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Rank, Tenure & Promotion



A faculty member is eligible for a promotion in rank when he or she has met the faculty rank criteria stated in the Initial Placement Table (see Appendix C-1, page 56) or the Eligibility for Advancement and Promotion Table (see Appendix B, page 54). The candidate must have completed a full year of teaching at GSEP before applying for promotion in rank. Those who have attained eligibility are notified by the Dean. This notification will be included in the packet that contains the faculty member's annual contract. The Dean also notifies the RTP Committee Chairperson of those who are eligible. If a faculty member fails to apply for promotion when eligible, or if a faculty member applies but is denied promotion, he or she forfeits that year for future promotion considerations.

Application Procedures

Faculty members who are eligible and wish to apply for promotion must notify the Dean in writing that they intend to apply, and the Dean, in turn, will notify the RTP Committee Chairperson of the candidates who intend to apply. The candidate must then complete the Faculty Data Form (see Appendix D-1, page 61) and supply the necessary supporting documentation for all areas of evaluation.

Application Materials

Electronic copies of the Faculty Data Form should be sent to the Dean. When possible, supporting materials should be copied into pdf files and sent to the Dean. Two hardcopy sets of the application materials are required. Each set of the materials should be presented in a binder with a table of contents that is divided into the following sections:

  • Completed Faculty Data Form
  • Supporting documentation for Teaching Effectiveness such as course syllabi, curriculum outline, notes/handouts, and other relevant instructional materials. A separate section may be included for each course taught.
  • Supporting documentation for Scholarly Activity such as copies of published articles, books (at least the title page and table of contents for lengthier volumes), papers presented at professional conferences, optical or magnetic products, etc.
  • Any additional supporting documentation that the faculty member wishes to submit in support of his or her application, e.g., letters of support from colleagues at other universities or other professionals who are familiar with his or her work.

The two sets of application materials should be submitted to the Dean's office where they will be kept in a secure manner. The materials are usually due in the Dean's office in mid-October, but eligible candidates should use the date indicated on the memo sent by the Dean that notifies them about the review process.

Areas of Evaluation

The candidate for promotion in rank is evaluated in each of the following areas:

  1. Teaching Effectiveness

    Teaching effectiveness includes competence of the instructor in classrooms and in the supervision of individual projects, research, and field work. The candidate must describe how he or she prepares students for working with diverse populations in the community. Furthermore, the candidate must also address how he or she assesses student learning. In other words, how does the faculty member attempt to ascertain if the course objectives are being met for each of his/her students? Since the Committee regards excellence in teaching to be of prime importance, teaching effectiveness will be given greater weight than any of the other performance areas.
  2. Scholarly Activity

    Scholarly activity includes those activities that demonstrate the achievement and dissemination of knowledge which advance the fields of education and/or psychology and support the primary function of teaching. Scholarly activities clearly assist the faculty member in his or her own professional growth, and additionally result in some product that advances the profession as well as enhances the reputation of the School and the University. Examples of such activities are listed below. Except for a, b, and c, the examples of activities are not listed in order of importance or weight.

    For purposes of promotion consideration, the following requirements apply:
      1. Associate Professor. Criteria considered as necessary are three scholarly activities within the past six years, with at least one from categories a or b. In addition, considerations of quality are essential in the evaluation process.
      2. Professor. Criteria considered as necessary are five scholarly activities within the last eight years, with at least three from categories a or b. In addition, considerations of quality are essential in the evaluation process.
    1. Publication of articles as author or co-author in peer reviewed journals that target professionals in education, psychology, or related fields. The publications must make a contribution to training/education, practice, and/or research.
    2. Publication of professional books as editor or co-editor or the publication of professional books or chapters as author or co-author in education, psychology, or other related fields (e.g., social policy, forensics, public health, etc.). The books themselves or the edited volumes in which the faculty member has a chapter must have undergone an independent review by peers and/or acquisition editors of publishing corporations. Books may be written for the following audiences: students, clients, teachers, therapists, parents, administrators, school board members, and colleagues from diverse professional disciplines.
    3. Delivery of papers, posters, and panels at local, state, regional, or national conferences of professional groups.
    4. Presentations to knowledgeable public groups.
    5. Development of a new academic program, development of a substantial number of new courses, and/or development of a structural model for a course for dissemination to other instructors. Such program development activities should comply with state and/or accreditation standards.
    6. Significant contribution to the development of optical or magnetic products such as software, audio, video, laser disc, or CD-ROM
    7. Consideration is given to areas such as instructional design, purpose, use in an instructional setting, and effectiveness.
    8. Service on editorial and/or review boards for journals and professional books.
    9. Publication in the fields of education and psychology that appear in the mass or popular media, such as an editorial or articles in general audience magazines, newspapers, or professional newsletters.
    10. Participation in colloquia or panels at one's own or other institutions.
    11. Professional achievement that leads to and/or results in significant advancement in one's profession. Such achievement would include presentations to one's colleagues and some form of associated peer review. Examples would include the diplomate in psychology (ABPP) and advanced formal training.
    12. Scholarly activities of a broadly based professional nature that are within the faculty member's specialty discipline, including consultantships, grant applications, and/or contracted services that produce a written report.
  3. Service

    1. Professional Services. Professional service includes advisory and consultative positions of recognized stature; active participation in local, state, regional, and/or national professional organizations; and holding Committee membership at national, regional, state, or local level.
    2. Graduate School of Education and Psychology and University Service. Graduate School of Education and Psychology and University service includes Committee work at the division, School, and/or University level as well as administrative responsibility and program development.
    3. Community Service. Community service is demonstrated by active participation in religious, civic, or other nonprofit organizations, as well as service in speaker's bureaus.
  4. Support for Christian Values

    The candidate is expected to display a consistent pattern of support for generally accepted Christian values and the mission of Pepperdine University (see the Pepperdine University Mission Statement printed in the Faculty Handbook, page 2). Candidates are expected to actively participate in a community of faith. If possible, the candidate is encouraged to discuss the integration of faith and learning in the classroom.

