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Procedure: Academic promotion

Purpose

To outline the procedures underpinning the University’s holistic recognition of academic staff achievements in research/creative activity, education, service and leadership.

Definitions

Achievements relative to opportunity: Assessing achievements relative to opportunity involves evaluating the quality and impact of the staff member’s achievements having regard to the applicant’s career stage and trajectory and taking into consideration the impact of relevant personal circumstances. This supports appropriate evaluation of achievements in relation to productivity, the ability to participate in certain types of activities, and the consistency of activities or output over the period of consideration.

In recognition of the issues arising in 2020 and 2021 including bushfires, air quality, hailstorm, campus shutdowns, COVID-19 and the disruption to academic activities, applicants are provided with the opportunity to note the impact these events had on their career development and academic achievements.

The relevant personal circumstances include, but are not limited to:

  • COVID-19, including lost opportunities, disruption to academic activities, impact on research, education and service and any personal impact, including caring responsibilities experienced by applicants as a result of the pandemic;
  • 2019/2020 bushfires, air quality issues, hailstorm and resulting campus shutdowns;
  • personal ill-health or injury;
  • relevant cultural expectations or circumstances;
  • a temporary or permanent disability;
  • family responsibilities (e.g. child rearing, elder care, illness of a partner/dependent);
  • family caring responsibilities (e.g. parental leave, primary carer’s leave, single parent, elder care, ill health or injury of a partner/dependant);
  • significant or traumatic events or circumstances such as a relationship breakdown, death in the family or domestic violence;
  • periods of part time work; and/or
  • any other relevant personal circumstances identified by the applicant.

Diversity: Diversity in referees refers to having a mix of persons, where possible for example, from different universities/workplaces, from different states/territories and countries, and with different personal characteristics including gender and cultural identity.

International reputation: an expert in an applicant’s general field of expertise, external to the University and of high international standing, who can provide independent and authoritative advice on the application.

Procedural irregularity: refers to where the University does not follow a process that is articulated in this procedure.

Research-intensive applicant: is a candidate for promotion who is employed on a research-intensive contract of employment and who is appointed to undertake predominately research and research-related activities.

Procedure

Eligibility

  1. Application for academic promotion is available to academic staff who:
  • hold a full or part-time position, whether continuing or fixed term, who have been employed at the University continuously for at least 12 months or hold a full academic honorary status working at the ANU Medical School and undertake work in each of the categories of research, education and service. ANU Medical School clinical staff who hold an honorary clinical title must apply for promotion through the clinical pathway via the ANU Medical School Appointments and Renewals Committee, rather than through the University Promotions Committee;
  • have evidence to demonstrate that they have consistently exceeded College and University minimum standards at the present level of employment and at least meet minimum College and University standards at the level to which promotion is sought; and
  • in exceptional cases, academic staff with employment at the University of less than 12 months may submit a case for exemption to the relevant promotion committee Chair. This exemption should be obtained in advance of the promotion round opening. Both supervisor and Research School Director endorsement and College Dean acknowledgement are obtained prior to submitting an exemption case to the promotion committee Chair.

Preparation for academic promotion

  1. Applicants, supervisors, College Deans and promotion committee members are familiar with University policy, procedures, education, research and service indicators and approved pro-formas, and assessing achievement relative to opportunity guidelines for academic promotion, including COVID-19 related information published for the 2021 Academic Promotions Round.
  2. Applicants discuss their proposed application with their supervisor and their Research School Director or equivalent.
  3. Applicants discuss their proposed application for promotion to level E1 with their College Dean.

Submission of academic promotion application

  1. Applications for promotion are submitted by the published deadlines to the relevant promotion committee.
  2. Applications for promotion for academic staff not employed in a College are submitted to the promotion committee affiliated with their cognate discipline. This affiliation is at the School level.
  3. Applications for promotion are submitted on the current approved University pro-forma, comprising:
  1. Part 1: Staff member details, ORCID ID, weightings, statement relevant to the impact COVID-19 has had on the applicant for the 2021 round, any other statement(s) relative to opportunity (where appropriate) and declaration;
  2. Part 2: Applicant’s case for promotion;
  3. Part 3: Details of referees nominated in consultation with the applicant’s supervisor, and with consideration given to the applicant’s nominated activity weighting, comprising:

Level applying for:

Requirement:

Level B

The need for referees is at the discretion of the College Dean.

