School of Nursing: Standard for Preparing a Promotion Portfolio for Review by Appointment, Promotion, and Reappointment (APR) Committee

Unit Standard


School of Nursing: Standard for Preparing a Promotion Portfolio for review by Appointment, Promotion, and Reappointment (APR) Committee



This document provides instructions for the preparation of a promotion portfolio for fixed-term faculty.


All fixed-term faculty seeking ranks of assistant, associate or full professor. For those seeking rank to assistant professor, refer to Section 8.


The following resources aid in preparing promotion materials:

The central purpose of the promotion portfolio is to showcase and interpret your work for internal and external reviewers. Your portfolio is pivotal to your promotion and is the central source of material used to assess readiness for promotion. Therefore, your essay is a critical component of this portfolio. The following instructions will help you create the strongest reflection of the important contributions you make and how these activities reflect your performance at the rank you are seeking. In addition to the materials you present, the following documents are also reviewed by the APR committee: your division head letter, peer review letters, and internal and external review letters.

Portfolio components submitted by candidate seeking the Rank of Associate or Full Professor

  1. Curriculum Vitae (CV): formatted according to the current SON: Curriculum Vitae Template
  2. Teaching Evaluations (see specifics below)
  3. Faculty practice evaluations (as appropriate)
  4. Essay
  5. Scholarly products (no more than five)
  6. Internal and External Reviewer List
  7. UNC-Chapel Hill Form AP-2 (initiated by candidate and completed by division staff)


  • Discuss your readiness for promotion with your division head. If there has been a gap in your academic career, or you are transitioning from the tenure track to the fixed term, be sure that your primary area of review coincides with your scholarly activity and focus. Also be certain that you have enough evidence to reflect excellence in this primary area, enough to warrant recognition and promotion. It is suggested that faculty who have had gaps in their academic employment or are coming from the tenure track, give themselves sufficient time to amass evidence of their excellence in their current role(s). If you decide to go forward, then your division head will submit your candidacy for the upcoming year to be placed on the APR promotion schedule. You will then receive a letter from the Office of Administrative Services (OAS) that provides a timeline for the submission of your promotion portfolio. Make sure you understand what is being asked and that you understand the deadlines. Adhering to the timeline is very important because delays may jeopardize the efficiency of the review process, potentially delaying your review until the following academic year. Preparing a promotion portfolio takes time and is a lengthy process. Develop a submission timeline with your division head.
  • Read and re-read the SON: Standard on Appointment and Promotion for Fixed-Term Faculty so that you understand the criteria for different professorial ranks.
  • Seek assistance from your division head during every step of portfolio preparation to include identifying the scholarly products to submit in your portfolio that best showcase your achievements. Consider asking your division head to assist you to identify faculty who may be willing to share their successful portfolio.
  • The APR Chair is available to answer questions about policies, processes and procedures.

1. Curriculum Vitae

  • Use the current SON: Curriculum Vitae Template to keep your CV up-to-date. Ask your division head to review it for appropriate placement of entries.

2. Peer Teaching Evaluations

  • Meet with your division head to discuss obtaining peer teaching evaluations (reference SON: Standard on the Evaluation of Teaching). Your division head is responsible for identifying peer reviewers. This needs to be done very early in the process as it takes time for the division head to solicit peers to provide a review for you and the peer reviewers to coordinate calendars to observe your teaching. Peer reviewers will also complete a written evaluation and return it to the division head. For those seeking promotion where teaching is the primary responsibility, the APR Committee requires two (2) peer teaching evaluations.

3. Evaluations of Practice, Service, Administration, and/or Research as appropriate

  • Faculty with substantial responsibility in practice, service, administration and/or research will discuss with their division heads what supporting materials should be submitted in order to showcase your area of unique expertise.

4. Essay

Your essay is the most important part of the promotion portfolio. The central purpose of this essay is to showcase and interpret your work for reviewers and APR members. You are directing readers to understand what you have accomplished and the context within which you want them to interpret your accomplishments, their impact and your potential contribution at the next rank. This essay is your opportunity to show reviewers the central focus of your work and what distinguishes your work from others. In order to do this, you must weave your career activities, scholarship, service, research (all that applies) together.

It is critical to fully describe activities that illustrate your level of expertise and your area(s) of central focus and how these activities reflect your performance at the rank you are seeking. Providing context for your major accomplishments and telling the story of your major work is important. Less central or more self-evident activities require less explanation. The essay allows you to help reviewers understand the components of your vitae that may not be as obvious to the reader. For example, there may be only one line on your vitae referring to an accomplishment, yet it may represent the bulk of your scholarship and impact. While you know this, you must make it explicit for the reader. Be mindful that external and internal reviewers may not be familiar with the structure of the SON or university. It is incumbent upon you to provide context and significance of your work. You must tell your reviewers how to interpret and connect items listed in the vitae, without simply repeating what is on the vitae. For example, do you want them to see a certain publication as a contribution primarily to teaching, research, practice, or service? Is the publication an example of knowledge generation, integration, application, or dissemination? If teaching is your primary focus, provide a summary of the last three years of student or attendee numeric evaluation and comments (courses, teaching, lab instruction, or presentations) and course/presentation changes you made in response to student or attendee feedback.

