Lindy Rome
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Practical Alternatives to Tenure: Lessons Learned for Best Practice

As chief academic officers, we are all familiar with the real and perceived concerns about traditional tenure-track faculty appointments. At many of our institutions, these concerns are enhanced by constraints in funding and tenure quotas that limit our ability to make tenure-track appointments. Statistics show the percentage of tenured and tenure-track appointments has declined across all sectors of higher education in recent years. In fact, the American Association of University Professors reports that the actual number of full-time, non-tenure-track faculty hired in 2016 exceeded the number of tenure-track faculty.

While not advocating for or against this practice, we recognize that provosts may need to make non-tenure-track (NTT) appointments to address enrollment trends and to recruit specialized faculty, particularly in new degree programs. Making such appointments may be critical to your success in ensuring the academic quality of your programs.

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