Non-tenure Faculty Line (Dartmouth College Employees)

A. Tracks and Ranks:

1. Lecturer Track:


  • Lecturer
  • Senior Lecturer

2. Research-intensive Track


  • Instructor
  • Assistant Professor
  • Associate Professor
  • Professor

Non-tenure Line Faculty may be hired without a national search (or a waiver from a search). No member of the Non-tenure Faculty Line may move to a Tenure-track/Tenure Faculty Line appointment in the absence of a national search or a waiver from a national search.

Initial appointments in the Non-tenure Line require approval of the senior faculty and Chair of the sponsoring department following review of the candidate’s CV and of three (3) letters of recommendation (the letters may be internal or external to Dartmouth, but must come from individuals with whom the candidate does not have a conflict of interest; see Appendix 5: Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth Guidelines for Faculty Promotion Procedures).

The qualifier Non-tenure Line will be defined in all offer letters and reappointment letters, and in all Geisel databases, but does not need to be used on internal (e.g., letterhead) or external (e.g., grant application) documents, or on personal business cards (e.g., John Doe, Assistant Professor of Microbiology & Immunology).

In 2013, Dartmouth College introduced a new category of non-faculty academic appointments that corresponds to different ladder categories of Research Scientist (See Section: Non-Faculty Academic (NFA) Titles and Promotion). Research Scientists are academics with Principal Investigator eligibility who are expected to perform essential roles in the research enterprise of individual laboratories (i.e., under the auspices of a faculty sponsor), in institutional cores, or in providing support for broad-based institutional initiatives through roles in data analysis and assessment.

With the introduction of these non-faculty academic positions, it is anticipated that new appointments in the Non-tenure Faculty Line at the Geisel School of Medicine will, with few exceptions, be for individuals who are fully committed to teaching (e.g., Lecturers and Senior Lecturers, although some cases, individuals may hold titles of Assistant, Associate and full Professor). Individuals who are not successful in advancing in the Tenure-track/Tenure Faculty Line may move to the Non-tenure Faculty Line.

B. Initial Appointments, Terms and Offer Letters:

B1. Terms of Appointment

1.One (1)-year terms (renewable):

  • Instructor
  • Lecturer
  • Senior Lecturer

2. One (1)-year terms (not renewable):

  • Associate Professor or Professor (see below)

3. Three (3)-year term (renewable):

  • Assistant Professor

4. Six (6)-year terms (renewable):

  • Associate Professor
  • Professor

New appointments as Assistant Professor, Associate Professor or Professor in the Non-tenure Faculty Line are, under current guidelines, are not expected. However, if such new appointments are approved by the Dean, individuals will be expected to meet criteria for excellence in research, having established a strong regional to burgeoning national reputation for appointment Associate Professor and a strong national to international reputation for appointment to Professor. In all cases on meeting metrics for disseminated scholarship with documented and measurable impact.

Individuals hired as Associate Professors or Professors in the Non-tenure Faculty Line will be appointed for an initial period of one (1) year (except under conditions where APT review and administration approval occur prior to employment).

  • Associate Professors may be reappointed for additional 6-year terms until promoted;
  • Professors may be reappointed for additional 6-year terms.

B2. Expectations for Initial Appointments and Offer Letters:

Initial Individuals appointed in the Non-tenure Faculty Line are expected to hold a terminal degree (e.g., PhD, MD, MD/PhD). In some cases, individuals who hold non-terminal degrees appropriate for a specific position (e.g., an MBA or M.Ed.) may, upon approval by the Dean or their proxy, the DAB and the Provost, be approved for appointment to the Tenure-track/Tenure Faculty Line (exceptions may be more common in the Lecturer Track).

All appointments to any rank in the Non-tenure Faculty Line require evidence of demonstrated scholarly accomplishments (in all but exceptional cases, peer-reviewed) and, in all but rare cases, also require a minimum of two years of postdoctoral training. Publications must meet the standard of being indexed in appropriate databases (e.g., Medline and other indexed databases within the Web of Science/The Social Sciences Citation Index).

Offer letters will fully delineate the track in Non-tenure Faculty Line, expectations in terms of research, scholarship, teaching, and service (depending on track and any other contractual agreement) or engagement). For faculty members in the Non-tenure Faculty Line, continued appointment during any term appointment and continued employment at Dartmouth College are contingent upon availability of qualified funds (see Appendix 3: Geisel Policy on Compensation and Research Support) to the faculty member and their research program at Geisel (Dartmouth College). With respect to extramural support for research, such funding may be to the individual as principal investigator or may be derived from larger team-based extramurally-funded research wherein the Non-tenure Line faculty member is key personnel.

Offer letters will also indicate that continued employment for faculty members who hold a paid assignment in the Non-tenure Line is dependent upon both performance and availability of funds to the Medical School, as determined by the Dean. If support from qualified sources for the position changes during the appointment period, support for the appointment (i.e., fractional FTE) may be adjusted to be consistent with support levels from these qualified sources. If the Dean determines that there are insufficient funds at Geisel to continue with the faculty appointment and/or the faculty member’s specific teaching or research program, employment may be terminated and faculty members must be given a minimum of thirty (30)-days’ notice prior to termination of employment.

1. Instructors:

Historically, were hired for specific teaching responsibilities and provided with the title of Instructor. Since 2016, most faculty members employed by Dartmouth College whose responsibilities include only teaching now hold the title of Lecturer, but a few individuals who have solely teaching and scholarship (non-research) responsibilities may still hold Instructor titles if appointed with that title prior to 2016.