Essay Format and Organization
Components of the Essay
  • Introductory Paragraph: In the Introductory paragraph(s), you should state your area of excellence or area of primary review, demonstrating excellence in the domain in which your primary responsibility lies. However, if you are significantly engaged in clinical practice as well as teaching, it is important to speak to your accomplishments in both areas, even if clinical practice is secondary. The same is applicable to teaching and service. You might also include here a broad statement that distinguishes your work: its past and future directions. For example, you might describe your scholarship as directed toward the development, implementation, and evaluation of distance technologies for undergraduate nursing education, or your research program as directed toward the management of symptoms in HIV/AIDS patients. The goal is to identify and name the heart of the work around which your efforts in the SON have been organized.
Area of Excellence or of Primary Review: Performance, Impact or Significance and Recognition
  • In this section, you should present a brief but comprehensive review of your performance in your stated area of primary review. Remember, your scholarly work and other evidence of excellence should reflect this area of primary review. Summarize what you have done - that is, your performance, organized by primary and secondary areas of excellence. Include evidence and a description of your performance since your last promotion and interpret and document the impact of your work and the recognition you received for this work.
  • When presenting evidence of teaching, provide a summary of your teaching including your role in the course, your self-evaluation of your teaching, and include student and peer evaluations as described in the APR Guidelines.
  • In order to maintain brevity, refer to appended documentation, such as certain publications, syllabi, student and peer evaluations, and awards. Once you have referred to any one of these items, you should not refer to them again in other sections. For example, you must decide whether certain accomplishments (a published paper, a video, a protocol) are primarily an example of a contribution to research, teaching, practice, or service. You should not keep referring to the same item to meet different performance areas.
Area of Competence or Secondary Review (if applicable): Performance, Impact or Significance, and Recognition
  • In the next section of your essay, you should move to a brief but, again, comprehensive review of your performance in the secondary review if applicable, or the one that represents the most significant portion of your time.
  • Faculty on the fixed-term track are not required to discuss any areas of their work other than the one in which their primary responsibility lies. They may choose to do so if they have accomplishments they wish to show-case in these other areas, or if they have responsibilities in more than one domain.
Area of Competence or Tertiary Review (if applicable): Performance, Impact or Significance, and Recognition
  • In the final section, you should summarize and interpret your performance in an additional area of competence or of secondary review if applicable.
Direction for the Future
  • You should end your essay with a summary of your goals for the future and of the direction you will take your work. You might also include the significance your goals have for the School, the University, nursing, and/ or health care.

5. Scholarly Products

Append scholarly products (limited to five) that best support your assertions and represent work since your last promotion at UNC-Chapel Hill or your prior institution. For long products (i.e. greater than 10) pages, select a representative excerpt of no more than 10 pages in length. Scholarly products are only required for individuals seeking promotion to the rank of Associate or Full Professor

6. Selected Reviewer List

  • Submit a list of two names of potential internal (UNC-Chapel Hill faculty not assigned to the School of Nursing) and two names of external (not UNC-Chapel Hill faculty) reviewers, as defined in the SON: Appointment, Promotion, and Reappointment (APR) Committee Policies and Procedures. Provide a brief explanation describing why each individual is an appropriate reviewer. Please provide complete contact information: Name, credentials, rank, affiliate (university, etc.) email and phone number. You may want to review your proposed list of reviewers with your department head. Reviewers are only required for individuals seeking promotion to the rank of Associate or Full Professor.

7. UNC-Chapel Hill AP-2 Form

  • The UNC-Chapel Hill AP-2 Form is a request for personnel action recommending promotion for an EHRA employee. Your division staff will complete this form and include it in your promotion portfolio. It is your responsibility to review the AP-2 for accuracy.

8. Portfolio Components for individuals seeking promotion to Rank of Assistant Professor

For those candidates who are seeking promotion from Instructor to Assistant Professor, the candidate does not need to submit scholarly articles or submit names for external reviewers. Therefore the process can be streamlined in the following manner:

  • Curriculum Vitae (CV): formatted according to the current SON: Curriculum Vitae Template.
  • Teaching Evaluations (see specifics below).
  • Faculty practice evaluations (as appropriate).
  • Essay: (2 pages that can incorporate bulleted lists) that cites examples of how the candidate meets the requirements consistent with an Assistant Professor. Essay should include candidate’s aspirations for continued advancement of their scholarly work.
  • UNC-Chapel Hill AP-2 Form (initiated by candidate and completed by division staff). It is your responsibility to review the AP-2 for accuracy.

Related Requirements

External Regulations and Consequences

Unit Policies, Standards, and Procedures

Contact Information

Primary Contact

Theresa Raphael Grimm, APR Chair

Important Dates

  • Revised: 6/6/2022, 8/23/2019 by APR Committee
  • Effective Date and title of Approver: 2/10/2012; approved by APR Committee
Print Article


Article ID: 132400
Thu 4/8/21 9:30 PM
Mon 11/13/23 4:18 PM
Responsible Unit
School, Department, or other organizational unit issuing this document.
School of Nursing
Issuing Officer
Name of the document Issuing Officer. This is the individual whose organizational authority covers the policy scope and who is primarily responsible for the policy.
Issuing Officer Title
Title of the person who is primarily responsible for issuing this policy.
APR Chair
Next Review
Date on which the next document review is due.
06/06/2023 12:00 AM
Last Review
Date on which the most recent document review was completed.
06/06/2022 12:00 AM
Last Revised
Date on which the most recent changes to this document were approved.
06/06/2022 12:00 AM
Effective Date
If the date on which this document became/becomes enforceable differs from the Origination or Last Revision, this attribute reflects the date on which it is/was enforcable.
06/06/2022 12:00 AM
Date on which the original version of this document was first made official.
04/27/2007 11:00 PM