Evaluation Sources

The evaluation forms provided for peers, the Associate Dean, and RTP Committee members assess the candidate in the four areas of teaching effectiveness, scholarly activity, service, and support for Christian values and the mission of Pepperdine University. Rating scales are provided for the first three areas. They are patterned in the following fashion:

  • Poor
  • Marginal
  • Adequate
  • Good
  • Very Good
  • Outstanding
  • Please comment:

For the fourth area, support for Christian values, peer evaluators, the Associate Dean, and members of the RTP Committee are asked to comment on the candidate's standing without using a scale.

  1. Peer Evaluations

    The candidate in conjunction with the Dean and the Chairperson of the RTP Committee selects five "peers" from among the GSEP tenured and tenure-track faculty members to evaluate him or her. These peer evaluators should be conversant in the field of the person to be reviewed. Members of the RTP Committee cannot serve as peer evaluators. It is recommended that at least one of the peer evaluators be from the division other than the one to which the candidate belongs. The colleagues selected to serve as peer evaluators review the Faculty Data Form (see Appendix D-1, page 62) and supporting documentation of teaching effectiveness, scholarly activity, and any additional materials that support the candidate's application. After reviewing all materials, the evaluators will complete the Peer Evaluation Form (see Appendix D-2, page 65), and submit the completed form to the Dean's office. Peer evaluations are reviewed by members of the RTP Committee and the Dean. These evaluations may be sent to the Provost if he or she requests the material. They are not viewed by the candidate.

    Peer evaluators may be requested to appear before the RTP Committee for the purpose of clarifying evaluations, but evaluators are not requested to justify their evaluations. When designated a peer evaluator, a person should recognize that it is both a compliment and a responsibility that carries the obligation of providing an honest and impartial evaluation. Both the strengths and weaknesses of the candidate should be reviewed with an eye toward positive recognition and also feedback on weaknesses for further growth opportunity.
  2. Student Evaluations

    The Associate Dean provides the Dean's office with a summary of all student evaluations for the candidate during the period at which the candidate has been at the present rank as well as have available the course evaluation forms for the courses taught over the last 3 years. The RTP Committee may request, from the appropriate Associate Dean, any or all student evaluations and/or computerized summaries from the time the candidate commenced teaching at the University.
  3. Supervisor Evaluation

    After reviewing all materials provided by the candidate, the appropriate Associate Dean completes the Supervisor's Evaluation Form (see Appendix D-3, page 71), and submits this completed form to the Dean's office. The supervisor's evaluation of the candidate is reviewed by members of the RTP Committee, the Dean, the Provost, and the President. It is not viewed by the candidate.
  4. Committee Evaluation

    After Committee members have reviewed the candidate's Application materials, peer evaluations, teaching evaluations, and supervisor evaluation, each member evaluates the candidate by completing the Committee Member's Evaluation Form (see Appendix D-4, page 75).

    The Committee as a group then reviews the forms of all Committee members and makes a recommendation regarding the candidate's application.

    All Committee Members' Evaluation Forms are destroyed after the Committee has concluded its deliberations. These forms are provided for expediting the decision process of the Committee and are disclosed only to the Committee. This provision safeguards the confidentiality of the vote of the Committee members.

    After deliberation and voting on whether or not to recommend the candidate, the Chairperson of the Committee writes a summary letter to the Dean that delineates the Committee's assessment of the candidate in the areas of teaching effectiveness, scholarly activity, service, and support for Christian values as well as the Committee's recommendation. This letter is approved by the other members of the Committee prior to being forwarded to the Dean. The Chairperson will maintain a copy of the letter forwarded to the Dean in a secure manner until the end of the academic year, at which time, it will be destroyed. The letter from the RTP Committee is forwarded by the Dean to the Provost.
  5. Dean's Evaluation

    The Dean conducts his or her independent review of the candidate's application materials, evaluations from peers and the Associate Dean, and the summary letter submitted by the RTP Committee. The Dean then writes a letter with his or her recommendation that is forwarded to the Provost along with the candidate's Faculty Data Form, the evaluation of the Associate Dean, and the summary letter of the RTP Committee. The Dean will meet with the candidate to provide him or her feedback from the GSEP review process as soon as it is feasible.
  6. Evaluation Process After Candidate's Application Leaves GSEP

    Promotion can be denied at the internal level if both the RTP Committee and Dean recommend against promotion. If the outcome of the independent reviews by the RTP Committee and the Dean is a split decision, the candidate's materials are still forwarded to the Provost and President. The Provost and President review all candidates for promotion and make the decision as to whether or not to grant the promotion.

    See Appendix D-5 for the flowchart of the promotion process.

Candidate Notification

Each candidate for promotion will be notified of his or her status in writing prior to the issuance of the next succeeding year's faculty contract. Candidates who are successful in their application for promotion will be notified by the University administration. Candidates who are unsuccessful will be notified by the Dean of the School. The Dean will meet with a candidate who has not been recommended for promotion and counsel the individual. The Dean and candidate, together, will set goals so that the candidate may understand what he or she must do to improve his or her performance prior to reapplying for promotion.