Contracts and Ranks

III.  Faculty contract letters and Rank

A.   Types of Faculty Appointment Contracts

Faculty contract letters are for 10-month or, in some instances including faculty in the Accelerated Degree Program, 12-month appointments. The contract term shall be specified in the original appointment letter issued by the Chief Academic Officer. Except for special appointments limited to a brief association with the College, including the appointment of Visiting Professors, or reappointment of retired faculty members on special conditions, all full-time faculty appointments are of one of three kinds:

  1.  Probationary Faculty Appointment in a Tenure-trackFaculty members holding probationary, tenure-track appointments shall have the right to apply for a tenured appointment, and it shall be the obligation of the College to consider, grant or deny such applications, in complete good faith accordance with the provisions (including the period of probationary service at Albright required prior to such consideration) set forth in Sections IV.V., and VI., and VII. of this faculty Handbook.These appointments will be for one year, subject to renewal. In all cases the length of a probationary appointment; the salary and benefits to be paid during the appointment; the rank at which the faculty member shall be appointed; and a statement binding the College and the faculty member to the rights and responsibilities of each as enumerated in this Faculty Handbook shall be stated in the faculty member’s initial, and each subsequent, faculty contract letter.
    1. Time of Service in a Probationary Appointment
      Beginning with appointment to the rank of full-time Instructor or a higher academic rank, the probationary period at the College is generally six years, and shall not exceed seven years at the College except where the faculty member has been granted a tenure clock stoppage as provided in Section IV.C.2.c.However, a full-time faculty member who comes to the College after having been a full-time faculty member in one or more other colleges may, upon agreement in writing at the time of the initial appointment to the College, receive credit for up to three probationary years.  In such cases the probationary period at the College shall be at least three years.
    2. Notification of Renewal, Tenure, and Promotion Procedures
      Each spring the Chief Academic Officer shall give the faculty written notice, by publication in the April issue of the Chief Academic Officer’s Bulletin, of the guideline dates governing applications and other submissions for tenure and promotion for the upcoming academic year.
    3. Notification of Renewal
      The Chief Academic Officer shall, upon approval of the President, by March 15 of each year, advise all probationary faculty members whose appointment is to be renewed for the following academic year of the terms and conditions of their renewal.
    4. Notification of Non-RenewalIf the probationary appointment of a faculty member is not to be renewed, the Chief Academic Officer shall give written notice to that faculty member in advance of the expiration of the appointment as follows:
      1. Not later than March 15 of the first academic year of service, if the appointment expires at the end of that academic year; or, if a one-year appointment terminates during an academic year, at least three months in advance of the appointment’s  termination;
      2. Not later than December 15 of the second academic year of service, if the appointment expires at the end of the second academic year of service; or, if an initial two-year appointment terminates during an academic year, at least six months in advance of the appointment’s  termination;
      3. At least 12 months before the expiration of an appointment if the appointment will terminate after more than two years of service at the college.
    5. Evaluation standards and procedures are described in the Faculty Performance Evaluation guide, approved by the faculty and posted on the Intranet under the Faculty Resources tab.
  2. Continuing Faculty Appointments With Tenure
    1. The appointment of all faculty members granted tenure by the Trustees of the College shall be a continuing, permanent (“tenured”) appointment.  A tenured appointment shall not be terminated, nor shall the terms or conditions of such appointment be made materially less favorable to the faculty member holding such an appointment, except for adequate cause shown by the College, as “adequate cause” and the procedures for demonstrating the existence thereof are defined and set forth in this Handbook at Section VII.
    2. Annual Notification of Terms of Tenured AppointmentsBy March 15 of each year, the Chief Academic Officer shall, with the approval of the President, notify each faculty member with a continuing appointment of the terms of his or her appointment for the following academic year.
    3. Evaluation standards and procedures are described in the Faculty Performance Evaluation guide, approved by the faculty and posted on the Intranet under the Faculty Resources tab.
  3. Full-time Faculty Appointments Not in a Tenure-track
    1. In addition to faculty appointments with tenured status and probationary faculty appointments without such status but with “tenure-track” status, the College shall have the right to offer, and a faculty member shall have the right to hold, a full-time, non-tenure-track faculty appointment.  All such appointments shall be for one year subject to an annual review, except in cases in which the faculty member has received an “evergreen” multiyear appointment as described below in Section 3.f, in which case the provisions of subparagraphs (i) through (x) shall be modified accordingly. In all cases in which such an appointment is offered, the written initial offer from the College and any and all renewal offers from the College shall clearly state:
      1. That the appointment is a non-tenure-track appointment;
      2. The one year term of the appointment;
      3. That renewal of the appointment at the end of its term is not precluded but shall not, regardless of the excellence of the faculty member’s performance, be presumed;
      4. That no faculty member while holding a non-tenure-track appointment shall be granted tenure or receive a sabbatical leave;
