Academic Affairs

Sabbatic Leaves

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The following is the official policy text from the 2009-10 Bowdoin Faculty Handbook

Sabbatic Leave Policy and Procedures

The College provides three types of sabbatic leaves for tenure-track and tenured faculty, coordinated with the various stages of the career, in support of the continued development of faculty. Assistant Professors are eligible for a pre-tenure leave, ordinarily taken in the fourth year of service, following a successful reappointment. Newly tenured members of the faculty who have been promoted from Assistant to Associate Professor are eligible for a post-tenure leave ordinarily taken in the second year in rank at Associate Professor and normally upon the completion of no fewer than seven years of employment at the College.1    Tenured members of the faculty with the rank of Professor or Associate Professor are eligible for a sabbatic leave of absence following the completion of ten semesters of full-time service since the previous leave funded by the College.

A sabbatical is one semester of leave at full pay or one year of leave at half pay. Faculty on year-long leaves may supplement their salary with internal or external sources of funding, up to their regular, full-time rate.

1 The post-tenure sabbatical was recommended by the faculty and approved by the Board of Trustees 8 May 2009 (09-3-4). This sabbatical provision is available to faculty tenured on or after July 1, 2010.

1. Purpose
The purpose of this provision is to make available to members of the faculty opportunities to pursue scholarly, artistic, and professional activities related to their development as teachers and scholars or artists. Therefore, sabbatic leaves may not be used ordinarily to teach at other institutions. Should special opportunities arise for some teaching during a sabbatic leave which might have particular benefit for a faculty member, approval for accepting such opportunities must be obtained in advance from the Dean for Academic Affairs.
The College’s sabbatical leave program is intended to provide opportunities for continued professional growth for the benefit of both the faculty member and the institution. Faculty members are therefore normally expected to return to teach at the College following the sabbatical.

2. Eligibility2
Pre-tenure Leave for Assistant Professors. Assistant Professors who are in their third year of service to the College may apply for a sabbatic leave of absence pursuant to the By-laws of the College. Approval of such a leave will be contingent upon reappointment. The junior leave will normally be taken in the fourth year. A candidate for tenure may normally postpone the tenure review by no more than one year as a result of a pre-tenure sabbatical or leave of absence for research, scholarship or artistic work, including leave taken prior to reappointment.3

Post-tenure Leave for Associate Professors. Upon promotion to Associate Professor, faculty members may apply for a post-tenure leave, normally to be taken in the second year of tenure. Eligibility for a post-tenure leave is based on successful promotion. Additionally, the faculty member is expected to have completed at least three years of teaching since the junior leave and to have been employed by the College for no fewer than seven years; exceptions require the approval of the Dean for Academic Affairs.

Sabbaticals. Eligibility to apply for a sabbatic leave other than the pre-tenure leave or post-tenure leave is determined by the number of semesters of full-time teaching; ten semesters of full-time teaching constitutes the basic requirement to be met. For faculty who were tenured before July 1, 2010, service toward sabbatical eligibility begins to accrue following the pre-tenure leave. For faculty tenured on or after July 1, 2010, service toward sabbatical eligibility begins to accrue following eligibility for the post-tenure sabbatical.4 Leaves of absence from the College, whether spent in teaching or research activities, will not count as service to the College in determining eligibility for future sabbatic leaves. At least three years of teaching at the College should intervene between a leave of absence and a sabbatic leave; exceptions require the approval of the Dean for Academic Affairs.

2 Revised per (00-2-3), approved by the faculty 6 March 2000 and (09-3-4) approved 8 May 2009.
3 Revised per (03-5-4), approved by the faculty 19 May 2003.
4 Revised per (09-3-4), approved 8 May 2009.

The granting of a sabbatic leave will depend upon the necessary period of teaching, an evaluation of the prospects for the successful completion of the sabbatic leave activities and the value of those activities for the faculty member and the College. Consideration will also be given to the leave pattern in the department.

If a faculty member defers or advances a sabbatical at the request of the College, doing so will have no negative effect on the faculty member’s eligibility for a subsequent sabbatical. A faculty member may accrue no more than twenty-four semesters of service toward sabbatical eligibility (the equivalent of a one-year sabbatical at full pay).

3. Procedure

During each academic year, the Dean for Academic Affairs will determine which members of the faculty will be eligible, on the basis of the number of semesters taught, for a sabbatic leave during the academic year two years beyond a current academic year (e.g., in the spring of 2008-09 the determination of eligibility on the basis of the number of semesters taught will be calculated for the academic year 2010-11). The Dean for Academic Affairs will notify Assistant Professors of their eligibility for pre-tenure leave at the time at which reappointment in the rank of Assistant Professor is offered. The Dean for Academic Affairs will notify newly tenured Associate Professors of their eligibility for a post-tenure leave following a successful promotion. The Dean will then inform those members of the faculty about their prospective eligibility and invite discussions of possible sabbatic leave plans among the faculty member, department and the Dean for Academic Affairs.

The faculty member shall develop a plan for sabbatic leave activities. The plan should describe the relation of the planned activities to previous research and scholarly or artistic work, professional development and teaching and course development in the future. Requests for sabbatic leave should normally be made in writing to the Dean no later than October 1 of the academic year preceding the year in which the leave would take place.

The Dean will consult with the relevant department chair and/or program director, evaluate the leave plan, and may consult with the Governance and Faculty Affairs Committee in determining approval for the leave. The Dean will review annually sabbatic leaves and their activities with the Governance and Faculty Affairs Committee and with the Academic Affairs Committee of the Trustees.

Within three months of returning from sabbatical, the faculty member shall provide a report to the Dean for Academic Affairs on the activities undertaken during the sabbatical.