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Faculty Handbook Changes and Pending Actions

(Draft: December 1, 2021)

CONTACT: Beauvais Lyons, Chair of the Faculty Affairs Committee ( or Diane Kelly, Vice-Provost for Faculty Affairs (

Date Revision Links Status Additional Notes
2-1-2021 Reorganization and updates to “Other Policy Documents” from section 1.11 and Appendix I. “Other Policy Documents” (Section 1.11) and Appendix I


Approved by the Faculty Senate on February 1, 2021. Awaiting final review and implementation by the OGC. Section 1.11 is proposed to be moved to the Appendix I section. In Appendix I, where HR policies exist outside of the handbook, they should be linked to. These minor changes will be presented to the Faculty Senate  Executive Council on January 24, 2022. These changes are a matter of routine housekeeping, with some of the documents out of date or inaccurate as well as a number of resources shifted to the Faculty Central website as appropriate.
11-29-2021 Revise 5.2: Faculty Ombuds Office to reflect new operations of the office. 5.2 Handbook Proposed Revision To be presented to the Faculty Senate for first-reading on February 7, 2022 Ombuds section (5.2) changes approved by the Faculty Affairs Committee and has received a preliminary endorsement from the Office of General Counsel. Diane Kelly indicated that the key issues in the current draft relates to the question of legal aspects of the proposed language.
10-15-2021 Recommendations from the Task Force on Bullying to establish a workplace bullying policy to be reflected in both the faculty handbook and HR policies. Workplace Bullying Task Force Activity Summary and Draft Policy_10-15-2021.pdf Reviewed by Faculty Affairs (see 11-22-2021 minutes) and currently under review by OGC. Faculty Affairs applauds this initiative, but has contacted the task force co-chairs Lisa Yamagata-Lynch and Mary Lucal with specific concerns regarding what counts as the “workplace” and who counts as an “employee” as covered by this proposed policy.


10-25-2021 A clarification of retention reviews and APPRs following a tenure-clock suspension as a result of the new parental leave policy. See Faculty Affairs September 27, 2021 Minutes   Currently posted on the Provost’s website, is being shared with the Faculty Senate Budget and Planning Committee, the Faculty Senate Benefits and Professional Development Committee, and the Commission for Women, and could be added to the Handbook. This change is an effort to align the faculty handbook with our parental leave policy.
9-27-2021 Electronic migration to the Assembly of the Tenure and/or Promotion Dossier See Faculty Affairs September 27, 2021 Minutes This is in the process of being presented to OGC for initial review. This change results from no longer asking people to submit paper copies for the Assembly of the Tenure and/or Promotion Dossier. As this is in the Appendix to the handbook, it is easily amended.
11-22-2021 Revisions to section 3.12 regarding consultation with the Faculty Senate in cases of tenure termination.  Changes to current policies are being considered as a result of the Anming Hu case. FH Revisions to Termination of Tenured Faculty.pdf Approved by Faculty Affairs on 11-22-2021 and sent to Lela Young with OGC for initial review. This proposed change has been discussed with the Provost and the Office of General Counsel, but a specific proposal is not yet in workflow. Seeking to present to the Faculty Senate Executive Council on January 24, 2022. Proposed changes to (3.12) on the termination of tenured faculty members for cause regarding the meaning of “consultation with the president of the Faculty Senate or the Faculty Senate Executive Council.” Proposed revision would (1) more clearly define the meaning of consultation and (2) would revised policy to involve consultation by the Chief Academic Officer with “representatives of the Faculty Senate consisting of the Faculty Senate President, the Immediate-past President and the President-Elect.”
11-22-2021 A proposal developed by the Provost’s Task Force on Equity and Fairness to consider changes to the retention review process for tenure-track faculty. Report to Provost Equity and Fairness.pdf


Faculty Affairs October 25 and November 22 minutes.

The Faculty Affairs Committee has discussed an Equity and Fairness Report at our October and November meetings. On November 23, an email was sent to Stephanie Bohon (Sociology) and Michael Higdon (Law), the co-chairs of the Equity and Fairness Task Force to propose specific handbook language for revising the retention process for tenure-track faculty members. Diane Kelly informed the committee in October that the task force’s recommendation to conduct a retention vote, but not to share this with the faculty member under review is not possible, as faculty members have a right to see the results of any vote if conducted. Below are two recommendations that reflect our initial discussion on October 25, and subsequent discussions:


– Retention votes (retain versus not retain) should not be conducted before the mid-cycle review, with an emphasis on qualitative assessment of the faculty member’s progress to fulfilling the criteria for tenure and promotion. Votes would be conducted for all reviews from mid-cycle and subsequent reviews.

– Develop a rubric that can be used to supplement retention votes to provide specific input for faculty under review. “No” votes should be discarded if there is no clear explanation or use of the rubric.


There was general consensus in support of the first recommendation, but concern about the ability of a rubric to ensure the anonymity of no votes.  While receptive to the value of providing tenure-track faculty with justifications for no votes, it was also recognized that anonymity can have value to ensuring an honest assessment without fear of retribution. There was also discussion of the process for non-renewal ( when warranted.


11-22-2021 A proposal developed by the Task Force on PPPR initiated by Provost Zomchick and Vice-president Martin to consider changes to the APPR process to fulfill UT Board requirements from PPPR. Report to Provost PPPR.pdf

Faculty Affairs October 25 and November 22 Minutes

A forum hosted by the Office of the Provost and the Faculty Affairs Committee has been scheduled for Wednesday February 9 at 3:30pm to initiate a broader campus conversation around the report and its recommendations.


The task force proposed two initiatives:

Initiative 1: Provide college guidance to the unit heads on the expected structure of the APPR written narratives they provide at least once every three years.

Initiative 2: Accommodate periodic enhanced review into the current APPR system for post-tenure faculty.



11-29-2021 Stylistic and editorial revisions In progress with the goal of having it ready for review by Faculty Affairs by January 2022. This effort is endorsed by the Faculty Affairs Committee and has initial approval from the OGC. The Office of the Provost has commissioned an extensive set of revisions to the handbook to reflect various stylistic changes that use more inclusive language, as well as to address some grammatical and other minor revisions.
11-22-2021 Review of emeritus designations for former administrators in HR0102. UT System Policy


Faculty Affairs November 22 minutes

Vice-President Linda Martin was contacted to seek clarification of the origin of the system policy in 2017. She indicated that emeritus policies more broadly are under review. The Faculty Affairs Committee has concern regarding (1) the meaning of “emeritus” as being retired but allowed to retain one’s title as an honor, (2) the need for clearer and rigorous criteria for awarding emeritus titles, and (3) a lack of parity between awarding emeritus titles to administrators who are not yet retired from the institution and only to faculty who are.
11-29-2021 Handbook proposals addressing issues impacting Non-Tenure-Track Faculty Report to Provost NTTF.pdf Current under development with the NTTF Issues Committee. 4. Building off a May 1, 2021 report to the Provost by a dedicated task force, the NTTF Issues Committee is currently working on a series of issues related to the handbook (4.1, 4.2, 4.3, 4.7 and 5.6) that will be taken up in the Spring 2022.