All schools do ‘em in one way or another. Your job is to figure out your school’s expectations for End of Year reviews.
- Make sure you are familiar with your contract’s breakdown of what is important and by how much. For instance, a research institution might require Teaching, Research and Service, but the breakdown might be 30%, 60%, 10% respectively. If you find yourself on 10 committees before you make tenure at the expense of your research, you will not have fulfilled expectations, even though you have worked hard. On the other hand, a teaching college might put more emphasis on service and teaching, so you might have a larger portfolio of committees, even as you attempt to keep your art practice flourishing.
- Document everything you do on an ongoing basis so when end of the year comes around, you can pull up those folders and not start from scratch each time. Typically, an End of Year review will build upon the previous ones. This includes teaching activities (rewriting curriculum, collecting documentation of student work, assessment data), conference participation (don’t just go to conferences, participate in them), professional activities (writing articles, curatorial, sitting on community advisory boards), research, collaboration, service (including fun things like advising student art clubs and organizing field trips).
- Vary your documentation – remember those who look at your review material need some variety. A slideshow documentation of a field trip you organized can be a fabulous break from the same old dry narratives.
- Some institutions might require you to write a narrative of your activities, or of highlights. Tenure reviews most certainly will require this, so keeping active in this area, varying what you write about and engaging in a multiplicity of activities will help out here. Consider how important it is for your activities to engage in your teaching – for instance, how did that exhibition you put up affect your students?
- Check on your tenure review requirements your first year on the job. There are many things that you can begin to prepare for immediately, be clear about the requirements and begin handling them your first year, forging the connections and fulfilling your responsibilities, so that you can create a balanced approach during your tenure year.
- If you don’t have a new faculty mentor, ask for one.
- Pace yourself and learn to say no. It is more important to hit your ratio (see above) and be actively engaged than to over commit and spread yourself too thin. No one expects a new faculty member to do everything. Find a good balance between being the team contributor your colleagues expect and overdoing it, especially in the first years on the job.
- Remember, your End of Year review might need to be submitted in December – if you get in the habit of documenting regularly and at the time of the event, you’ll be one step ahead when the data is due.