Research Faculty Promotion

How the Research Faculty promotion process works

Professional research personnel are members of the General Faculty and are considered Research Faculty.  Because of the differences in functions, instructional and research faculty have different promotion criteria.  Note that the term “Scientist” is used to indicate the appropriate designation – Engineer, Scientist, Associate, or Technologist.

Process and Package Contents

See Section 3.2.1 of the Faculty Handbook for further details.

  1. Individuals who meet the minimum criteria for promotion may recommend themselves for promotion or be recommended by their direct supervisor.
  2. Contents of the Research Promotion package submitted by the candidate include:
    • Research Promotion Coversheet
    • One paragraph summary of accomplishments of candidate for institute review
    • CV (in format as specified for research promotion candidates)
    • File with support documents (optional)
    • Immediate supervisor's recommendation letter (optional)
  3. The candidate is then reviewed at multiple levels and the following documents are added to the candidate’s promotion package:
    • School Peer Review Recommendation Letter (provided by committee members)
      1. All research promotion packages must include a peer review at the school, laboratory, center, or unit level.
      2. For Principal Research Scientist Promotion: At least three external letters of recommendation, with bios of external evaluators providing letters for Principal Research Scientist candidates must also be included in the package. 
    • School Chair Recommendation Letter
    • College Research Promotion Committee Recommendation Letter - A committee comprised of COE faculty members will review the packages and make recommendations, which will be forwarded to the institute.
    • Each candidate’s packet must be reviewed on at least two levels prior to being submitted to the Senior Vice Provost for Research and Innovation.
    • Candidates receiving a negative recommendation at any level must be reviewed at all levels.
  4. The candidate’s package is then forwarded to the Senior Vice Provost for Research and Innovation who will establish an Institutional Advisory Committee, which will conduct the final level of review prior to presenting the recommendations to the Provost/Vice President of Academic Affairs and the President.

Criteria for Promotion

  • Research Scientist I: Initial rank, requiring a bachelor’s degree.
  • Research Scientist II: Requires a Master’s degree, and 3 years’ relevant full-time experience, or a doctoral degree.
  • Sr. Research Scientist: Requires a Master’s degree and 7 years relevant full-time experience after completion of the degree, or a doctoral degree and 4 years relevant full-time experience after completion of the degree.
  • Principal Research Scientist: Requires a Master’s degree and 11 years relevant full time experience after completion of the degree, or a doctoral degree and 7 years relevant full-time experience after completion of the degree. At least the most recent 3 years of such experience shall have been at a responsible managerial level.

Eligibility for Promotion

See Section 3.2.1 of the Faculty Handbook for further details.

  • Research Scientist II: 3 years as Research Scientist I
  • Sr. Research Scientist: 4 years as Research Scientist II
  • Principal Research Scientist: 5 years as Sr. Research Scientist

Decisions for Promotion

The decisions, which are either "promotion" or "non-promotion," will be communicated from the Office of Human Resources to the dean, who will forward the decision to the school chair, who will inform the candidates. The effective date is July 1.