A Career Equity Review is an examination of a faculty member’s personnel actions from the initial hiring at UCI onward in order to determine if the actions have resulted in the appropriate rank and/or step. The purpose of the Career Equity Review is not to reopen or appeal the decision of any previous case. Rather, the purpose is to see if the candidate’s performance, when considered over multiple review periods, may warrant additional action.
Possible justifications for a Career Equity Review action may include, but are not limited to, the following:
- the rank or step was comparatively low at the time of initial hiring;
- the cumulative record warrants a recalibration even though each previous review decision was deemed appropriate at the time;
- certain work and contributions were overlooked, undervalued, or had a delayed impact;
- rank or step does not appear to be equivalent to faculty of equal merit.
A Career Equity Review may be initiated by any Ladder Ranks faculty member or Lecturer with Security of Employment who is a member of the Academic Senate.
The criteria for advancement used in the normal merit review process shall also be used in the Career Equity Review. These criteria cover the areas of research, teaching, professional activity and service in terms of the standards appropriate to the candidate’s field, specialization and cohort. However, this process will be augmented by the systematic use of an “expanded dossier” review in which the candidate’s entire record at UCI, up to and including the last review, is considered.
A Career Equity Review file should consist of an “expanded dossier” documenting all previous actions. This should include copies of all previous merit and promotion dossiers. Departments may request copies of past cases from Academic Personnel, which is the office of record, if copies are not readily available in the department. The candidate should provide copies of principal publications or other forms of creative activity, with published reviews or other documentation of quality or impact.
While outside letters of evaluation are not required for Career Equity Reviews, they may be judged appropriate or necessary in some cases. Colleagues at other UC campuses are in the best position to evaluate candidates for Career Equity Reviews, since they know our rank and step system, and are likely to have instituted Career Equity Reviews on their own campuses. A sample solicitation letter, developed in consultation with the Council on Academic Personnel, is attached for your use in these cases.
The Council on Academic Personnel feels that an equity recalibration should normally be undertaken within rank, not between ranks. In egregious cases, however, where recalibration to the next rank seems warranted, the file should be prepared as a promotion file (or as an advancement to Step VI file). In other words, promotions are the appropriate place to do equity recalibrations to the next rank. In cases where a promotion seems warranted, the file should be prepared as it would be for a promotion, with the addition of comparative data, argumentation, and/or analysis regarding the equity concerns.
If an area of concern is the rank and step at initial hire, then the expanded dossier should also include the following: (a) the record as a faculty member before appointment at UCI, and (b) the record since the last review. Submission of a complete dossier, including prior academic appointments and an up-to-date addendum, will allow reviewers to evaluate the file as if the individual were joining the faculty today.
Timing of the Career Equity Review
There may be cases where a candidate who is due for a normal merit or promotion review wishes to request a Career Equity Review in conjunction with the normally scheduled review.
- Normal Merit: In the case of a merit review that is combined with a Career Equity Review, the candidate should specify what step is to be considered in the Career Equity Review. The expanded dossier will be used for the Career Review. The merit increase based on new material will be considered separately and will follow the decision on the Career Equity Review.
- Promotion or Advancement to Step VI: Promotion points and advancement to Step VI are the times that departments should be looking at the candidate’s whole career to date with equity adjustments in mind. If a candidate requests a Career Equity Review in conjunction with a promotion review, the promotion file should be documented as normal with new material, outside letters, etc. After the decision on the promotion has been made, reviewers will consider the Career Equity Review request to help determine the appropriate step at the new rank.
A Career Equity Review should not be undertaken immediately after a negative decision on a promotion case, as any equity recalibration should have been recommended by another level of review in the promotion file.
Once a Career Equity Review occurs, two positive advancement reviews must be completed before another Career Equity Review may be requested by the candidate.
A positive outcome to a Career Equity Review may be an increase in rank and/or step. When the Career Review results in advancement in rank and/or step, an appropriate salary adjustment will also be made. After a positive Career Equity Review, the period of service until the next scheduled review will be specified in the final action on the advice of the Council on Academic Personnel and other levels of review. This will usually be the period from the last normal review. The effective date of any increase will be July 1 following the review. Increases will not be awarded retroactively.
Another possible outcome to a Career Equity Review may be confirmation that the candidate has been appropriately placed at rank and step. This Career Equity Review outcome will in no way affect current or future actions proposed during the regular academic personnel review process.
There will not normally be a tentative decision and chance to respond in a Career Equity Review if there are differing recommendations from the Chair, Dean, CAP, or the Executive Vice Chancellor. However, reviewers may request additional information if they feel the file is unclear or incomplete.
Any faculty member who thinks he or she may not be at the appropriate rank or step may request a Career Equity Review. The written request shall include a statement that identifies how and why the candidate’s current rank or step may be undervalued and what rank or step the candidate believes to be appropriate.
A Career Equity Review may be initiated by a candidate in one of two ways:
- By written request to his or her Department using Form UCI-AP-52. Normal personnel review procedures will be followed in the Career Equity Review, except that they will involve consideration of the expanded dossier. Use UCI Career Review Checklist, Form UCI-AP-52A to assemble the review file.
- By a confidential written request to the Dean using Form UCI-AP-52. The Dean will designate a confidential ad hoc committee to oversee the assembly of materials for a Career Equity Review to provide an analysis and recommendation. The committee will solicit extramural letters, if judged appropriate or necessary, considering candidate and independent recommendations for referees. The committee will include members of the School and, at the Dean’s discretion, may contain members of the Department and/or representatives from outside the School or from other UC campuses. The committee will provide an analysis equivalent in depth to that of a Department letter. With the consent of the candidate, the Dean will transmit the file along with a redacted copy of the committee analysis to the Department for consideration, recommendation and vote. Thereafter, normal personnel review procedures will be followed, except that they will involve consideration of the expanded dossier.
If the recommendation is not positive, the Dean will confidentially notify the individual of the negative recommendation and a redacted copy of the ad hoc committee recommendation will be included with the notification. At this point in time or at any other time, the faculty member has the option of withdrawing the request for a Career Equity Review. If the faculty member withdraws the request, no part of the Career Equity Review request will be included in the candidate’s personnel file or be considered in any subsequent review. Use UCI Career Review Checklist, Form UCI-AP-52A to assemble the review file.
A Career Equity Review may also be recommended by any level of review (Chair, Dean, CAP) in the course of a regular personnel review. In this case, the candidate will be notified of the recommendation and provided the opportunity to request a Career Equity Review, using one of the procedures outlined above.
The Career Equity Review process is intended to be an objective “second look” at a candidate’s record, if requested by the individual. Care should be taken to respect the confidentiality of the candidate’s concerns throughout the Career Equity Review. In addition, candidates should refrain from making specific personal comparisons with respect to the performance and salaries of their colleagues.