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Faculty Review & Development

Tenure and Promotion Guidelines

Department of Music

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Of the six current tenure-line positions in Music, only two of them might be considered “traditional” academic appointments, persons who teach full-time in musicology or music theory and for whom traditional measures of teaching and scholarship might be applied. The other four (three ensemble directors and a composer) spend a significant percentage of their teaching load outside of the traditional classroom, and often their entire scholarly work is in areas of creative enterprise rather than traditional prose publications. Music being what it is, even those who whose teaching is entirely in the classroom (as opposed to the rehearsal room or studio) may find that their scholarly work also takes them in directions more related to musical performance than writing about music; thus scholarship in music may take very different forms.

Guidelines for Tenure

Expectations for Teaching

Effective teaching is the most important of the criteria for tenure and promotion, and the following are general expectations for all teachers in the department:

  • Demonstrates an ability to communicate course content effectively.
  • Has students who demonstrate growth in skill and understanding over time.
  • Keeps abreast of developments in the field, adjusting course content accordingly.
  • Responds constructively to concerns raised about teaching, whether from student course evaluations, class visitations by colleagues, annual reviews by the department chair, or evaluations by the Dean and Committee on Appointments.

Evaluation of Teaching:

The degree to which our expectations for teaching are being met is determined in a number of ways. None of these stands alone, but each contributes to an overall assessment:

  • Student course evaluations. These can be especially helpful in demonstrating that earlier problems have been overcome. Over time, these should be at a level consistent with evaluations of tenured faculty in the department.
  • Class/rehearsal observations by other members of the department.
  • Evaluation of course syllabi and materials by peers and outside reviewers.
  • Additional assessment tools for ensemble conductors:
  • Quality of ensemble performance, recognizing always the “starting place,” i.e., the skills that the student members bring (or do not bring) to the ensemble.
  • Appropriateness of repertoire, including scope and level of difficulty.
  • Enrollments. One must take care in using this as an evaluation tool, for external factors can have significant impact here, beginning with the number, variety, and talent of musicians who matriculate at the college. Nonetheless, the effectiveness of an ensemble conductor, over time, will be measured in part by his or her ability to create and sustain student interest in the enterprise.

Scholarship/Creative Endeavors
Expectations for Scholarship:

We recognize that scholarly productivity often follows a natural cycle that incorporates the initial generation of ideas—a gestation period, if you will—that culminates in spurts of concrete “product.” Thus we find not only finished product of value in evaluating scholarly activity, but also evidence of process—indications that the candidate has a continuing connection with his or her field of research and has embarked on a program of scholarship that is moving forward with a trajectory of some predictability.

For faculty who are performers/conductors, musical performances—especially those on campus—are teaching-related, but performances also function as scholarship, and are frequently the principal (or only) form of scholarship. Thus, there are many ways in which effective scholarship can be demonstrated in music:

  • Publication (as author, co-author, or editor) of scholarly books and monographs
  • Publication (as author, co-author, or editor) of chapters in books, articles in journals, or articles in major reference works
  • Articles, essays, books in progress
  • Public presentation of papers at conferences
  • Performances as conductor of off-campus ensemble
  • Performances as conductor of college ensemble
  • Solo performance (on-campus/off-campus)
  • Presentation of a master class
  • Performance with off-campus professional ensemble
  • Performances of original compositions
  • Receipt of grants/commissions

Evaluation of Scholarship

For books, monographs, articles, etc.:

  • Refereed publication by an established periodical or publisher
  • Evidence of excellence as indicated by peer and outside evaluation
  • In the case of unrefereed publications or work in progress, peer and outside evaluation

For compositions:
  • Live performances
  • At conferences
  • By artists/ensembles
  • Recordings with national or international distribution and with a peer-review selection process
  • Broadcast presentations
  • Refereed publication
  • Publication by an established publisher
  • Peer and outside evaluation of personally published or unpublished works and work in progress
For performances (solo and ensemble):
  • Evaluation of both live and recorded performances by peer and outside evaluation
  • Broadcasts


Much of the work that falls under service is common to all faculty, and we do not rehearse those things here. There are additional areas of service, however, that are specific and essential to our department:

  • Evaluation of admission materials (recordings and scores submitted by prospective students)
  • Visits with prospective students (and their parents)
  • Maintenance of department handbook
  • Maintenance of department web site
  • Various roles/tasks related to an ongoing program of public performance by students, including but not limited to supervising preparations of program copy and program notes, visiting/evaluating lessons taught by our approximately 25 adjunct instructors, preparing/revising guidelines for the variety of performing opportunities offered by the department, and overseeing senior projects for whom the principal instructor is an adjunct lecturer (this carries no teaching credit in our department, so it is best deemed as service).

Guidelines for Promotion


We anticipate continued excellence in teaching as evidenced by the criteria listed above. In addition, there is an expectation the syllabi/repertoire are evolving and growing. New course development, while not required, would be emblematic of this growth.

Scholarship/Creative Endeavors

Demonstrated continuing growth and recognized achievement through further research and/or performance. Evidence of a long-term trajectory beyond immediate projects. Especially in music, the kinds of scholarly/creative activities faculty do can broaden or change, and this situation should be factored into the evaluation process.


Continued distinguished service to the college and department is expected.