Louisiana Conference of the American Association of University Professors
Committee A on Academic Freedom and Tenure

The educational work of Committee A includes advice on the resolution of disputes, particularly those concerning academic freedom and tenure rights.

We always recommend seeking administrative and collegial solutions first, and we will assist in this if we are able.

We can provide referrals to lawyers, but ours is not legal advice.

Querents should also realize that the AAUP works by moral suasion. It recommends that policy meet certain standards, and it urges universities to adopt and uphold AAUP standards, but it cannot oblige them to do so.

If you wish to seek the advice of Committee A, please provide the following information:

  1. Name and contact information
  2. Institution and department
  3. Degree, job title, rank, tenure status (tenured, tenure-track, non-tenure track)
  4. Years of service at present institution (AAUP considers 7 years de facto tenure)
  5. Brief description of issues (100 words or less). Example 1: “I have been denied tenure and I believe procedural errors were made in the evaluation of my file. I seek advice on composing an effective appeal.” Example 2: “I have been told two recent journal articles cannot be counted toward promotion, or for graduate faculty status, because they are in a different subfield from the one in which I was originally hired. Can I contest this on academic freedom grounds?” Example 3: “My chair insists I teach an 8 AM section but university daycare does not open until 8:30. Can you help me?”

We will get in touch with you and ask for the additional information we will need. In the case of the first example above, that would include a copy of your institution’s tenure policy and your tenure evaluation. In all cases it will include a timeline (when did this issue start, when did relevant communication or other events take place), the relevant documentation including copies of correspondence, and a brief statement of your objective. What would a satisfactory resolution of the dispute look like to you? Please begin assembling these materials as you wait to hear from us.

Your inquiry should be sent to Kevin Cope, Chair, Committee A, encope@lsu.edu.