The title of Instructor may also, in highly limited instances, be provided to research-intensive senior trainees in those cases where it is required to make transitions to independence (e.g., K awards). All such appointments must be reviewed and agreed upon by the Departmental Chair and the Dean of Faculty Affairs.

Instructor titles are not provided to senior research associates/postdoctoral fellows solely based on longevity or standard responsibilities within the laboratory (e.g., training graduate students etc.). Research associates/postdoctoral fellows are trainees expected to be here for a limited period of time. Individuals provided with Instructor titles may not advance to a Tenure-track/Tenure Faculty Line in the absence of a national search or a waiver from a search (Appendix 2).

2. Lecturer Track:

Lecturers are hired for the specific purpose of teaching one or more courses without any other implicit obligations to the Medical School. Such individuals must contribute the equivalent of teaching of one full course that is recognized in the Office of the Registrar (ORC) Catalogue Reference of Dartmouth College. Individuals appointed at the rank of Lecturer for teaching obligations may be provided with support for compensation (and equivalent fractional FTE) for these specific teaching responsibilities as approved by the Departmental Chair and the Dean.

Appointment at the rank of Lecturer requires evidence of excellence in pedagogy, teaching and/or curriculum design supported by:

  • Recommendations from established senior faculty at Dartmouth and/or other institutions;
  • Clear capacity for productivity, as evidenced by metric and narrative teaching evaluations, pedagogical scholarship and/or program development.
  • Appointment as or advancement to Senior Lecturer will require not only demonstrated excellence in teaching and pedagogical scholarship, but also documented innovation in program development and evidence of excellence in administrative oversight of educational programs.

The Chair (and/or their designee as academic advisor) shall meet with each faculty member at the rank of Lecturer or Senior Lecturer on a regular basis (which, at a minimum is annually, but which is expected to be more than once per year) in order to assure that each faculty member is meeting expectations for teaching, scholarship, and, if applicable, service to Dartmouth.

3. Research-intensive Track:

Individuals, predominantly hired prior to 2013, with the expectation of engaging in research endeavors may continue to hold appointments and be promoted in this line (Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, Professor). These research-intensive members of the Non-tenure Faculty Line are expected to have strong and continued evidence of securing external funding from qualified sources and, unless otherwise approved by the Dean (or as they qualify for support according to Appendix 4), need to secure all but de minimis support for their compensation from such sources. As such, unless otherwise contracted to do so (see below), they are neither required nor permitted to perform either teaching or service for the institution, and Department Chairs or other officers of the school should not request them to do so.

Non-tenure Line faculty members who are solely engaged in research activities may voluntarily participate in de minimis professional opportunities (e.g., an occasional guest lecture or occasional term appointment to a non-standing and limited-engagement committee). Such voluntary activities may not be compensated by the Department or the Medical School, and individuals whose support is fully derived for research activities should not serve on standing/long-term committees nor take on teaching duties of recognized authority (i.e., as course instructor or co-instructor) without a reallocation of FTE to these pursuits.

In some cases Non-tenure Line faculty members may have an identified portion of their FTE dedicated to specific teaching obligations under conditions where the Department/Institute has funds to cover the compensation obligations to the Non-tenure Line faculty member on a contract basis. Teaching activities on such a contract basis are limited to the period for which the Department/Institute has funds available to support such activities and do not obligate the Medical School to any continued support for Non-tenure Line faculty members (i.e., subvention).

To be in compliance with the US Government Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), faculty members in the Non-tenure Line who are expected under terms of their hire to develop a research program and who are committed at > 50% effort (6 person-months) as principal investigator (PI) or co-investigator (co-I) on sponsored awards (whether federal or non-federal) will be afforded at a minimum 5% central support for grant writing and other service activities precluded as allowable costs on federal research awards. Non-tenure Line faculty who demonstrate excellence in research as set forth by guidelines in Appendix 4 :Subvention Guidelines may be provided with additional subvention support (e.g., 25% or 50%), but such subvention is not made in perpetuity and is contingent upon a continued level of maintained support.

C. Academic Progression and Promotion in the Non-tenure Faculty Line (Research-Intensive Track)

It is the joint responsibility of the faculty member and the departmental Chair to establish a clear understanding of the faculty member's goals and the Medical School’s expectations to achieve those goals in order to develop plans to advance their academic career. This process leads to the generation of an academic portfolio that is consistent with the mission of Geisel, tailored to the particular talents, interests, and responsibilities of the individual faculty member, and guided by criteria that define accomplishment along specific career paths. The portfolio is a framework for academic development

C1. Departmental Oversight:

The Chair (and/or their designee as academic advisor) shall meet with each faculty member at the rank of Assistant Professor or Associate Professor on a regular basis (which, at a minimum is annually, but which is expected to be more than once per year) in order to assure that each faculty member below the rank of Professor is meeting expectations for research, and, in those cases where applicable, formal teaching and service to Dartmouth.

Each department should work to establish a template for gathering appropriate information such that the Chair (or Chair designee) should be able to assess the accomplishments and shortfalls of each faculty member with respect to the expectations in their academic line. Templates may vary from department to department, but each department is encouraged to use a similar template and mechanism of assessment for all of its faculty members within a specific track. Chairs (or their designees) need to identify accomplishments, shortfalls and trajectory for advancement well in advance of an expected date for promotion review.

