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7.2 General Principles

  1. Full-time faculty members appointed to The University of Tennessee must devote themselves to the University’s mission of teaching, research, and public service. Fulfillment of these responsibilities demands a full-time commitment to normal University duties, including remaining current in the discipline to which the faculty member is appointed.
  2. While compensated outside activities may be valuable for both faculty and the University, the primary responsibility of a faculty member is to fulfill the teaching, research/scholarship/creative achievement, and service commitments of her/his full-time appointment to the University. Faculty members have a responsibility not to undertake external activities that substantially burden or interfere with commitments to the University. A full-time appointment includes an obligation to maintain a meaningful presence on behalf of the University in the performance of responsibilities. This obligation means being accessible on campus to students, staff, and colleagues. Compensated outside activities must not result in a conflict of interest or a conflict of commitment with respect to the faculty member’s University duties.
  3. As outside compensated activities are not part of the full-time commitments of a faculty member, they cannot be substituted for commitments of a faculty member to teaching, research/scholarship/creative activity, and service within the University. Correspondingly, the annual review of the performance of a faculty member is based only on her/his regular responsibilities and duties as part of her/his full-time commitments to the University which are negotiated annually and must be consistent with the Handbook and applicable bylaws. The primary responsibility for assessing the value of compensated outside activities rests in the academic departments and their bylaws.
  4. College and/or departmental bylaws may define the nature and allowable time commitments of appropriate compensated outside activities for a faculty member in the unit beyond these guidelines. Administrative officers such as deans or department heads who believe that a faculty member has engaged in compensated outside activities in a manner inconsistent with these guidelines or applicable bylaws, may initiate appropriate action. In such cases, a faculty member has the right to the appeals processes described in Chapter 5 of this Handbook.
  5. These policy guidelines primarily concern long-term or continuing/recurring short-term arrangements between faculty members and clients. These guidelines do not apply to activities such as:
    • Occasional, short-term activities (which are typically not compensated except for modest honoraria), which include but are not limited to, publication and/or editing of research/scholarship/creative activity, participation in symposia, accreditation visits, research paper presentations, professional licensing board examination questions, exhibitions, recitals, or extra-service pay.
    • Compensated activities conducted in the summer by faculty who serve in an academic-year appointment.
    • Faculty compensation through grants and contracts. See Fiscal Policy on Sponsored Grants and Contracts.
  6. These guidelines shall be construed to be consistent with the University’s policies regarding conflict of interest, ownership of commercial ventures, intellectual property, and Faculty Handbook provisions regarding academic freedom as stated in Chapter 2.