Search and Initial Appointment Procedures

The University hires at the level of senior lecturer only if a candidate has an excellent and documented record of at least six years of full-time teaching experience or the equivalent, at Yale or elsewhere, in a ladder or non-ladder rank. Lecturers may be appointed to a term varying from one semester to three years, and senior lecturers may be appointed to a term varying from one semester to five years, in each case depending on professional accomplishment, teaching experience, programmatic needs, and available resources. 

Initial terms of appointment of one semester or one year require the approval of the FAS Dean’s Office, but do not require the appointment of a search committee or a department faculty vote. Department chairs instead, in consultation with their faculty, make their recommendations directly to the FAS Dean’s Office. The FAS Dean’s Office then makes a determination after a review of relevant enrollments, the general necessity of the appointment, and available resources. For appointments of one year or less, the department may skip forward to step 9 of this section.

1. For initial appointments longer than one year in duration, the department chair (Throughout these procedures, when a lecturer or senior lecturer is considered for initial appointment, review, or promotion in one of the Area Studies Councils of the MacMillan Center or in an FAS program, the Center functions as the department, and the director of the Center functions as the department chair) requests authorization for the position from the Teaching Resource Advisory Committee (TRAC) in the FAS Dean’s Office and provides a preliminary description of the position requested and the reasons it is needed. In considering the request, TRAC may solicit the advice of the FAS Steering Committee, one of the Area Committees, the Creative Arts Advisory Committee (CAAC), and/or others as appropriate.

2. If the position is authorized, the department chair, in consultation with the FAS Dean’s Office and the Office for Equal Opportunity Programs (OEOP), drafts the job description or advertisement and initiates the search.

3. The search committee is composed of at least three members. Once the job description has been approved by the FAS Dean’s Office, the department chair appoints the committee, including:

  • at least one member of the department’s ladder faculty
  • at least one non-ladder faculty member of the same or higher rank as the target of the search (may come from another department if necessary)
  • a trained diversity representative (among or in addition to the required three) Where necessary or appropriate, faculty from other Yale departments and programs are also eligible to serve. The search committee must be approved in advance by the FAS Dean’s Office.

4. Once the search committee has concluded its preliminary screening, a proposed list of candidates for on‐campus interviews must be approved by the relevant dean. Typically, up to four candidates may be invited to campus for each search. Travel expenses for candidates are not supported without prior written approval from the FAS Dean’s Office.

5. The search committee considers each candidate’s full curriculum vitae, at least three letters of recommendation from outside Yale (If a candidate’s teaching experience has been exclusively at Yale, internal letters may substitute for external ones), and additional materials it deems relevant to evaluating the candidate. These additional materials should include, if available, teaching evaluations from each candidate’s prior academic institution(s). Whether or not they serve on the search committee, all of the department’s ladder faculty and all non-ladder faculty at the same or higher rank as the target of the search should have the opportunity to talk with final candidates and to convey feedback to the search committee.

6. Voting in the initial appointment process occurs in two stages:

  • Stage one: search committee vote. Once the review of candidates is complete, the search committee votes to determine its final candidate recommendation, if any, to the department chair. All members of the search committee vote in this stage.
  • Stage two: department-wide vote. As in all such cases, the department conducts a secret ballot vote on the proposed appointment. All ladder faculty are permitted to vote. Consistent with department practices, non-ladder faculty of the same or higher rank as the target of the search, may be permitted to vote. For an appointment to be approved, the candidate must receive affirmative votes from a majority of those present and eligible to vote. Absentee ballots may not be accepted, counted, or recorded. The department chair notifies the FAS Dean’s Office of the outcome of the vote.

7. If the appointment is approved by the department, the chair prepares and submits a Faculty Search Questionnaire (FSQ) to OEOP. Note that no offer of appointment can be made until the FSQ has been approved by OEOP and the FAS Dean’s Office.

8. The FAS Dean’s Office presents any recommended appointment to TRAC for final review (For a recommended appointment in arts practice for a duration of three years or longer or for a high-resource visiting appointment, TRAC will review the recommendation from the perspective of teaching resources, and the Creative Arts Advisory Committee (CAAC) will make the final decision on the appointment). 

9. If TRAC (or as appropriate, the FAS Dean’s Office) approves the recommended appointment, the department chair consults with the FAS Dean’s Office regarding length of term, salary, and other conditions of the appointment. The FAS Dean’s Office drafts a letter of appointment for the candidate for review by the chair. Following approval of the letter, which must be co-signed by the chair and a relevant dean, the FAS Dean’s Office sends it to the candidate, with copies to the chair, the Office of Faculty Administrative Services (OFAS), and others as appropriate. Any subsequent modifications to the offer must be pre-approved by the FAS Dean’s Office. If the candidate accepts the offer, he or she must acknowledge and agree to its terms by signing the offer letter and returning it both to the department and to the FAS Dean’s Office.


Pam Bosward

Faculty Appointments and Promotions Coordinator