Critical Clauses 2015-2018

Critical Clauses (Collective Agreement 2015-2018)




(b) In considering a possible recommendation for tenure, the Department and the University Review Committee (see 11.1.40 below) shall remain alert to the fact that they are assessing the worth of the Candidate to the University on a long‑term basis.  Tenure is to be recommended only if the Candidate has established themself as a successful teacher, has contributed to the discipline through research and publication, and is, in their judgement, a person who will contribute to the growth and stature of the University, and will promote its objectives as set out in the Saint Mary’s University Act, 1970.  Additionally, the criteria set out in 11.1.13 above shall be taken into account.


12.1.12 Associate Professor

An Associate Professor is a member of a Faculty of the University who shall ordinarily have the following minimum qualifications:

(a)        A doctoral degree;

(b)        Successful experience in university teaching;

(c)        A significant record of scholarship as defined in Article 1.1(n).

(d)        A satisfactory record of service to the University, the profession, and the community, as defined in article 8.4.12 and 11.1.14.
12.1.13 Professor

(a)        A professor is a member of the Faculty of the University who:

(i)         has achieved recognition as an outstanding scholar combined with a record of very good teaching and has a satisfactory record of service to the University, the profession, and the community,as defined in article 8.4.12 and 11.1.14;


(ii)        has distinguished him/herself as an outstanding teacher combined with a record of very good scholarship and has a satisfactory record of service to the University, the profession, and the community,as defined in article 8.4.12 and 11.1.14;

(b)        A Faculty Member may qualify for promotion to the rank of Professor if the Faculty Member has achieved an outstanding record of serviceto the University, the profession, and the community,as defined in article 8.4.12 and 11.1.14, and also has established a very good record of both teaching and scholarship.  Extensive involvement in administrative work does not by itself constitute outstanding academic service.

DATES ( 2015-2018)


(b) Applications for promotion, tenure, accelerated promotion or early consideration of tenure, including supporting material as defined in Article 11.1.12, are the responsibility of the Faculty Member.  Such applications shall normally be made according to the following schedule:

April 15    Candidates shall inform department chairs of their intention to apply and provide them with their list of potential assessors.

May 15     The Department Chair shall provide the Dean with a list of applicants, together with the applicants’ and Department’s list of potential assessors.

June 15    The Dean shall finalize the list of assessors to be consulted.

June 15    Candidates shall submit the original and three (3) copies of their application file to the Dean and one (1) copy to the Department Chair.


11.1.13 External Assessments

(b) The external assessments shall be obtained by the Dean from three (3) referees. The Department and the Candidate shall each provide to the Dean, and to each other, a list of three (3) or more potential referees. These two lists shall not contain the same suggested referees. External assessors are required to provide an independent assessment of a candidate and therefore, former supervisors, co-authors, or close associates shall not be proposed as referees. Both the Candidate and the Department shall annotate their respective lists to indicate why the proposed external assessors are appropriate.  The Dean shall provide to the Department and Candidate a list of three (3) or more potential referees, which may include those names proposed by the Candidate and/or the Department. The Dean shall likewise provide information as to why any person on their list who is not included on either the Candidate’s or Department’s list is suitable and, if applicable, reasons why anyone on the Candidate’s or Department’s list is unsuitable.  In the event, a name on the Candidate’s or Department’s list is found to be unsuitable reducing either list below the minimum of three (3) required names, the Candidate and/or Department shall provide additional name(s) to restore the list to the minimum number of three (3) that is required.  Once the Candidate, the Department, or the Dean have proposed a name, no correspondence in any way related to tenure or promotion shall occur between those named and the Candidate or the Department Chairperson.

(c)  The Dean shall solicit the assessments from at least one referee from each of the three (3) lists.  The Dean may choose all of their potential referees from either the Candidate’s or Department’s list.  The Dean shall solicit the assessments within five (5) days of their determination of the referees.  External assessors will be asked to reply to the Dean by the following October 31st.   In cases where a candidate is being considered for both promotion and tenure in the same year, assessments for promotion and tenure may be obtained from the same referees in a single assessment encompassing an evaluation of the candidate on criteria for both promotion and tenure.

(d) The external assessments are to be solicited in writing and provided in writing.  The Candidate and the Department are to be provided with copies of the referees’ assessments without attribution to the referees’ name and institutional affiliation.

(e)  The Dean shall accompany the written solicitation for external referees with copies of Articles 1.1(n), 11.1.14, 11.1.21, 11.1.22 as appropriate, and 12.1 as well as copies of the items listed in 11.1.12.  The Dean shall also accompany the solicitation with the complete file as submitted by the candidate on or before June 15.




Among the criteria which the Department must consider in making an assessment of a Candidate are the following:

(a)        Quality and effectiveness as a teacher;

(b)        Academic credentials, including degrees, special studies and honours;

(c)        Quality and significance of scholarship as defined in Article 1.1(n).  The varied nature of academic and professional disciplines requires that appropriate weight be given to the various aspects of scholarship in terms of their contributions and relevance to a discipline.

(d)        Service on committees within the University; appropriate weight shall be given to such activity, although it is recognized that committee service is dependent either on appointment or election and is not necessarily under the control of Candidates for renewal, promotion, or tenure.

(e)        Other contributions to the University, including participation in its effective operation through academic advising, supervision of students, service as chairperson, director of division or programme coordinator, and performance of other functions which have been traditionally accepted as part of the collegial character of the University.

