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Developing your academic career

Preparing for promotion

Where to start if you're thinking about going for promotion

  1. Get a copy of the academic promotion criteria from the Human Resources Unit. The Human Resources Unit can also provide an advice pack relevant to the level you are applying for
     
  2. Review your application and try to make an assessment of your suitability for promotion based on your application. Have you represented your achievements in the best light? Do your achievements relate to the appropriate criteria? Is it clear how you want the committee to read your application?
     
  3. Talk to your academic supervisor and your Dean about your application. Ask them to read your application and give you feedback
     
  4. Talk to other academics who have been successful in applying for promotion and ask them for feedback on your application

Advice on preparing your application

Overwhelming feedback from past applicants and other participants in the process is that you should take time to prepare your application well. This means starting well before the due date for applications. Read the criteria thoroughly and make sure you address them in your application.

Senior academics have a range of views about the qualities of good applications. Here is some common advice from administration and members of previous committees. A good application:

  • provides evidence of a strong, well-substantiated track record, and clearly demonstrates how that track record meets the criteria for promotion
     
  • lets the committee know whether you claiming an outstanding or major or satisfactory contribution to each of the areas of performance and standing
     
  • gives a clear picture of your qualifications and your individual strengths and achievements: as a teacher and educational developer; as a scholar and researcher; as a contributor to the university and community and as a person of high personal standing with a capacity for academic leadership
     
  • shows that there is evidence to support the claims you make, and particularly provides evidence of the significance of your achievements and their influence or impact
     
  • makes links between different aspects of your work - eg the scholarly underpinnings common to your research and teaching
     
  • gives a sense of what excites and engages you as an academic - your scholarly commitment, enthusiasm, intellectual engagement with your field etc.
     
  • can be understood by someone not from your discipline or academic unit - eg. you describe your major research achievements in lay terms, it provides some context for the subjects you teach
     
  • shows the sustained pattern of your achievements and gives a sense of how you will continue to achieve and develop in the future
     
  • shows how you reflect on your work and seek to improve
     
  • is clear, succinct and easy to read - leads the reader through your claims, makes links, highlights important points, uses headings and subheadings appropriately etc.
     
  • doesn't fudge or make misleading claims
     
  • is in a readable font with adequate white space so that it doesn't overwhelm the reader

Is quality of teaching valued in promotion?

Yes. Teaching is valued equally with research, and service to the university and community according to the UTS criteria. People have been promoted to all levels at UTS in part on a major or outstanding contribution to teaching. However, you do need to provide non-anecdotal evidence about the quality of your teaching.

How can I provide evidence of the quality of my teaching?

Academic portfolios encourage you to collect and reflect on a wide range of evidence about your teaching and some questions on which you might reflect.

How do promotion committees judge teaching?

Teaching will be judged against a series of criteria. The UTS allow for teaching in different disciplines to demonstrate quality of teaching in different areas. Whatever area you are teaching in, you will need to provide non-anecdotal evidence of the quality.