Human Resources

Professorial Fellow (Research)

Further information

Research staff promotion procedures

A member of academic staff seeking promotion to Professorial Fellow (Research) will be expected to play a leadership role in research including postgraduate supervision within the University and should normally hold the rank of Associate Professor (Level D).

  1. Introduction
  2. Teaching and Learning
  3. Research and scholarship and/or other relevant creative work
  4. Service


The applicant will be expected to have demonstrated exceptionally distinguished scholarly achievements and will normally be recognised as an eminent international authority in the discipline and will be required to have made an exceptional contribution to scholarship by research. Teaching and service to the University, the profession and the community will also be considered. In the case of Teaching and Research staff the applicant must provide evidence of a satisfactory level of teaching and service to the University, the profession and the community.

Where applicants seeking promotion have fractional appointments, the University expects the same level and quality of achievements and recognition as full time academic staff. In terms of the quantity of output, such as teaching load, research publications and service, the expectation is of at least pro-rata output consistent with the level of achievement required for promotion.

The Academic Promotions Committee will give due consideration to matters such as fractional or joint appointments and interrupted careers (perhaps due to caring responsibilities or illness) and differing opportunities for research output by comparing rates of achievement rather than total aggregates. Applicants must advise the Committee of these circumstances.

When assessing an application the Committee will take account of an applicant's entire body of work, with a particular focus on the achievements since their last promotion.

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Research and scholarship and/or other relevant creative work

The applicant will be expected to show evidence of sustained, substantial and exceptional research and scholarship (or other creative work, in the case of appointments in the Arts). This could be demonstrated in a number of ways, including:

  • publication in refereed journals, books, performances and other scholarly works, invitations to present keynote addresses at international meetings and chapters in international books, election to learned academies and other recognition such as awards, prizes and honorary degrees,
  • fostering the research of other groups and individuals in the School, and related disciplines,
  • successful supervision of post graduate students and willingness to supervise major Honours or Postgraduate research projects,
  • experience in the development of research policy.

Documentation should demonstrate completed publication (or the equivalent including patents granted, compositions performed and reviewed, paintings exhibited and favourably reviewed, successful product marketing, etc.) during the period since appointment or any past promotion.

References to publications should be given in full with, for example, exact pagination and dating. Outstanding performance on indicators 1 and 2 is essential as is demonstrated international recognition and/or outstanding rating on one or more of the other indicators.

  1. Publication in refereed journals or series, or by publishers recognised as leaders in the field

    Applicants should demonstrate the quality of their output, for instance, by giving a brief explanation of the quality and reputation of the refereed journals or publishing houses which have produced their work. In studio arts or architecture there is a range equivalent to that of publications, from appearance in juried shows or collections, an invited one-person show at a distinguished gallery or institution, through to an appearance at a mixed gallery - this last being roughly the equivalent of the selected conference paper for other academic disciplines.

    As with research publications, in the Arts it will be the quality, status and recognition of works that will be considered and assessed. For example, in musical composition, the work or the soloist will need to have been chosen for performance in a competitive or highly selective context, or be favourably reviewed by independent reviewers. For both research publications and creative works in the Arts, work presented or published in less prestigious formats will also be considered but will depend more heavily for its weighting on independent and authoritative assessment of merit as in 2 or 4 below.

  2. High ratings of the publications and other research or creative work as attested (where appropriate) by citations indices, by references in published literature which cite the applicant’s work as definitive or in letters from distinguished scholars, critics in the field (a substantial number of whom must come from outside The University of Western Australia) or significant figures from industry.
  3. Value to industry and community of knowledge, processes and products developed.
  4. Favourable published reviews of the publications or creative works.
  5. Awards by professional associations for outstanding research or creative work.
  6. Invitations to positions, lectures or demonstration at outstanding institutions or leading professional conferences.
  7. Grants based on competitive jury recommendations.
  8. Research leadership, as evidenced by team achievements or, with suitable justifications, citation indices.
  9. Breadth of expertise.
  10. Any other clear evidence of exceptional contribution to the chosen field.

Research publications and other achievements should be organised under the headings used by the University in the evaluation of research output of Schools.

