Criteria for Evaluation


Criteria for Evaluation of Teaching Faculty


  • Full-time teaching faculty at Elon University are evaluated annually according to the criteria listed below and by the guidelines found in the Statement of Professional Standards.
  • Teaching is given top priority. The second level of priority is contributions to the life of the University and professional activity. All criteria for evaluation are considered.
  • A teaching faculty member is not expected to be accomplished in all indicators to fully meet the criterion. The list of indicators under each criterion is not intended to be a set of requirements, nor is the list exhaustive.

For annual (Unit I and III) and midpoint (Midpoint Unit III, Post-Probationary Unit III, and Unit V) evaluations, and post-probationary Long Range Professional Development Review, a teaching faculty member is evaluated according to the expectations of rank currently held in addition to the criterion listed below. Teaching faculty members are expected to have met the standards of the promotional rank sought  before they apply for promotion in rank.

First Level Criterion – Teaching


Effective teaching is activity which promotes the intellectual vitality of the University and the wider community. While the primary focus of this activity is transmission of knowledge and the development of new skills, insights, and sensitivities within the classroom, teaching is not limited to that setting. It also includes the advising, supervising, and mentoring of students; the sharing of personal and professional growth with others; and the presentation of intellectual and moral concerns within the University community. Evidence of effective, high quality teaching may be seen through peer and student assessments related to a variety of possible indicators, as well as goal-driven, evidence-based critical self-assessment. Some indications of effective teaching are:

  • Fostering respect for diversity
  • Facilitating intellectual opportunities for students
  • Integrating scholarship and teaching
  • Conveying the foundation of established knowledge and theory
  • Creating class environments of mutual respect
  • Challenging students to be engaged learners
  • Cultivating informed critical thinking and creative expression
  • Integrating knowledge across disciplines
  • Extending learning beyond the classroom
  • Encouraging translation of knowledge into practice and service
  • Demonstrating an ability to communicate effectively with students
  • Being available to students
  • Demonstrating command of the subject matter
  • Demonstrating a commitment to improvement of teaching
  • Using appropriate and varied methods and strategies of teaching, assessing, and grading
  • Using current and relevant materials that enhance our understanding of the world
  • Being concerned for the wholeness and wellbeing of students
  • Using technology to meet course objectives

Second Level Criteria – Contributions to the Life of the University and Professional Activity


Faculty must contribute meaningful, high-quality accomplishments in both service and professional activity, although an individual’s accomplishments may be stronger in one area than the other. Levels of activity may vary over the course of a faculty member’s career, relative to reassigned time, funding, and other opportunities and responsibilities.

For further description of the types of and characteristics of peer-reviewed scholarship of high quality in various disciplines, see each department's scholarship statement.

Contributions to the Life of the University

Faculty members are an integral part of the University through their commitment to the institution and its mission, their presence and involvement, and their responsibility for the life of the university. Contributions to the life of the University at the Lecturer and Assistant Professor ranks typically begin with service on the program and departmental levels that progress to service on the college/school and university levels with experience. Service should include leadership roles as a faculty member progresses through faculty ranks. Participating in activities such as department meetings, faculty meetings, convocations and commencements is expected of all faculty members and is not considered service. University service includes activities such as:

  • Service and leadership in the department, to academic programs, and to the college/school
  • Service and leadership on University committees, task forces, and advisory groups
  • Mentoring and leadership provided to student organizations
  • Presentations and participation in activities that serve the University such as admissions, development, and alumni events
  • Service and leadership that connect the University to the wider community

Professional Activity

Peer-reviewed scholarship of high quality, as defined in a document generated by the department and approved by a special ad hoc committee consisting of the Deans and a representative body of the teaching faculty to be appointed by Academic Council’s Committee on Committees, is a necessary but not sufficient condition for tenure and promotion to Associate Professor or Professor.

Other professional activities are also expected. These activities should promote the exchange of ideas and acquisition of knowledge that enrich one’s teaching and contribute to the advancement of learning in the profession at large. Indications of scholarly or artistic activity may be:

  • Participation in academic presentations, exhibitions and creative performances of a professional nature that are not defined as peer-reviewed scholarship
  • Grant proposal writing
  • Leadership roles in a professional organization related to one’s field
  • Research and experimentation, including that which involves undergraduate research associates
  • Consulting
  • Service as a judge of artistic or scholarly works (e.g., reviewer)
  • Faculty internships
  • Participation in workshops and seminars
  • Professional involvement with the community
  • Attendance at professional meetings and conferences

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