Five College Consortium

Joint Faculty Appointments

Five College Joint Faculty Appointments help the institutions maintain or develop the curriculum by sharing appointments. Joint appointees are based at a single campus (the position's home campus), but teach at one or more other campuses on a rotating basis. The procedures of the position's home campus and department govern the review and promotion process, with input from the other campuses sharing in the position. Joint appointments are generally tenure track or continuing.

Faculty members holding Five College joint appointments have enriched scholarship and creative work and teaching at all five institutions for nearly 70 years. The commitment of Five College joint faculty members to working cooperatively across the campuses strengthens the intellectual communities and curricula at their home campuses and throughout the consortium.

More than 80 joint faculty members -- in at least 33 different fields -- have served in visiting, three-year, or tenure track appointments since 1948. Currently, 32 scholars, nine of whom are tenured, hold joint appointments at the campuses. Tenure rates for those appointed to joint tenure-track positions compare very favorably with the tenure rates for those appointed to tenure-track positions based fully at a single campus.

Exact arrangements for sharing support of a position and allocating teaching and other obligations among the participating institutions vary, depending on the needs of the institutions and the position; however, for each appointee, teaching and service obligations are clearly defined in Memoranda of Understanding (MOU), as are procedures for review for renewal and tenure. The MOU and other relevant procedural documents are shared with the appointee and attached to the Letter of Appointment. A core principle is that the total obligations of any joint appointee should never exceed what would be expected of a faculty member working full time in an equivalent tenure-track or term position at the appointee’s home campus; correspondingly, the total expectations for tenure of a joint appointee do not exceed what would be expected in total from a faculty member working full-time in a tenure-track appointment in the same department or program of the appointee’s home campus.

Requests for joint appointments, which are normally developed over several months and in consultation with a Five College staff member, are reviewed and approved by the Five College Deans. The Deans also establish guidelines for searching and hiring in joint appointments, for reviewing joint appointees, and for supporting the work of joint appointees. View the guidelines on searches, reviews and revisions and the guidelines for participating institutions (PDF files). 

The number of appointments varies from year to year, according to the availability of funding. View a list of the current Five College Joint Faculty Appointees and the courses they'll be teaching this year.  You can also see a list of joint appointees with home and host campuses (click on the link below).  Joint faculty and others teaching on another campus might find the resource site for Joint Faculty Appointees useful.

For more information about Five College Joint Faculty Appointments, contact Sue Dickman.

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