To this end, it is also the obligation of each department to designate a senior mentor or (ideally) a senior faculty mentoring committee to each faculty member below the rank of Professor to guide their academic advancement. Reciprocally, faculty members should convey to Chairs/mentoring committees information related not only on their status with respect to their scholarship, teaching, research, engagement and service, but also as to what resources are needed (and what barriers they believe exist) to maximize their academic potential.

C2. Research-Intensive Non-tenure Faculty Line

C2a. Assistant Professor to Associate Professor:

For faculty in the Research-Intensive Track of the Non-tenure Faculty Line, the Chair(s) (and/or their designee) of the Department(s) should review the progress of each Assistant Professor with their senior faculty (or Promotions Committee) according to policies outlined in Appendix 5: Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth Guidelines for Faculty Promotion Procedures, with the expectation that each Assistant Professor in the AMS Faculty Line will be put forward for review by the APT Committee for promotion to Associate Professor by six (6) years in rank as Assistant Professor. Although advancement to Associate Professor within six (6) years in rank is the expectation, multiple renewals of three (3)-year terms as Assistant Professor are allowable in the Non-tenure Faculty Line.

C2b. Associate Professor to Professor:

For faculty in the Research-Intensive Track of the Non-tenure Faculty Line, the Chair(s) of the Department(s) should review the progress of each Associate Professor with their senior faculty (or Promotions Committee), with the expectation that each Associate Professor in the Tenure-track/Tenure Line will be put forward for review by the APT Committee for promotion to Professor within six (6) years in rank as Associate Professor.

Criteria for promotion (or initial appointment) to the rank of Professor follow from those established for appointment/promotion to Associate Professor, with the expectation that both quantitative and qualitative advances in research, education, engagement, and clinical care, as applicable, will have been made in order for this rank to be bestowed. While accomplishments may vary with the individual, those promoted to Professor must have a sustained record of excellence and will have garnered extramural recognition at the national and/or international level for research, original scholarship, and, if applicable, teaching and service/engagement.

C3. Accelerated appointments and promotions

It is the expectation that faculty members should be mentored along an academic trajectory that will lead to their successful promotion, on average, after 6 years in rank, and with portfolios being presented to the APT Committee in most cases during the faculty member's fifth to sixth year in rank. It is also recognized that some individuals may achieve academic success and recognition that may be consistent with promotion on an accelerated timeframe.

While such accelerated promotions are not expected to be common, they may be considered under the following guidelines:

  • The candidate has a history of documented and sustained accomplishments in their prior years in rank that are consistent with the criteria for promotion;
  • Beyond their past track record, at the point in time that the candidate is being considered for accelerated promotion, they have evidence of robust academic accomplishments which are recognized as, without doubt, meeting the expectations/criteria set forth for the level of promotion;
  • That extending the period of time that the candidate is in rank prior to being reviewed (i.e., the standard 5-6 years) would not substantively change the likelihood that the APT Committee, Dean, DAB, Provost and (where relevant, Board of Trustees) would, based on the candidate's full portfolio, find that the candidate had met the criteria for advancement. That is, a candidate's promotion should not be delayed solely so that they meet years in rank if all other metrics have been met.

C4. Lecturer Non-tenure Faculty Line

Promotion requests to Senior Lecturer may be considered for individuals who have excelled as educators (as made evident by teaching reviews) and in program development and administration beyond the classroom itself. Promotion requests for advancement to Senior Lecturer will originate with a request from the Chair of the faculty member's primary department. The Chair will submit the following materials to the Dean of Faculty Affairs:

  1. The Chair’s letter of support for the candidate, which should summarize the candidate’s professional obligations and the accomplishments that warrant consideration for advancement,
  2. A current CV for the candidate that provide relevant information on training, past and current academic titles, bibliography of peer-reviewed and non-peer-reviewed scholarship, an educator's portfolio (see Geisel CV instructions) and personal statement (see Geisel CV instructions).
  3. Three letters of reference from faculty members (may be internal or external) that address the candidate's qualifications for advanced rank in addition to the letter from the chair.
  4. All relevant teaching reviews (metrics and narratives).

The Dean of Faculty Affairs will assemble an ad hoc committee comprising

  1. The Dean of Faculty Affairs.
  2. Two faculty members at the rank of Senior Lecturer, Associate Professor or Professor who are
    1. Not in the home department of the candidate;
    2. Have applicable expertise relevant to the candidate;
    3. Have no other conventional conflicts of interest with the Research Scientist candidate.

The committee shall forward a recommendation to the Dean.

C5. Efforts to advance diversity and inclusion:

The Geisel School of Medicine believes a diverse, equitable, and inclusive community of students, residents, fellows, staff, and faculty enhances our mission of providing exceptional education, advances biomedical discovery, and fosters innovation to help tackle the most vexing challenges in health care. Building a diverse and inclusive community is an institutional goal to which the Geisel community as a whole must contribute.  Therefore, it is also expected that during these annual meetings that Chairs will assess how their faculty members have advanced the school’s mission to build a diverse and inclusive organization.  Such efforts may include, but are not limited to:

