School of Medicine Office of Faculty Affairs

Obligations And Responsibilities Of Tenure

The primary responsibilities of the tenured faculty are effective teaching and research, and creative scholarship throughout their careers, which advance their fields of learning and research, and initiate others into these fields through creative and effective teaching.

Those who accept the rights and immunities of tenured appointment owe it to their colleagues unfailingly and unflinchingly to defend independence and freedom of mind in their field of competence. The tenured faculty should create and sustain an intellectual ambiance in which their non-tenured colleagues can think, investigate, speak, write, and teach secure in the knowledge that their intellectual vitality is both essential and welcome.

It falls to all, but again most stringently to the tenured, to see that no improper consideration enters into the appointment process. Academic freedom, no less than academic excellence, requires that academic appointments be made on academic grounds alone.

The acceptance of an appointment, whether for a term or permanently, implies a commitment to the University as an intellectual community. The rights to membership on the faculty and to academic freedom carry with them the obligations to uphold academic freedom against invasion or abuse, to not violate the academic freedom of others, and to perform in a productive, professional fashion so as to deserve membership on the faculty. It is equally a responsibility of the officers of the University administration and of the Board of Trustees to assure, to protect, and to defend academic freedom. The tenured faculty and the officers and Board members should work together to that end.