Guidelines for Heads of Department

Heads of Department may, subject to the conditions given below, put forward a case for the promotion of a member of the academic, research or teaching staff for the purpose of retention.

Contract type Promotion route
Research and Teaching Lecturer (grade 7); Senior Lecturer (grade 8); Reader/Professor
Research Research Fellow (grade 7); Senior Research Fellow (grade 8); Reader/Professor
Teaching and Scholarship Lecturer (grade 7); Senior Lecturer (grade 8); Reader/Professor

The following principles and practical arrangements have been agreed with the Vice-Chancellor and the Academic Promotions Committee. There must be good grounds for asking the Academic Promotions Committee to consider a case and the absolute essential requirement is that there should be no deviation from the standards applied by the Committee in the normal course of its work. The Committee will endeavour to determine cases as quickly as possible, consistent with the integrity of the process.

  1. Retention cases seeking promotion should be discussed in the first instance by the Head of Department with the Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Provost.
  2. The Head of Department should submit a case for retention in writing to the Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Provost, addressing the four points listed below. Only if all of these are satisfied will the case be submitted to the Academic Promotions Committee for full consideration.
    • the person is highly likely to be offered a post at another institution
    • there must be a clear departmental/University case for retention
    • there must be good grounds to believe that the Academic Promotions Committee would be able to make a positive recommendation
    • there must be reasonable belief that the person would turn down the other offer if promoted at York.
  3. Following discussion with the Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Provost, and if a convincing case is received, the Academic Promotions Committee will be consulted and will advise on the merits of the case against the published criteria. Co-ordination of this process is handled through the HR Academic Promotions team to ensure consistency of process and record-keeping.
  4. The Head of Department should provide to in electronic form:
    • the case for retention as made to the Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Provost, addressing the four points in 2 above
    • a completed HoD report form, making an explicit case for retention in the final statement of the report
    • an up-to-date CV as prescribed in preparing a CV for promotion
    • the names and contact details of the requisite number of referees, not all of whom should have worked or collaborated with the individual (see referee requirements for academic promotion in the Academic Promotions Policy).
  5. References will be sought in all cases, corresponding to those required under the normal promotions procedure. Referees will be provided with a copy of the relevant criteria and asked to submit their reference by an agreed date. In the case of promotion to Reader/Professor, four references should be sought. However, in exceptional circumstances where this proves impossible, a decision could be based on a minimum of three. In the interests of expediency Heads of Department may make initial contact with the nominated referees to secure their agreement to act.
  6. If there has been a previous decision not to promote at York there must be persuasive evidence of a significantly stronger case in the form of an updated CV, the prescribed number of independent references and an updated confidential report from the Head of Department specifying the relevant changes since the last application.
  7. The final decision will normally be communicated to the Head of Department within ten days of receipt of documentation.

See also: