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Am I eligible for sabbatical?

School of Medicine faculty members are eligible for a sabbatical assignment after six years of full-time service to the University of Colorado and after achieving the rank of Associate Professor or Professor. Faculty members who hold “part-time” appointments (0.50 - 0.99 FTE) are eligible for a sabbatical after a longer, pro-rated period of service. All tenured and tenure-eligible faculty members are eligible, as are faculty members in the Research Professor and Clinical Practices series. A sabbatical assignment may not be granted more than once in a seven year period.

According to the Board of Regents, “a sabbatical is a privilege granted by the University for the advancement of the University. A sabbatical assignment is an important tool in developing academic scholarship and is a time for concentrated professional development. The faculty member shall use the sabbatical assignment in a manner that will enhance her/his scholarly and/or teaching competence and potential for service to the University, and advance departmental program goals.”

Applying for Sabbatical

Faculty members must apply for a sabbatical assignment. All sabbaticals must then be approved by the faculty member’s department chair, the Dean of the School of Medicine, the Provost of the University of Colorado Denver and the President and Board of Regents. Importantly, all sabbatical assignments are subject to the availability of resources. All sabbatical requests should be submitted at least six months prior to the start of the planned sabbatical. 

Submitting a Written Plan

Faculty members requesting a sabbatical must submit a written plan for the sabbatical, which includes: the dates of the sabbatical; plans for coverage of teaching, clinical, administrative, research and other responsibilities; and a budget, which outlines explicitly how the faculty member will be paid (including internal or external sources of funding). The application must include a statement of available external funding sources and “attempts to obtain such funding.” Obviously, the application must also include a clear description of the sabbatical, including a work plan, specific goals and an explanation of how the sabbatical will contribute to the faculty member’s professional growth and expertise and the academic goals of the department and the School of Medicine. The sabbatical plan must also describe how the work will contribute to “enhancing the University’s reputation and the educational experience of students.” 

Remuneration during Sabbatical

Remuneration during the sabbatical (from University resources such as state funding, University administered grants or contracts, or any other University managed sources) is subject to the following limits: faculty members may be paid either: their full salary for a period up to six months; or half salary for sabbaticals from six to 12 months. 

Post-Sabbatical Requirements

In accepting a sabbatical assignment, the faculty member also must agree to return to the University upon completion of the sabbatical and work for the University for at least one year thereafter. 

After completing the sabbatical, and within four months after returning to regular duties, faculty members must file a written report with the Dean and with their department chair, summarizing their work and accomplishments during the sabbatical. Both the plan for the sabbatical and the post-sabbatical report are evaluated by the Dean and are public documents. Departments are expected to use the sabbatical report during annual performance and post-tenure reviews. 

For more information about sabbaticals and the application process, visit the Faculty Affairs website and click on the link for “Sabbaticals and Other Privileges.” ​