Policy for Annual Assessment of Faculty Members

Background

The Kansas Board of Regents requires an annual assessment of all faculty members who have at least 0.5 FTE appointments (KUMC Handbook for Faculty and Other Unclassified Employees, III, Part 2, B2, Faculty Responsibilities). The assessment process is designed to effectively and efficiently identify and meet the needs of individual faculty members, departmental chairs, the Executive Dean, the Dean on the Wichita campus, and the School of Medicine. The process was designed by an appointed task force of ten faculty members (five senior and five junior).

Objectives

By the end of the assessment, the faculty member must have:

  • an assessment of achievements
  • an accurate reflection of her/his distribution of effort to teaching, research/scholarship, and clinical and academic service.
  • verification of academic track, arrangements for mentoring and career development
  • specific objectives and goals for the upcoming academic year based on the updated position description

Once established, annual assessments provide the ability to plan and monitor the career development of each faculty member based on formal position descriptions, annual objectives, and regular assessment of achievements and needs. The assessment system improves our ability to match individuals to the various academic tracks and optimize their opportunities for success in whichever of the diverse faculty roles best matches their interests and talents. We are better able to predict faculty recruitment and development needs, to forge collaborations across units, and make realistic estimates of professional service resources for our multiple missions and responsibilities. The assessment process is demanding of time and energy, for departmental chairs, faculty members, and the Faculty Affairs and Faculty Development office, but it is essential to our effort to ensure the continuing success of the School of Medicine.  For Early or Mid-Career faculty members, the accumulation of accomplishments will assist with completion of their promotion and/or tenure applications.  This process will also be helpful to all departments as they prepare their annual reports to the Executive Dean.

All discussions and documents concerning the assessment of individual faculty members are strictly confidential: the only document provided to the Executive Dean or Dean's Office is the Annual Faculty Assessment Summary. The Dean of the Wichita campus will provide copies to the Executive Dean in Kansas City of Annual Faculty Assessments completed by his faculty members.

Process

The process has three stages:

  • preparatory documentation
  • interview/discussion
  • summary documentation

The time period covered by the form is the calendar year. (January 1 through December 31)

Preparatory Documentation

The School of Medicine has developed an annual assessment process for individual faculty members.

Based on the current position description, both the chair and faculty member prepare a written assessment of the faculty member's achievements to date. The self-assessment should be provided to the chair prior to the interview.

The self-assessment should provide a concise yet comprehensive description of responsibilities, activities, achievements, time allocation and other aspects of professional activities, using both quantitative and qualitative data to document the extent to which responsibilities have been carried out and services provided in education, research/scholarly activity, administration, and clinical and other services to the institution and the community (see KUMC Handbook for Faculty and Other Unclassified Employees, III, Part 2, B2 Faculty Responsibilities). Whenever possible this assessment should be based on previously established objectives or benchmarks. The self-assessment should include objectives for the upcoming calendar year with suggestions for change and an indication of longer-term goals. It is not sufficient to state goals in a general manner such as "writing two grants" or "publishing two papers." The objectives and goals should be specific and related to the growth and development of the individual faculty member as well as departmental programs.

The chair should seek input and collect data in order to form an objective assessment of the faculty member's achievements during the reporting period. Multiple sources of information must be used for assessment to create a faculty portfolio of accomplishments. Peer assessment of various aspects of teaching is encouraged. The portfolio must include students' ratings of instruction using a standardized and validated instrument for assessment of teaching. Appropriate documentation of scholarly activities and service shall also be included in the portfolio. Measures of patient care activities should include numbers of patients, time allocation in clinical activity, procedures completed, Relative Value Units (RVUs), and the value to the School of the clinical service  The assessment shall be provided to the faculty member in writing prior to its final adoption and placement into the faculty member's personnel file.

Individualized Goals and Expectations

Consistent with the Board of Regents' directive, the University of Kansas School of Medicine policy provides for differential allocations of effort among faculty in the areas of their academic responsibilities. Departments in the School of Medicine have missions that include teaching, scholarship, clinical service, administrative service, service to the School of Medicine and to the community. The individual's annual assessment is determined on the basis of individualized allocation of effort within the unit's established responsibilities and mission.