  • Self-education or professional development opportunities that have increased your own awareness, empathy and ability to be inclusive.
  • Committee membership, leadership or other service opportunities that have advanced institutional initiatives for diversity, equity, and inclusion.
  • Mentoring, counseling or advising. This may be student organizations or individual students.  It may include mentoring of students who are themselves members of under-represented groups or mentoring majority students in order to enhance their understanding of key issues in diversity, equity, and inclusion.
  • Incorporation of material in courses, lectures etc. that enhances presentation/understanding of diverse groups. This may include (but not limited to) discussions of both biomedical/health issues that have impact on different under-represented groups, highlighting the accomplishments of non-majority clinicians/scientists who have historically contributed to our knowledge of a biomedical subject, inclusion of issues related to biomedical ethics/or subjects that would be included in medical humanities that encompass greater cultural competence.
  • Presentations that you have made to groups within the academic/medical community or the community at large that have enhanced understanding of diversity, equity, and inclusion.
  • Specific efforts in which you have been engaged that have led to enhanced recruitment or retention of under-represented faculty, staff or students (e.g., service on a search committee that hired a non-majority candidate; hiring a non-majority individual for your laboratory [staff or postdoc]; service on admissions committees [med or grad] that augment recruitment of non-majority students; participation in summer programs that have, as part of their mission, enhancement of non-majority students in the biomedical community).
  • Participation in pipeline programs or engagement in efforts to enhance recruitment at meetings (e.g., professional societies, AAMC) or in conjunction with other professional visits (e.g., when giving a seminar at other institutions).
  • Participation/membership in local, regional, national, or international organizations whose missions are to enhance diversity, equity, and inclusion.
  • Other efforts that you may want to report that would meet our diversity, equity, and inclusion goals.

In addition, specific programs developed and implemented that promote demonstrable enhancement of the recruitment, retention and advancement of a diverse and inclusive body of faculty, staff and students at Geisel may also fall under the areas of Academic Endeavor (Engagement) described below.

C6. Areas of endeavor for promotion in the Non-tenure Faculty Line

Research-Intensive: Research and scholarship are the predominant areas of endeavor by which faculty members in the Research-intensive track of the Non-tenure Faculty Line will be recognized for academic advancement. However, given that under specific contractual conditions, these faculty members may also engage in teaching and/or service/engagement, criteria for those areas of endeavor are also provided here. In those cases where individuals of the Non-tenure Faculty Line have engaged in teaching and/or service/engagement, accomplishments in these areas may be included in assessment for promotion (proportionally weighted for the relative FTE for which the faculty member has committed time), but they are not essential for advancement.=

Time in rank alone is not sufficient to warrant promotion. To merit reappointment or promotion, the faculty member must provide strong evidence of achievement according to the criteria appropriate to a particular portfolio of academic activities.

Scholarly activity in the Non-tenure Faculty Line is recognized in the areas of teaching, research (investigation), and engagement. For each component, promotion requires scholarship as defined by the creation and dissemination of new knowledge.

Lecturers: Teaching, program development and administration, and scholarship are the predominant areas of endeavor by which faculty members who hold the title of Lecturer may be advanced to Senior Lecturer.

The descriptions below provide professional models and related indicators of excellence for academic contributions within each arena. These criteria are neither completely inclusive nor absolute. Moreover, there is a rich interdependency among these areas, each informing aspects of the others. In particular the area of engagement may be interwoven into each of the other areas. The depth of accomplishment will also be expected to vary with promotion/appointment to Associate Professor (very strong regional to burgeoning national presence, as recognized by external peers and officers, as well as internal colleagues) versus promotion/appointment to Professor, with tenure (very strong national to international presence as recognized by external peers and officers, as well as internal colleagues). Finally, because notable accomplishments may vary not only among individuals, but also with time as innovations shape the academic sphere, the following descriptions are intended to be suggestive of appropriate criteria, but do not provide a rigid checklist of items that must be met or met in any specific number.

a. Teaching: Teaching is a core mission of Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth and a fundamental expectation of all members of the Geisel faculty. While Geisel has historically been primarily dedicated to the teaching of medical and graduate students, Geisel faculty now participate in the education of many other learners in our academic medical system, within our region, and beyond (e.g., residents and interns, students in the other professional schools and in Arts and Sciences at Dartmouth, students in summer courses, and students in Dartmouth Community Medical School). The goal of all scholarship is to inform those inside and outside our own sphere. An informed and diverse body of learners becomes a critical legacy of our faculty and institution, and we are committed to excellence in their education. Indeed, some members of the faculty may devote the majority of their professional energy to teaching and to the area of scholarship that is the development and dissemination of novel pedagogy.

We expect our faculty to be dedicated to our learners and to aspire to excellence in teaching. We recognize and reward our teachers for their ability to inspire these learners to achieve a sound mastery of the subject, a critical manner of thinking, a healthy skepticism of dogma, and a clear notion of what is both known and unknown in their field. In addition, we expect our faculty to instill in those they teach these same skills and values so that they, in turn, will excel in teaching others. Our faculty members should teach rather than train, serve as role models rather than simply instruct, and inspire students to expand the horizons of knowledge.

b. Criteria Related to Teaching

The candidate’s contribution to teaching and its impact on learners should be documented through syllabi showing participation in didactic courses, formal clerkship/residency/fellowship curricula, evidence of membership on thesis and qualifying examination committees, and documentation of training of individual students, including both identification of mentees and service on student committees. The criteria for teaching excellence include:

