Post-Tenure Review as if it Mattered

35 Pages Posted: 31 Jul 2008 Last revised: 10 Dec 2008

Date Written: July 16, 2008


At most law schools, post-tenure review is a formality, designed to satisfy a central administration that someone is paying attention to faculty quality. Like any assessment process, post-tenure review can consist of meaningless box-checking. Or, properly designed, it can play a key role in both individual development and institutional success. This Article examines how real post-tenure review might work. It features a) a faculty-wide process of values - identification designed to highlight the behaviors that a faculty wishes to promote and reward and (b) a collegial process by which faculty members are comparatively ranked, much as we currently rank students (top 10%, next 20%, next 40%, etc.) on each item. The Article offers detailed examples of how this process might operate, including checklists, forms, and compensation guidelines. It then considers the inevitable opposition that such a process would face.

Keywords: Law Schools, tenure, post-tenure review

JEL Classification: K00, K10

Suggested Citation

Barnard, Jayne W., Post-Tenure Review as if it Mattered (July 16, 2008). Journal of Contemporary Legal Issues, Vol. 17, 2008, San Diego Legal Studies Paper No. 08-043, William & Mary Law School Research Paper No. 08-04, Available at SSRN:

Jayne W. Barnard (Contact Author)

William & Mary Law School ( email )

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P.O. Box 8795
Williamsburg, VA 23187-8795
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