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Teaching and Learning

Criteria: Applicants should demonstrate a significant professional contribution and commitment to high quality teaching at all levels and a leadership role in the maintenance of academic standards and in the development of educational policy and of curriculum areas within the discipline. Applicants are expected to have made original and/or innovative contributions to the advancement of teaching in the discipline.

Teaching aims to impart or inspire valuable knowledge, skills or approaches in a form and at a rate that is challenging but manageable for students, and to an extent that benefits students more than merely reading or viewing available material. Documentation of outstanding teaching should therefore focus on demonstrating a superior level of performance in some of the following areas and satisfactory performance in the rest.

  1. Success in teaching that influences, motivates and inspires students to learn

    This may be demonstrated by:

    • the fostering of student development by stimulating curiosity and independence in learning
    • contributions to the development of students’ critical thinking skills, analytical skills and scholarly values
    • the encouragement of student engagement through the enthusiasm shown for learning and teaching
    • the inspiration and motivation of students through high-level communication, presentation and interpersonal skills
    • evidence of the retention rates for students progressing through the discipline
    • the receipt of awards for teaching excellence
    • the contribution to out-of-class matters that provide a positive student experience such as assistance to a student interest group, provision of career guidance
  2. Successful development of curricula and resources that reflect a command of the field

    This may be demonstrated by providing evidence of:

    • the development and presentation of coherent and imaginative resources for student learning
    • the implementation of research-led approaches to learning and teaching
    • the application of up-to-date knowledge of the field of study in the design of the curriculum and the creation of resources for learning
    • the communication of clear objectives and expectations for student learning
    • leadership in teaching matters through initiatives such as the development of new units and courses, teaching methods, assessment methods, laboratory experiments, including those which take account of differences in learning style based on gender, cultural diversity and other diversity issues
  3. Successful assessment and feedback approaches that foster independent learning

    This may be demonstrated by evidence of:

    • the integration of assessment strategies with the specific aims and objectives for student learning, including the development of stated generic skill acquisition
    • the provision of timely, worthwhile feedback to students on their learning
    • the development and use of a variety of assessment and feedback strategies
    • the implantation of both formative and summative assessment
    • the application of assessment methods to different contexts and diverse student needs
  4. Successful Postgraduate and Honours supervision
  5. Demonstrated scholarly activities that have influenced and enhanced learning and teaching

    This may be demonstrated by providing evidence of:

    • advanced skills in evaluation and reflective practice
    • participation in and contribution to professional activities related to learning and teaching
    • coordination, management and leadership of units/courses and student learning
    • research publications related to teaching and citations relating to these publications
    • leadership through activities that have broad influence on the profession
  6. Demonstration of activities that show respect and support for the development of students as individuals

    This may be demonstrated by providing evidence of:

    • participation in the effective and empathetic guidance and advising of students
    • assistance to students from diverse backgrounds to participate and achieve success in their courses
    • influence on the overall academic, social and cultural experience of higher education

To demonstrate outstanding performance in the teaching area of the kind that would be essential for someone applying for promotion on the basis of teaching alone (and desirable for anyone including teaching as part of the basis for promotion) would require further evidence of excellence in one or more of the areas above and should also be supported by quality evidence bearing on some of the following:

  • favourable reviews or significant adoptions of innovative published or circulated instructional material (this is taken to include software, curricula, demonstrations, films, devices, and the like)
  • invitations to lecture or demonstrate at conferences on the teaching of the applicant’s discipline, or to serve on national or international committees on teaching or curriculum in the applicant’s area(s)
  • evidence of systematic experimentation on, or scholarly analysis and evaluation of, alternative and innovative teaching approaches or materials, such as the development of inclusive curricula
  • publications on aspects of teaching or the results of research on teaching, in the applicant’s disciplinary area that demonstrated a scholarly level of expertise in that literature

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Service at The University of Western Australia is normally considered under three headings:

  • Academic citizenship.
  • Professional leadership within the University.
  • Community service and leadership.

All applicants for promotion will need to document their contributions to Service in a Service Folio.

Academic citizenship

Demonstration of high standards of professional behaviour (as documented in the Code of Ethics and Code of Conduct)

Sustained contribution to the development of a collegial and supportive work environment

Professional leadership in the University

Sustained contribution to University governance

Regular contribution to policy development

Community leadership and service

Sustained service to the discipline/profession at local, state, national or international levels

Community service through teaching

Community service through sharing of academic expertise

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