor and advise the supervisor of their final recommendation. The supervisor must also sign Form D.

  1. Referee Nominations (Applicant and Head/Director)

Both the Applicant and the Head/Director are required to submit referee nominations. The Committee, or the Executive Dean for Level B applicants, may also contact additional referees at their discretion.

Nomination of Referees must satisfy the criteria outlined in the following table:

Teaching Referees

All Teaching and Research, Teaching Focused and Clinical Academic applicants and their Heads/Directors must nominate one referee each to report on the applicant’s teaching ability. Referees should have first-hand knowledge of the applicant’s teaching, should cover as many aspects of the applicant’s teaching as possible and can be an applicant’s former student, colleague or former colleague.

Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Referees

 

 

Teaching Focused applicants applying for Level B promotion and their Heads/Directors must nominate one Scholarship of Teaching and Learning referee each (preference should be given to independent, external referees, who are leaders in the field).

Teaching Focused academic applicants applying for promotion to either Level C or D and their Heads/Directors must nominate two Scholarship of Teaching and Learning referees each (one each of the referees is a reserve). Independent, external refereeswho are leaders in the field must be chosen. Nominated referees must be able to comment on the applicant’s contribution to pedagogy and innovative teaching practice and their impact on the enhancement of learning in their discipline.

Research and Creative Work Referees

Teaching and Research, Research Focused and Clinical Academic applicants applying for Level B promotion and their Heads/Directors must nominate one Research/Creative Work referee each. Preference should be given to independent, external referees, who are leaders in the field.

T&R, RF and CA applicants applying for promotion to either Level C or D and their Heads/Directors must nominate two Research/Creative Work referees each (one each of the referees is a reserve). Independent, external referees, who are leaders in the field must be chosen.

Service and Engagement Referee

Clinical Academics must nominate one service/engagement referee. Preference should be given to an independent, external referee who can comment on the applicant’s professional and community roles.

In particular, where service and engagement are considered a relative strength, referees should be nominated with the ability to comment on this aspect.

Applicant Referee Nominations

Applicants should ascertain their referees’ willingness to provide a report prior to nomination.

Applicants may also nominate in their Case for Promotion referees that they would prefer the Committee not to contact.

Referee Nomination Forms

Applicants provide email, phone and address details of referees via the online application process. It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that the correct referee details are provided.

The Head/Director completes Form E - Head's/Director’s Nomination of Referees for Continuing Appointment and Promotion.

It should be noted whether consultation with an applicant has occurred when selecting referees (indicating with an asterisk on the form). The Head/Director must ensure that they do not nominate referees that have already been nominated by the applicant.

Conflict of Interest - Referees

Applicants must not nominate referees who have a close personal relationship, financial interest or other conflict of interest with the applicant (e.g. a mentor, close collaborator, relative or close friend). Committee members should not be nominated as referees.

Adverse Referee Comments

Applicants will have the opportunity to respond to any adverse referee comments.

6. Consideration and Decision Process

6.1 Applicants for Promotion to Academic Level B

The promotion application will be considered and determined by the Executive Dean, on recommendation from the Head/Director.

6.2 Applicants for Promotion to Academic Level C and D

6.2.1 Brief update

The applicant may submit a brief ‘update’ up to one week prior to interview on any substantial new achievements since submission of the application (e.g. a one to two page dot point summary of new achievements with new teaching evaluation summary sheets appended).

6.2.2 Interview process

All candidates will be invited to be interviewed by the Committee. The interview process provides an opportunity for applicants to present their case for promotion and enables the Committee to seek clarification on any aspects of the application and ask questions. The interview will also provide an opportunity for applicants to further discuss the Head’s/Director’s recommendation, and any other relevant matters as required.

During the Committee’s deliberations, members of the Committee (other than the relevant Head/Director if present) will be tasked with leading discussion on the applicant’s case for satisfying the promotion criteria regarding Teaching, Research/Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, and Service and Engagement elements as applicable. Prior to and during committee deliberations, the relevant Head/Director (if present) is only able to clarify points of fact and make other comments that are consistent with their written report.

7. Outcome and Date of Effect

7.1 Applicants for Promotion to Academic Level B

For Academic Level B promotion applicants, the Executive Dean will determine the outcome of a promotion application, on recommendation from the Head/Director.

The Executive Dean will advise the applicant of the outcome of their promotion application as soon as reasonably practicable.

Successful applicants will have a date of effect of the first of the month following the promotion decision.

Unsuccessful applicants will be provided with feedback from the Executive Dean, and/or Head/Director, as appropriate.

7.2 Applicants for Promotion to Academic Level C and D

The Committee will consider promotion applications for Academic Level C and D applicants.

The Executive Dean will advise applicants in writing of the outcome as soon as reasonably practicable after the completion of the interview rounds.

Successful applicants will be promoted with effect 1 January of the year following application.

Unsuccessful applicants will be afforded the opportunity to meet with the Executive Dean and the relevant Head/Director to gain feedback on their application.

8. Appeals

An applicant who is unsuccessful in their promotion application may appeal the decision on procedural grounds. Prior to appealing, it is expected that unsuccessful applicants will seek feedback on their application.

The appeal:

  • must be lodged in writing with the Director, Human Resources, within 21 days of the date of issue of notification; and
  • must be based on procedural grounds.

An initial assessment that an application for appeal is validly made will be conducted by the Director, Human Resources, before an appeal proceeds to the Authorised Officer for consideration. For an appeal to be successful, the Authorised Officer must be satisfied that the procedural error had substantial and significant impact on the decision. The decision of the Authorised Officer is final.

Every effort will be made to hear and determine an appeal prior to the cessation of a fixed-term contract (where applicable). Fixed-term contracts will not however be extended by virtue of an appeals process.

9. Confidentiality

All staff involved in the academic promotion process will respect the confidentiality of the applicants and the deliberations of the Committee members.

Custodians
Chief Human Resources Officer Dr Al Jury