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Office of the Provost

Tenure and Promotion

Candidate File Preparation Guide

Tenure and promotion decisions require a record of accomplishment indicative of continuing development of the faculty member in research, teaching, and service, and appropriate progress toward development of a national or international reputation in a field.

The initial file is created by the candidate using a template for primary files (docx) [doc]. At each step in the review process, additional documents are added and a vote summary is updated. Digital letters and signatures are acceptable, and completed files should be submitted electronically as PDFs.

Important Resources

  • Faculty Manual - final authority on procedures and guidelines for file compilation, submission, and review.
  • UCTP Guidelines for Units: Preparing Criteria and Files [pdf] - helps tenure and/or promotion candidates and their units in the compilation, submission, and confidential handling of tenure or promotion files (also known as the Goldenrod).

Candidate File Preparation

Use the guide below to determine how to prepare a candidate file for submission to the unit tenure and promotion committee chair. There are potentially eight levels in the tenure and promotion review process:

  1. Candidate (file preparation)
  2. Unit Tenure and Promotion (T&P) Committee
  3. Department Chair
  4. Dean
  5. Provost
  6. UCTP Committee
  7. President
  8. Board of Trustees

Create Primary File

Use this template to begin a file. Be sure to sign the front page of the file before submitting to the unit chair. Download primary file template (MS Word).

Vote Summary

Includes name, rank and decisions from each step in the approval chain. The vote summary template is included in the primary file template; please download from the link above. 

Tenure Clock Extension Letter

Faculty who have received an automatic or requested tenure clock extension must include the extension approval letter from the Office of the Provost. Download form [pdf] to request any extension.

Unit Criteria

Candidates for tenure may be choose to be reviewed by either the criteria in place when hired or the current criteria. For promotion to professor, the candidate must use the criteria currently in place.


List all activities in reverse chronological order. Include the number of students in each class (do not just put an 'X' in the cell to indicate when a class was taught). Add additional columns as needed for additional semesters of teaching. The Faculty Manual requires that an evaluative summary of a candidate’s teaching be included in the primary file. The Faculty Manual states that the summary be “based on clearly specified criteria” and “give context to student evaluations of the faculty member’s classroom teaching…” Regardless of the format used, the teaching summary should include comparative data from other sections of multi-section courses and from the same, or when applicable, comparable courses taught by other faculty members in the recent past. If such comparisons are neither possible nor applicable, a short explanation should be provided.

Scholarship and Research

List all scholarship and research activities since the year of the last tenure or promotion action in reverse chronological order. Add additional columns as needed for additional semesters of scholarship and research. The Headings used in the Template may be renamed or modified to accommodate the scholarship/research/creative activity practices of a specific discipline. Headings may also be added if there is another category of scholarship/research/creative activity that a candidate wishes to include.


List all activities in reverse chronological order. Add additional columns as needed for additional semesters of service.

Personal Statement

The personal statement is recommended, but not required. Candidates should make the case for tenure or promotion. Be sure to relate to the criteria, address any potential problems or unique circumstances and be concise and data (fact) based.

Secondary File

The secondary file is for all supporting materials. List all of the materials, and  organize into teaching, scholarship/research and service. Provide enough information on this list so that a reviewer can easily locate each entry.

Order of Bookmarks

The primary file should be converted to PDF with standard bookmarks for easy navigation. See the order of bookmarks on the right.


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