Externally-Funded Course Reductions
The Law School also may provide a course reduction if a faculty member obtains adequate funding from a non-University entity to support a release from teaching obligations. Please contact Molly Heiler for details.
Faculty members with a partial appointment in the Law School and a partial appointment in a non-teaching institution that provides course reductions, such as the American Bar Foundation or the Institute for Policy Research, are not eligible for Law School-provided course reductions.
As long as it is consistent with the needs of the curriculum, a research-intensive faculty member may organize his or her teaching obligations into one semester (or quarter) to provide an extended period of non-teaching. Faculty who so organize their teaching, however, will continue to be in residence at the Law School for both semesters and will continue to carry out their University and Law School committee and other assignments unless the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs: Faculty and Research agrees otherwise in writing.
Notwithstanding a faculty member's qualification for a Law School-provided course reduction or an externally-funded course reduction, each faculty member is required to teach at least one general demand course per academic year (unless he or she in on a formal leave of absence for the entire academic year). When this minimum teaching requirement prevents a faculty member from taking a Law School-provided course reduction for which he or she otherwise would qualify, or an externally-funded course reduction, the faculty member generally will be permitted to reduce his or her teaching load in a future year or years. Such future course reduction arrangements are decided upon by the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs: Faculty and Research and by the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs: Curriculum, in consultation with the faculty member.
Faculty members are frequently asked to join other education insitutions as visiting faculty or scholars for all or part of the year. Before accepting any such position, the faculty member must obtain the permission of the Dean or Associate Dean for Academic Affairs: Faculty and Research, and the visit must be approved by the Office of the Provost (as a leave of absence). If such a visit away is approved:
While visits away from time-to-time are valuable to the individual and to Northwestern for the exposure that they provide to our faculty and the Law School, in the interest of encouraging and maintaining a cohesive Law School community, the following frequency guidelines apply:
Northwestern University offers paid childbearing, adoption and childrearing leaves for eligible faculty.
The childbearing, adoption, and childrearing leaves described below are independent of personal leaves taken according to the provisions of the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA). Unpaid FMLA leave may be taken in addition to the leaves described below.
Faculty members who do not meet the eligibility requirements described below remain eligible for the "Leave for Childbearing" described in the Northwestern University Faculty Handbook (pdf).
Faculty eligible for the childbearing, adoption, and childrearing leaves described below are:
Types of Leave
Leave for Childbearing
Paid leave is provided to eligible faculty members for childbirth or adoption of a child. This leave for childbearing is not taken in additional (but is coordinated with) the six week "Leave for Childbearing" described in the Northwestern University Faculty Handbook. Is a medically certified disability arises as a result of pregnancy or childbearing, which renders the faculty member unable to work before or after the academic term in which the faculty member takes this childbearing leave, the faculty member is eligible for additional leave described in the "Medical Leave" section of the Faculty Handbook.
Faculty members who give birth to a child are eligible for a subsequent paid childrearing leave.
Leave for Adoption
Paid leave is provided to eligible faculty members for adoption of a child. Faculty members who adopt a child are eligible for a subsequent childrearing leave.
Leave for Childrearing
Paid leave is provided to eligible faculty members who are at least an equal partner in caring for a child.
Length and Timing of Leaves for faculty members whose primary appointments is in the Law School:
Childbearing and Adoption Leave:
Ten weeks, with reduction in annual teaching load, equivalent to one course. Faculty members with term-based teaching responsibilities must take this leave during the academic term during which the birth or adoption takes place, or during the academic term immediately following birth or adoption. Other faculty members must take the leave at a time coincident with the birth or adoption. The faculty member is expected to notify the school dean at least sixty days prior to the beginning of the leave; in cases of reception of a child by adoption, a shorter notification may be necessary.
Ten weeks, with reduction in annual teaching load, equivalent to one course. Childrearing leave must commence within twelve months of the birth or adoption of the child. Requests for childrearing leave are generally granted, upon recommendation of the school dean and approval of the Provost. The faculty member is expected to submit the request form below to the school dean at least sixty days prior to the beginning of the intended leave period.
Expectations during childbearing, adoption, and childrearing leaves:
Faculty members on childbearing, adoption, and childrearing leave will not be required to discharge such University service responsibilities as membership on committees; however, they are expected to retain responsibility for any necessary supervision to students pursuing such work as: undergraduate senior honors, masters, or doctoral research.
During the academic year in which the leave is taken, a reduction in the annual teaching load corresponding to the length of the leave will be made. If the course reduction and leave from service are not taken in the academic year in which the birth or adoption occurs, the faculty member may take the remaining course reduction(s) and leave from service in the following academic year. Notwithstanding the provisions regarding course reductions, it is assumed that no faculty member's teaching load will be reduced to less than one course a year because of childbearing, adoption or childrearing.
Tenure clock extension (research-intensive faculty)
Independent of a faculty member's taking a leave of absence, Northwestern University provides extensions to the pretenure probationary period for circumstances related to the birth, adoption and/or rearing of a dependent child. A one-year extension will be granted to mothers following the childbirth, and to parents following adoption. An additional one-year extension for childrearing may be granted to a parent who is at least an equal partner in caring for a child. Extensions for childbirth and/or adoption and/or childrearing are limited to a total of two years within a faculty member's pretenure probationary period at Northwestern, regardless of the number of children.
In cases of birth or adoption, approval of requests for leave and for extension of the tenure clock for one year is automatic. However, both circumstances require that the faculty member provide the school dean notification of the birth or adoption and/or the customary request for extension of the tenure clock.
For extension of the pretenure probationary period related to childbearing, adoption, or childrearing, the faculty member must initiate the process to obtain an extension before the beginning of the final year of the probationary appointment. The dean will in turn provide to the faculty member written confirmation that the probationary period has been extended.
Subject to University policies, a faculty member may take an unpaid leave of absence with the approval of the Dean and Provost to serve in significant governmental or public interest positions, to facilitate his or her professional development, or for personal reasons. In such a case, the leave period cannot exceed one year.