Faculty-Friendly Policies

ADVANCE at WSU supports institutional policy and leadership attitudes to create a culture that promotes achievement by all faculty members and provides for leadership succession planning.

Click HERE for the 2023-2024 Faculty Manual

Common Questions

  • Is Partner Accommodation Available? 
  • Can I Stop the Tenure Clock?
    •  Faculty who started at WSU prior to August 2020 received an automatic tenure clock extension, though they have to ability to opt out. Faculty may opt out of this extension through April 15th of the spring prior to the academic year they would ordinarily be considered for tenure.
    • More information is available at: provost.wsu.edu/promotion-and-tenure/
    • Full-time faculty members on the tenure track who become a parent of a child or multiples by birth, adoption, or fostering (i.e., 12 months of foster care, but not necessarily contiguous) will automatically be granted a one-year extension of the tenure clock when the faculty member is a caregiver. For each subsequent child, a faculty member may request an additional extension for a maximum of two separate extensions of the tenure period. When both parents are members of the faculty and share equally in caregiving responsibilities, each parent will be granted a one-year extension. Faculty may elect to opt out of the automatic extension of the tenure period granted for childbirth, adoption, or fostering.
    • Faculty may also request an extension of the tenure clock for a variety of reasons, including illness; caregiving responsibilities; unexpected delays in scholarship (e.g., a lab flood); and other life or work circumstances.
  • What are WSU’s Family and Medical Leave Policies? 
    • The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) allows employees up to 12 weeks of leave when the leave is taken for purposes of caring for the employee’s newborn or newly adopted or foster child; to care for the
      employee’s spouse, dependent, or parent who has a serious health condition; or for a serious health condition that makes the employee unable to perform their job. This leave is also available for employees who wish to take time to bond with their newborn or adopted child(ren). This leave may be taken as paid or unpaid leave, upon the discretion of the employee. Employer-paid medical benefits will remain effective during the FMLA period as long as the monthly premiums are paid. To receive such benefits, an employee requesting FMLA must notify Human Resource Services within 30 days of the event, or as soon as possible if 30 days’ notice cannot be given.
    • Qualifying events and more information can be found here: hrs.wsu.edu/employees/disability-services/paid-family-and-medical-leave/
  • Can I change to Part-time?
    • Faculty members may sometimes benefit from a part-time appointment. The University wishes to accommodate these faculty members if possible without negatively impacting their program, department, or University. Part-time appointments of no less than 50 percent time may be available to faculty in all ranks. The duties (e.g., teaching, research, and service expectations) and support provided (e.g., startup money and teaching or research assistance) will be the same as for a full-time faculty member except it may be prorated for the percentage of the appointment. The duties and support for a part-time faculty member should be specified in the offer letter signed by the faculty member, chair, dean, campus VCAA (dependent on college and WSU campus) and provost.
    • For more information, visit the Faculty Manual found on the Provost’s webpage.
  • What If I Need Modified Duties?
    •  Faculty members with significant caregiving responsibilities may alter their duties for a semester away from inflexible responsibilities (e.g., teaching) toward more flexible ones (e.g., research) without any loss of salary. Decisions about modified duties are made in consultation with the chair, dean, and provost.
    • More information is available at: hrs.wsu.edu/employees/disability-services/modified-duties/
    • Faculty Modified Duties Request form can be found HERE
  • Am I Eligible for Professional Leave?
    • Aaer five years of active service tenured faculty members with a permanent appointment are eligible for professional leave. Sabbaticals are assigned through a competitive application process. Professional leave is normally granted for periods of two semesters or twelve months at 75 percent pay or for one semester or six months at full pay.
    • To learn more, please visit: provost.wsu.edu/professional-leave-and-retraining/
  • What Is WSU’s Reasonable Accommodation Policy?
    • Anyone with a disability may apply for a modification or adjustment of a job, work environment, policy, practice, or procedure that will enable that individual to enjoy equal employment opportunities with others. Reasonable accommodations are negotiated on an individual basis through Human Resource Services.                                                             
    • Visit: hrs.wsu.edu/employees/disability-services/reasonable-accommodation/
    • Reasonable accommodation policy and form can be found HERE
  • Is Phased Retirement an Option?
    •  Faculty members 55 years old or older who have served the University for at least 10 years are eligible for phased retirement. Phased retirement agreements are negotiated on an individual basis.
    • For details, see: hrs.wsu.edu/phased-retirement-guidelines/
  • Is There a Faculty Fitness Program?
    • Faculty and staff members may purchase a Noontime Fitness Membership. In return, they receive exclusive access to most of the University’s athletic facilities in the Chinook Student Center, Student
      Recreation Center, or Hollingbery Fieldhouse. M-F, 11:00 am to 1:00 pm.
    • For details, visit: urec.wsu.edu/memberships-lockers/faculty-staff-noontime-fitness/


Each assistant professor at WSU should have a mentor or mentors.  Mentoring is also advised for all associate professors.  The number and duties of mentors differ across departments. If you are not being mentored and wish to have a mentor or mentors, please discuss this with your department chair or school director.

Diversifying the Faculty at Washington State University

The Provost holds Deans accountable for demonstrable efforts at diversifying their faculties. Deans likewise hold their chairs accountable. Annual reviews include evaluation of these efforts. The Provost’s office has supported the development of data collection systems to more accurately measure and track faculty recruitment, retention and race, ethnicity and gender. Department chairs will appoint diversity liaisons to search committees. Diversity liaisons are tenured faculty who ensure that searches are fairly conducted and inclusive search procedures are followed.

Note: Policy development and recommendations supported by ADVANCE at WSU efforts.

Click HERE for the Faculty-Friendly Policies FAQs

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