Arrival at Texas Tech
If you are new to Texas Tech University, your department chair, or a designated person, will be your best resource for information, including information about paperwork that must be filled out, setting up your office, research space, acquiring keys, and other issues. Each department has slightly different procedures.
The Department of Human Resources has created a New Employees webpage that provides a step-by-step guide to help you make a successful transition into your new position.
If you are setting up laboratory or studio space, be sure to contact the Department of Environmental Health and Safety (EH&S) for input addressing such issues as chemical storage, room design and chemical inventory. Your department chair, or a designated person, can provide guidance.
Texas Tech is one of the largest campuses in the country. An online campus map is available to help you find your way around.
eRaider is your electronic ID at Texas Tech University. You will need your eRaider account to access Texas Tech's wired and wireless networks with your PC, download and access free software, access your Texas Tech email account, Blackboard, high performance computing services, and to utilize many other Texas Tech and external resources. For security purposes, you must provide and verify a secondary contact phone number during your eRaider account setup for utilization with two-factor authentication when changing your eRaider password, recovering your password, or when accessing select services, such as direct deposit.
Your eRaider account is automatically created during the hiring process; however, you will need to "activate" it by following these steps:
- Confirm with your department that your hiring documents have been processed (referred to as an "ePAF" – electronic personnel action form)
- Obtain an initial set-up code that will allow you to set a password from the Texas Tech IT Division at New Faculty Orientation or the University ID office in room 103 of the Student Union Building. Note that you will need to appear in person and present a government-issued ID (driver's license, passport, visa, etc.) to receive your eRaider set-up code.
- Once you have the set-up code, visit the eRaider website. There, you will enter the
set-up code as a one-time password and be prompted to set a new password.
Sharing eRaider credentials is strictly prohibited, as it violates institutional policy and State of Texas mandate. Be cautious of phishing schemes – TTU will not ask you for password information by email or phone.
Information Technology Resources
The Texas Tech University Information Technology Division (TTUITD), managed by the Texas Tech Office of the CIO, provides a wide selection of computing resources and services for faculty, in support of institutional strategic goals and priorities. Information about these resources is available at www.infotech.ttu.edu, and includes information, such as:
- Free Microsoft Office 365 and Symantec Endpoint Protection software
- Discounted hardware bundles from Dell and Apple
- OneDrive for Business Cloud storage (similar to DropBox, but with data protection, including encryption and FERPA compliance)
- Encryption technology to secure protected data
- Laptop/tablet checkout for overseas travel
- Selected specialized software (AutoCAD, MATLAB, ESRI, SPSS, SAS)
- REDCap data collection and collaboration platform
- Texas Tech Data Center - a secure, climate-controlled environment to house your computing resources and data; Data is backed up according to prevailing industry-recognized business continuity and disaster recovery best practices
- Access to regional and national high-speed networks including access to Internet 2
The High Performance Computing Center (HPCC) provides consulting and assistance to campus researchers with experimental software and/or hardware needs, training in parallel and grid computing, and administration for local high performance systems. HPCC offers a host of services and solutions that include grid computing and research clusters.
Partnering with the Texas Tech Library, the Texas Tech IT Division is also making available a research data management solution (RDMS) as a repository for storing research data. For more information, contact HPCC Support at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Data and Information Resource Security
The Texas Tech Information Technology Division (TTUITD)has dedicated resources to support and facilitate our research mission that are designed to secure data and information resources. The Texas Tech Office of the CIO works with faculty to classify and protect confidential and sensitive research data. University policies require that if sensitive or confidential data is stored or copied to mobile devices, such as laptops, then the data must be encrypted. The Texas Tech IT Division provides an encryption solution that will satisfy the encryption requirements for most users, including researchers. In some cases, researchers may require a higher level of encryption technology for certain types of data. In these cases, the Texas Tech IT Division can work directly with the researchers to develop a customized solution.
A host of cybersecurity and other research-focused resources are available from the IT Division. For more detailed information about IT services for researchers, please contact IT Help Central at (806)742-4357 or email@example.com. We also invite you to review the IT Operating Policies, including the Texas Tech IT Security Policies.
New Faculty Orientation
There is a New Faculty Orientation scheduled a few days before the beginning of each semester. You will be contacted about the time, date and location. Attending orientation will answer a lot of questions about campus resources.
The Faculty Handbook provides a convenient reference for present and prospective faculty members.
Tenure and Promotion
Texas Tech's tenure and promotion rules are covered under Operating Policy 32.01.