      5. That a faculty member while holding a non-tenure-track appointment shall be permitted to apply for a probationary tenure-track appointment should such a position become available;
      6. That completion of a period of continuous employment consisting of uninterrupted renewals of such non-tenure-track appointments, regardless of the length of such period, shall not cause a faculty member to be eligible to apply for or to receive, or compel the College to grant, a permanent tenured appointment or a tenure-track probationary appointment;
      7. The process whereby, during such appointment, the faculty member’s performance shall be reviewed and a determination made regarding renewal or non-renewal of the appointment;
      8. That should the appointment be continued for another year, the faculty member will be notified of such renewal no later than March 15thof the current academic year.  Failure to receive such notice indicates that the appointment will not be renewed.
      9. The minimum salary to be paid and benefits (if any) to be provided during the appointment;
      10. The rank at which the faculty member shall be appointed; and
    2. All persons to whom the offer of a non-tenure-track appointment is made by the College shall evidence his or her knowledge and acceptance of the terms and conditions thereof by signing, dating, and returning to the designated officer of the College a true and correct counter-part copy of the letter in which such offer is tendered.
    3. A full-time faculty member whose contract specifies that his/her appointment is not a tenure-track appointment shall hold all privileges and is subject to all responsibilities of full-time faculty in a tenure-track or tenured appointment with the exceptions of such distinctions as are set forth in Section III.A.3.a. above and in such faculty member’s letter of appointment.
    4. Except in certain cases approved by the Chief Academic Officer, all faculty members holding non-tenure-track appointments shall hold the rank of Instructor.  Should the faculty member request to be considered for a higher rank, the Chief Academic Officer should use the criteria as listed in Section III.B.  in determining if a higher rank is warranted, especially with regard to possession of terminal degree, years of service at the College, and years of service at the College in the former rank; as well as performance.  The faculty member may be required to submit evidence indicating he or she has met the criteria for the requested rank.
    5. Evaluation standards and procedures are described in the Faculty Performance Evaluation guide, approved by the faculty and posted on the Intranet under the Faculty Resources tab.
    6. After at least four years of teaching at the College in which at least two consecutive “Satisfactory” evaluations have been received and with the approval of the department chairperson, a fulltime non-tenure track faculty member may apply to the Chief Academic Officer for a three year “evergreen” employment appointment.  The decision to award an evergreen appointment will be made by the Chief Academic Officer after consultation with the department chairperson.  The appointment, once approved, is always in the first contract year of the three years unless the faculty member receives an “Unsatisfactory” performance review. In the event of an unsatisfactory review, the Chief Academic Officer shall inform the faculty member that the next contract begins the second year of the appointment. If a “Satisfactory” or “Meritorious” evaluation is received in the second year of the appointment, the faculty member shall be returned to the “first year” of the appointment. Otherwise, the faculty member shall be notified that he or she is on the third and final year of the appointment.  All conditions in III.A.3.a., except for III.A.3.a.ii., will remain in effect. In addition, all such appointments are subject to the provisions of Article VII of the Faculty Handbook under the grounds laid out in Section B.
    7. If the College eliminates the full-time non-tenure track position, or if the position is converted to a tenure-track position, the Chief Academic Officer shall inform the faculty member that the next contract begins the third and final year of the appointment.
  4. Full-time Faculty Appointments as a Shared PositionAlbright College is aware that flexibility in hiring arrangements may benefit faculty and the College in allowing a single faculty position to be filled and the duties shared by two persons.
    1. Definition:  Two qualified persons who are married or are same-sex domestic partners may be appointed jointly to share the equivalent of one full-time faculty position. Verification of same sex domestic partner status shall be in accordance with normal College policy.  In principle, all duties, responsibilities and benefits of a single faculty position shall be shared equally to the greatest extent possible between the two persons.
    2. Appointment:  The appointment to a shared position can occur in one of two ways:
      1. New Faculty Appointments.
        The process to appoint two persons to a shared appointment shall follow the faculty search guidelines for tenure track faculty to the greatest extent possible. Applicants may choose to indicate a desire for their applications to be considered both individually or jointly at the time of submission, or may request consideration of a shared appointment upon being invited for interview.  Upon due consideration of the applicant pool, if the academic department or program determines that each individual who has applied to share a faculty position meets the College’s criteria for hiring independently, the department or program may propose a shared appointment to the Provost.
      2. Conversion of Existing Faculty Positions.
        Upon application by the faculty member and his or her spouse or domestic partner, a full-time, tenure-line appointment may be converted to a shared appointment. This is done upon recommendation of the department(s) or program(s) involved and with the approval of the Provost.  The position will not be posted as an open position and additional applicants will not be sought.  However, all normal application materials and the standard interviewing process shall be followed with the exception that two voting faculty members from outside the department(s) to which the person is to be appointed shall be assigned to the vetting committee.
