GENERAL COMMENTS ON STYLE FOR UIUC LIBRARY FACULTY PREPARING PROMOTION PAPERS
BREVITY is a virtue. The maximum length for Sections I through V is 23 pages
(allowing one page for cover sheet and one page for comments by the University Librarian within the
stipulated 25-page maximum). Portions drafted by the candidate for promotion within Sections I
through V should be limited to about 13 pages (allowing 10 pages for evaluative comments by other
individual(s), peer committee summary, list of external evaluators, etc.).
- The Campus Committee on Promotion and Tenure is only interested in a candidate's professional
accomplishments after joining the University of Illinois faculty, or after his/her last promotion
at the University. The lists of publications, however, may derive from one's entire professional
- Avoid unnecessary explanatory comments and/or the listing of relatively minor activities which
might be construed as "padding" by critical readers. Summarize rather than list.
- Avoid redundancy, insofar as possible, by placing information and/or comments only under the
most appropriate general headings.
CLARITY is essential. Remember that non-librarians will read promotion papers; one
cannot assume that specialized concepts, terminology, and acronyms in common use among librarians
will be readily understood by those members of the Campus Committee on Promotion and Tenure who are
not information professionals.
- Except for clearly recognizable terms (e.g., USA, UIUC), avoid using an acronym without
insuring that the full name (of organization, agency, etc.) has been stated prior to initial use,
followed by the acronym within parentheses; e.g., "...the American Library Association (ALA).
- Bibliographic information must be complete, following forms specified in
The Chicago Manual of Style (15 th ed.; University of Chicago Press, c2003). See Library
Citation Style for
Dossiers for examples
CONSISTENCY of presentation is important. Use standard headings, as provided on
the "Outline of Promotion Dossier" issued by the University Provost's office, supplemented by
"Substitute Section III for Librarians" prepared by the Faculty Review Committee. For headings on
the "Outline of Promotion Dossier" (but not necessarily for all subdivisions of Section III-A-0)
use the phrase "Not applicable" as required.
- Strive for consistency in respect to spacing, punctuation, and capitalization throughout the
document. Spell out months in full; e.g., " February 28, 1999" instead of " Feb. 28, 1999." The
designation of two specific years separated by a hyphen should be indicated in full; e.g.,
"1997-1998" or "1999-2001" rather than "1997-98" or "1999-01."
- Capitalize " University " and "Library" when applied specifically to the University of Illinois
and to the University's Library system. Capitalize names of departmental units, committees, and
University divisions. (E.g.: "The Music Library provides an intensive bibliographic instruction
program for graduate students of the School of Music..." - "Shortly after assuming my present
position at the University in 1992..." - "My research interests on interface design have been
developed in conjunction with my activities as a member of the Library's Public Access Catalog
Revised on 31 May 2005, twc et al.