Guideline UL-ACG13 Faculty Peer Review Committees (Formerly UL-HRG13)

Main Policy Content

Contents:

  • Purpose
  • Non-Tenure Track Review Committees
    • First-Level Promotion Review Committee
    • Second-Level Promotion Review Committee
  • Tenure-Line Review Committees
    • First-Level Tenure and Promotion Review Committee
    • Second-Level Tenure and Promotion Review Committee
  • Recusal

PURPOSE:

To state the University Libraries’ procedures for establishing faculty review committees for promotion of full-time non-tenure track faculty members according to University policy AC21 Definition of Academic Ranks, and faculty review committees for tenure and promotion of tenure-line faculty members according to University policy AC23 Promotion and Tenure Procedures and Regulations.

NON-TENURE TRACK REVIEW COMMITTEES

First-Level Promotion Review Committee 

Composition:

Three (3) members of the University Libraries faculty.

Eligibility:

All full-time non-tenure track members of the Libraries’ faculty holding the rank of Associate Librarian or Librarian, except Academic Administrators.

Selection:

All members are elected by a vote of University Libraries full-time non-tenure track faculty to staggered two-year terms.

If any member is unable to serve the full term of two years, the faculty member who received the largest number of votes in the most recent election (among those not elected or appointed) will complete the term.

Chair of the Committee:

Elected by the Committee each year.

Promotion to Librarian (full rank):

When candidates are being considered for promotion to full rank (Librarian rank), the Dean will form a three-member ad hoc committee whose members include those with full rank on the First-Level Promotion Review Committee. If the Chair of the First-Level Promotion Review Committee does not hold full rank, the Dean will appoint a chair from among the members of the ad hoc committee.

Second-Level Promotion Review Committee

Composition:

Three (3) members; one (1) member from University Park, one (1) member from a campus other than University Park, and one (1) member at-large

Eligibility:

All full-time non-tenure track members of the Libraries’ faculty holding the rank of Associate Librarian or Librarian, except Academic Administrators.  Prior service of at least one term on the First-Level Committee is a prerequisite for membership on the Second-Level Committee.[1]

Selection:

All members are elected by a vote of University Libraries full-time non-tenure track faculty. One (1) member elected by a vote of the University Park Libraries’ full-time non-tenure track faculty to a two-year term; one (1) member elected by a vote of the full-time non-tenure faculty at campuses other than University Park to a two-year term; one (1) at-large member elected by a vote of the University Libraries full-time non-tenure track faculty to a one-year term.

If any member is unable to serve the full term, the faculty member who received the largest number of votes in the most recent election will complete the term.

Chair of the Committee:

Appointed by the Dean of University Libraries each year.

Promotion to Librarian (full rank): 

When candidates are being considered for promotion to full rank (Librarian rank), the Dean will form a three-member ad hoc committee whose members include those with full rank on the Second-Level Promotion Review Committee. If the Chair of the Second-Level Promotion Review Committee does not hold full rank, the Dean will appoint a chair from among the members of the ad hoc committee.

TENURE-LINE REVIEW COMMITTEES

First-Level Tenure and Promotion Review Committee

Composition:

Seven (7) members of the University Libraries faculty.

Eligibility:

All tenured members of the Libraries’ faculty holding the rank of Associate Librarian or Librarian, except Academic Administrators.

Selection:

Four (4) members elected by a vote of University Libraries tenure-line faculty to staggered two-year terms; three (3) members appointed to one-year terms by the Associate Deans and Directors, in consultation with each other. The appointments are made after the election, and include careful consideration of the core responsibilities of the candidates under review to ensure a balanced faculty review committee whose members can contribute to an informed understanding of the responsibilities of each candidate.

If an elected member is unable to serve the full term of two years, the faculty member who received the largest number of votes in the most recent election (among those not elected or appointed) will complete the term.

Chair of the Committee:

Elected by the Committee each year.