      3. For both types of shared appointments, rank at time of appointment shall be according to normal College procedures.  Credit toward tenure for prior years of service shall be no more than one year at time of appointment into a shared appointment.
    3. Responsibilities:  Allocation of the responsibilities of the shared appointment shall be agreed upon by the members of the pair with the approval of the department chair(s) and the Provost prior to the appointment and may be modified thereafter in the same manner, or by the Provost, in his or her sole discretion, if the parties fail to agree.  It is expected that each person will contribute equally in the areas of teaching, research and service; however, it is understood that this sharing will not necessarily be strictly equal on an annual basis but that in general, an equitable sharing of all responsibilities will be adhered to on an ongoing basis.
    4. Tenure and Promotion:  Reappointment and tenure reviews of each member will be done independently and decisions will be reached for each individual separately based on the actual duties and performance of the individual faculty member. No special restrictions or benefits related to the timing of tenure review and sabbatical leaves are associated with shared appointments; the tenure procedure and timing for each individual in a shared appointment follows the procedures applicable to all members of the Faculty outlined in the Faculty Handbook.  If the appointment should be made to an existing faculty position for which the incumbent already holds tenure, the second person shall not be given tenure upon appointment but must go through the normal tenure and promotion process.
    5. Termination:  If an appointment of only one member of the pair terminates for any reason, including denial of tenure, or one member of the pair becomes incapacitated, the other member of the pair shall assume the entire responsibilities of a full-time faculty position or may resign.  If the marriage or same-sex domestic partnership terminates, the conditions for holding the shared appointment no longer exist and the agreement ends.   In such an event, the parties can propose to the Provost, within a designated period of time, how the responsibilities for the position will be filled by one or both of the parties (as a non-shared appointment).  The Provost, in consultation with the department chair(s), determines whether or not the proposal can be accepted.
    6. Eligibility for full time positions:  Should a full time faculty position become available, either faculty member is eligible to apply for future positions at the College, as permitted under the policies of the College, should such positions be available. Those holding shared appointments will have no particular claim on the positions, nor shall receive preferential treatment during the search to fill the positions.  However, should one of the faculty members be hired in such a position, the other will assume the entire responsibilities of the shared appointment or resign, unless another arrangement is agreed on by the Provost, in consultation with the department(s) and Human Resources.
    7. Contracts:  Each faculty member holding a shared position shall have an individual contract reflecting the employment terms and faculty status of each.
    8. Benefits:
      1. The salary for the shared appointment shall be shared equally unless there is an agreement by the parties.  All salary sharing arrangements shall be subject to the approval of the Provost, at his or her sole discretion.
      2. Both faculty members are considered benefit-eligible employees of the College and, as such, are eligible for employee benefits including participation in the TIAA-CREF Retirement Plan, shared eligibility to the College health insurance plan, long-term disability insurance, group universal life insurance, supplemental dental and vision benefits, participation in the Flexible Spending Account (FSA) Program and eligibility in the tuition remission and exchange programs, to the extent such programs exist and are generally available to benefit eligible employees in similar appointments.
      3. Health Insurance will be available as a single plan for this appointment and any shared coverage would need to be consistent within the guidelines of the summary plan description and be consistent, both in eligibility and pricing, with other eligible employees.
      4. If the appointment is to an existing faculty position, moving expenses or start-up funds will not normally be available to the second faculty member in the shared appointment.
      5. If the shared appointment is within one department, the position will only have one vote in departmental matters.  Only one person may serve as a voting member of any departmental search committees.
      6. Both persons will have voting privileges at full faculty meetings or on any faculty governance committees upon which they serve, and will count towards quorum in any of these governance bodies.
      7. Both faculty members are fully eligible to apply for professional development funds.  In addition, both are fully eligible for summer faculty scholarship and teaching grants, ACRE project funding and other professional development opportunities as are generally available to all full time faculty.
      8. Both faculty members are eligible for sabbatical leaves and other leaves as delineated in the Faculty Handbook.
      9. The College will do its best to provide individual offices to each faculty member, but office space may have to be shared.
      10. The position is subject to the same restrictions on overload as a full-time faculty position.
    9. Review/Modification:  This policy shall be subject to review and modification by the Professional Council in consultation with the Provost and Human Resources.  This policy may be terminated by the Cabinet and Board of Trustees if it is determined not to be in the best interests of the College.  In this case, existing shared appointments would be continued but no new appointments would be made.