  • Recognition by peers and students as a key and/or outstanding individual in training, teaching, and advising of undergraduate, medical, and graduate students; residents, clinical, and postdoctoral research fellows; and allied medical personnel and peers. Such recognition of excellence is supported by:
    • Surveys, evaluations, and institutional ratings by students at all training levels;
  • Assessments of the candidate’s teaching contribution from department chairs or by other institutional officials (e.g., course directors) that provide a judgment based on a significant sample of the individual's teaching;
  • Documentation of the faculty member’s mentoring of a substantial number of students and of the documented outcomes of teaching (e.g., the mentees who have gone on to obtain positions of their own in biomedical or academic institutions);
  • Documentation of the success of specific educational programs implemented by a faculty member either singly or as a substantive member of a team that results in meeting specific defined goals of the department, the Medical School and/or the Medical School’s primary clinical partners, including (but not limited to):
    • Record of placement of residents in well-recognized programs which can be attributed to a new or revised program;
    • Record of hires of clinical trainees to the academic faculties and/or the professional staff of organizations with a reputation for excellence in academic medicine and/or health care delivery which can be attributed to a new or revised program;
    • Record of training providers that meet a specific goal identified by the school and the health care system (e.g., trainees that increase the ranks of primary care providers in rural areas).
    • Record of peer-reviewed publication and or extramural awards in areas of medical pedagogy;
    • Record of non-traditional scholarship in areas of medical pedagogy;
    • Record of student performance improvement (e.g., augmented scores on USMLE1);
    • Record of enhancing the educational experience and professional development of under-represented learners (e.g., but not limited to those recognized in the Geisel Diversity Commitment and Policy).
  • Formal acknowledgement of outstanding teaching (e.g., selection as Class Day speaker; Teacher of the Year award; membership in AOA, HHMI, and Teaching Professorships).
  • Leadership and major participation in departmental or institutional courses or educational programs (e.g., clinical clerkship directorship), development of novel graduate curricula or novel programs that extend across the institution (e.g., development or substantive contributions to MD/MSE, MD/MBA, MS/MD, MD/PhD, or AB/MD curricula).
  • Scholarship in the area of education and teaching methodologies, including textbooks, videotapes, and training manuals, as well as the development, dissemination, and effective implementation (documented) of new courses, curricular content, or novel teaching materials--syllabi, web-based and/or computer-assisted instruction, films, or videotapes. Developments that are peer-reviewed and/or exported on a national or international level shall be heavily weighted.
  • Scholarship in the area of innovation in curriculum design and teaching that enriches Dartmouth’s teacher/scholar model through the innovative use of institutional resources, such as library resources and expertise, that has an objective and evidence-based impact on learners.
  • Novel scholarship as made evident in Dartmouth’s Digital Library and Dartmouth Digital Learning Initiatives.
  • Peer-reviewed extramural support for educational inquiry.
  • Directorship or development of major courses or other curricular offerings and/or development of significant new teaching materials. Service in a major teaching responsibility (e.g., course director with major teaching responsibility) shall constitute a heavily weighted achievement when coupled with substantive effort commitment to other activities (e.g., clinical care or research).
  • Measures of student achievement (e.g., scores on local or national board and in-service examinations, publication of students’ work).
  • Effective leadership or major participation in Continuing Medical Education (CME) at the local, regional, or national level; design of courses; and/or participation therein.
  • Effective leadership or major participation in Graduate Medical Education (GME) at the local, regional, or national level; design of curricula; and/or participation therein.
  • Frequent invitations to serve as a visiting Professor or outside speaker, especially in endowed visiting Professorships or lectureships.
  • Letters of commendation for exceptional educational contributions to other institutions and organizations.
  • Evaluations and ratings arising from participation in other teaching programs.
  • Peer-reviewed research that involves the development or evaluation of teaching methods, material (e.g., national board questions), and/or new programs, or that defines important, innovative, and effective (documented) changes in medical education.
  • Editorship or authorship of textbooks, reviews, or other scholarly contributions.
  • Development of important curriculum offerings or teaching materials (including textbooks, web-based training modules, clinical handbooks) adopted by Geisel and/or other institutions.

Individuals for whom teaching and pedagogical research comprise a critical part of their academic endeavors may want to track their activities using an educator’s portfolio. While there is not a required template for these portfolios, we note that the AAMC provides helpful guidance for both planning and recording of these activities with respect to academic advancement.

b. Research: The mission of the investigator is research, encompassing the discovery, production, and dissemination of new knowledge. Productive scholarship at all levels, from the molecular basis of living systems and human disease to health services and public policy, is an essential characteristic of an academic medical system. The biomedical research of today informs and transforms clinical practice and the health care policies of tomorrow. Results of research can have exponential influence well beyond Geisel by enhancing our understanding of the fundamentals of biological processes, developing new drugs and devices, and advancing healthcare delivery. Accomplished, active investigators imbue their teaching with the rigor of the scientific method and the excitement of discoveries that transform their fields. Investigators nurture an atmosphere of inquiry that permeates all phases of biomedical training and, in turn, promotes the development of researchers under their tutelage who have the ability to ask critical questions. This skill is at the heart of academic medicine, and individuals who understand the fundamental mechanisms of health, disease, and health care delivery will be those best equipped to advance the frontiers of biomedical knowledge and promotion of wellness and excellence in clinical care.

