Approved by ELT on 08/30/2012


A key theme of the College of Engineering’s strategic plan involves aligning our hiring and promotion practices with our values.  This philosophy presents an opportunity to implement non-tenure track faculty appointments in engineering modeled after clinical/professional faculty at Purdue and who are designated as Faculty of Engineering Practice. These positions benefit from the experience of individuals such as industry technical fellows, high level executives or successful entrepreneurs who share their expertise in the classroom, develop engagement opportunities or lead the development of new paradigms for new engineering practice and education. These positions allow the college to respond to strategic opportunities and support many other initiatives identified in the strategic plan.

University guidelines* already exist with principles outlining core criteria in establishing such non-tenure track faculty appointments.  They state that non-tenured clinical/professional faculty shall:

  • Possess the appropriate educational background and practice expertise to engage in these responsibilities
  • Possess appropriate professional licensure as needed
  • Engage in activities which consist mainly of clinical/professional practice teaching and supervision in degree granting programs
  • Participate in activities to enhance professional growth
  • Be considered members of the University faculty and be given full voting rights as instructional faculty
  • Be provided the same fringe benefits as tenure-track faculty

*University Guidelines for Clinical and Professional Faculty within Purdue University, 5/21/94



A. Faculty of Engineering Practice are appointed for two years with their renewal based on meeting performance expectations. Longer appointments require Provost pre-approval.

B. Faculty of Engineering Practice have titles which reflect professorial rank, i.e., Assistant Professor of Engineering Practice, Associate Professor of Engineering Practice, and Professor of Engineering Practice, but are not tenure-track.

C. Faculty of Engineering Practice must possess the appropriate degree and/or licensure in their field.

D. The school head shall initiate a request to the dean to appoint Faculty of Engineering Practice following the development of a job description incorporating faculty input and receiving faculty approval.

E. There shall be no transfers between tenure track and Faculty of Engineering Practice appointments.  However, faculty holding a position of one type will be allowed to apply for a declared, open position of the other type and be considered through the normal national search and screening process.

F. Generally, not more that 15% of the faculty of a school may consist of Faculty of Engineering Practice.



Assistant Professor of Engineering Practice:: Required degrees, qualifications, or experience shall be determined by the appointing school. This faculty member must exhibit documented expertise in professional practice and be qualified to participate in the education programs of the school/division. When appropriate, the school/division may require Faculty of Engineering Practice to have specialty certification prior to being appointed. Further, this person shall have a primary commitment to assist the School in meeting programmatic need for professional services and instruction.

Associate Professor of Engineering Practice: To be considered for appointment to the rank of Associate Professor of Engineering Practice, the person shall have a primary commitment to assist the School in meeting its programmatic need for professional practice and instruction. Required degrees, qualifications (e.g., certification), or experience shall be determined by the appointing school.

Candidates for appointment to the rank of Associate Professor of Engineering Practice shall demonstrate evidence of excellence in teaching and professional practice. In addition, candidates are expected to have accomplishments or potential for national prominence in their fields.

Professor of Engineering Practice: A faculty member must demonstrate an extremely high level of professional accomplishment in teaching, service and/or professional practice. Faculty at this rank must have achieved recognition by their peers at the national/international level.



A. Faculty of Engineering Practice will participate in Primary Committee deliberations in the review of Faculty of Engineering Practice promotions of lower academic rank.



A. All  Assistant and Associate Professors of Engineering Practice must be mentored according to the College of Engineering mentoring policies.

B. For the purposes of mentoring, review and promotion of Assistant Professors of Engineering Practice, the School Primary Committee will be augmented to include all Associate and Full Professors of Engineering Practice, with full voting rights.  For purposes of mentoring, review and promotion of Associate Professors of Engineering Practice, the School Primary Committee will be augmented with all Full Professors of Engineering Practice. From now on this committee will be designated as the Augmented Primary Committee (APC).

For schools without any appropriate representation available from Faculty of Engineering Practice, the Dean, with input from the school, will appoint one Faculty of Engineering Practice from outside the school at the Associate Professor or (Full) Professor rank.  This appointment will be for a one-year duration and renewable.

A. The APC will perform an annual review of a record submitted by the faculty member and presented by the mentor (s). Written feedback regarding progress toward promotion is provided by the APC to the Faculty of Engineering Practice member through the school head.

B. For the purposes of review and promotion of Assistant and Associate Professors of Practice by the Engineering Area Promotions Committee (EAPC), the Dean of engineering will augment the EAPC by appointing at least one Faculty of Engineering Practice at the (Full) Professor rank, with full voting rights.  This appointment will be for a one-year duration and renewable.  The augmented engineering area primary committee will be referred to as the AEAPC in the remainder of this document

C. Merit increases and promotion are based on the assigned mission and on the accomplishments and experience consistent with University and College norms for faculty members who devote full time to their mission/assignment.

D. Faculty of Engineering Practice follow the same schedule and process as tenure-track faculty members regarding academic rank promotion. 



A.  Faculty of Engineering Practice can be principal investigators on grants, subject to university guidelines.*



Faculty of Engineering Practice may request “special appointment” status from the Graduate School with approval from their unit head. With such “special status”, they can serve as a co-major professor to a graduate student, but not as a major professor. With the same status, they can teach graduate courses and they can serve on graduate student advisory committees in instances where personal expertise might prove useful.**