Terms of reference

1. Purpose of Committee

The Promotions Committee is the formal School decision-making body which considers and reaches decisions on departmental recommendations for Interim Review and Major Review. The Committee is also the decision-making body for proposals to promote members of the academic staff to Associate Professor and Professor. The Promotions Committee is a Sub-Committee of the Appointments Committee and is chaired by the Director of the School.

2. Membership

The membership of the Promotions Committee is approved annually by the Appointments
Committee and comprises ex officio:

The Director (Chair) or The Provost and Deputy Director (Acting Chair)

Vice-Chair of Appointments Committee

Pro Director  Teaching and Learning

And fifteen professorial members nominated from the five Academic Board constituency Groups|. There are three professorial representatives from each Academic Board Group.

Professors currently serving as Heads of Department are ineligible to be considered for
Committee membership until their term as Head of Department expires.

The Committee is serviced by Human Resources.

3. Nomination Procedure

Nominations to fill vacancies arising on the Promotions Committee will be sought from
Heads of Department. It will normally be expected that nominations will carry the support of all Heads from within the Group(s) in which vacancies occur.

In the interests of ensuring that the Committee retains an appropriate balance in terms of
gender, subject coverage across disciplines and representation of smaller departments, the VCAC has discretion to nominate up to five professorial representatives to serve on the Committee. The VCAC's nominees may be drawn from any of the five Academic Board Groups.

4. Term of Office

One half of the elected members of the Promotions Committee will normally retire from the Committee at the end of each academic session and no appointed member who has served a full term of office (which is normally two years) will be re-eligible until three further years have elapsed.

Casual vacancies are filled by the appointment of a new member drawn from the Academic Board Group in which the vacancy occurs, who will serve for the unexpired period of the appointment.

5. Code of Conduct

Committee members are expected to take a School-wide view of the issues before them and not to represent departmental views. As a matter of principle, Committee members take no part in the deliberations or reaching of decisions for promotion and review proposals from within their own departments. Committee members are expected to make themselves available to attend every meeting in view of the importance of maintaining continuity in the deliberations of the Committee. Committee members are expected to respect the importance of dealing with the work of the Committee in the strictest confidence at all times. Members should not reveal the Committee's deliberations in any part outside of meetings.

6. Schedule of meetings

The dates of the Committee's annual schedule of meetings are published in the School
Calendar. The Committee meets twice in the Michaelmas term, twice in the Lent term, and once in the Summer term. In addition, there may, on occasion, be exceptional circumstances which necessitate convening a special meeting in vacation periods - e.g. to consider an emergency promotion proposal.

Terms of Reference

1. Title of Committee: Promotions Committee

2. Status of Committee: Sub-Committee of the Appointments Committee

3. Responsibilities delegated to the Promotions Committee by Appointments Committee:

3.1 To monitor quality and to act as the decision-making body for individual proposals put forward under the annual promotion and review round for academic staff concerning: Interim Reviews, Major Reviews (including award of Major Review Teaching Prizes) and Promotions, and to report annually to the Appointments Committee.

3.2. To consider any issues referred to the Committee by the Vice-Chair of Appointments Committee concerning the individual progress of pre-Major Review staff; where appropriate, to consider and implement measures to monitor and provide support towards meeting School expectations for a successful outcome at Interim/Major Review.

3.3. To have oversight of policy and procedures pertaining to the School’s arrangements for promotion and review of academic staff (including promotion and review criteria); to review and report annually to the Appointments Committee on the operation of these arrangements and to make recommendations as appropriate on developments or changes to policy and procedures.

3.4. To have oversight of equality and diversity issues in relation to the annual promotion and review round; to receive reports on the profile of promotion and review candidates by gender and ethnicity with a view to looking at potential inequalities and ensuring that School procedures do not discriminate. To make recommendations to the Appointments Committee as appropriate on equality and diversity issues in respect of promotion and review procedures.

3.5. To consider and make recommendations to the Appointments Committee on policy issues relating to the recruitment and retention of academic staff.

3.6 To consider and make recommendations to the Appointments Committee on any issues referred by the Vice-Chair of Appointments Committee arising from the operation of the Academic Career Development Scheme.

3.7 To consider and make recommendations on any other policy matters or issues which have a direct bearing on its work that may be referred to it by the Director, the Provost and Deputy Director, the Vice-Chair of Appointments Committee, the Appointments Committee, and other School committees/fora, or arising from the outcomes of the Staff Survey or the work of the Staff Consultative Council.

4. Arrangements for Promotions Committee to report to Appointments Committee on the exercise of its delegated authority:

4.1 The Promotions Committee shall report to Appointments Committee on its determinations and any significant policy or procedural issues – including recommendations on changes to policy and procedures - annually, in the Summer term.

4.2 The Committee shall report to other School committees/fora as appropriate regarding any relevant issues.

5. Frequency of Meetings 

5.1 The Committee meets twice in the Michaelmas term, twice in the Lent term, and once in the Summer term. The annual schedule of Committee meetings is published in the School meetings calendar.

5.2 The Committee can convene exceptionally out of cycle – e.g. in relation to emergency proposals for promotion.

5.3 Decisions can be taken by the Committee by correspondence and email.

6. Chair

6.1 The Director or the Provost and Deputy Director chairs meetings of the Committee under delegated authority from the Director. In case he/she recuses himself/herself, the VCAC takes over as Chair, in which case the Pro-Director Teaching and Learning takes over the function of the VCAC.

7. Voting

7.1 All official members of the Promotions Committee are entitled to vote on a case. Members do not vote on cases from their own Department. The Chair does not normally vote but has the casting vote. The VCAC does not vote unless he/she chairs in lieu of the Chair in which case he/she has the casting vote.

Last updated 18 June 2014 

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