Promotion & Tenure

Promotion and tenure reviews are among the most important work in the academy. At the University of Nebraska—Lincoln, we strive to facilitate long and successful careers for our faculty by hiring talented academics who are capable of producing very important work and building noteworthy careers, and then we set high standards for performance throughout their careers and hold them to these high standards. Those colleagues who are invited to join the senior faculty each year will shape the University’s academic reputation for years to come.

Each time a faculty member is considered for promotion or tenure, judgements are made against the same standard: a proven record that suggests a sustained career typified by true excellence.


Below are the due dates for submission of promotion and/or tenure files to the appropriate Vice Chancellor; please note that IANR, colleges, departments, and other administrative subunits may have additional deadlines to be observed.

January 31, 2019 Deadline for nominations for tenure with or without promotion to go into effect July 1, 2019 or August 19, 2019
February 28, 2018 Deadline for nominations for promotion only to go into effect July 1, 2019 or August 19, 2019

Submissions before the deadlines are appreciated. Please aim for a target date of one week prior to the deadline if possible.

Documentation Request

The Documentation Request outlines the materials to be included in every promotion and tenure file. Please note that this Request has been updated. Every file must be organized with clearly labeled sections in “Documentation Request” order.


The following forms must be completed by all candidates and included in your nomination file.

University of Nebraska-Lincoln Transmittal Forms for:

Waiver of Right to See Information Form

Course Listing and Evaluation Form

External Reviewers

Every tenure and/or promotion file must include three external and independent letters of review. It is the responsibility of the department chair/head, the chair of the departmental promotion and tenure committee, or the dean – not the candidate – to solicit these letters. Generally, external reviewers should have full professorial rank at peer or aspirational peer (typically, R1) institutions. In any case they must occupy a rank equal to or above that being considered for the candidate.

Reviewers must be chosen who are qualified to judge the quality of the candidate’s work because of their own knowledge of the field. These letters are to be “independent” in the sense that they will be from individuals who have had at most limited professional or personal relationships with the candidate and who have been chosen by the department chair/head (or chair of the promotion and tenure committee, or dean, as appropriate) for their ability to provide an objective assessment.

As such, external reviewers should not include dissertation advisors, current or former collaborators, former colleagues, personal friends, or others who have any special relationship to the candidate. In cases where the extreme prominence of a candidate makes independent letters impracticable, special care should be taken to solicit letters from exceptionally prominent reviewers.

Model Letter Soliciting External Reviews

Special Circumstances

Personal circumstances may prevent a faculty member in a tenure-leading position from performing at the level that is necessary to reach the high expectations of tenure within the timeframe of the probationary period. In such cases, an extension in the tenure clock may be appropriate.

Occasionally a faculty member might, for various reasons, request a change in tenure home. This memo describes the process, which begins with the Request to Change Tenure Home Department form.