T&P FAQs Section 5: Roles and Responsibilities

5.1. What is the Department Chair’s role?

Since the Department Chair’s role is not specifically addressed in the procedures, units may wish to elect the Department Chair as a voting member of the Adjudicating Committee. Alternatively, the Department Chair could be an ex-officio member of the Adjudicating Committee.

If the chair is not a member of the Adjudicating Committee, s/he could be solicited as a referee for one or more specific areas (Teaching and Service). If candidates wish to have the written input of their department chair as a referee for teaching, professional contribution and standing, or service, they may wish to specify that a letter of reference should be solicited from the Chair.

Unless a member of the Adjudicating Committee, the Department Chair would not see the whole file.

5.2. What is the status of the Dean’s letter (Section F.3.3.)?

While it is called a “letter of transmittal”, the Procedures also say that the Dean will give reasons for his/her “recommendation” in the case of dissent. What is the status/definition of the recommendation in this case? How should the Dean’s letter be weighted by review committees in relation to the Adjudicating Committee’s letter?

In the Policy, the Dean plays a coordinating role in the process, adding a letter of transmittal in which s/he has reviewed the file and the judgment of the Adjudicating Committee and either concurs with the Adjudicating Committee recommendation (in which instance the Dean’s letter would normally be brief), or dissents and gives reasons for his/her dissent. If the Dean concurs with the Adjudicating Committee’s recommendation, it would normally be viewed as providing additional support for that recommendation. If s/he dissents, the reasons for the dissent are articulated in the letter (as has always been the case).

5.3. What is the role of the Senate Committee on Tenure and Promotions?

The Senate Committee is charged with reviewing unit standards and subsequent changes in those standards to ensure consistency across the University.  In this role the Committee will review both Faculty standards in non-departmentalized Faculties, and unit and Faculty standards in those Faculties with departments, to ensure that consistency is being maintained.

When files come forward for consideration, the Senate Committee’s role is to interpret the criteria and procedures in a file context; that is, to review individual files (whether as members of a panel of Senate T&P or as members of Faculty Review Committees, which are sub-committees of Senate T&P Committee) to ensure that the University’s criteria and unit standards have been fairly applied, with due consideration to temporal equity, that the Tenure and Promotion procedures have been properly followed by Adjudicating Committee in reaching their decisions, and that the evidence in the files supports the recommendations of the Adjudicating Committee. The Senate T&P Committee does not consider a file de novo.


Section 1: General
Section 2: Unit Standards
Section 3: File Preparation
Section 4: Adjudicating Committees
Section 5: Roles and Responsibilities