COVID-19 and the 2021-2022 Promotion & Tenure Process

Chris Brown, Vice Provost for Faculty Development
Thursday, May 13, 2021, 2:00 p.m.
KU Lawrence faculty and staff

Dear Faculty, Chairs/Directors, and Deans,

As previewed at the Open Meeting on Promotion and Tenure last week, this message is being sent to confirm that the new forms for the 2021-2022 P&T cycle are now posted on the Faculty Development website, along with complete guidelines about how we will take COVID-19 impacts into account in the P&T process.

We recognize that faculty work has been affected since Spring, 2020 by COVID-19 disruptions:

  • As individuals, we experienced the impacts in different ways.
  • These impacts are not distributed evenly.
  • We can't assume we know the impacts across our faculty.

Therefore, as we move into the upcoming cycle for promotion and tenure in 2021-2022, it is important to enable our faculty to document any impacts arising from the pandemic, and have review committee members document how they took those impacts into account in their evaluations.

Thus, all candidates have the option to address the impact of COVID-19 disruptions on their teaching, research/scholarship/creative or artistic work (hereafter, scholarship), service, and professional performance in their candidate statements for P&T.  While not required, Faculty Development encourages candidates to supplement their candidate statements as applicable, given the challenges raised by COVID-19 disruptions, specifically:

  • It may be that some normally expected activities were simply not possible to accomplish or were drastically curtailed during the pandemic, especially, but not exclusively, in the area of scholarship.
  • The conditions of the pandemic may be directly related to a change in the pattern or types of activity faculty pursued in the face of the challenges.

For privacy reasons, candidates should not share any personal circumstances in their statements, but rather focus on the impact to outcomes that they want to address. The inclusion of this supplemental information about the impacts of COVID-19 disruptions will allow chairs, deans, and promotion and tenure committee members to carefully review faculty dossiers and conduct fair and contextual evaluations of whether, except for COVID-19 disruptions, faculty are meeting our standards for P&T (FSRR 6.2).

Complete guidance is now posted on the Faculty Development website. It includes:

  • A non-exclusive list of some of the types of impacts faculty may want to address in their candidate statements.
  • How internal evaluators are expected to respond in each evaluation section of the form (teaching, scholarship, service, professional performance) to any impacts from COVID-19 mentioned by candidates.




J. Christopher Brown

Vice Provost for Faculty