Merit for University Faculty and Student Employees
Academic and Administrative Faculty
The University typically receives an allocation for merit from the State Legislature. Comparable funds are to be provided by non-state-funded budgets as available to reward meritorious performance for non-state-funded faculty positions. Colleges, schools, or other units will use their established criteria and processes for determining meritorious performance. Departmental recommendations based on annual performance evaluations will be considered in determining merit awards. One major objective of the merit distribution policy is to maintain the standards for rewarding quality performance. Vice presidents will be responsible for reviewing and approving the recommendation of merit within their unit.
"A" Contract vs. "B" Contract
"A" contract is a 12-month faculty contract. All administrative faculty are on "A" contracts. Some academic faculty are on "A" contracts and most research faculty are "A" contracts.'
"B" contract is a 9-month faculty contract which applies to academic faculty only. "B" contract faculty (.5 FTE or more) including new faculty hired on or before September 1st of the current fiscal year, to include academic, administrative, tenured, tenure-track and non-tenure track faculty.
Performance Evaluation and Merit
Merit salary increases are usually effective each July 1 based upon performance during the previous calendar year. Merit is a fixed-step system aligned with the rating on individual performance evaluations which are based upon a goal/role statement specific to the position. There are four acceptable evaluation ratings: Excellent, Commendable, Satisfactory, and Unsatisfactory. Merit is granted only for ratings of excellent and commendable.
There are five levels of merit awards: commendable: levels 1 and 2; excellent: levels 3, 4 and 6. Deans and Vice Presidents review and approve the recommendations for their respective colleges and units. Extraordinary merit (level 6) requires approval by the Executive Vice President and Provost. (University Administrative Manual, "Merit Salary Increases" Section 2,718). The specific value of the merit levels, as well as any additional criteria or procedures for implementing the merit program, are determined by the president, based on recommendations from the Merit Policy Committee.
Eligibility for Merit
- All renewable "A" contract or "B" contract faculty (.5 FTE or more) including new faculty hired on or before September 1st of the current fiscal year, to include academic, administrative, tenured, tenure-track and non-tenure track faculty.
- Faculty who have changed positions with no change in pay during the current fiscal year.
- Faculty on sabbatical or development leave during the evaluation.
Ineligible for Merit
- Temporary faculty, letters of appointment, postdoctoral fellows/scholars, medical residents, graduate teaching and research assistants;
- Academic or administrative faculty who will advance in rank or range and receive a 10% increase to salary effective July 1;
- Administrative faculty who have received an advance in range and an increase to salary between July 1 and June 30 of the current fiscal year are not eligible for an additional merit award on July 1 of the subsequent fiscal year.
The employer determines frequency and manner in which merit raises are made within the job classification schedule. Student employees should be evaluated on a regular basis, typically once a semester. If the evaluation is satisfactory, a merit increase within the classification wage range might be appropriate. A new PAF is required to submit this change. If the classification changes, a new Job Board number must be obtained. If the PAF is submitted after timesheets have been generated, the wage on the pre-printed timesheet must be manually changed to the new rate. The employer makes the change on the timesheet prior to submitting it to the Payroll office.