Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost

Annual Policy Notification

To:               Probationary Tenure-Track Faculty

Cc:              Collegiate Deans, Associate Deans for Faculty, DEOs, and Faculty HR Representatives

From:          Lois J. Geist, associate provost for faculty

Date:           February 2, 2022

Subject:       Extensions of Tenure Clock – Addition of a Minor Child and Discretionary

This memo is intended to notify the University of Iowa campus, and particularly probationary tenure-track faculty members, of the UI’s policy on extensions to the tenure clock. Please see the policy information in the UI Operations Manual (Chapter III-10.1(a)(4e)

The policy allows the possibility of extending a probationary faculty member’s tenure clock under the following two scenarios:

A. Automatic Extension for Addition of a Minor Child

The policy states: 

For each minor child (e.g., biological, adopted, stepchild, or by guardianship) added to the family of a probationary faculty member from two years prior to the initial appointment through September 1 of the tenure decision year, and upon relevant notification, the faculty member’s probationary period shall be automatically extended twelve months per child (up to two children). Extensions for the addition of more than two children may be considered under the Discretionary Extensions provisions (e)(ii).

It is a faculty member's responsibility to notify his or her DEO, dean, or Provost of the relevant qualifying event that activates the automatic extension of the faculty member's tenure clock. The Provost's office shall remind probationary faculty annually of the extension policy and direct probationary faculty to a person in the Provost's office to whom they may provide the notification that activates the automatic extension. Probationary faculty may also provide the relevant notification through any other form of communication with their DEO, dean, or Provost. When providing the relevant notification, the faculty member shall provide the name(s) of the minor child(ren) and the date on which the child(ren) joined the family (e.g., birth date, adoption date). This notification can be submitted at any time but, if the faculty member expects an automatic extension to be granted in what would otherwise have been the tenure decision year, notification must be submitted no later than the department or college deadline by which faculty members are expected to submit their dossiers for review. Upon receipt of the notice, the Associate Provost for Faculty shall issue a written acknowledgment to the dean, with copy to the probationary faculty member, confirming the extension and resetting the relevant tenure decision dates (e.g., for reappointment, tenure review).

To notify the Office of the Provost about the addition of a minor child to a probationary faculty member’s family, please contact Alaina Hanson (  

For policy information, including provisions for declining an automatic extension, please see the Operations Manual (Chapter III-10.1(a)(4e).

B. Discretionary Extension

The policy states: 

The probationary period may be extended upon the mutual agreement of the probationary faculty member, the DEO (when applicable), the dean, and the Executive Vice President and Provost because of a professional or personal impediment, such as the assumption of additional teaching or clinical responsibilities above the normal load at the request of the department or college, the failure of the University to provide resources in a timely manner if the resources are promised in writing, personal health reasons, the assumption of significant ongoing care responsibilities for a spouse, domestic partner, minor or adult child, or parent with a serious health problem, or because of the death of the faculty member's spouse, domestic partner, or minor or adult child. The faculty member is responsible for describing and documenting the unusually difficult circumstances posed by the impediment in her/his request. 

Requests for Discretionary Extensions shall be submitted by the faculty member to the DEO (when applicable), who shall advance a recommendation to the dean for review, recommendation, and subsequent routing to the Executive Vice President and Provost for approval. The Associate Provost for Faculty will issue a written decision to the dean, with copy to the probationary faculty member, and, if approved, the written decision will include the new tenure decision dates.

For policy information: Operations Manual (Chapter III-10.1(a)(4e)

For additional information, please contact either myself or my staff at 319-467-4627 or