Level C

Minimum of four referees to be submitted for consideration by the relevant promotion committee, with a maximum of one referee internal to ANU.

Two completed references are required as threshold.

Level D

Minimum of five referees to be submitted for consideration by the relevant promotion committee, with a maximum of one referee internal to ANU, and at least two referees who have an international reputation.

Three completed references are required as threshold.

Level E1

Minimum of six referees to be submitted for consideration by the relevant promotion committee, with a maximum of one referee internal to ANU and at least three referees who have an international reputation.

Four completed references are required as threshold.

Referees to be contacted in the first instance are determined by the relevant promotion committee. If one or more of those referees does not submit a reference, then the required number of additional referees are contacted as a contingency to achieve the threshold number of references.

The applicant, in consultation with their supervisor, discloses and provides details of any potential conflicts of interest with their nominated referees. Applicants should ensure that the majority of their nominated referees are not conflicted. A conflict of interest may include, but is not limited to: a personal relative or close friend, a PhD supervisor or HDR student, co-chief investigators on joint grants within the past five years, close working associates and long-term collaborators and parties either currently supervised or employed or previously supervised or employed by the applicant. A conflict of interest may depend on the nature and depth of the association between individuals and is determined by the relevant promotion committee.

The diversity of the list of proposed referees must be considered.

The committee reserves the right to review referees for diversity and conflicts of interest and to ensure the holistic appraisal of the applicant’s achievements. If required, the committee appoints or requests additional or alternative referees. The applicant and their supervisor are notified if additional or alternative referees are required.

Referees are invited to provide a holistic assessment of the promotion case, and are forwarded the full promotion application, including Supervisor and Research School Director endorsement and College Dean acknowledgement (endorsement for Level E1 applications)

The applicant may identify the names of up to two parties whom they do not wish to be contacted as referees

  1. Part 4: Curriculum vitae that distinguishes achievements, performance and activities at the time of application (career to date) and includes as a minimum the following:

Curriculum vitae requirements

    Formal qualifications and any prizes, awards, honours and other esteem indicators.
    A list of the six best or most significant research publications/creative works and two of the best or most significant education achievements (research and education staff).
    Appointments, including consultancies.
    Research/creative activity outputs, including bibliographic details, year of publication, individual contribution by percentage; and evidence of impact.
    Research/creative activity funding, including title of grant, funding body, grant category, individual contribution and role in the grant, year, total grant value, any patents and evidence of impact.
    Higher Degree by Research student supervision, including name of student, role, years of enrolment, completions and student achievements post-graduation (where appropriate).
    Education activities (where appropriate), including course or program development and review; courses taught, nature of teaching contribution and enrolments and evidence of impact.
    Public policy activities and evidence of impact.
    Service to the School/Department, College and University, the academic discipline, and the community, including names of committees and/or boards, year(s) of service and role.

  1. Applicants also attach a maximum of five pages of supporting evidence that demonstrate the quality, productivity and impact of their contributions to research/creative activity, education, service, leadership, public policy, commercialisation of research or contribution to public intellectual debate.
  1. The education, research and service indicators are available to applicants, in order to assist putting forward their case for promotion, including evidence of the outcomes and impact of the academic work.
  2. Applicants ensure that the application is complete and accurate, and one promotion application checklist is included in their application for promotion.