The Geisel School of Medicine also recognizes that research may encompass a broad range of academic inquiry. Specifically, we recognize that as with laboratory or data sciences, peer-reviewed extramural support for educational inquiry and scholarship in this area of endeavor will be viewed as contributing to the research community and will be taken as validation of the faculty member’s contributions to advancing their given field.

b. Criteria Relating to Research

The candidate should be recognized by peers as an investigator whose work has been instrumental in promoting significant advances in their field of inquiry, inclusive of basic research, clinical research, pedagogy, and health care delivery science. Hallmarks of recognition include both those made as an individual and those made as part of a larger, cooperative team. Recognition of excellence in investigation is made evident by:

  • Documentation of the ability to create new knowledge or manners of thought, as made evident by continued publication of substantive, original studies (basic, clinical, pedagogical, or translational science) in peer-reviewed, high-quality journals. Assessment through publications and peers that one has had a substantive impact in driving advances in their chosen field of endeavor.
  • Recognition by peers for peer-reviewed. Disseminated, original, and substantive investigation as shown by external funding of competitive peer-reviewed projects, in individual investigator awards, and/or in multi-investigator/institutional projects (biomedical or educational/pedagogical).
  • In the case of both disseminated, peer-reviewed scholarship and peer-reviewed funding, Geisel recognizes that such efforts more likely than not will occur in the context of collaborations with colleagues and often times as the combined efforts among individuals in research teams. In this context, Geisel recognizes the importance of substantive and original investigation whether attributed to an individual who is the head of a research team or to members within such a team by the following standards:

Substantive and original scientific contributions represent content or methodological work that is substantive (associated with a major scientific contribution or impact) and original (novel and/or unable to be replaced or substituted with a generic or standard alternative). “Substantive and original” scientific contributions are critical to the impact, design, methods, findings and/or interpretation of research, and include ones that are specific to the faculty member offering the contribution. In the area of research methods, substantive and original contributions apply to, for example, developing novel techniques, methods, and/or analytic models that break new ground, establish novel paradigms, and are associated with original publications in peer-reviewed publications, and/or major invited presentations at national or international meetings, and/or attributable funding (as an independent investigator or as part of a team—with commensurate effort as noted above) to support development of those techniques.

While recognizing that the term substantive is subjective in nature, in the context of appointments or promotions to a faculty rank, unless otherwise indicated by documentation provided by the faculty member’s chair, it will be expected that substantive effort on sponsored projects will be reflected in greater than de minimis effort on such work. This designation of “substantive” does not mean that contributions to projects at de minimis effort are not without importance in evaluation of the faculty member’s portfolio, but that such efforts will be weighted accordingly in considering the overall the faculty member’s academic contributions. For promotion/appointment to Associate Professor or Professor, faculty members will be expected, in all but rare cases, to have a well-documented and consistent record of contributions on funded awards at this level of effort.

In contrast, to substantive contributions, a professional “service” or operational contribution is one that, while of noted value to the research project, can be readily replaced, substituted, contracted, or otherwise arranged or purchased and which is not unique to a faculty member. Examples of service or operational contribution include providing a research service, biological product (unless it is a novel reagent developed by the individual as part the academic program of discovery), tool, registering patients in a database, or routine component in a research study that are along the lines of standard practice in the field.

As noted above, research accomplishments are often achieved by individuals as part of a complex and distributed team of investigators and clinicians. The scholarly importance of these team-science activities is recognized even when individuals are not accorded conventional indications, such as first or last authorship on collaborative projects. While team science is to be recognized, individuals must provide intellectual input that is critical to the scholarship. Service participation, however useful to for the collaborative effort, does not meet the criteria for advancement if it is bereft of analysis and interpretation, which are the cornerstones of scholarship. Similarly, as with committed efforts on sponsored research, for a faculty member to hold the rank of Associate Professor or Professor, with rare exception, it will be the expectation that they have a well-documented and consistent record of peer-reviewed publication in indexed journals which they are recognized for making substantive and creative contributions to that work.

  • Entrepreneurial advances. The transfer of knowledge and technology is integral to the educational mission. Research excellence may be recognized by intellectual property (patents, licenses, rights granted under copyright) and the transfer of technological advances to industries that provide for the improvement of society.
  • Substantive, non-peer reviewed contributions to the biomedical literature (e.g., authorship or editorship of textbooks, monographs, reviews, or journals). Such contributions may also be relevant to a faculty member’s contributions as an educator and/or clinician.
  • National or international prizes or awards.
  • Invitation to hold endowed lectureships.
  • Invited lectures, particularly at major scientific meetings.
  • Development of programs that result in increased submission of awards and receipt of funded awards of learners/faculty engaged in research.
  • Development of programs/methodologies that enhance and support new modes of scholarship, applied practice, and research innovation
  • Impact of scholarly output (through a variety of media, including opinion pieces and white papers) on scientific debate, policy, and health care practice.
  • Participation on editorial boards, associate editorships, and editorships of journals.
  • A strong record of departmental/institutional participation in scientific training.
  • Leadership of or active participation in development of research programs (institutional, extramural, and those that link research efforts of Geisel with other organizations).
  • Active participation in research-related administrative or committee activity.
  • Leadership of or active participation in program projects, training grants, graduate programs, or postdoctoral training programs that advance scientific content in concert with the teaching of science.
  • Leadership roles in institutional activities that are critical for broad-based discovery and scholarship. While service work is expected of all faculty members, it is recognized that leadership roles associated with specific activities are fundamental to the scholarly output of large sectors of the institution, even if that individual is not identified by named investigator status on specific grants or published work arising from those efforts. Such efforts may include leadership roles with the Clinical Trials Office or in major initiatives such as establishment of institution-wide electronic health record (EHR), etc. Administrative support of such efforts in the absence of evidence of leadership capacity, while valued, is not a criterion for academic advancement.

Whether the research endeavor is characterized as team-based or not, it is the expectation that faculty and their mentors follow the precepts and guidelines of the ICMJE in terms of defining authorship ( In particular, faculty and those that mentor them need to adhere to 4 criteria recommended by the ICMJE:

  • Substantial contributions to the conception or design of the work; or the acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data for the work; AND
  • Drafting the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content; AND
  • Final approval of the version to be published; AND
  • Agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.

