I deserve a promotion

Steve Simon


Please note a related weblog entry: External scholars needed to review my promotion materials.

I have a joint appointment as an associate professor with the School of Medicine at the University of Missouri, Kansas City. I am looking to produce the paperwork to ask for a promotion to full professor. I thought that some of the material that I produce in this process might be interesting to others. Perhaps not, but storage space on the web is cheap. It will also allow me to organize my thoughts better and interact more efficiently with others who will be helping me in this process.

I am in a nontenured position and I am in the non-MD, non-clinical track. So it looks like my role is defined best by saying what I am not. The guidelines for promotion are on the web in pdf format.

My credentials are reviewed by a committee of

five Professors and Associate Professors who themselves are non-regular (non-tenure), non-MD and nonclinical MD faculty, plus the Chairman of the UMKC SOM Appointment and Promotion Committee for MD Faculty who shall serve ex officio and the school’s faculty representative to the UMKC Promotion and Continuous Appointment Advisory Committee.

If they like me, my application is reviewed by the Dean of the School of Medicine. If I pass that hurdle, then I am reviewed by a university wide promotion committee.

The criteria for promotion to full professor is that I excel in one of three areas and perform well in a second area. The three areas of consideration are:

  1. Teaching (communication of extant knowledge, the ability to inspire or stimulate students and the ability to translate difficult concepts into easily understood principles),
  2. Service (dedication to the mission of the SOM and to the general welfare of the community)
  3. Research (creation of new knowledge, revision and/or re-conceptualization of understanding, and dissemination of new knowledge).

Specific markers of excellence in teaching include

  1. mastery of the discipline that he/she is teaching,
  2. knowledge and understanding of the process of learning,
  3. [knowledge and understanding of] the principles of teaching,
  4. skills with case-based or evidence-based teaching methods,
  5. development of a new course,
  6. substantial revision of an existing course,
  7. effective innovations in teaching techniques,
  8. [effective innovations in] curricular initiatives, and
  9. [effective innovations in] instructional technology.

Specific markers of excellence service include

  1. active membership in institutional or departmental committees,
  2. quality improvement activities,
  3. management of health service programs or clinics,
  4. management of laboratory or other critical facilities necessary for the mission of the school,
  5. innovative administrative activities,
  6. service on advisory boards,
  7. development of community outreach programs and
  8. leadership positions in community, state, and national service or professional organizations

Specific markers of excellence in research include

  1. grant awards,
  2. original publications and
  3. funding for investigative projects.

The guidelines also remind you that

they are neither a rigid requirement nor an all inclusive list of acceptable scholarly activities

The application form for promotion includes

  1. Promotion Coversheet and Checklist,
  2. Personal Information Sheet,
  3. Self Appraisal Sheet,
  4. Scholarly Activities Descriptions and Sheets,
  5. Teaching, Professional/Clinical Service,
  6. Advancement of Knowledge (Research)

and a form asking for five external scholars for soliciting evaluation letters.

The guidelines suggest that candidates for promotion maintain a journal or portfolio

which identify scholarly activities in sufficient detail to be recognized and evaluated by their peers.

This portfolio is something, perhaps, that I can develop on these web pages.

You can find an earlier version of this page on my old website.