Promotion and reclassification guidelines: to Assistant Professor

Faculty at the rank of Lecturer may request promotion (or "reclassification" for PhD faculty) to the rank of Assistant Professor based on advanced education or sustained commitment to the academic mission. 

Criteria for promotion (to Assistant Professor): Clinical (MD) faculty

You can achieve promotion to the rank of Assistant Professor by 

  • obtaining 'advanced degree', or
  • 'sustained commitment' to the academic mission of the Temerty Faculty of Medicine.  

There are no set timelines, but generally, you need to demonstrate sustained contributions and scholarship in the Temerty Faculty of Medicine for at least three years to meet the criterion of sustained teaching excellence.

Advanced Degree

You must show successful completion of a recognized graduate program or an advanced training experience deemed to be equivalent to a Master’s level program.

In some cases, one to two years of fellowship training or a one to two year teaching certificate program will be considered the equivalent to an advanced degree.

You must complete the degree program and have proof, such as a successful defense of a thesis or degree award, before submitting your request for appointment. Normally the thesis results in at least one first authored scholarly publication in a high quality peer reviewed journal.

If you have completed equivalent fellowship training but are currently enrolled in a graduate studies program, you need to complete your degree program before your appointment can be changed.

You should have at least one or two published (or accepted) first authored peer‐reviewed publications in well regarded journals in your field, excluding case reports, editorials, letters to editor or book reviews.

Sustained Commitment

You must clearly demonstrate educational accomplishments that include convincing evidence of one or more of the following:

  1. Sustained teaching excellence, i.e. a summary of a strong teaching dossier that includes:
    • analysis of student/trainee evaluations with comparisons against peer teachers;
    • numbers and types of trainees and evidence that the candidate has taught in a variety of teaching environments; and
    • teaching awards.
  2. Design and development of curricula, educational offerings and/or educational materials.
  3. Creative Professional Activity (CPA) in teaching/education (such as the setting of practice standards). You must provide evidence and impact of CPA.
  4. Demonstrated impact of scholarship at local or regional levels.

Generally, your advanced training and publications should be sufficiently recent and related to your current work, to show some continuity of academic accomplishment to the present.

Other evidence of academic achievement, such as research funding, academic positions, patents and invited lectures are considered.

Criteria for reclassification (to Assistant Professor): Status-Only (PhD) faculty

Status-Only faculty are employed outside the University, usually by an academic or research institution and normally receive no remuneration from the University of Toronto.  

In LMP, eligible Status-only faculty (holding PhD degree) include:

  • scientists
  • clinical biochemists
  • microbiologists
  • clinical molecular geneticists, etc.

Criteria for reclassification to Assistant Professor

You must meet the following criteria to be reclassified to the rank of Assistant Professor:

Show strong evidence of scholarly productivity. Scholarship can include:

  • a post-doctoral fellowship
  • first-authored peer-reviewed publications
  • national speaking engagements
  • invited lectures
  • sustained excellent contributions to a teaching program, including curriculum development.

You must have clear evidence of a strong record of scholarly achievement and/or creative professional activity in line with departmental norms such as:

  • a history of relevant experience involving graduate level teaching.
  • coordinating a significant component of the curriculum including any of the following;
    • classroom lectures
    • presentations
    • small group facilitation
    • supervision of graduate research projects
    • involvement in the organization or planning of the evaluation components of the curriculum.
  • positive evaluations from students.
  • published work including monographs, reports, articles and reviews in which you have contributed to the advancement of knowledge as a result of your work.
  • contributing innovations in techniques or concepts that have an important influence on the discipline’s practice including teaching.
  • presenting peer reviewed scholarly papers or posters at professional and/or scientific meetings or participating as a panel member at such meetings.
  • principal or co-investigator/co-supervisor for a research project.
  • involvement in the planning of major research initiatives – e.g. planning or coordinating research symposia.
  • collaborative research with faculty members.
  • evidence of instructional innovation and/or creative excellence.
  • contributing innovations (with documentation) in techniques or concepts that have an important influence on the discipline’s practice.
  • registrant in good standing of a provincial/national regulatory body.

Process and timeline for junior promotion and reclassification

It may take a year to complete the entire promotion / reclassification process.