Application endorsement and acknowledgement

  1. For applications for promotion to levels B-D, the local promotion committee secretary coordinates the Research School Director endorsement and College Dean acknowledgement, after the promotion application (including the supervisor’s endorsement) has been submitted by the applicant. The acknowledgement by the College Dean does not constitute endorsement or approval of the promotion application.
  2. For applications for promotion to level E1, the University promotion committee secretary coordinates Research School Director and College Dean endorsement after the promotion application (including the supervisor’s endorsement) has been submitted by the applicant.
  3. Where an application is submitted involving a joint appointment, the supervisor endorsement, Research School Director endorsement and College Dean acknowledgment is provided by the primary School and College in consultation with the joint School and College.
  4. The supervisor endorsement and Research School Director endorsement may include comment on the degree to which the applicant has fulfilled obligations in relation to the ANU Code of Conduct.

Applicant activity weightings

  1. Applicants allocate weightings to each of the categories of research, education and service, reflecting the average contribution over the period since last promotion or appointment to ANU, to a total of 100%, and meet the maximum and minimum requirements for each category below.

Contract Type

Research

Education

Service

Research and education

15% minimum

15% minimum

5% minimum

Research intensive

95% maximum

Not required to assign a weighting but may do so if relevant, with a maximum of 15%

5% minimum

  1. Applicants ensure that the allocation of weightings:
  • reflects their case for promotion, based on their average contribution since last promotion or appointment to ANU; and
  • is consistent with their current contract with the University and if applicable, the relevant research funding rules governing their contract.
  1. It is noted that weightings in the case for promotion may be different from those set in the annual Performance and Development Review.
  2. Contributions to Higher Degree by Research supervision are included in the research section of the application. Any contributions to Higher Degree by Research coursework teaching are included in the education section of the application.

Determination of promotion: level B to E1

  1. Outcomes for promotion are determined on the basis of the holistic recognition of the quality, productivity and impact of staff achievements in research/creative activity, education and service, with reference to the education, research and service indicators, as demonstrated through various forms of evidence.
  2. Outcomes for promotion to level D and E1 are determined on the basis of the quality, productivity and impact of the applicant’s demonstrated and sustained collegial and collaborative leadership within the areas of research/creative activity, education (optional in research intensive applications) and service to the ANU and the wider community. For promotion to level D and E1, demonstrated leadership is a mandatory requirement at a level commensurate with the level of promotion being applied for.
  3. Promotion committees consider achievements at the time of application, that is, all career achievements up to the date of application.
  4. At the discretion of the promotion committee chair, interviews may be required for applicants for promotion to levels B to D, and are compulsory for level E1 applicants. Where an interview is undertaken, it forms part of the holistic assessment of the promotion case. Applicants may request that their supervisor or alternate support person attend their interview to observe proceedings and to provide comment if so requested by the College Dean or promotion committee. Applicants should note that interviews may be held online depending on changing circumstances. Applicants are informed of any decisions regarding interviews as soon as possible.
  5. Deans meet with the University promotion committee to provide comment on E1 applications from their College. This may include comment on the degree to which the applicant has fulfilled obligations in relation to the ANU Code of Conduct.
  6. Promotion committees must receive the minimum number of references as below, in accordance with requirements in clause 7;
  • Level B – at the discretion of the College Dean;
  • Level C – no fewer than two;
  • Level D – no fewer than three;
  • Level E1 – no fewer than four.
  1. Additional information may be required before a decision can be made. The additional information required is obtained from the applicant; supervisor; College Dean; nominated or additional referees; or research and teaching data available from the University enterprise systems or external databases. The applicant and their supervisor are notified if additional or alternate references are required.
  2. For clinical applications, additional information is obtained from the ANU Medical School Appointments and Renewal Committee regarding clinical contributions and performance.
  3. The College Dean approves, or, the local promotion committee endorses and the relevant College Dean approves, promotion to level B.
  4. The local promotion committee endorses, and the relevant committee chair approves promotion to levels C and D.
  5. The University promotion committee endorses, and the Vice-Chancellor approves promotion to level E1.

