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Building a Case for Academic Promotion

Information related to UCL’s Academic promotion processes

UCL considers academic promotions through an annual cycle, in order to ensure comparability of excellence across the whole of UCL.  

Whilst the criteria in this framework apply to all staff, specific guidance for staff on different contract types (academic, teaching or research) is provided below. 

Outstanding performance at the current level does not automatically mean that promotion will follow; neither does meeting some of the criteria at the next level.  Promotions committees will retain the right to award promotion on the basis of the case in the round, as well as the candidate’s discipline context and the range of opportunities available for the activities taking place within that discipline.

It should be noted that candidates are encouraged to indicate any personal circumstances that may have affected their recent output/impact.  A range of personal circumstances can be taken into account, examples of which will be contained in the separate guidelines.


Staff on academic contracts: to Lecturer (Grade 8); to Associate Professor (Grade 9) and to Professor (Grade 10)

For promotion to each level, staff on academic contracts need first to provide clear evidence of strong performance at their current grade and demonstrate that they have the ability to meet the pre-requisite research and education criteria at the level to which they seek promotion.

They should then build a case to demonstrate their impact within, and leadership of, a portfolio of academic activities, as detailed below.

Progression through the above grades might be expected to be attained through:

(i) a Mixed academic portfolio, by demonstrating an ability to meet the threshold education and threshold research criteria at the next level as well as:

  • several of the core research AND core education criteria at the next level; and
  • some criteria at the next level in at least one of the other two domains (enterprise and external engagement or institutional citizenship) at the next level.

or

(ii) an Education-led academic portfolio, by demonstrating an ability to meet:

  • at least the threshold education and threshold research criteria at the next level; and
  • most of the core education criteria at the next level; and
  • some of the specialist education criteria at the next level; and
  • some criteria in at least one of the other two domains (enterprise and external engagement or institutional citizenship) at the next level.

or

(iii) a Research-led academic portfolio, by demonstrating an ability to meet:

  • at least the threshold research and threshold education criteria at the next level; and
  • most of the core research criteria at the next level; and
  • some of the specialist research criteria at the next level; and
  • some criteria in at least one of the other two domains (enterprise and external engagement or institutional citizenship) at the next level.

or

(iv) an Enterprise-led or External Engagement- led academic portfolio, by demonstrating an ability to meet:

  • at least the threshold research and threshold education criteria at the next level; and
  • several of the core research or education criteria at the next level; and
  • some of the core enterprise or external engagement criteria at the next level; and
  • some of the specialist enterprise or external engagement criteria at the next level; and
  • some of the criteria in the institutional citizenship domain at the next level.

This enables staff on academic contracts to progress through to Professor on a mixed, education-led, research-led or external engagement / enterprise-led portfolio.  It should be noted, however, that all staff looking to be promoted on academic contracts (to Associate Professor and Professor) will be expected to demonstrate impact against both the threshold education and threshold research criteria before other core and specialist criteria are considered).


Staff on research contracts: to Research Fellow (Grade 7), Senior Research Fellow (Grade 8), Principal Research Fellow (Grade 9) and Professorial Research Fellow (Grade 10)

Progression through the above grades might be expected to be attained by demonstrating an ability to meet:

  • the threshold research criteria at the next level; and
     
  • several of the core and/or specialist research criteria at the next level; and
     
  • at least the threshold education criteria or some of the criteria in either of the two other domains (enterprise and external engagement; institutional citizenship) at the next level.

Staff on teaching contracts: to Senior Teaching Fellow (Grade 8), Principal Teaching Fellow (Grade 9) and Professorial Teaching Fellow (Grade 10)

Progression through the above grades might be expected to be attained by demonstrating an ability to meet:

  • the threshold education criteria at the next level; and
     
  • several of the core and/or specialist education criteria at the next level; and
     
  • at least the threshold research criteria or some of the criteria in either of the two other domains (enterprise and external engagement; institutional citizenship) at the next level.