A. Appointment Parameters

(1)   Dean’s Oversight

All appointments are subject to the final approval of the Edgerley Family Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS).

(2)   Tenure-Track System

The Faculty of Arts and Sciences has a tenure-track system to attract and support the best tenure-track faculty in all disciplines. Tenure-track faculty at the FAS are assistant professors and associate professors; tenure is held only at the rank of professor. Assistant professors are ordinarily reviewed for promotion to associate professor in the penultimate year of their assistant professor term; if promoted to associate professor, they can expect to be reviewed for tenure in the penultimate year of their associate professor term. At each stage, reviews for promotion are based on the criteria stated in this Handbook. When a tenure review is successful, based on the criteria, the candidate will be offered a tenured professorship in the FAS. When any part of the review indicates that the candidate does not meet the FAS standards for tenure, the tenure-track system does not obligate the department or the FAS to continue the review, and the candidate will not be promoted. In addition, as noted in Chapter 4, “Tenured Professors”, “Candidates who withdraw their case from consideration, at any stage in the process, will not subsequently be reviewed for internal promotion to tenure….When a tenure review is unsuccessful, whether or not it involves the candidate withdrawing at any stage in the process, the candidate cannot then be appointed instead to another FAS tenure-track position upon the conclusion of their existing FAS tenure-track appointment. An unsuccessful tenure review does not necessarily preclude the possibility of a later appointment as an FAS tenured professor, after, for instance, the candidate has spent time at another institution….If a candidate chooses to undergo a review for promotion to tenure at an earlier time than in the ordinary timetable for tenure reviews, and if that early review is unsuccessful, the candidate’s tenure-track appointment will end one year after the review occurred, superseding the original end-date of the tenure-track appointment." The process and criteria for promotion reviews to associate professor and tenured professor can be found in Chapter 4, “Tenured Professors” and Chapter 5, “Assistant Professors, Associate Professors, and Convertible Instructors.”

 (3)   Eight-Year Rule

Individuals in the non-tenure-track ranks, including College Fellows, lecturers, preceptors, and teaching assistants, may only hold teaching appointments for a maximum of eight years. This policy holds regardless of how many or what type of appointments (including teaching assistantships and tenure-track faculty appointments) the individual has held in the past.

For the purposes of this policy, any appointment, full-time or fractional within an academic year, is ordinarily counted as one year of service. The only exception to the eight-year rule is for lecturers holding annual appointments on or after July 1, 2010. In these circumstances, lecturers who have reached the eight-year limit may be appointed at the equivalent of up to one four-credit course per year, under the appropriate conditions, until they have accumulated 3.0 annual lecturer FTEs. Lecturer appointments prior to academic year 2010-2011 count as one year of service. Note: This allowed accrual of 3.0 annual lecturer FTEs beyond the original eight years is intended to support FAS curricular needs and is not intended as a general endorsement of long-term affiliation with the FAS beyond what is ordinarily eight years for term-limited appointments. 

With regard to associate senior lecturers, the eight-year rule has no bearing on term length when an associate senior lecturer is appointed. However, any years as an associate senior lecturer will subsequently count towards the eight-year limit if the associate senior lecturer later holds a position as a lecturer, preceptor, Benjamin Peirce Fellow, or Briggs-Copeland Lecturer.

(4)   Degree Requirements

In order to be eligible for an academic appointment of any rank, appointees must possess the minimum equivalent of a four-year undergraduate degree, except in cases approved by the assistant dean for the division.

Teaching appointments that ordinarily require a doctorate (with the exception, as appropriate, of appointments in the arts) include tenured professors, assistant and associate professors, full-time professors of the practice, professors in residence, senior lecturers, associate senior lecturers, lecturers, Benjamin Peirce Fellows, and College Fellows.

If an incoming faculty member has received a doctorate within 12 months of the start date of his/her/their appointment, verification is required. Acceptable verification is either a certificate of completion from the degree-granting institution or a letter from the institution’s registrar. Such documentation should state that all requirements for the doctorate have been successfully completed and should verify the date the degree has been or will be conferred. If the candidate received his/her/their degree from Harvard, written verification from the chair or director of graduate studies, on department letterhead, may suffice.

(5)   Teaching Appointments

FAS faculty appointments at the rank of Convertible Instructor, Lecturer, Dependent Lecturer, Preceptor, College Fellow, Benjamin Peirce Fellow, Briggs-Copeland Lecturer, Associate Senior Lecturer, Senior Lecturer, Senior Preceptor, full-time or part-time Professor of the Practice, Professor in Residence, Visiting Lecturer, Visiting Professor (assistant professor, associate professor, or professor), or Professor (assistant, associate, or tenured) are teaching appointments. Teaching Fellowships, Teaching Assistantships, and Course Assistantships are not faculty appointments; persons holding these ranks assist in courses or tutorials under the supervision of faculty. Recommendations for faculty teaching appointments may be made only by departments or committees empowered to offer courses for credit.

 

Responsibility for instruction rests solely with the head of the course. This person’s name appears with the course listing in my.harvard as the instructor of the course.

 

Faculty appointment ranks listed above can serve as course heads. However, preceptors do not ordinarily serve as course heads.

 

Regarding members of other (non-FAS) Harvard Schools, senior lecturers, professors of the practice, professors in residence, assistant professors, associate professors, or tenured professors in another Harvard Faculty may teach in the FAS without an FAS teaching appointment. All other non-FAS faculty may teach in the FAS only if they are appointed to the rank of lecturer in the FAS under the normal rules governing such appointments.

(6)   Principal Investigator Rights

Individuals with appointments in the ranks of Senior Research Fellow, Senior Research Scientist, Benjamin Peirce Fellow, senior lecturer, professor of the practice, assistant professor, associate professor, professor in residence, tenured professor (including professor emeritus/emerita), research professor, Rowland Fellow at the Rowland Institute (with the approval of the Director of the Institute), Junior Fellow in the Society of Fellows (with the approval of the Chair of the Society of Fellows), John Harvard Distinguished Science Fellow (with the approval of the Director of the John Harvard Distinguished Science Fellows), and NSF-Simons Fellows (with the approval of the Director of the NSF-Simons Center) have principal investigator rights on a continuing basis. For information on the P.I.-rights status of other research appointments in the FAS, please see Chapter 13, "Research Appointments." Some appointees who are not ordinarily P.I.-eligible may be granted P.I. rights by the divisional dean on a case-by-case, exceptional basis. Please see FAS Faculty Research Policies (available at https://research.fas.harvard.edu/policies/faculty-research) for more information, as well as the “Principal Investigator Rights Questionnaire.” 

(7)   Commitments at Other Institutions

Policies governing conflicts of commitment and conflicts of interest are detailed in the following references (see also faculty research policies at https://research.fas.harvard.edu/policies/faculty-research): the University Statement on Outside Activities of Holders of Academic Appointments (available at https://provost.harvard.edu/statement-outside-activities-holders-academic-appointments), University Policy on Financial Conflicts of Interest (see http://files.vpr.harvard.edu/files/vpr-documents/files/harvard_university_fcoi_policy_4_0.pdf), FAS/SEAS Policy on Financial Conflicts of Interest Disclosures (available at https://research.fas.harvard.edu/policies/financial-conflicts-interest-disclosures), FAS/SEAS Policies Relating to Research & Other Professional Activities (available at https://research.fas.harvard.edu/policies-relating-research-and-other-professional-activities-within-and-outside-university) and FAS/SEAS Policies on Effort Reporting for Academic Year Effort and Supplemental Salary (available at https://research.fas.harvard.edu/effort-reporting). All faculty members are expected to familiarize themselves with these guidelines and to conduct their research and teaching accordingly.

With the acceptance of a full-time appointment in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, an individual makes a commitment to the University that is understood to be full-time in the most inclusive sense. According to the Statement on Outside Activities of Holders of Academic Appointments, “persons holding academic appointments at Harvard should conduct outside professional pursuits in ways that respect their responsibilities to their home institution. Along with status as a full-time Harvard academic appointee comes the expectation that one’s primary professional duties are to Harvard, and that outside professional activities will not conflict with obligations to one’s students, to colleagues, and to the University as a whole….anyone holding a full-time academic appointment at Harvard should not, without permission of the Corporation upon recommendation of the appropriate Dean, engage in teaching, research, or salaried consulting at any other educational institution during the academic year.”

The Statement on Outside Activities of Holders of Academic Appointments also states, “A Harvard appointee holding the rank of professor, associate professor, or assistant professor (or other title as may be designated by a particular Faculty)… may not also hold a regular academic appointment at another institution.” However, faculty members taking unpaid research leave may hold paid or unpaid visiting teaching appointments at other institutions. Additionally, faculty on paid sabbatical leaves may hold unpaid visiting teaching appointments at other institutions. If questions arise about such appointments, they should be brought in advance to the attention of the Office for Faculty Affairs, which will work with the faculty member (and other FAS offices as relevant) to resolve the matter in accordance with FAS policies.

