This section describes the policies and guidance for annual performance evaluation for Academic & Research faculty members, i.e., the Professoriate.

In line with Koç University’s mission, the overall annual performance evaluation of the Academic & Research faculty member (Professoriate) is based on an average of his/her teaching effectiveness, research and scholarly activity, and university and professional service. The relative weight of each evaluation category reflects the expectations of the University from faculty members who are in different stages of their academic careers. The academic area of the faculty member, his/her academic seniority, his/her teaching and research progress over the years, and service responsibilities provide a basis for the evaluation decisions. For example, in the evaluation of junior faculty members with minimal service responsibilities, “Outstanding” is reserved for those who have excelled in both research and teaching during that year by receiving an “Outstanding” in one category and “Above Expectations” or “Outstanding” in the other category. Similarly, to receive “Above Expectations” the necessary condition is to have “Above Expectations” and above marks in one category and “Meets Expectations Successfully” and above marks in the other category. These considerations are summarized for all categories in the performance matrix given in Appendix 13.

Koç University has a defined mission of excellence in teaching, research, and service to the university and society. Standards of performance expected from faculty members have to be consistent with the mission of the university, and these standards are expected to advance as the University progresses towards accomplishing its mission of becoming a globally recognized Center of Excellence in teaching and research. The following presents the framework for annual evaluations that is basically valid for all forms of evaluations and promotions. There is no quantitative formula suggested or used for such evaluations. Clear understanding of the terms of reference is expected to eliminate miscommunications and unproductive judgmental discussions.

Meaning of the annual evaluation report: The evaluation assesses the academic achievements of an individual within the report period. The annual evaluation report refrains from assessing the overall scholarly value of an individual. Consequently, even the greatest scholar can have a deficient year, and vice versa. The rationale for this limitation is to encourage continued productivity. The scholarly establishments of a faculty member are established over a time frame longer than a year. The cumulative establishments and standing of a faculty member are assessed at the time of the initial contract offer, subsequent contract renewals and promotions. At the same time, the expectations of annual productivity from a junior and senior faculty member may be different.

Scope of the evaluation report: The evaluation report accounts for finalized work, i.e., measures output within the report period. Finalized work in research consists of published and accepted work in written and presentation format. In teaching, finalized work consists of courses taught, advising provided, teaching material produced, such as lecture notes and textbooks, and student evaluations received. These definitions naturally exclude submitted work, preparations and work in progress.

The rationale for evaluating only the output consists of the following arguments:

  • The impact of scholarly activity only comes from finalized work;
  • Ongoing work is an unreliable indicator of achievement due to the uncertainties in leading to successfully finalized work;
  • The evaluation of ongoing work may provide misleading feedback to the faculty;
  • Evaluating ongoing work leads to multiple accounting of accomplishment over the years;
  • Ongoing work is eventually evaluated in the long term as it gets finalized;
  • Evaluation of input (i.e., effort, intention, etc.) gives administrators uncontrolled  authority for subjective judgment.

A natural consequence of evaluation of the output is the inability to report on the ongoing efforts and good intentions. Possible frustration should and can be avoided by noting that academic work goes through an investment period before leading to productivity. The investments that are sound eventually lead to finalized work in the long term. The opposite is also true in the sense of receiving high evaluations due to work that is finalized with efforts that were unrewarded in the past.