The Tenure Academy is held annually to make clear the tenure process. Each session is facilitated by TTU administrators and faculty with proven expertise on the subject. The Tenure Academy is directed by the Division of Institutional Diversity, Equity and Community Engagement. Check with your home department about specific department or college tenure and promotion requirements. Some colleges will meet with new faculty each semester for mentoring you on the tenure and promotion process.
Faculty Professional Development
The Office of Research Services (ORS) offers workshops, including a faculty research orientation, and seminars on the basics of proposal budgeting as well as use of various electronic proposal submission systems. Some of these workshops have been recorded and posted online for your convenience.
The Teaching, Learning and Professional Development Center (TLPDC) offers a variety of opportunities to strengthen your classroom skills. From confidential teaching consultations to weekly seminars touching on classroom skills and issues, the TLPDC is a valuable resource for new faculty members or for those wanting to refresh their skills. The TLPDC also partners with the OVPR and other campus areas to offer seminars and workshops on research ethics, academic integrity and assessment.
The OVPR offers Programs to Support Faculty Success. The OVPR also has developed a number of internal funding opportunities to assist faculty including:
- Presidents' Collaborative Research Initiative
- Seed Grant Solicitation for Interdisciplinary Research
- Proposal Support Program
- Proposal Review Program
- Transdisciplinary Research Academy
- Scholarship Catalyst Program
All faculty are urged to attend the monthly Faculty Research Club which provides a social setting to stimulate interdisciplinary research collaborations, networking and promote informal discussions about research.
The OVPR recognizes faculty excellence through nominations for selected external awards and internal award programs. Certain external awards recognized by the Center for Measuring University Performance, the American Association of Universities and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board carry incentives from the Offices of the Provost and the OVPR. Details can be found at the Targeted External Faculty Awards Program webpage.
Faculty excellence also is recognized through three internal awards:
- Barney E. Rushing Jr. Distinguished Research Award
- Chancellor Council Distinguished Research Awards
- President's Commercialization Award
The OVPR also tracks nominations and awards and asks all faculty who have been nominated for or received research awards and honors. To report awards or nominations, please click here.
If you are working with graduate or undergraduate students in your research or scholarship, it's important to think about and talk to students about how the mentor relationship will work. Faculty also should talk at length with students about ownership of data.
Faculty are responsible for ensuring that their students are:
- Following all institutional and sponsor requirements
- Properly trained in appropriate laboratory or studio culture and ethics
- Following responsible conduct of research guidelines
- Participating in required responsible conduct of research training
Faculty should also discuss academic integrity with their students, including such issues as publication authorship credits, plagiarism, image manipulation, misrepresenting facts and data, and any discipline-specific intellectual property issues. Many departments and colleges have student handbooks with useful information. The university has developed a Statement of Academic Integrity.
The OVPR also offers responsible research training activities for faculty, staff and students. For those with NSF-funded projects, you and your research team may be required to complete the CITI or Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative. For questions, contact Marianne Evola in the OVPR. The OVPR Office of Responsible Research website also offers a variety of RCR external resources for your use. There also are several external examples of best practices available, such as the one from DataONE.
Promote your Research
The university Office of Communications and Marketing is charged with publicizing Texas Tech faculty and their research, scholarship and creative endeavors. Each member of the media relations and marketing teams provides coverage for different aspects of the university and is dedicated to responding to media inquiries and supporting the communication needs of schools, colleges, departments and other programs. Faculty members are encouraged to contact the appropriate communications person when their research yields a new grant or publication. The office also provides design services to support the communications needs of the campus community.
Communications and Marketing publishes Texas Tech Today that features interesting stories from around campus.
The Office of the Vice President for Research (OVPR) also has a communications office that publishes Texas Tech Discoveries: Research, Scholarship, Creative Activity, a biannual electronic magazine. The monthly electronic internal newsletter Scholarly Messenger is also produced by the OVPR and includes news of interest to the research community.
Spending Start-up Funds
Start-up funding will be set up and transferred to accounts in your department under your direction upon commencement of your appointment. This funding is expected to accelerate and enhance your research program. All funding distributed by the OVPR must be expended in a manner that increases the research capacity of the institution. Specific funding information, guidelines, and expenditure deadlines will be communicated and are set by departments such as purchasing, travel and human resources. Your department business manager will be of assistance in setting up and expending your start-up, however, you are welcome to contact Michele Hamilton, senior director of finance and administration, or Josie Solis, OVPR business manager, for further questions.
Grant and Contract Transfer
Project transfer can be an unexpectedly lengthy process and could take months to finalize.
The first thing you should do is inform the program director of your intended move to see if the project can be transferred. Not all projects can be moved.
