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Smathers Libraries Career Development Handbook

IV. A. 1. Research and Creative Works

The University of Florida Administration requires that faculty have a research component as part of their assignment. Therefore, supporting staff research and publication is a high priority for the Libraries as a corollary to University rules and as a part of staff development. The Dean of University Libraries and the Provost must approve any assignment for which there is no research component.

It is expected that staff will assume primary responsibility for their professional growth and that the Libraries will make a joint contribution to assist them. Although the employee's primary responsibility is to fulfill assigned work responsibilities in the department, library faculty are expected to demonstrate evidence of professional growth by identifying and researching problems relating to bibliographic control, user services, management of complex operations or emerging technologies. The fruit of this research should be published, read to professional societies, or otherwise promulgated to the profession.

When the librarian wishes to take more than 10% FTE professional development/research time, release time must be negotiated with the department chair or division director and a Professional Development/Research Proposal Form should be completed. In the Professional Development/Research Proposal Form and the Annual Assignment, the librarian will formalize the agreement and outline the intended research product and its dissemination to the profession.

If the research project requires more than 10% FTE, librarians should submit a completed Professional Development /Research Proposal Form to their department chair or division director.

  1. After approval from the department chair, the form will be forwarded to the division director who will make the final decision on the request.
  2. Upon approval of the proposal, the librarian's annual assignment will be changed, if necessary, to reflect the amount of time spent conducting research.
  3. If such a request is approved for a TEAMS or USPS employee, the employee's position description will be changed to reflect the change in activities.
  4. Criteria for approval of professional development/research proposals include:
    • degree to which results will benefit the Library, the University, the employee, and scholarship in general
    • need of the profession for breakthrough in this area
    • expertise of the applicant that would permit him or her to carry out the project successfully
    • outside funding ( e.g., grant or joint project with an academic faculty member)
    • well thought-out publication prospects (in scope for proposed journal, etc.)
    • current work load of the employee and the department in general.
    • election or appointment to an administrative position in an appropriate association or scholarly society.

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