B.   Faculty Ranks

Full-time faculty are employed in one of seven ranks. The following requirements for appointment to specific ranks are understood to be minimal requirements and their achievement does not, by itself, entitle the individual to appointment to that rank. Promotion in rank during the faculty member’s employment at Albright shall be accompanied by a monetary increase, as determined by the Chief Academic Officer. Such amount shall be the same for all faculty members achieving promotion in rank, regardless of individual circumstances or level of rank.

  1. Instructor

    Only persons holding at least a Master’s degree in their field of major teaching assignment or related field shall be eligible for appointment to the faculty with the rank of Instructor.

  2. Senior Instructor

    Only persons who have established a record of teaching excellence and service over a period of at least six years at the College at the rank of Instructor shall be eligible for appointment to the faculty with the rank of Senior Instructor. The Chief Academic Officer reviews applications for a change in rank. The number of applications approved shall be a function of the extent to which they meet the criteria and available funding.

  3. Artist/Scholar in Residence

    Only persons whose combination of academic background and career expertise in areas of business, industry, law, K-12 education, the arts or government makes them valuable contributors to the College shall be eligible for appointment to the faculty with the rank of Artist/Scholar in Residence. While these individuals may not hold the terminal degree appropriate for their disciplines, they will have spent much or all of their career outside academia at the time of first appointment.

  4. Senior Artist/Scholar in Residence

    Only persons who have established a record of teaching excellence and service over a period of at least six years at the College at the rank of Artist/Scholar in Residence shall be eligible for appointment to the faculty with the rank of Senior Artist/Scholar in Residence. The Chief Academic Officer reviews applications for a change in rank. The number of applications approved shall be a function of the extent to which they meet the criteria and available funding.

  5. Assistant Professor

    Only persons holding an earned doctorate or such other terminal degree as is granted in their field of major teaching assignment or related field shall be eligible for appointment to the faculty with the rank of Assistant Professor (or with any higher rank). In the creative arts the Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A) degree shall be considered sufficient for appointment to the rank of Assistant Professor and above. In the field of accounting, certification as a Certified Public Accountant (C.P.A) plus the Master’s degree in economics, business, accounting or tax shall be considered sufficient for appointment to the rank of Assistant Professor and above.

  6. Associate Professor

    Only persons holding an earned doctorate or such other terminal degree as is granted in their field of major teaching assignment or related field, shall be eligible for appointment to the faculty with the rank of Associate Professor (or with any higher rank). For a faculty member who holds the terminal degree in his or her field at the time of initial appointment at the College, whose initial appointment at the College is at the rank of Assistant Professor, who serves for three to six consecutive years at the College in the rank of Assistant Professor before a tenure decision is made and is awarded tenure, promotion to the rank of Associate Professor shall be awarded concurrently with the award of tenure. If such person is not tenure-track, appointment to the rank of associate will be eligible after serving for at least six years at the rank of Assistant Professor.

  7. Professor

    Full time, tenured Associate Professors shall be eligible to apply for promotion to the rank of Professor during their tenth to thirteenth consecutive year of service at the College, seven of which shall have been in the rank of Associate Professor; such faculty who are awarded promotion to the rank of Professor shall gain the rank of Professor at the conclusion of the academic year in which such promotion was awarded. Only persons holding an earned doctorate or other appropriate terminal degree in the field of major teaching assignment or related field and who have achieved outstanding performance with respect to teaching, scholarship, and service to the College shall be eligible for promotion to the rank of Professor.

  8. Initial Appointment to the Faculty with the rank of Associate or Full Professor.

    The Trustees, Administration and Faculty of the College recognize that in some circumstances the best interests of the College may be served by making an initial appointment to the faculty at the rank of Associate or Full Professor. No such appointment shall be made without the approval of the Chief Academic Officer in consultation with the Chair of the Department within which the appointed faculty member would serve.

C.   Part-Time Faculty Appointment Contracts

  1.  Part-time Faculty 

    Conditions of the contracts for part-time faculty are determined through individual negotiation between the prospective faculty member and the Chief Academic Officer, in consultation with the appropriate departmental chairperson(s).  Part-time faculty are appointed at the rank of Lecturer unless achievements warrant otherwise.

    The appointments may not be for more than one year, subject to renewal.  In all cases the length of a part time appointment; the salary and benefits to be paid during the appointment; the rank at which the faculty member shall be appointed; and a statement binding the College and the faculty member to the rights and responsibilities of each as enumerated in this Faculty Handbook shall be stated in the faculty member’s initial, and each subsequent, faculty contract letter.