February 4, 2023

From Gerald R. Lucas

TPS Report Submitted

Every year, these TPS Reports get longer, like syllabi. In fact, we now have two forms to fill out: one from the university and one from the school. They each have redundant information, but the one from the school tries to be granular in how it defines the quality of certain vita lines. I guess defining a published book chapter as “Tier 1” and a book review in a journal as a “Tier 2” is useful in an EduCorp kind of way, but to me, this is obvious and now we have to do the administrators’ work for them by classifying our accomplishments. Instead of having understood criteria for evaluation, we now have detailed, quantifiable categories that are overly complicated and pointless. I guess this is good for the powers-that-be and the legal department. When I look back on my older TPS Reports, they relied more on personal narrative like you might see in a cover letter rather than a check grid. These days, if you can’t quantify it, then it doesn’t signify. Soon students will be able to just like or dislike a whole class on the university Instagram.

So, I finished and submitted my TPS Report for 2022 yesterday, and it looks like junk on a Word template. The school document makes it much more complicated than it needs to be. It took much longer than it should have, and I never know how it will be received. I never did receive any feedback about my post-tenure review a couple of years ago. I guess I did OK. Maybe it’s a no-news-is-good-news situation.

Reflections has been sent to the printer, and we agreed on a contract for Lipton’s which we should be signing in a couple of days. I should hear something from the Ransom Center about the fellowship by mid-March. Maybe I can come up with an interesting DH project for the short fiction while I write the book. It could be an interesting summer.