The University of San Francisco: Provost/Academic Affairs

Research, Scholarship and Creative Work Support

In Fall 2010, the Provost convened a Task Force to improve the quality, quantity, and visibility of research, scholarship, and artistic accomplishments at the University of San Francisco. The Task Force produced a report on their findings:  Task Force for Research and Scholarship Excellence Report 2011

The Provost Office collected a list of resources available to support faculty research, scholarship, and creative work. Some of these resources were offered previously and some were added in response to the work of the Task Force. 

– Arts and Sciences, Education, Nursing and Health Professions, Management faculty and Librarians
Each academic year, the Dean (or Associate Dean) meets with faculty to discuss and agree upon a career prospectus. During this meeting, the Dean and faculty member/librarian review the faculty member’s/librarian’s research/creative performance and plans as well as any support that the Dean may provide to the faculty/librarian member.  

CARMA: Center for the Advancement of Research Methods and Analysis

CARMA provides web casts and a video library, plus discounts on short courses, on the topic of research methodologies for all subject disciplines. The Gleeson Library-Geschke Center subscribes to this service, making it available to faculty.


The Center for Instruction and Technology (CIT) has established a campus-wide agreement with for access to over 1000 instructional videos on a range of topics of interest to faculty, staff, and students. Topics are wide ranging and include tutorials on the Adobe product suite, Microsoft Office, Canvas, Twitter, Time Management and much more.

The University’s Information and Technology Services (ITS) provides a Lenovo or Apple, with the choice of either a desktop or laptop, computer to full-time faculty. Generally, computers are replaced every three years for laptops and every four years for desktops.

The Office of Contracts and Grants (OCG) encourages and supports USF faculty and staff in their pursuit of federal, state, and local funding for research and institutional contracts and grants. OCG helps faculty and staff identify prospective funding opportunities, interpret federal and state agency guidelines, develop realistic budgets, complete application requirements, and prepare and submit competitive proposals. OCG also provides post-award support to faculty and staff to help them manage their grants and contracts by providing regular financial reports, interpret agency requirements, and help them to request approvals for no cost extensions and budget reallocations. The OCG also holds workshops and events for faculty throughout the year.

Note: Full-time faculty can apply for released time from their regular teaching load. The amount is determined by the nature of the grant and the needs of their department. Released time from courses needs to be compensated by the grant at full salary rates. Generally, one class during the academic year is equal to 12.5% of salary, but this must be verified with the business manager in each college or department. You can also utilize the Self-Calculating Proposal Budget Template on the OCG web site.

Throughout the academic year, the schools and college sponsor special Faculty Development Luncheons and Workshops. These events provide an opportunity for faculty to come together to learn about and discuss matters related to research and scholarship. Attendance is voluntary, the atmosphere is collegial, and discussion is encouraged.


The University is a member of the Faculty Resource Network (FRN). The primary mission of the FRN is to help serve the faculty development needs of small to medium-sized member institutions. The FRN offers a broad range of faculty development opportunities ranging from intensive summer seminars, longer research residencies, lunchtime lectures, panel discussions, national symposia, and more.

Jesuit Foundation Grants
The Jesuit Foundation, established by a gift from the USF Jesuit Community, helps USF engage and foster its Catholic identity. Because that identity depends considerably upon the depth and presence of Ignatian spirituality within the institution, the Foundation encourages the integration of Ignatian spirituality with the programs and structures that sustain the character and life of the University. Successful proposals ordinarily will be funded up to a total of $5,000 for Ignatian Spirituality Grants, Pedagogy Grants, Research Grants and Community-in-Conversation Grants and up to a total of $3,000 for Immersion Accompaniment Grants.

Faculty Development Fund –Arts and Sciences, Education, Nursing and Health Professions, Management faculty and Librarians
The Faculty Development Fund (FDF) provides financial support for research expenses, conference travel, research assistants (RAs), transcription services, classes on research methodology and analysis, training in statistical software packages, editorial and indexing services, etc. Research grants are intended primarily to be seed money that will help faculty carry out preliminary studies to be used in developing proposals for external funding. Research endeavors that support a candidate's request for consideration for promotion or tenure will be accorded highest priority. Activities that enhance professional effectiveness (as defined in the Collective Bargaining Agreement) will be accorded secondary priority. Normally, preference for FDF will be awarded to untenured faculty.

Faculty Team Innovation Awards
The Provost launched Faculty Team Innovation Awards to encourage and accelerate academic collaboration and cross-fertilization. Teams of faculty members representing at least two distinct USF academic departments are invited to submit proposals that outline a wholly new project (related to research, curriculum development or service) that would combine expertise from the disciplines represented. Successful proposals receive a $5,000 stipend per team.


Gleeson Library-Geschke Center
The library holds 765,000 books (51,000 e-books ), 50,000 full-text magazine, journal and newspaper titles in 250 databases and offers 650 seats, 100 computers, 7 study rooms—and uncounted discoveries—all brought to you with the guidance and care of 70 creative librarians, staff, and students. The library also offers these new and unique services:

This online reference manager allows users to create personal databases and use them for a variety of research activities. References are quickly and easily imported from text files or online databases. The databases can then be used to manage, store, and share the information. Users can automatically insert references from their database into their papers and generate formatted bibliographies and manuscripts in seconds.

