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August 23, 2004



A couple of quick points (which I should preface with the disclaimer that I've only been t/t for one year):

1) In my 4/4 department, the requirement for research appears to be "some." Articles count, conferences count, book reviews, etc. At least, that's true for tenure. To advance to full professor, you probably need a book.

2) Some key administrators in my university advocate pursuing "the scholarship of teaching" as a way to finesse the problem of access to materials. (Hardly an insuperable problem, since Yale's an hour away, with Boston and NYC around 2 hours.)

3) The extended horror-show that is the job market is likely to perturb the system. We had searches this year in which it seemed as if virtually all of our finalists had either a book in hand or a contract.


Very helpful post. Much of what you say also applies to community college faculty, where we have almost no expectation of publications of any kind, though promotion will credit scholarly work, as well as the scholarship of teaching.

The freedom to pursue one's interests has certainly been true for me in a 40 year teaching career.

Jason's point about being near major libraries, even if you don't teach at that institution, works for lots of us in major urban areas. I'm lucky enough to live 1.2 miles from Stanford and it's under an hour to drive to UC Berkeley. Over the years, I have used both libraries extensively.

As more of us describe our experience (as you have so well), I believe a more complex view of scholarhip and teaching will emerge, hopefully placing Research I institutions in context.

Another Damned Medievalist

Wonderful post! I'm in one of those 'no scholarship necessary' community college jobs, but it's temporary. I'm worried sick about explaining lack of scholarship in (I hope) job interviews at 4-years. I wonder if I should just refer to you for examples of various requirements ;-)?

Prof. Anon

These posts are very illuminating. I'm at a regional university you've never heard of where (word is) we're expected to publish a book in order to get tenure. But I'm starting to wonder if this is a reasonable expectation: our library does not subscribe to many key journals; there's a rumor that they're going to crack down on inter-library loans because they're so expensive; the shelves lack important recent scholarly monographs; grant money for summer research is not especially forthcoming for humanities scholars; only two tenured faculty members in my department have ever published a book, so there's not a wealth of advice to be had for how to do it.

In short: wtf?

A 3-3 teaching load and a publishing expectation of 4 articles + reviews sounds great.

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