Determination of out of round promotion: level B to E1

  1. An application for promotion to levels B through to E1 may be considered outside of the usual promotion round upon request of the relevant College Dean, normally for a staff member who has been offered an appointment at another institution.
  2. Assessment of out of round applications for promotion to level B do not require committee consideration, and may be approved by the relevant College Dean on the basis of the holistic recognition of the quality, productivity and impact of staff achievements in research/creative activity, education and service.
  3. Out of round applications are constituted by:
  1. a brief evidence-based case (two A4 pages maximum) recommending promotion on the basis of a holistic appraisal of the quality, productivity and impact of staff achievements in research/creative activity, education and service, with reference to the education, research and service indicators, as demonstrated through various forms of evidence, prepared by the staff member’s supervisor and supported by the College Dean and may include a statement on the impact of COVID-19 on academic achievements;
  2. curriculum vitae; and
  3. documentary evidence of the offer of employment at another institution (where applicable).
  1. The promotion committee may require further information, including, but not limited to data that is available on the Statement of Academic Activity; research and teaching data from the University enterprise systems or external databases; or written documents from discipline peers. The promotion committee may also, at its discretion, require an applicant interview.
  2. For clinical applications, additional information is obtained from the ANU Medical School Appointments and Renewal Committee regarding clinical contributions and performance.
  3. The Vice-Chancellor, on the recommendation of the relevant College Dean, may consider and approve an accelerated out of round application, including cases that may not meet the standard eligibility criteria for promotion. In such cases, the Vice-Chancellor may call for input from the promotion committee.

Determination of promotion: level E2

  1. Eligibility and outcomes for promotion to level E2 are determined on the basis of an evidence-based, holistic recognition of the quality, productivity and impact of staff achievement and demonstrated collegial and collaborative leadership in research/creative activity, education (optional in research intensive applications) and service to the ANU and wider community, which is commensurate with level E1, as well as demonstrated pre-eminence in one or more of the areas highlighted below:
  • demonstrated pre-eminence in education, as evidenced for example, in distinguished national or international awards or fellowships or outstanding national or international leadership in education innovation or quality assurance as acknowledged by peers in the field (noting that the receipt of an award or Fellowship is not a guarantee of promotion); or
  • demonstrated pre-eminence in research or creative activity, as evidenced for example, in election to a distinguished learned academy or some equivalent form of recognition; distinguished national or international awards or fellowships or outstanding national or international leadership in research innovation, as acknowledged by peers in the field (noting that the receipt of an award or Fellowship or election to an Academy is not a guarantee of promotion); or
  • demonstrated pre-eminence in service to the University and wider community as evidenced, for example, in distinguished national or international awards or outstanding national or international leadership in governance, management, contribution to the discipline or to public commentary or policy, as acknowledged by peers in the field (noting that the receipt of an award or appointment to a leadership role is not a guarantee of promotion).
  1. The College Dean consults with the chair of the promotion committee in anticipation of a case being made for promotion to E2.
  2. The College Dean submits a nomination to the promotion committee which includes:
  1. an evidence-based case recommending promotion on the basis of a holistic appraisal of the quality, productivity and impact of staff achievement and demonstrated leadership in research/creative activity, education (optional in research intensive applications) and service to the ANU and wider community, which is commensurate with level E1, as well as demonstrated pre-eminence in the nominated area(s) and may include a statement on the impact of COVID-19 on academic achievements;
  2. supervisor endorsement;
  3. current curriculum vitae,
  4. details of four referees external to ANU from persons of eminent international standing; any case for reduction in the number of referees is discussed with the chair of the promotion committee. Note that independent assessments of an applicant’s standing are critical; referees who have no conflict of interest are required. Referees are asked to explicitly comment on achievements and standing above E1 level ; and
  5. maximum of five pages of supporting evidence that demonstrates the quality, productivity and impact of contribution to research/creative activity, education, service, leadership, public policy, commercialisation of research or contribution to public intellectual debate.
  1. The promotion committee invites the relevant College Dean to attend an interview (if required) to apprise the committee of any additional information relating to the application.
  2. For clinical applications, additional information is obtained from the ANU Medical School Appointments and Review Committee regarding clinical contributions and performance.
  3. The promotion committee makes a recommendation to the Vice-Chancellor, who makes a determination for promotion to Level E2.
  4. Professor E2 positions are remunerated in accordance with the Academic Staff Salary Scales in the Enterprise Agreement.