One of the three major citation searching databases, and the largest database of peer-reviewed research literature covering 17,500 peer-reviewed journals. Includes the Author Identifier to automatically match an author’s published research including the h-index.

Institutional Repository
The Institutional Repository will allow faculty to deposit their research into the repository as well as set up an individual page called "selected works" to manage all their publications. The repository will track download counts for each deposited article and provide regular reports to the author.

Library Liaison

The Library Liaison program pairs librarians with specific academic programs to better support faculty teaching and research, and to enhance the library’s instruction and collection development programs.

Link+ is a cooperative library project that links the catalogs of participating libraries, and allows USF patrons to electronically request an item from another of the more than 40 Link+ libraries, and have that item quickly delivered to the USF library to be checked-out there.

Interlibrary Loan System
If you cannot locate an item in the library or through Link+, you can also use the Interlibrary Loan (ILL) system.  ILL is based on an agreement among participating libraries to make certain materials—books, dissertations, journal articles—available to other member libraries upon request. We routinely search the Online Computer Library Center database to locate and borrow materials owned by other US, Canadian, and European libraries.

Jesuit Library Passport
Faculty may also take advantage of the Jesuit Library Passport, a nationwide reciprocal borrowing program among Jesuit libraries. Through the program, USF faculty have access and borrowing privileges at all 28 Jesuit institutions in the United States. Contact the Access Services/Circulation department for more information.

Zief Law Library
The Zief Law Library offers a variety of services, including research assistance and instruction, interlibrary loan, and course reserves. Reference librarians are available to help with the following research tasks and more:

  • advice on research strategy;
  • advice on choosing paper topics;
  • assistance with law review citation checks;
  • advice on developing more efficient Internet research strategies;
  • advice on searching Lexis, Westlaw, HeinOnline, and other databases.


The Office of Media Relations invites faculty members to join their roster of experts, and also offers media training to prepare faculty for successful print, broadcast and on-line interviews. They also work directly with reporters (locally, nationally, and internationally) to provide them with academic experts and story ideas. Please contact the Media Relations office to become a faculty expert and to keep them posted on what your research.

The Faculty Mentor Program is an initiative directed at facilitating the adaptation of new full-time faculty to San Francisco, USF, and the College. The program is intended to help new faculty meet other members of the faculty and administration and to provide an informal source of information about procedures, expectations, traditions, history, and even lore at USF. Faculty mentors provide advice and support on research and help new faculty connect with other faculty in their area of specialty.

The NEH Chair in the Humanities is prestigious grant for the Humanities at the University of San Francisco.  The recipient of the chair receives released time over the academic year to support sustained research and writing on a major project for publication. The holder of the NEH Chair in the Humanities gives a public presentation in April on the topic of the project.

If a full-time, probationary or tenured faculty member receives a nationally competitive prestigious fellowship, the University will match the fellowship award dollar for dollar up to an amount not greater than the faculty member’s normal salary. The Dean will determine which fellowships qualify. Eligible faculty members should discuss their eligibility and the details of this program, including the continuation of benefits, with the Dean or Associate Dean before an application is submitted.


Throughout the academic year, the Provost sponsors New Faculty Luncheons on a variety of topics. Past luncheons have focused on how to apply for external research funding, promotion and tenure tips, etc. Attendance is voluntary, the atmosphere is collegial, and discussion is encouraged.

Research support including the Office of Contracts and Grants is overseen and led by the Senior Vice Provost. The Associate Dean for Faculty Scholarship and Academic Effectiveness in the College of Arts and Sciences, the Associate Dean for Faculty Scholarship in the School of Law, and the Associate Dean for Faculty and Research in the School of Management provide additional support.

SABBATICAL LEAVESArts and Sciences, Education, Nursing and Health Professions, Management faculty
Regular Sabbatical Leave
In order to increase the effectiveness of faculty to the University and to afford opportunities for professional development, faculty are eligible to apply for a sabbatical leave beginning in their seventh year of continuous full-time service at the University, and in the seventh year following each sabbatical leave granted. The eligible faculty member may select either a one-semester sabbatical leave at full compensation or two semesters at three-quarters (75%) compensation.

Fourth-Year (Pre-tenure) Sabbatical
A full-time probationary faculty member is eligible to apply for a fourth year sabbatical for either a one-semester sabbatical leave at full compensation or two semesters at half compensation under certain conditions (as defined in the Collective Bargaining Agreement). Faculty awarded a fourth year sabbatical are eligible for a sabbatical leave six (6) years after they have been granted a fourth year sabbatical leave, where such faculty have complied with all sabbatical leave requirements and have achieved tenure at the University.

Faculty may have SPSS loaded on their computer. The SPSS Installation Request Form is available on the Information and Technology Services web site. Packages may also be purchased through the Faculty Development Fund.

Visiting scholars may be invited to USF with the approval of your Dean. Visiting scholars from overseas must also be approved by the Center for Global Education under the Senior Vice Provost.

Faculty may sign up for one-day, on-campus retreats as well as weekend, off-campus retreats throughout the year. There are also writing retreats designed specifically for ethnic minority faculty. The retreats provide an opportunity for faculty to devote their attention to a specific writing goal. Please contact your dean’s office for more information.