Peer Review

Purpose

Peer Reviews are used to assess overall performance and make recommendations concerning promotion of rank (for Teaching-Intensive Stream (TIS), Contractually Limited Term Appointment (CLTA), Continuing and conferral of tenure (for tenure-track faculty).

The Peer Review process is separate and distinct from Performance Reviews, which are used to assess performance during a specific review period and to identify and develop recommendations concerning performance issues and/or professional development. Performance Reviews are considered as part of any Peer Review process.

See Process Map for a summary of the Peer Review Process.

Eligibility for Peer Review

Lecturers, Assistant Professors, Associate Professors are eligible to apply for promotion to the next Rank after a minimum of three (3) years at their current Rank at OCAD U. Such application must be made by submitting a completed Application for Peer Review form to the dean of home faculty no later than October 1 for promotion in the following academic year. Candidates who are unsuccessful in applying for promotion of rank may reapply after a minimum of two (2) years.

Probationary (tenure-track) faculty may apply for tenure during their probationary term. Such application must be made by submitting a completed Application for Tenure form to the Dean of home faculty no later than October 1 for promotion in the following academic year. These forms can be acquired through a member's home faculty. Unless extended by approved leaves, probationary terms are for a maximum of five years, after which the appointment must be terminated or become tenured.

Faculty Peer Review Committee

Peer Reviews are conducted by a Faculty Peer Review Committee consisting of:

  • Dean of Faculty or designate appointed by the VP Academic (Chair, non-voting except in case of a tie);
  • Associate Dean of Faculty, or designate (voting);
  • Two (2) faculty selected by the Chair from the home faculty’s Tenured faculty, both of whom must be of equal or where possible higher rank than the candidate (voting); and
  • Up to one (1) additional faculty member who may be added at the discretion of the committee for diversity and/or specific expertise (voting).

Peer Review Process

1. Preparation

In making its evaluation, the Faculty Peer Review Committee will consider the following:

  • the Application for Promotion of Rank or Application for Tenure;
  • Cover Letter;
  • Curriculum Vitae (CV);
  • Statement of Professional Practice, Scholarship, and/or Research/Creation;
  • Digital Portfolio of creative work and/or publications; 
  • Statement of Teaching Philosophy;
  • Syllabi and Course Outlines;
  • Evidence of teaching effectiveness, such as sample assignments, student feedback, course evaluations, etc. Classroom visits may be conducted at the request of the faculty member under review and scheduled subject to mutual agreement with faculty member and Chair;
  • Grant Applications (if applicable);
  • Performance Reviews;
  • Annual Reports submitted (outlined in article 24.2 of Memorandum of Agreement);
  • Additional materials relating to the review period submitted by the faculty member and/or the Chair of the Peer Review Committee. Only materials which have been brought to the attention of the faculty member under review will be considered, including published course evaluations and written communication on file;
  • In cases of tenure and of promotion of rank to full professor, the Faculty Peer Review Committee, in consultation with the candidate, shall request referees external to the university to comment on the candidate’s contributions in the area of professional practice/research. Solicited or unsolicited letters of support (e.g., from students, faculty and externals) will not be considered; nor will anecdotal evidence be considered.
  • In cases of Tenure and of Promotion of Rank to Full professor, the Chair of the Faculty Peer Review Committee shall, in consultation with the candidate, determine the name of five mutually=agreed upon referees external to the university, of whom three (3) shall be selected by the Chair, to comment on the candidate's contributions in the area of professional practice/research. Solicited or unsolicited letters of support (e.g. from students, faculty and externals) will not be considered; nor will anecdotal evidence be considered.

2. Committee Review

The Faculty Peer Review Committee meets to discuss the above-listed materials and to conduct its review. The Standards for Performance and Criteria for Placement & Promotion of Academic Ranks, are outlined in Appendix B of the Memorandum of Agreement. The results of this review are documented on the Recommendation for Promotion of Rank Form or Recommendation for Tenure Form.

3. Communication with the Faculty Member

Following the committee’s review and finalization of the form, the Chair of the Peer Review Committee meets with the faculty member to discuss his/her Peer Review and provide the Recommendation for Promotion of Rank Form or Recommendation for Tenure Form. A report generated as a result of the Peer Review shall be communicated to the candidate, which includes an overall assessment of their strengths and/or recommendations for improvement.

4. Recommendation of Faculty Peer Review Committee

The Faculty Peer Review Committee submits its recommendations to the university Peer Review Committee, which consists of the Vice-President, Academic and Provost (Chair, voting), the Chair of Senate, and a faculty member of Senate normally holding the rank of Full Professor.

The recommendations of the University Peer Review Committee shall then be subject to approval by the President and the Board of Governors.

5. Appeal Process

A faculty member who disagrees with the Peer Review decision (such as failure to confer tenure status for probationary faculty and/or denial or promotion of Rank for TIS, CLTA, Continuing, Tenure-track or Tenured faculty) has recourse to the Peer Review Appeal process (as outlined in Article 24.5 of the Memorandum of Agreement). A Peer Review Appeal is initiated when a faculty member submits a "Request for Peer Review Appeal" to Human Resources within 14 calendar days following notification of the Peer Review decision which the faculty member wishes to appeal.

The Peer Review Appeal Committee consists of the following:

  • Vice-President, Academic & Provost or designate with the approval of the President (Chair, non-voting);
  • Dean (or designate) from another faculty with approval of the Vice-President, Academic & Provost; 
  • Two (2) faculty selected by the Chair from the home faculty’s tenured faculty, both of whom must be of equal or where possible higher rank than the candidate; and
  • One (1) Tenured faculty member selected by the candidate.

The Chair of the Peer Review Appeal Committee will make every effort to convene a meeting of the Committee within 30 calendar days of the receipt of a "Request for Peer Review Appeal," and to communicate the Committee’s decision in writing to the faculty member in a timely manner.

The decision of the Peer Review Appeal Committee is grievable only to the extent outlined under Article 24.5.5 of the Memorandum of Agreement.