(f)         Other contributions to the professional field and the community such as serving on external grant selection committees; serving on a board, commission, council, or task force by virtue of special academic competence or expertise; service as an external examiner of graduate theses or academic programs.  Appropriate weight shall be given to such activity in terms of its contribution to the discipline concerned.


Articles 11.1.30 to 11.1.51 outline the procedures that must be taken at the department, dean, University Review Committee, and Presidential levels. Members are encouraged to familiarize themselves with these steps, which stipulate how applications are to be considered. Remember that members have the right to respond in writing to any assessment made during these steps and to have their response included in the application file. It should be noted that this right to respond also applies to any written assessment of a member’s Annual Reports.

I Scholarship

Article 1.1

(n)        Scholarship means the discovery, integration, interpretation and/or application of knowledge related to one’s discipline.  Scholarship must normally be public, susceptible to critical review and evaluation by one’s peers, and accessible for exchange and use by other members of one’s scholarly community.  Evidence of scholarship, including the scholarship of teaching, includes the following:

i)          Publication by a recognized publisher in print or electronic form including: books, textbooks, case studies, monographs, contributions to edited books, articles in refereed journals, book reviews, and presentation of refereed papers at professional and scholarly meetings;

ii)         Recognition by one’s peers including: participation as an editor or as a member of an editorial board of a journal or scholarly publication, and evaluating or refereeing the work of other scholars;

iii)         Intellectual and creative contributions to an academic discipline including: designing, developing and conducting major research projects; success in obtaining research and publication funding; conducting contract and/or applied research from which a report, study or text results; developing computer software; commissions to create work of academic or artistic value; and creative and artistic works, productions, and performances related to an academic discipline.

iv)        The scholarship of teaching consists of original and innovative thought and analysis related to pedagogy and/or learning that is disseminated publicly for peers to review, critically evaluate, and apply, or recognition by one’s peers internally and externally that an individual is a leader, or possesses outstanding stature or expertise, in the scholarship of teaching.  Good teaching does not constitute the scholarship of teaching.

II Teaching

Article 15.6.2

For purposes of this article, teaching includes, but is not limited to, the following activities performed by Employees either in a classroom, through correspondence, or from a distance through the use of technologically assisted instruction such as the Internet.

(a)        giving courses, conducting seminars, guiding tutorials and laboratories, doing fieldwork involving students, and supervising individual study projects;

(b)        preparing and correcting assignments, tests and examinations;

(c)        guiding the work of teaching assistants, markers and laboratory instructors;

(d)        guiding and evaluating students’ individual work, such as theses and papers;

(e)        granting individual consultations outside of class or laboratory time;

(f)         participating in the development of teaching methods, programs or course content;

(g)        preparing instructional material, laboratory exercises and course notes for the employee’s own students; and

(h)        writing textbooks, it being understood that such textbooks may also be considered when evaluating an Employee’s scholarship.

All other activities in which the Employee engages for the purposes of preparing courses and seminars, including those undertaken to ensure that his/her teaching is in keeping with the current state of the subject taught, are considered teaching activities.


Any person or committee assessing an Employee’s teaching performance shall review all relevant information, including but not limited to:

(a)        The type and nature of courses taught, including class size,

(b)        The nature of the subject matter,

(c)        The experience of the instructor with the course, and the number of new course preparations assigned to the instructor,

(d)        The quality and utility of pedagogical materials prepared by the Employee, the Employee’s contributions in the areas of pedagogical development and innovation,

(e)        The opinions of students, including quantitative summary information gathered through a “course evaluation” questionnaire as per 15.6.12 of this Collective Agreement.

(f)         Any and all information submitted to the person or committee by the Employee being evaluated, such as observations based upon classroom visitations.

Persons or committees assessing an Employee’s teaching performance shall, in consultation with the Employee, seek information from a variety of relevant sources.  No person or committee assessing an Employee’s teaching performance shall rely entirely or mainly on information gathered from “course evaluations” unless no other information has been provided.


Any person or committee preparing an assessment of an Employee’s teaching performance shall include in that assessment:

(a)        A statement of the scope of the assessment and the sources of information used

(b)        A summary of the information gathered, and

(c)        An analysis of the information gathered and the results of the assessment.


The assessment of an Employee’s teaching performance shall determine that the Employee’s teaching performance is either “outstanding,” “satisfactory” or “unsatisfactory.”


Observations based upon classroom visitations require the Employee’s advance consent.


III Service

8.4.12 Service to the University, the Profession and the Community

(a)        Faculty Members have the right and the responsibility to participate in the functioning of their Departments, Faculties, and the University. Faculty Members also have the right to participate in the Faculty Union. Service to the University shall include, but not be limited to, administrative duties and committee service, where relevant, that is related to each of these units. Where participation in such bodies is by election or appointment, a Faculty Member shall be elected or appointed only with his or her consent. Those who have the responsibility to make such appointments shall make every effort to ensure that academic, professional and University service commitments are equitably shared.

(b)        Faculty Members have the right and responsibility to participate in their profession, and academic community through active membership on appropriate bodies, such as councils, committees, Senate, editorial boards, and as referees for the evaluation of scholarly work.

(c)        Community Service includes participation in activities and organizations outside the University where the Faculty Member’s academic, professional, teaching and/or research interests and competencies form the basis for such participation.

© 2000, Saint Mary’s University Faculty Union.
Contact Karen Crowell for comments and suggestions.
Reviewed: 02/06/2013 12:30:15.