Transferring projects to Texas Tech from another institution requires the following steps:
- Stop work and discontinue expenditures at your previous institution.
- The accounting department at your previous institution must submit a final financial report to the sponsor.
- The sponsored programs office at your previous institution must notify the sponsor of intent to relinquish the project.
- Contact the Proposal Services team in the Texas Tech Office of Research Services (ORS) as soon as possible so that a
transfer request can be processed. The following will be needed:
- Internal routing approvals must be obtained.
- A budget of unexpended funds must be created. An estimate is acceptable until the final financial report is submitted by your previous institution.
- A brief proposal, or status report, describing the project objectives that have been accomplished at the previous institution and the objectives remaining to be accomplished at Texas Tech. This will be submitted by ORS at TTU.
- Submit any human subjects, animal use or biosafety protocols to respective committees at Texas Tech. If you plan to submit proposals or are transferring funds to Texas Tech, you must complete the conflict of interest certifications.
- Some agencies have specific requirements on these issues. Contact the Texas Tech ORS Proposal Services team for assistance.
- After your previous institution has submitted both a relinquishment letter and a final
financial report, the Texas Tech Proposal Services team will submit a transfer request to the sponsor. The transfer request will include:
- The completed transfer proposal
- A budget for funds to be transferred to and expended at Texas Tech
- Assurances and compliance certifications
Outside Compensation and Consulting
Faculty members are allowed to consult with outside entities, within state laws and Texas Tech Operating Policy 62.37. Outside employment must be compatible with the interests of Texas Tech and of such a nature that it will not detract from the usefulness and performance of the employee.
Please note that laws and university policies and procedures may be different from your previous institution. Please consult with your department chair or his/her designee.
Financial Conflict of Interest
Texas Tech Operating Policy 74.17 outlines the general university regulations and procedures regarding annual disclosure of significant business and financial interests, as well as the identification of conflicts or potential conflicts of interest. These regulations and procedures serve to protect the credibility and the integrity of the university's faculty and staff, as well as the institution. Forms, training options and instructions can be found on the Investigator Financial Disclosure website. All faculty who have grants or are planning to submit proposals to Public Health Service agencies, such as NIH, must follow specific PHS guidelines for financial disclosure, which are different than Texas Tech's guidelines.
Environmental Health and Safety
The Department of Environmental Health and Safety (EH&S) is responsible for a variety of safety, health and environmental issues at
Texas Tech. Staff members have been assigned to specific areas to assist faculty,
staff and students. The office also is responsible for hazardous and radioactive waste removal.
EH&S has created a variety of online training and laboratory safety materials to help researchers and lab managers, including a laboratory safety checklist.
To help faculty and students report potential safety issues, EH&S has created SCAN, the Safety Concerns And Near-miss system. SCANs are potential hazards or incidents that have not yet resulted in any personal injury or property damage. You can use SCAN to report potentially unsafe conditions, unsafe work habits, improper use of equipment, use of malfunctioning equipment, or unexpected reactions – and EH&S will follow-up. SCANs can be anonymous.
EH&S is also responsible for:
The Environmental Protection section is responsible for the management of hazardous chemical and biological wastes; surveillance of campus food facilities, swimming pools, laboratory animal facilities, and underground and above-ground storage tanks; environmental complaints; coordination of pest control operations; and monitoring of storm water management activities.
Occupational Safety is responsible for monitoring compliance with federal, state and local safety and health regulations. Surveys may include but are not limited to noise, lighting, ventilation, chemical hygiene, hazard communication, airborne contaminants, and accident investigation. Training is provided in areas such as respiratory protection, hazard communication, and forklift safety.
Laboratory & Biological Safety
The Laboratory and Biological Safety Program promotes and supports a strong safety culture in TTU laboratories, art studios and field research sites.
Your department chairperson or his/her designee can assist you with questions and issues about sponsored research. For more assistance, each college also has an Associate Dean for Research or a faculty member who represents the college on the OVPR's Research Advisory Committee, a standing council charged with providing advice and input to the Vice President for Research.
- College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources – Michael Ballou or David Weindorf
- College of Architecture – Clifton Ellis
- College of Arts and Sciences – John Zak
- Rawls College of Business – Jim Wilcox
- College of Education – Robin Lock
- Whitacre College of Engineering – Brandon Weeks
- Honors College – Michael San Francisco
- College of Human Sciences – Michael O'Boyle
- College of Media & Communications – Glenn Cummins
- College of Visual and Performing Arts – Brian Steele
- School of Law – Vickie Sutton