BSD Track Faculty:  Advisory Committee on Assistant Professors (ACAP)

Assistant Professors in their fifth year receive an advisory review by the Advisory Committee on Assistant Professors (ACAP).  The purpose of the review is to provide helpful advice before you enter the promotion and tenure process.  This review requires you to submit a CV and research and teaching narratives, and to make a brief research presentation to the ACAP committee highlighting the significance of the research, the scientific challenge or opportunity you are pursuing, and your projected timeline. 

This fifth-year review for Assistant Professors was added because the reappointment review, at three years before the promotion decision, can be too soon for assessment of prospects for promotion. The ACAP review is timed to be later but still early enough for advice to be useful.  Note that your ACAP materials (below) and presentation and the review outcome will not be shared with the promotions committee (COAP). 

 

Your department will need to provide various documents to ACAP at least two to three weeks in advance of your presentation, including:

  1. A current CV, which should include current/pending publications and manuscripts, invited speaking and service, and grant support (click here for a model CV)
  2. Research/scholarship statement (1 – 2 pages)
  3. Teaching narrative (.5 page)
  4. Preprints, unpublished manuscripts and specific aims of grants in preparation or under consideration
  5. From the Department Chair:  A Cover Letter (1 – 3 pages) summarizing the Assistant Professor’s prospects for promotion and tenure, and the basis for this judgment.  It should also discuss (a) the time burden of duties other than research, and (b) the department’s view of the appropriate summary advice.

Preparing the Presentation:  

  • Presentations are 15 minutes, plus 5 minutes for open questions from the committee (total 20 minutes).  Please submit a short powerpoint or equivalent presentation the day before your presentation to:  officeoffacultyaffairs@bsd.uchicago.edu.
  • As ACAP includes BSD faculty who are not experts in your field (just like the promotions committee), avoid field specific jargon and assumptions and complex slides, and clearly explain the significance of your work.
  • Include a discussion of how your published research as an independent investigator will, by the time of tenure review, clearly have the “rigor, creativity, and fundamental impact” to satisfy tenure expectations.  
  • Be clear about your contributions to collaborative efforts.  Be prepared to answer questions about how you are documenting your contribution and the independence of your involvement in collaborative and team-based research.

Timeline:

For those whose second term begins on July 1st:                       

 
July

Start of 5th year as assistant professor.
Assistant Professor and Dept Chair are notified of ACAP process.
Timing of ACAP meetings in October-November is set.

September

Assistant professor provides materials to departmental office, leaving time for preparation of departmental cover letter.

October

Assistant professor materials and departmental cover letter due at OFA, 1 month before ACAP presentation

November

20-minute presentation by assistant professor to ACAP

December ACAP advice transmitted to the Assistant Professor and Department Chair in writing

These are target dates and are subject to change from year to year.  Timelines are comparable for assistant professors with other start dates.

 Additional Resources 

The Office of Academic Affairs houses guidelines and information for BSD Track faculty preparing for promotion, including requirements, timetables, and examples of materials used in successful promotions cases.  Click here for more information.