Policy on Use of Teaching Dossiers in Faculty Evaluation

Consistent with the recommendation of Leadership in Learning, Western's strategic plan, on the recommendation of the Provost's Advisory Committee on Faculty Evaluation and Development and the Senate Committee on University Planning, Senate adopted the following policy on the contents and use of teaching dossiers. The use of the teaching dossier will ensure that faculty members who are being considered for promotion and tenure receive a fair and thorough evaluation of their teaching contributions which comprise a very significant component of their academic performance.

The Use of Teaching Dossiers in Faculty Evaluation

To provide a more complete and comprehensive method of evaluating teaching for faculty personnel decisions at The University of Western Ontario,

  1. Teaching dossiers are part of the required documentation for evaluation of teaching at The University of Western Ontario.
  2. Full teaching dossiers are to be used only for decisions on faculty tenure and promotion and for teaching award nominations, and are not required for annual performance appraisal or salary adjustments.
  3. The teaching dossier represents one component only of the total dossier considered by promotion and tenure committees.
  4. The contents of teaching dossiers should conform to the guidelines attached.
  5. The maximum length of teaching dossiers is 35 pages, including a maximum of 20 pages of appendices.
  6. Sample teaching dossiers will be made available by the Teaching Support Centre.
  7. Policies and procedures relating to teaching dossiers will be reviewed on a regular basis.

Guides & Examples

A Guide to Constructing Your Teaching Dossier

Teaching Dossier Example I

Teaching Dossier Example II

Teaching Dossier Example III

Guidelines: Contents of UWO Teaching Dossier

Categories designated as Required would be included in all teaching dossiers submitted for tenure and promotion purposes, whereas categories designated Recommended are advisable but not mandatory, and Optional categories are included if material is available and deemed appropriate by individual departments or faculty members.

Teaching Responsibilities

  • List of all courses or segments of courses taught in the past 7 years (or since initial appointment), plus a description of your role therein and the level of assistance provided by your department or faculty. (In the case of promotion, the dossier should cover the period since the last promotion.)
  • Course outlines (maximum length 5 pages each) for all courses taught in the past 2 years
  • List of all students supervised, including graduate and undergraduate theses, independent study, and practicum supervision.
  • List of academic advising duties for past 5 years.

Teaching Philosophy

  • A succinct, clearly reasoned statement of your personal beliefs about teaching and how these have influenced your choice of teaching methods, i.e., an explanation of why you do what you do. Maximum length: 1-2 pages.

Teaching Innovations

  • description of novel teaching methods or curriculum material that you have developed, including textbooks, lab manuals, assignments, computer software, and materials for courses in mediated learning modes .. maximum length 1 page.
  • contributions you have made to development of new courses or revision of existing courses.
  • evidence of impact or effectiveness of above innovations .. for example, data from program evaluation studies or letters of support from colleagues, students, or curriculum experts.

Evidence of Teaching Effectiveness: Classroom Teaching

  • Graphical or tabular summary of formal student ratings for all questions related to teaching effectiveness for all courses taught at UWO, or all courses taught in the last 7 years, whichever is less ..maximum length 3 pages.
  • Letters from students, parents, former students, or employers of former students .. letters should be designated as solicited, or unsolicited, and if solicited, the letter of solicitation should be included.
    (Inclusion of solicited letters is required. Inclusion of unsolicited letters is optional.)
  • Colleague evaluations based on direct observation of classroom teaching .. maximum length, 2 pages (total) .... colleague observers should be selected by mutual consent of the faculty member and the Chair or Dean.
  • Objective indicators of amount learned by students... for example, mean student performance on a committee-graded or objectively scored final examination in a multi-section course.
  • Evidence of student success attributable, in part, to your teaching .. for example, awards, acceptance for advanced study.

Course Content and Course Management

  • Colleague evaluations based on analysis of course documents and materials such as course outlines, assignments, and sample graded essays or exams .. maximum length 2 pages (total) .. colleague evaluators should be selected by mutual consent of faculty member and Chair or Dean.
  • Formal student ratings of course (as opposed to instructor) quality or impact.

Student Supervision

  • Letters from former undergraduate or graduate students for whom you served as thesis, research, or practicum supervisor .. maximum length 4 pages (total) .. letters should be designated as solicited or unsolicited, and if solicited, the letter of solicitation should be included.
    (Inclusion of solicited letters is required. Inclusion of unsolicited letters is optional)
  • Evidence of student success attributable in part to your supervision .. for example, awards, appointments, publications, acceptance for advanced study.

Prior Recognition

  • Teaching awards or nominations.
  • Invitations to teach or contribute curriculum materials to other institutions or departments.

Professional Development

  • Brief description of steps taken to improve your teaching, including workshops and seminars attended, courses completed, and peer consultation.

Educational Leadership

  • Membership on curriculum or educational policy and planning committees.
  • Membership on committees responsible for evaluating or improving teaching.
  • Delivery of formal faculty development programs, for example, running workshops, serving as peer consultant or faculty development specialist.

Research on Teaching

  • Papers published or presented on teaching or curriculum issues, including articles proposing or evaluating new teaching methods or curriculum developments.
  • Informal, unpublished research on teaching.