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Policy on Non-Tenure-Track Faculty (1997; Revised 2007, Revised 2015)

Section I. Scope of the Policy

This policy describes the conditions under which faculty appointments are made in the lecturer and clinical faculty instructional categories, established by the Board of Trustees of Indiana University on May 4, 2001 (AcademicAppointments.pdf), and as described in the IUB Academic Guide. It also considers the rationale for such non-tenure-track appointments and the rights and obligations of those holding such positions.

Section II. Definitions

Lecturers and senior lecturers contribute to the university’s mission either by teaching alone or by some combination of teaching and service. Clinical ranks (clinical professor, associate clinical professor, assistant clinical professor; or senior clinical lecturer, clinical lecturer) include positions where the primary duties are the teaching of practical skills and demonstrating best professional practices in a clinical setting or the providing of clinical service to the community at large. The primary qualifications for such clinical positions typically include substantial practitioner experience. The duties of all non-tenure-track faculty are fixed and specified by the contract of employment.

Section III. Rationale

The need for faculty in the lecturer and clinical ranks will vary widely among departments in the College. Such appointments must be justified in a principled way in terms of the teaching, research, and service missions of the College. Justifications for the appointment of these non-tenure track faculty are normally determined as part of a department's course scheduling process.

Section IV. Conditions of Employment

The appointment procedure for lecturers and clinical faculty is expected to follow closely that used for tenure-track faculty. All conditions governing the initial appointment, reappointment, promotion, and salary setting for faculty in non-tenure-track ranks must be prepared in advance in writing by the department. Initial appointment, reappointment, promotion, and salary will be commensurate with the demonstrated credentials, experience, and quality of performance presented by the non-tenure-track faculty
member. All these decisions will be made through the normal procedures of each department, in a way that is consistent with all relevant College policies and the requirements for the specific appointment as stated in the IUB Academic Guide.

New appointments to non-tenure-track faculty ranks will pass through a probationary period, the duration of which will be set by the department, but which may not exceed the equivalent of seven years of a full-time appointment. During the probationary period, the initial appointment may be made for a maximum of three years followed by annual reappointments until the decision to award (or not to award) a longer term contract. After the probationary period, reappointment will involve a longer term contract which may be rolling three-year contracts or fixed five-year contracts, at the discretion of the department. In the case of lecturers, reappointment at the end of the probationary period will also include promotion to the rank of senior lecturer.

The quality of teaching and service for non-tenure-track faculty must be assessed annually by the department, as decisions about salary, promotion and reappointment are made. Review of teaching and service should be made by the same kinds of procedures by which teaching and service of tenure track faculty are reviewed. Faculty in these ranks are expected to submit the customary faculty annual report, and provide other evidence of the quality of their performance (e.g., teaching evaluations, classroom peer assessment, etc.).

Promotion through the non-tenure-track ranks will be governed by the specific expectations established by each department. In general, senior non-tenure-track faculty will have demonstrated significant achievements in pedagogy or practice, such as assuming teaching leadership roles, developing innovative classroom techniques, and receiving national recognition for their work.

In the event of negative reappointment decisions, advance notice must be given as detailed in the IUB Academic Guide. Longer term contracts offered to non-tenure-track faculty do not carry the same guarantees as tenure. A faculty member in these ranks will be reappointed only if his or her performance is judged by the department or College to be effective. Reappointment is also contingent upon the continued existence of the expedient need which created the demand for the position and upon the continued consonance of the position with the academic mission of the department or unit.

Section V. Rights and Obligations

Faculty appointed to these ranks are expected to participate in departmental activities that are pertinent to the tasks assigned them. In return, departments are expected to provide the necessary resources for teaching and service responsibilities.

By way of a parallel with the University Faculty Council Policy on Clinical and Lecturer Appointments, the role of non-tenure-track faculty in governance within the unit shall be determined by vote of the tenured and tenure-probationary faculty of the unit, provided that where non-tenure-track appointees have voting privileges , their voting participation must be structured in a way that reserves at least 60% of voting weight to tenure track faculty. The academic integrity of the school and its programs ultimately is the responsibility of tenured and tenure-probationary faculty. Tenured and tenure-track faculty may establish departmental procedures that allow non-tenure-track faculty to vote on hiring and promotion decisions concerning non-tenure-track faculty of their rank. It is important that the research and teaching missions of the department or unit remain within the purview of faculty on tenured or tenure-track lines. Non-tenure-track faculty may play an important role in determining how best to implement the teaching and service missions of the department, but major decisions concerning curriculum and the overall direction of the department should be the responsibility of tenured and tenure-track faculty.

Teaching loads for non-tenure-track faculty will be decided by the department in consultation with the Dean. Teaching loads for non-tenure track faculty should be consistent with prevailing national standards at peer research institutions. In some cases, non-tenure-track faculty may be expected to perform service activities or other duties, such as administrative tasks, which must be taken into consideration in setting teaching loads. Although non-tenure-track faculty are not expected to perform research or creative activities, they should keep up with research in their area of expertise and apply it in their teaching. Additionally, students will be best served if these faculty have the opportunity for intellectual development and growth in their field.

Departments must have available, at the time they hire non-tenure-track faculty, a written set of grievance procedures. These faculty must continue to have access to procedures and mechanisms for grievance, appeal or review of administrative decisions after their appointment.