Texas Tech University

Faculty Evaluation

Evaluation of Faculty Performance and Merit Pay Considerations

Merit Pay Considerations


August 2015


Specify the mechanism by which faculty performance is evaluated and how salary increases based on merit are determined.


This Operating Policy will be reviewed by the Faculty Council and Executive Associate Dean by when changes are made in University or College procedures. Substantial changes will be approved by a majority of voting COHS faculty members.


All salary increases for faculty shall be on a merit basis unless otherwise mandated by the legislature and shall be based on quality teaching, scholarly activity, and other contributory activities, including university and community service along with outreach and engagement. Application of these criteria will be guided by each faculty member's letter of initial appointment. See the related policy for information regarding administrative and unique appointments. The procedure for merit salary increases is set forth in the prevailing instructions from the Office of the Provost for budget preparation.

Merit is assigned at the department level and approved by the Dean. It is the responsibility of the department chairperson to recommend salary rates and merit increases. It is expected that there will be a range of award levels, with higher achieving faculty members receiving a higher merit award and lower performing faculty members receiving a lesser award.

Each faculty member is required to provide an annual report on his/her work to the department chairperson and departmental peer committee (if appropriate to departmental policy) for use in consideration of a merit increase(OP 32.08). Consideration for merit will be based on each faculty member's annual faculty review for the previous three years. New faculty with less than three years will be reviewed on the basis of their time at Texas Tech.

If a faculty member does not submit an annual report by the deadline set by the department, he/she will not be considered for merit for that year, which is one-third of the total time included.

In an attempt to provide continuity across all areas of the college, a basic framework of merit guidelines, which apply to all COHS faculty members, is provided below. Departments may have unique needs which could be addressed in addition to the basic criteria provided. All merit criteria must fit within the university guidelines and should be developed through faculty participation and made available to faculty members.

Basic Merit Criteria

A. Teaching

Teaching effectiveness should be based on factors to include:

  1. Teaching evaluation by students in each course taught.
  2. Teaching evaluations by the Teaching Effectiveness Committee. This evaluation is generally voluntary and must be request by a faculty member. Evaluation is required annually for pre-tenure faculty. For faculty members contemplating promotion, this evaluation should be conducted minimally the year before the promotion application and optimally two years before the promotion application. Evaluation by the Teaching Effectiveness Committee is recommended periodically for all faculty members.
  3. Maintenance of current, relevant, and innovative courses as reflected through course syllabi, academic rigor, and innovative teaching methodologies and evaluation techniques (e.g., grade distribution, measurable learning outcomes requiring higher order thinking [application, analysis, synthesis] and skill levels, honors courses, writing intensive courses, domestic and international study courses/tours, case studies, collaborative courses, team projects, service learning projects/courses, teaching-related research projects, web-based courses, and distance education).
  4. Academic workload (OP 32.18).
  5. Chairing or serving as a member of thesis or dissertation committees and directing independent studies.
  6. Recognition of awards for teaching, awards received by students under the supervision of faculty, and TTU Teaching Academy membership.

B. Scholarship

Scholarship productivity should be measured by the scope, depth, relevance, and overall contribution of the individual's program. The candidate may provide evidence of scholarly activities in a variety of mechanisms appropriate to the discipline and based on the initial appointment letter. Scholarship may take the form of traditional research or creative activities (Department of Design only). Evaluation of scholarship performance should be based on such factors as:

  1. Grant proposals submitted to agencies and sponsors.
  2. Sponsored project funding – total amounts obtained, number of grants, duration of grants.
  3. Multidisciplinary research partnerships and productivity.
  4. Development efforts to secure research funding.
  5. Quality and number of publications in refereed journals (publications shall be weighted in keeping with the scale recommend by the university with the rating provided by the chairperson).
  6. Other publications such as books, book chapters, and technical reports.
  7. Citations of research in academic publications, industry/trade publications, and popular press.
  8. Relevance of research to faculty member's academic discipline as well as the college and departmental teaching, research, and service missions.
  9. Patents and product development.
  10. Quality and number of presentations at international, national, state, and regional professional meetings – refereed, invited, and keynote address.
  11. Research efforts including letters of intent and competitive inside grants.

Faculty members in two programs in the college, Interior Design and Apparel Design and Manufacturing, may be involved in creative work as all or part of their scholarship activity. It is the responsibility of the faculty member to document the quality of his/her creative work through appropriate documentation and validation by peers. Creative activities may include:

  1. Innovative techniques, creative designs, artistic performances, unique methodologies, originality of design, case studies, etc.
  2. Juried exhibits and competitions.
  3. Patents, juried memberships in professional organizations, and other forms of scholarship will also be considered.

C. Service and Community Outreach/Engagement

Faculty members are expected to make professional contributions through service to the department, college, university, the discipline at large, and the community. Evaluation of service and community engagement activities should be based on factors such as:

  1. Membership on and/or chairing departmental, college, and university committees.
  2. Activity in professional societies and organizations such as offices held, responsibility for program planning, committees, etc.
  3. Conducting professional development activities such as seminars/workshops, internships/practica, extended learning courses, post graduate courses, study abroad experiences.
  4. Invited seminars, talks, review panels, workshops, reports, etc.
  5. Advising student organizations.
  6. Direction of accredited or approved programs or coordinating academic-related activities.
  7. Participation at international, national, state, regional, and local meetings of various groups related to the discipline.
  8. Leadership in short courses and workshops for public and private groups.
  9. Community service and public relations activities.
  10. Fundraising activities.
  11. Recognition for awards for service.
  12. Participation in subordinate activities associated with the operation of the department, college, and university.

While faculty performance should generally cross the three areas of teaching, scholarship, and service, merit considerations may allow flexibility to reward significant achievement in one main area. Such performance for teaching, for example, should usually represent university or national recognition in the form of teaching awards, etc. In this way, merit guidelines retain more flexibility than the guidelines for promotion and tenure.


Faculty members who have worked at Texas Tech for at least four and a half months and have not received a pay increase in the last four and a half months are eligible for merit-based salary increases.

  1. Faculty members submit an annual report in the specified format for the previous calendar year by the designated time, no later than January 31.
  2. The department chairperson will evaluate each faculty member based on basic college criteria and any previously agreed on departmental criteria.
  3. If appropriate to departmental policy, a peer evaluation group conducts a similar evaluation as advisory to the chair.
  4. Based on the chairperson's evaluation and peer committee evaluation for the previous three years(OP 32.08), faculty members are assigned a ranking for merit purposes.
  5. When the merit pool is identified by the Texas Tech Board of Regents, the department chairperson then assigns a dollar amount to each faculty member based on their ranking. Those figures are submitted to the Dean for approval.
  6. At the designated time, merit awards are added to faculty salaries through the university salary system.
  7. Once the Board of Regents meets to give approval to the final budget, and the budget office verifies the budget, the chairperson will notify, in writing, each faculty member of their merit increase.
  8. Merit increases are effective in September (October paycheck) each year.

See the timeline detailing the merit process for more information.


OP 32.08 Faculty Salary Increases

CoHS Teaching Effectiveness Committee process

OP 32.01A Promotion and Tenure Dossier Format

OP 32.18 Academic Workload Calculation

Timeline for merit process

Journal Evaluation Scale

Merit Notification Letter