COVID-19 Context

The global pandemic crisis of COVID-19 has created many challenges for faculty. Following are some updates on changes in the promotion process during 2021-2022 as impacted by the global pandemic.

  1. Deadlines return to normal for promotion dossier submissions to the university-level for
    1. Career-Track Promotion dossiers are due Monday, December 6, 2021
    2. Continuing-Track and Tenure-Track dossiers are due Friday, January 21, 2022
  2. Student Course Surveys and Peer Observations during Spring 2020 and Fall 2020: Given the unexpected changes in teaching format these semesters and the stay of releasing Student Course Surveys, if candidates did conduct their own student evaluations for the given semesters, these can be included in the section 6A. There will be no penalty to candidates if student evaluations are not provided for the semesters in 2020. Department and unit committees need to keep in mind the university did not release or require teaching observations or student evaluations to be conducted due to the pandemics.
  3. Section 2A: Pandemic Impact Statement is Required for 2021-2022: This subsection was initially added last year to provide faculty an opportunity to describe the impact of the global pandemics on their workload assignment or trajectory of their scholarly activity, teaching, service, clinical activities, extension activities, or administrative roles. Please see link here for more details and tips for completing this new section.
  4. We are dedicated to improving Equity in the promotion process. We will work with review committees, department heads, and deans to consider how the global pandemic may have disproportionately impacted women and minorities. We will be adding new information on this topic into our training for department heads and promotion review committees.  
  5. COVID-19 Promotion Clock Delays are available for tenure-eligible faculty and continuing eligible faculty through a simple opt-in website link until June 30th, 2021. Promotion to Full Professor does not have a mandatory review year; we encourage faculty and department heads/directors to be compassionate and flexible in considering the best timing to submit for review in light of COVID-19.

Given the growing evidence that COVID-19 has had a disproportionate impact on women, underrepresented ethnic/racial/sexual groups, family caregivers, and those with health risks, we recognize that more than ever it is critical to acknowledge and consider issues of equity, diversity, and inclusivity in the review of materials. Moreover, individuals should not be penalized for adjusted work schedules, modified duties, or changes to research and creative momentum due to the extraordinary obstacles to everyday life that have resulted from the pandemic. However, we also acknowledge that unexpected changes in scholarly work, teaching, and service may lead to new and unexpected innovations and breakthroughs that have significant societal impact and which should be viewed in the light of the context of COVID-19, even if they do not follow a traditional pathway. As such, we call on all administrative leaders and review committees to not only recognize and mitigate these concerns but also to proactively seek opportunities for resource reallocation and infrastructure investments to support the professional development and promotion process for all faculty.  Here you can find some recent articles for more details on the gendered impact of COVID-19 as related to research and publishing. These findings are important for review committees to consider:

  1. https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2020/04/21/early-journal-submission-data-suggest-covid-19-tanking-womens-research-productivity
  2. https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-020-01294-9
  3. https://www.thelily.com/women-academics-seem-to-be-submitting-fewer-papers-during-coronavirus-never-seen-anything-like-it-says-one-editor/
  4. https://www.natureindex.com/news-blog/decline-women-scientist-research-publishing-production-coronavirus-pandemic
  5. https://voxeu.org/article/who-doing-new-research-time-covid-19-not-female-economists
  6. https://www.theguardian.com/education/2020/may/12/womens-research-plummets-during-lockdown-but-articles-from-men-increase
  7. https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/voices/scientist-mothers-face-extra-challenges-in-the-face-of-covid-19/