Promotion to Librarian (full rank):

When candidates are being considered for promotion to full rank (Librarian rank), the Dean will form a five-member ad hoc committee whose members include those with full rank on the First-Level Tenure and Promotion Review Committee. If the Chair of the First-Level Tenure and Promotion Review Committee does not hold full rank, the Dean will appoint a chair from among the members of the ad hoc committee.

Second-Level Tenure and Promotion Review Committee

Composition:

Five (5) members; two (2) members from University Park, two (2) members from campuses other than University Park, and one (1) member at the discretion of the Dean.

Eligibility:

All tenured members of the Libraries’ faculty holding the rank of Associate Librarian or Librarian, except Academic Administrators.  Prior service of at least one term (elected or appointed) on the First-Level Committee is a prerequisite for membership on the Second-Level Committee. [1]

Selection:

One (1) member elected by a vote of the tenure-line University Park Libraries’ faculty to a two-year term; one (1) member elected by a vote of the tenure-line faculty at campuses other than University Park to a two-year term; three (3) members appointed by the Dean of University Libraries to a one-year term with (1) member from University Park, one (1) member from a campus other than University Park, and one (1) member at the discretion of the Dean.

If an elected member is unable to serve the full term of two years, the faculty member who received the largest number of votes in the most recent election (among those not elected or appointed) will complete the term.

Chair of the Committee:

Appointed by the Dean of University Libraries each year.

Promotion to Librarian (full rank):

When candidates are being considered for promotion to full rank (Librarian rank), the Dean will form a five-member ad hoc committee whose members include those with full rank on the Second-Level Tenure and Promotion Review Committee. If the Chair of the Second-Level Tenure and Promotion Review Committee does not hold full rank, the Dean will appoint a chair from among the members of the ad hoc committee.

RECUSAL

Instances of recusal are limited by Penn State policy to cases where a legitimate conflict of interest exists. According to the University’s Administrative Guidelines for AC-23, Promotion and Tenure Procedures:

 “Committee members should abstain only when there is a legitimate conflict of interest, such as a relative being considered for promotion or tenure, or when there may have been an earlier vote on the candidate in the same review year. If there is an abstention, the reason might be noted in the evaluative statement. A committee member who is abstaining should not be present for the discussion or the vote.” (Page 21, V.G.3.e.)

(The University Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs’ 2020-21 FAQ on promotion and tenure further adds that “significant collaboration with a candidate” that creates a legitimate conflict of interest may also be a reason for recusal. (Page 5, Peer Review Committees, #16))

Serving as a candidate’s supervisor or as a faculty member in the reporting line of a candidate is not a reason for recusal, per the University guidelines.

 

[1]This requirement waived for the 2017-18 and 2018-19 promotion cycles, per approval by the Office of the Provost, July 2017.

Effective Date: July 2005
Date Approved: July 1, 2005 (Provost)
Date Approved: June 8, 2005 (Libraries Faculty Organization)

 

Revision History (and effective dates):

  • August 2021 - Revised "Fixed-Term" to "Non-Tenure Track" to comply with suggested language from the Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs Office.
  • March 2021 - Revised to clarify recusal guidelines; removed Independent Judgments of Review Committees and replaced it with Recusal
  • February 2018 - Categorization changed from UL-HRG to UL-ACG to reflect new PSU Academic Policy classification
  • July 14, 2017 – Revised by Dean
  • April 26, 2017 – Revised to reflect legislation passed by the Library Faculty Organization
  • July 1, 2013  – Revised
  • February 2013 - Revised to reflect formation of one first-level (department-level) faculty review committee, and to clarify the independent judgment of review committees. Approved by the Libraries Faculty Organization (May and September 2012), Dean of the University Libraries and Scholarly Communications (February 2013), Provost (February 2013)
  • August 2007 – Revised to reflect decision to have Hershey fall under the Commonwealth Campus Libraries' process and Dickinson under the University Park Libraries' process; deleted the transition plan and replaced it with election schedule
  • July 1, 2006 – Revised to reflect campus reorganization
  • July 1, 2005 – New guideline with a completely revised structure for election of peer review committees

Last Review Date:  August 2021