  • Reminder for junior promotions / reclassification is sent out every February
  • Submit your dossier (rolling deadline)
  • LMP solicits reference letters
  • LMP Promotions Committee adjudication meeting
  • LMP submits promotion dossier to Temerty Faculty of Medicine Faculty Appointments Advisory Committee (FAAC)
  • Temerty Faculty of Medicine Faculty Appointments Advisory Committee (FAAC) review
  • Promotion will be effective after Dean's approval

Documentation checklist: promotion or reclassification dossier requirements to Assistant Professor

Deadline: Rolling deadline

Submit documents by email to Xilonem Lopez

You can download the instructions below as a PDF. (169.65 KB)

1. Cover letter

Address the following points in your letter (~3-5 pages):

  • reason for seeking promotion (e.g. excellence in research and competence in teaching)
  • short narrative of your academic career history
  • for faculty with clinical duties, briefly describe your job description with percentage split between clinical and academic activities.
  • brief summary of your accomplishments and its impact since your last promotion or since your appointment (please list your most significant accomplishments first):
    • research, if applicable
    • creative professional activity, if applicable
    • teaching
    • administrative service
  • outline future direction.

Write your letter so that a non-specialist in your field could understand.

2. Curriculum Vitae

Use the Temerty Faculty of Medicine CV template. Review your CV and make sure that citations are complete.

3. Most significant publications

List your five most significant publications, including a short paragraph describing the significance and your contribution.

Include copies of these publications in your dossier.

These papers must be since your appointment to LMP.

4. Research documentation, if applicable

Research statement.

5. Creative Professional Activity (CPA) documentation, if applicable

If this section applies to you, please read the LMP Promotions Task Force - CPA report.  

It is important to write a compelling narrative to describe your activities. 

Your report must give the reader a clear and concise view of your accomplishments, the impact and the evidence of this impact.  

The report should:

  • describe your key accomplishment(s) since your last promotion (describe each accomplishment separately), stating clearly your role in the accomplishment. It may be necessary for you to provide some background for reviewers who are non-specialist in your field. 
  • explain the level of impact or influence – local, national or international position, and affected stakeholders (clinicians, hospital staff, public).
  • include a brief description of how this accomplishment showed exemplary professional practice (e.g. was it adopted by other institutions, etc.).
  • address the sustainability of the work. What is the vision for the future? Address funding sustainability, if applicable.
  • include evidence/proof of impact. For example attach:
    • letter(s) of support from other organizations who have adopted your initiatives
    • invitations to address major conferences
    • conference organization activities
    • peer-reviewed publications
    • website
    • workshops
    • uptake of your program
    • new collaborations
    • editorials that illustrate international impact of publication
    • review articles referring to work
    • symposium presentations
    • samples of media reports and news clippings
    • membership in think-tank organizations
    • special awards and recognition received as a result of your work.

Attach supporting documents for each CPA activity. For each CPA activity, collate supporting documents into one pdf.

For Quality Improvement activities that have not been published, it is highly recommended that you submit a QI report, e.g. Standards for Quality Improvement Reporting Excellence template on the Squire website.

6. Teaching and education documentation

Complete a Teaching and Education Report.

Your report must include:

  • a statement of your teaching philosophy, including an assessment of the impact of teaching activities. See Developing a Statement of Teaching Philosophy on the Centre for Teaching Support and Innovation website.
  • all your activities related to the administration, organizational and developmental aspects of education. Describe the nature and extent of your involvement and level of responsibility, clearly indicating when you had a major responsibility for the design of a course.
  • a summary of your teaching goals within the next 5 years.
  • teaching evaluation reports or assessments. For example:
    • summaries of course assessments, per course, per year
    • results of peer assessments of teaching effectiveness
    • solicited and unsolicited testimonial letters from colleagues
    • letters from senior members of the Faculty who have made personal observations at national meetings
    • CE courses and/or seminars and symposia (if applicable).

Do not submit copies of lecture slides.

7. Referee lists

The Chair may seek assessments from other departments at the University of Toronto where you hold cross-appointments, as well as other referees.

Colleague referees

Complete the colleague referee form, ensuring contact information is up to date.

Colleague referees should be able to understand your scholarly contributions and its impact in the field.

It can be a current or previous collaborator (i.e. co-author on papers or co-PI/ co-applicants on grants).

Colleague referees can be:

  • LMP faculty;
  • affiliated with UofT; or
  • external to UofT

For promotion / reclassification to Assistant Professor, it is not necessary to suggest arms-length referees.

Student referees

Complete the student referee form, ensuring contact information is up to date.

Student referees can be current or former students.

Sample promotion dossiers

You can review sample promotion dossiers from the LMP Office. Contact Xilonem Lopez to request access

Keeping your profile up to date

We strongly recommend you keep your online profile up to date in the Faculty Directory.

You can update your profile at any time by completing the online form or emailing


For any questions about the process or documentation required, contact:

Xilonem Lopez

Academic Affairs Officer


Find out more about the Promotions Committee: LMP Departmental Promotions Committee (DPC) Membership