Both faculty members, and their senior mentors are also strongly encouraged to consult with the Biomedical Libraries on best publishing practices ( The librarians provide an excellent resource in how to adhere to journal and funding organization requirements, open access considerations, the meaning of impact factors and how they are calculated, as well as how to assess whether a given journal meets a given scholar’s community norms or to be potentially wary of it (i.e., it may be a “predatory journal).

c. Promotion of Wellness and Advancement of Clinical Care: Academic Medicine has two primary directives: 1) to promote population health as made evident by programs and efforts that augment wellness and lessen the burden to society of our health care systems programs and 2) to provide for excellence in clinical care as made evident through advances in clinical research and in direct clinical practice. Both clinicians and non-clinicians may lessen the burden of disease through research and program development that advance health and wellness. For faculty members that are engaged in direct clinical care, we expect both superior performance and a clear academic dimension to these activities, evidenced by breadth and depth of knowledge, awareness of the fundamentals of basic science, pathophysiology and current clinical concepts, extensive use of the biomedical resources available to assist and improve clinical care, excellent judgment, humility, and an exemplary willingness to both teach and learn from professional colleagues. As embodied in the Oath of Hippocrates, the clinician demonstrates a consistent and deeply held dedication to human welfare, the promotion of good health, and the relief of human suffering.

Excellence in promoting wellness and advancement of clinical care can be assessed by a number of indicators, including recognition by peers and patients, clinical scholarship, practice of evidence-based medicine, quality of clinical service, whether as an individual or a team, and contributions to the profession and institution. In each instance, these are by-products of the individual's dedication to the highest principles of medical practice.

Criteria Relating to Promotion of Wellness and Excellence in Clinical Care

Recognition by peers and patients--a reputation within and outside of DHMC for excellence in medical practice as made evident by:

  • Development and maintenance of clinical skills and/or programs that have been demonstrated to significantly improve patient outcomes, clinical innovation, and elected or invited service to the profession, taking into account the impact of the program, based on regional health care need, patient volumes, program quality, and sustainability. Impact of such programs may be (but are not required to be) gauged through measures that include (but are not limited to):
    • Improved clinical effectiveness within the health care organization which can be attributed to a new or revised program;
    • Improved indices of wellness/professional satisfaction of professional staff in the health care system which can be attributed to a new or revised program;
    • Improved patient and/or population outcomes which can be attributed to a new or revised program;
    • Improved interprofessional dynamics of a clinical service attributable which can be attributed to a new or revised program;
    • Increased patient referral base which can be attributed to a new or revised program.
  • Record of placement of medical students in high quality residency programs which can be attributed to a new or revised program
  • Excellence in metrics/attestations of quality of care (e.g., patient testimonials, peer and support team evaluations).
  • Regional to national (for Associate Professor) or national/international (for Professor) recognition by peers and patients as an excellent clinician and consultant; evidence of unusual competence and accomplishment in clinical service.
  • Invitation to lead, organize or participate as faculty in regional or national CME courses or other programs that disseminate medical knowledge.
  • Evidence of a leadership role in local or regional clinical affairs by service (e.g., as Section Chief, Clerkship Director, Departmental Vice Chair, Departmental Chair, Center Director, or Service Line Director) and/or active and ongoing participation in committee, program, and/or governing boards.
  • Design and/or participation in workshops that promote and improve clinical care.
  • Patient referrals or professional recommendations from other health care providers and patients and complexity of patients referred, when applicable to the specialty and taking into account percentage of referrals/consultations that are requested by other peer providers rather than assigned number.
  • Recognition by key partners of excellence in care that arises from the concerted efforts of a team of practitioners. It is recognized that referrals may not be common for certain disciplines (radiology, anesthesiology, emergency medicine, pathology). In these fields, the recommendations of colleagues who can attest to the importance of the skills and contributions of the candidate in promoting the well-being of their patients will be weighed.
  • Consulting activities, documented acknowledgement by peers as a premier consultant, and requested involvement in complex clinical problems.
  • Introduction of novel and innovative skills or techniques locally, regionally, nationally, or internationally.
  • Special competencies that improve or extend other clinical or training programs.
  • Participation in clinical and translational research including questions relating basic biomedical science to clinical care, clinical trials, comparative effectiveness research, and quality improvement and translating education research and innovation into standard teaching practice. In assessing such participation, prime consideration should be given to the role of the individual in concept, design, oversight, and conduct of the research activity, as well as membership on key project committees and authorship.

Geisel does not require measurements such as numbers of referrals, clinical revenue productivity or patient satisfaction surveys in promotion review as these measures may not be relevant to all clinical fields (e.g., referrals to emergency medicine) and may not provide the most accurate assessment of clinical skill (i.e., patients may not like a decision made by a provider, but that decision nonetheless reflects the best avenue of clinical care).

d. Engagement: Engagement has been defined as “a highly positive step towards reestablishing what higher education is intended to be: a community of scholars, serving both internal and external audiences in addition to the academic and the public good.”[1] As such, engagement recognizes that service to both intra- and extramural communities fulfills not only an operational function, but is also fundamental to scholarship. Engagement is an alliance of university scholars, lay people, and individual knowledge-creating institutions in the local, regional, national and international community. Engagement promotes the public good and produces “projects that create knowledge and understanding that we cannot obtain anywhere else, while strengthening culture, community, and democracy.”[2] While committee membership is recognized as a valuable contribution to the academic community and is considered in the evaluation for appointment or promotion, engagement goes beyond service work. Engagement is one of the key endpoints of scholarship: extending academic efforts beyond one's own clinical, laboratory or classroom responsibilities to have a broader impact on the biomedical community within the institution and on society and its environs at large.