Determination of promotion: Distinguished Professor level E3

  1. Eligibility and outcomes for promotion to level E3 are determined in exceptional cases on the basis of the evidence-based, holistic recognition of the quality, productivity and impact of staff achievement and demonstrated collegial and collaborative leadership in research/creative activity, education (optional in research intensive applications) and service to the ANU and wider community, which is commensurate with level E3, as well as demonstrated international distinction in an area highlighted below:
  • demonstrated international distinction in education, on the basis of evidence such as prestigious international awards or equivalent peak awards; or
  • demonstrated international distinction in research or creative activity, on the basis of evidence such as prestigious international awards, multiple fellowships or equivalent peak awards in the cognate discipline. Examples include but are not limited to; election to the Fellowship of the Royal Society of London, Fellowship of the British Academy, Fellowship of the US National Academy of Sciences or US Academy of Engineering Fellowship (noting that the receipt of an award or election to a Fellowship or Academy is not a guarantee of promotion).
  1. The College Dean consults with the Vice-Chancellor and the chair of the promotion committee in anticipation of a case being made for promotion to level E3.
  2. The College Dean submits a nomination for promotion to Distinguished Professor level E3 to the promotion committee, which includes:
  1. an evidence-based case recommending promotion on the basis of a holistic appraisal of the quality, productivity and impact of staff achievement and demonstrated leadership in research/creative activity, education (optional in research intensive applications) and service to the ANU and wider community, which is commensurate with level E2, as well as demonstrated pre-eminence in the nominated area and may include a statement on the impact of COVID-19 on academic achievements;
  2. supervisor endorsement;
  3. current curriculum vitae;
  4. details of four referees external to ANU from persons of eminent international standing; any case for reduction in the number of referees are discussed with the chair of the promotion committee. Note that independent assessments of an applicant’s standing are critical; referees who have no conflict of interest are required. Referees are asked to explicitly comment on achievements and standing above E2 level; and
  5. maximum of five pages of supporting evidence that demonstrate the quality, productivity and impact their contributions to research/creative activity, education, service, leadership, public policy, commercialisation of research or contribution to public intellectual debate.
  1. The promotion committee invites the relevant College Dean to attend an interview (if required) to apprise the committee of any additional information relating to the application.
  2. For clinical applications, additional information is obtained from the ANU Medical School Appointments and Review Committee regarding clinical contributions and performance.
  3. The promotion committee makes a recommendation to the Vice-Chancellor, who makes a determination for promotion to Distinguished Professor level E3.
  4. Distinguished Professor level E3 carries a remuneration of level E2 plus a superannuable loading of $25,000 per annum.

Constitution and activities of promotion committees

  1. Promotion committees:
  • have a balanced gender composition;
  • respect the confidentiality of promotion documentation and deliberation activities and communication of outcomes;
  • respect the request of applicants that particular referees not be contacted;
  • declare any conflict of interest, as soon as they become aware of it, and refer to the chair to implement any mitigation actions;
  • endorse for the College Dean or Vice-Chancellor a written description of the factors used to determine the outcomes of cases; and
  • have a quorum such that if the chair and the external member participate, and a gender balance is present, one member may be absent from any particular assessment.
  1. The membership of local and University promotion committees is published for the benefit of applicants.

Local promotion committees

  1. The local promotion committee endorses promotion applications to level B at the request of the College Dean, and all promotion applications to levels C and D, is constituted by:
  • College Dean (chair);
  • Associate or Deputy Dean;
  • four to seven academic staff members at level D or above from with the College or Colleges with expertise broadly representative of the disciplines in the College;
  • at least two members external to the College; and
  • at least one member of the committee has the appropriate skills in equity consideration or an additional member with these skills may be co-opted by the chair.
  1. The constitution of local promotions committees is approved by the relevant College Dean.
  2. Colleges may have more than one local promotion committee, with appropriate cross-representation.

University promotion committee

  1. The University promotion committee endorses promotion applications to level E1 and is constituted by:
  • a Deputy Vice-Chancellor (chair);
  • a Deputy Vice-Chancellor that is not the chair;
  • Chair of the Academic Board;
  • four ANU Professors, broadly representative of the discipline groupings across the University, with membership rotating on a three-year basis; and
  • a Professor, Deputy or Pro Vice-Chancellor that is external to the University, with membership rotating on a three-year basis; and
  • at least one member of the committee has the appropriate skills in equity consideration or an additional member with these skills may be co-opted by the chair,
  • an Indigenous representative to be invited onto the committee where Indigenous promotion applications are received.
  1. The constitution of the University promotion committee is approved by the Vice- Chancellor.

Out of round promotion committee: level B to E1

  1. The promotion committee that endorses out of round promotion applications to levels B to E1 is constituted by:
  • a Deputy Vice-Chancellor (chair);
  • a Deputy Vice-Chancellor that is not the chair;
  • one College Dean, and an alternate College Dean nominated annually in case of a conflict of interest arising,
  • an Indigenous representative to be invited onto the committee where Indigenous promotion applications are received.
  1. The constitution of the level B to E1 out of round promotion committee is approved by the Vice-Chancellor.

Level E2 and E3 promotion committee

  1. The promotion committee that endorses promotion applications to levels E2 and E3 is constituted by:
  • a Deputy Vice-Chancellor (chair);
  • three Deputy Vice-Chancellors that are not the chair; and
  • Director, Human Resources.
  1. The constitution of the level E2 and E3 promotion committee is approved by the Vice-Chancellor.

Communication of outcomes

  1. Applicants receive written notification of the outcome from the chair of the relevant committee.
  2. Copies of the notification are provided to the applicant’s supervisor and College Dean.
  3. The Vice-Chancellor will publically congratulate applicants who are successful in obtaining promotion in the previous year, with details of the successful applicants published online.
  4. Verbal feedback is offered to unsuccessful candidates by the chair of the relevant promotion committee. That feedback focuses on factors determined by the committee as being key to the outcome and advice on future activities that might be undertaken to strengthen the case.
  5. Unsuccessful applicants can not apply for promotion in the following calendar year unless given written permission by the chair of the relevant promotion committee to do so.

Appeals

  1. Applicants who are unsuccessful may lodge an appeal on the basis that there has been a procedural irregularity resulting in material disadvantage.
  2. Appeals are made in writing to the Vice-Chancellor within 20 working days of written notification of outcome via the Director, Human Resources.
  3. The Vice-Chancellor considers appeals and seeks advice as to whether or not there has been a breach of procedure including, but not limited to; reference to the chair and/or the original decision-making committee, and on the basis of that advice:
  1. confirms the original committee’s determination to deny promotion;
  2. upholds the appeal and approve promotion;
  3. refers the matter to an appeal committee; or
  4. refers the matter to the local promotion committee.
  1. The appeal committee comprises at least three chairs from local promotion committees or the University promotion committee, giving consideration to gender balance, all drawn from past or present committees.
  2. The appeal committee recommends to the Vice-Chancellor either that the original determination be upheld, or that the appeal is upheld and that promotion should be granted.
  3. Appellants receive written notification of the outcome of their appeal.
  4. Copies of the notification are provided to the applicant’s Supervisor and College Dean.
  5. The effective date of promotion arising from an upheld appeal is consistent with the timetable for the annual round in which the application was originally received.

Information

Printable version (PDF)
Title Academic promotion
Document Type Procedure
Document Number ANUP_000624
Version 47
Purpose To outline the procedures underpinning the University’s holistic recognition of academic staff achievements in research/creative activity, education, service and leadership.
Audience Staff-Academic, Staff-Academic-Research
Category Administrative
Topic/ SubTopic Staff - Staff & Career Development
 
Effective Date 11 Jun 2021
Review Date 11 Jun 2024
 
Responsible Officer: Director, Human Resources
Approved By: Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation)
Contact Area Human Resources Division
Authority: ANU Enterprise Agreement 2017 – 2021
Delegations 0