Interview

The chair and faculty member must have sufficient uninterrupted time to review the assessments of achievements during the past academic year, discuss options to enhance performance and professional development, and plan for the current academic year. Progress in the faculty member's academic track and the options to change track must be part of the discussion for faculty members below the rank of Professor. Items which must be agreed upon include specific responsibilities, time allocation, reporting lines, and academic track. Whenever possible, expectations should be expressed as measurable objectives. The resources to conduct the agreed responsibilities and achieve the objectives should be specified, including time allocation, financial support, equipment, and arrangements for mentoring and faculty development.

Summary Documentation

It is anticipated that in the vast majority of cases there will be concurrence between the faculty member's self-assessment and the assessment by the department chair.  If the faculty member wishes to add emphasis in specific areas or record minor specific disagreements within the report, he/she may prepare an addendum to be added to both the report and summary.   The last page of the completed Annual Faculty Assessment Summary must be signed by both the departmental chair and the faculty member to verify the information and meet legal requirements. Even if the faculty member does not agree with the Chair's assessment/comments, the faculty member must sign and date the form.  In cases where a faculty member disagrees substantially with the overall evaluation, she/he must attach a detailed letter of explanation and request feedback from the Executive Dean's Office on the Kansas City campus/or the Dean's Office on the Wichita campus.

In Kansas City the chair will submit the signed Annual Faculty Assessment Summaries for her/his department to the Faculty Affairs and Faculty Development office for review by the Executive Dean. On the Wichita campus chairs will forward their department's Annual Faculty Assessment Summaries to the Dean.  The deadline for receipt of these documents in both Kansas City and Wichita is the second Friday of April to allow for allocation of resources, merit raises, and other plans for the upcoming fiscal year.

  • Assessments with "Needs Improvement" in one area should be addressed by the chair half-way through the calendar year and again in the next annual review.
  • Assessments of "Needs Improvement" Overall or "Unsatisfactory" in one area will result in follow-up to the Executive Dean's Office (Kansas City) or Dean's Office (Wichita) by providing evidence that a written plan for improvement is in place.
  • An Overall Assessment of "Unsatisfactory" initiates an intervention process defined in the Handbook for Faculty and Unclassified Staff (pages 75-76) and on line at here.

If the major disagreement results in an Overall "Unsatisfactory" assessment of a tenured faculty member there are specific procedures available to the faculty member. That process is discussed in a document entitled: School of Medicine Procedures for Tenured Faculty Members Receiving "UNSATISFACTORY OVERALL" ASSESSMENT for Academic Performance.

Following Unsatisfactory and Needs Improvement annual assessments for faculty on one-year term appointments (including research, clinical, and unmodified titles) the contract may be allowed to expire on June 30th of the contract year or under extenuating circumstances a plan for improvement may be developed for that faculty member with the approval of the Executive Dean (Kansas City) or the Dean (Wichita).

Following Unsatisfactory and Needs Improvement annual assessments for faculty members on the Clinical Scholar Track, the contract may be allowed to expire on the termination date of the current contract. Under extenuating circumstances, a plan for improvement may be developed for that faculty member with approval of the Executive Dean (Kansas City) or the Dean (Wichita).

Following Unsatisfactory and Needs Improvement annual assessments faculty members on the tenure track, who have not yet achieved "tenure," may receive a "Notice of Non-Reappointment" consistent with the procedures described in the Handbook for Faculty and Unclassified Staff [III, Part 2, B.6]. As stated in the Handbook [III, Part 2, B6: "Provisions regarding notices of non-reappointment are not applicable to faculty who are not on the tenure track."

Faculty Development Options Tenure Track Faculty Members

  • Faculty development is a means by which the School of Medicine invests in its faculty. If a faculty member's performance requires improvement in any area, the unit administrator will develop a plan for improvement with the faculty member.
  • If a unit administrator concludes that a faculty member's Overall Performance for that year does not meet academic responsibilities at an acceptable level (Unsatisfactory), the administrator and the faculty member shall develop a written plan  to improve the faculty member's overall performance which may include assigning a faculty mentor or providing other campus opportunities for continued faculty renewal and development. Other appropriate interventions might include counseling, medical leave, or a change in teaching assignments.
  • A faculty member may reject any plan recommended to enhance performance and this rejection would be included in his/her file. The faculty member must understand that a sustained overall failure to meet academic responsibilities at an acceptable level (Unsatisfactory) is a basis for dismissal.

 

Revision July 31, 2001/Revision April, 2005/Revision February, 2010

Last modified: Nov 27, 2013
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