Criteria Related to Engagement

  • Regional/national (Associate Professor) or national/international (Professor) recognition by peers for original teaching or investigative accomplishments as made evident by invited presentations, lectures, and symposia, requested publications; and formal awards. It is expected that national/international invitations will be more prevalent for those being considered at the rank of Professor than Associate Professor.
  • Distinctive recognition through formal awards, invited and named lectures, and participation in symposia, professional society programs, and invitations to lead or participate in notable regional, national, or international courses. It is expected that named lectureships and national/international awards will be more prevalent for those being considered for the rank of Professor than Associate Professor.
  • Membership on editorial boards, study sections, and/or advisory groups.
  • Leadership roles on editorial boards, study sections, and/or advisory groups.
  • Appointed or elected membership/leadership roles in major societies; committee/program, national professional organizations; governing boards and organizations for major professional meetings. It is expected that such elections will be more prevalent for those being considered for the rank of Professor than Associate Professor.
  • Membership (elected) and/or leadership roles in societies and/or governing boards related to the candidate’s area of endeavor. Participation from local/regional to national/international level is expected to increase from Associate Professor to Professor. Progression from membership to leadership roles is also expected to increase from Associate Professor to Professor.
  • Leadership roles in institutional activities that are critical for broad-based scholarship and/or transformative programs at Dartmouth. While service work is expected of all faculty members, it is recognized that leadership roles associated with specific activities are fundamental to the missions of large sectors of the institution, even when that individual may not be identified by named investigator status on specific grants or published work arising from those efforts. Such efforts may include leadership roles with major programs (e.g., Senior Administration, Dartmouth/Geisel Centers; NSF ADVANCE grants; COBRE or INBRE awards) or in major institutional initiatives. Administrative support of such efforts in the absence of evidence of leadership capacity, while valued, is not a criterion for academic advancement.
  • Record of advancing scholastic achievement of learners who enter programs from a less advantaged foundation than the majority of their peers.
  • Membership (elected) and leadership on state, national, and federal advisory committees.
  • Consultancy participation in or institutional reviews of major external programs.
  • Appointed or elected service and leadership on Geisel/DH/Dartmouth College Advisory Committees.
  • Contributions to entrepreneurial efforts that create new products or implement advances in product design and instrumentation relative to biomedical science and/or biomedical education.
  • Contributions to non-conventional scholarship (e.g., opinion pieces, white papers) that can be shown (e.g., page view, citations) to have a substantive impact on scientific debate, policy, and health care practice.
  • Contributions to advances in computation and computing infrastructure and to development and implementation of large databases and/or networks.
  • Participation in community-based research organizations.
  • Contributions to education communities of practice and/or education collaborations.
  • Design and participation in workshops that advance key areas of academic medicine.
  • Contributions with respect to departmental and institutional service related to the mission of the Medical School.
  • Leadership of or major participation in community engagement venues (e.g., Geisel Community Medical School, HHMI-sponsored outreach programs).
  • Development and implementation of curricula associated with regional K-12 outreach.
  • Community science cafes and other initiatives that disseminate advances in science and healthcare through media for the general public.
  • Community mentoring activities including efforts to enhance the skills of students entering STEM fields and efforts to enhance the diversity of student and faculty representation at Geisel.
  • Pro bono service at organizations (regional, national, and international) that further health care and biomedical teaching/science (e.g., The Good Neighbor Clinic, Headrest, Listen, WISE, Second Growth, Dar-Dar, the WHO, After School Enrichment Programs).
  • Involvement in initiatives that advance science and medical education at academic and non-academic institutions outside of Dartmouth.
  • Involvement in initiatives that meet key departmental and/or institutional goals in attracting individuals from under-represented groups to residency and fellowship programs and to the professional staff of the health system; and/or developing mentorship and sponsorship programs that act to enhance the representation of under-represented women and minorities in areas of health care.
  • Finally, many areas of engagement fall under the rubric of Advocacy.  As with program development, faculty members may have substantive impacts at the regional and national levels through advocacy, including testimonial and involvement in position papers and reviews that shape the direction of medicine and science through local, state, and federal government agencies. For those for whom advocacy comprises a substantial part of their academic portfolio, these advocacy-directed activities need to be academic in pursuit and, as with other areas of program development, efforts in advocacy should be goal-directed, with impact and outcomes demonstrated by rigorous assessment of relevant data.  Participation alone is not sufficient.

D. Termination of employment and faculty appointment:

Faculty appointments shall terminate effective of the employment termination date (irrespective of the end date of the appointment term), unless otherwise agreed upon in writing by the Dean of Geisel School of Medicine. New appointments in a different line (e.g., adjunct) may be granted to those who continue to fulfill criteria to hold such titles. Sponsoring departments must submit termination of title paperwork to the Dean's Office for faculty members in the Tenure-track/Tenure Line who leave employment. As noted above, if the Dean determines that there are insufficient funds at Geisel to continue with the faculty appointment and/or the faculty member’s specific teaching or research program, employment may be terminated and faculty members must be given a minimum of thirty (30)-days’ notice prior to termination of employment.


[1] Ward, K. Faculty Service Roles and the Scholarship of Engagement, 2003.

[2] Ellison, J. and Eatman, T.K. Scholarship in Public: Knowledge Creation and Tenure Policy in the Engaged University, 2008.