Annual performance reviews

The annual performance review (APR) is the system through which faculty are evaluated. It's based on an annual activity report that you submit to your chair. The APR is used to determine your annual merit pay increase, and forms a critical part of your candidate brief for the probationary renewal and tenure processes.

What you need to know

  • What it includes: Your APR covers your scholarship, teaching, and service activities over the previous calendar year (or two years). Please note that students’ written comments from teaching evaluations should not be seen by chairs or be used for APR. These comments are for your eyes only.
  • The timing: For pre-tenure faculty and definite term lecturers, the APR is done around the end of every calendar year. For tenured faculty and continuing lecturers, the APR is done every second year (in odd years). You still get a merit rating every year, it's just identical two years in a row.

    Faculty and departmental guidelines can be updated every two years, so make sure you have the most recent version.

    If you are awarded tenure (or hired with tenure) in an even year, you'll have one more one-year evaluation to transition to the biennial cycle.
  • The deadlines: The deadlines, expectations, and requirements for your activity report vary by department or school, so ask your department or school administrator.
  • What happens if you've been on leave: The expectations for quantity are adjusted based on the type and length of the leave (see section 13.5.4 of the MoA). In any category where assessment is not possible at all over the evaluation period, you'll get the average of your ratings in the previous three years.

Where to find information

Who to talk to

  • Your first point of contact: For questions about APR content for your faculty activity report and other expectations, talk to your chair/director and the departmental assistant.
  • Consult with colleagues: You might find it helpful to talk to colleagues in your unit or in similar positions outside your unit.
  • After receiving your APR: If you don’t agree with your evaluation, the first step is to discuss this with your chair or director. If you have further questions, then make an appointment with the FAUW Academic Freedom & Tenure Committee to discuss the specifics of your review.

Questions to ask

Things you might want to clarify at the department level:

  • What do I put on my annual activity report form? Specific requirements and conventions vary by department or school—and also by the type of appointment you have (e.g. research-track vs lecturer). Be sure to ask your chair or director if guidelines are unclear.
  • What am I being evaluated on? This will depend on what the weighting is for your position (40/40/20, etc.)? If these need to be changed, address with your chair or director.
  • What is the department/school average? Departmental averages are usually around 1.50 in each category; ask your chair for your own departmental/school averages from past years.

FAUW’s advice

  • What is considered a “good evaluation” varies across units. Remember that a “1.00 Satisfactory” on a performance review does not mean that a satisfactory standard for tenure or promotion has been met.
  • Respond to feedback: If you receive warnings or encouragement to focus more on a particular aspect of your evaluation, pay heed.
  • Seek advice from FAUW if you receive a score below 1.00 in any area, notice a downward trend, or have consistently low scores in any area. Lecturers are also welcome to consult with the FAUW Lecturers Committee at any point in the process.