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Evaluation of Research, Scholarship, and Creative Activities

CAUT Policy Statement

Evaluation for renewal, tenure, promotion or other career decisions is an integrated process which must balance different components of academic work. The collective agreement should make clear that the evaluation of research, scholarship and creative activities, like the evaluation of teaching and service, is only one component of this integrated process. Any evaluation of research, scholarship or creative activities should be carried out only under the provisions of the collective agreement between the academic staff association and the employer.

Research, scholarship and creative activity includes, regardless of format, the discovery, integration, interpretation, practice and/or application of a member’s professional expertise. It includes the scholarship of teaching, which consists of original and innovative thought and analysis related to pedagogy and/or learning. Research, scholarship, and creative activity also include academic work related to service, including social activism and community engagement.

Evidence of research, scholarship and creative activities can be in the form of written publication, Indigenous oral practices and other oral traditions, participation in conferences and scholarly and professional meetings, development of library and archival collections and services, production or performance of creative and artistic works, service on editorial boards, and other contributions to an academic discipline including the scholarship of teaching and professional practice. The evaluation of research, scholarship and creative activity should acknowledge diverse pathways and non-traditional approaches and methodologies.

Evaluations should consider a minimum period of three years’ performance unless they are for appointments of shorter duration.

Persons or committees performing evaluations should:

(a) demonstrate impartiality;
(b) have the appropriate expertise to carry out the evaluation including recent and relevant equity or other training;
(c) provide to the person whose performance is being evaluated a full written explanation of the purpose, procedures and criteria;
(d)  meet the person whose performance is being evaluated and provide an opportunity to respond to any concerns which might arise prior to a recommendation or decision being made;
(e) review all the information submitted by the person whose performance is being evaluated; and
(f)  provide a full written report that includes a statement of purpose and scope of the evaluation, summary of the information that was used, analysis of the information and a statement with reasons for their conclusions.

Anonymous materials or hearsay should never be used in evaluations.

Approved by the CAUT Council, April 2016; Editorial revision, June 2021.