(8)  FAS and University Policies

As a community of scholars, the FAS and University hold certain shared values concerning teaching, research, and service, and members of the community are expected to familiarize themselves with FAS and University policies on these matters. Policies on issues such as instructor responsibilities, academic integrity, principles governing research, authorship and acknowledgment, professional activities outside Harvard, conflicts of interest and commitment, cooperation with industry, intellectual property, restricted-access materials, research misconduct, human and animal subjects, environmental safety, sexual and gender-based harassment and unprofessional conduct, drugs and alcohol in the workplace, and free speech can be found at sites such as:

Office of the Provost: https://provost.harvard.edu/

Office of the Vice Provost for Research: https://vpr.harvard.edu/

Information for Faculty Offering Instruction in Arts and Sciences: https://infoforfaculty.fas.harvard.edu/

FAS Faculty Research Policies: https://research.fas.harvard.edu/policies/faculty-research (e.g., see “Guidelines on Authorship and Acknowledgment”)

FAS Research Administration Services: https://research.fas.harvard.edu/

Harvard College Handbook for Students: https://handbook.fas.harvard.edu/book/welcome

Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Handbook: https://handbook.gsas.harvard.edu/gsas-handbook

FAS Sexual and Gender-Based Harassment and Unprofessional Conduct: https://www.fas.harvard.edu/sexual-gender-based-harassment-policyresources

Harvard “Drugs and Alcohol in the Workplace” policy: https://hr.harvard.edu/staff-personnel-manual/general-employment-policies/drugs-and-alcohol-workplace

FAS Free Speech Guidelines: Available at the Office of the Secretary’s website, http://secfas.fas.harvard.edu/

Faculty and researchers are expected to sign electronically the University’s Participation Agreement (PA) by the start of their appointment. Information on the Intellectual Property Policy can be found at: https://vpr.harvard.edu/pages/intellectual-property-policy. The online PA form is available at: https://vpr.harvard.edu/harvard-university-participation-agreement.

Visiting faculty and researchers should submit by the start of their appointment an electronic PDF of a signed hard copy of one of three Visitor Participation Agreements (VPA) (https://vpr.harvard.edu/visitor-participation-agreements). Note: Visitors from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.) are not required to submit a VPA form, with the exception of M.I.T. undergraduates, who must submit a VPA form.

If working in one of Harvard’s laboratories, and if not receiving any form of payment from Harvard, faculty and researchers should also submit an electronic PDF of a signed hard copy of the Acknowledgement of Risk and Release for Non-Harvard Personnel Using Harvard Research and Instructional Laboratory Facilities by the start of their appointment (http://files.vpr.harvard.edu/files/vpr-documents/files/acknowledgement_of_risk_and_release_form_12_2014.pdf).

Please see the table below to identify the forms relevant for each appointment type.

Given the dynamic nature of a university, these policies and resources may evolve and change over time.

(9)  Table: Participation Agreement, Visitor Participation Agreement, Risk and Release Forms

The table below indicates which forms should be completed for each appointment type.

 

Participation
Agreement (PA)

Visitor Participation Agreement (VPA)

Acknowledgement of
Risk and Release

 

E-sign by the start of appointment

Submit electronic PDF of signed hard copy
by the start of appointment (see Section 7 for exceptions applying to M.I.T.)

Submit electronic PDF of signed hard copy
by the start of appointment
(if working in one of Harvard's laboratories)

Professor

X

 

 

Associate Professor

X

 

 

Assistant Professor

X

 

 

Convertible Instructor

X

 

 

Professor of the Practice

X

 

 

Professor in Residence

X

 

 

Senior Lecturer

X

 

 

Senior Preceptor

X

 

 

Associate Senior Lecturer

X

   

Lecturer

X

 

 

Preceptor

X

 

 

Benjamin Peirce Fellow

X

 

 

College Fellow

X

 

 

Briggs-Copeland Lecturer

X

 

 

 

 

 

 

Visiting Professor (paid)

 

X

 

Visiting Professor (unpaid)

 

X

X

Visiting Associate Professor (paid)

 

X

 

Visiting Associate Professor (unpaid)

 

X

X

Visiting Assistant Professor (paid)

 

X

 

Visiting Assistant Professor (unpaid)

 

X

X

Visiting Lecturer (paid)

 

X

 

Visiting Lecturer (unpaid)

 

X

X

 

 

 

 

Fellow (paid [salaried])

X

 

 

Fellow (paid [stipendiary])   X  

Fellow (unpaid)

 

X

X

Postdoc Fellow (paid)

X

 

 

Postdoc Fellow (unpaid)

X

 

X

Research Associate       

X

 

 

Research Fellow

X

 

 

Research Scientist (or Research Scholar) X    
Senior Research Scientist (or Senior Research Scholar) X    

Senior Research Fellow

X

 

 

Visiting Scholar (paid [salaried])

 

 

Visiting Scholar (paid [stipendiary])   X  

Visiting Scholar (unpaid)

 

X

X

Associate      

 

X

X

Links:

PA form: https://vpr.harvard.edu/harvard-university-participation-agreement

VPA form: https://vpr.harvard.edu/visitor-participation-agreements

Risk & Release form: http://files.vpr.harvard.edu/files/vpr-documents/files/acknowledgement_of_risk_and_release_form_12_2014.pdf