Faculty: Promotion and Tenure Files - Access to Information in the Closed Portion

Last Updated: 
Effective Date: 
Reason for Policy: 

To define the proper procedure and timing for release of information contained in a promotion/tenure file for which the candidate has waived his or her right of access.

Policy Statement: 

Faculty undergoing review for promotion and/or the granting of indefinite tenure should have knowledge of the general content of their dossier, as well as of the recommendation by their dean, prior to review at the university level. Furthermore, they should be given the opportunity to respond to information that may be inaccurate, misinterpreted or lacking in clarity. This policy allows for release of such information while maintaining the commitment of confidentiality to external referees and others preparing reports and recommendations.

After the dean has formulated a recommendation, but before the dossier is forwarded to the Office of Academic Affairs, the dean or associate dean, if so designated, will meet with the candidate. At this meeting:

1. Faculty shall be given an oral summary of the contents of his or her file and the recommendations made to date, including that of the dean. The oral summary should include relevant information presented in the departmental report, the general content of the outside letters, and the recommendation by the Dean's Advisory, or Personnel, Committee.

2. If the faculty member has not waived his or her right of access, he or she may examine all the contents of the dossier that are open as defined by the formal statement of waiver.

3. If the faculty member has waived his or her right of access, and if requested by the faculty member, the dean shall provide a written version of the oral summary. This document, typically no more than 1-2 pages in length, should accurately reflect the oral summary, and should not be an item-by-item summary of any report, evaluation or letter contained in the dossier.

4. If the candidate believes that his or her record has been misinterpreted, misunderstood, or is incomplete, he or she may submit to the Office of Academic Affairs a written statement of rebuttal. This document will be added to the dossier for review at all subsequent levels.

5. Redaction or substantive summary of material is not undertaken at the school/college level, or provided to faculty during or immediately after his or her meeting with the dean.

Faculty who have waived their right of access may request redacted versions of reports by elected faculty personnel committees and/or substantive summaries of any closed part of the file, but only following a negative decision by the Provost. A proper summary (abstract) is interpreted to mean document-by-document, not a general summary, with the condition that editing and abstracting will maintain the confidentiality of sources who submitted their evaluations with assurance of confidentiality in accordance with the candidate's waiver statement. Substantive summaries shall be prepared by the Office of Academic Affairs and reviewed by a member of the Faculty Personnel Committee.

Reviewed and Approved By: 
President's Staff
Issued by: 
Revision History: 

08 February 2010 - Policy number revised from 3.145 to 02.01.16

08 September 1999 - Issued by the university president

Original Source: 
UO Policy Statement