I'm writing an essay, and want to know the promotion rate and average duration from assistant professor to associate professor and associate professor to professor in recent years. Sadly I don't know the data for the US. Could anyone tell me?

  • 2
    Would you explain what do you mean by I haven't known the date in the US ? And you want to know the average duration from assistant professor to associate professor in the whole world or a particular location?
    – Nobody
    Dec 29, 2014 at 8:34
  • 1
    @scaaahu: the OP means "data" not "date".
    – Dan Fox
    Dec 29, 2014 at 8:51
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    I really like the OP to answer that question.
    – Nobody
    Dec 29, 2014 at 8:58
  • @Danfox: I fixed it. Dec 29, 2014 at 15:52
  • @scaaahu Sorry for my careless misspelling......I want to know the date in US
    – Yunzhou GE
    Dec 29, 2014 at 18:59

2 Answers 2


The US National Science Foundation collects a lot of data from surveys of recent doctoral recipients that it publishes on this web page. The precise thing you are looking for (tenure success rate) does not seem to appear, but there is a lot of relevant information. Specific professional societies collect similar information. For instance, the American Mathematical Society publishes an annual survey of information on recent doctoral recipients; it includes data about the salaries and employment situation of recent doctoral recipients in the mathematical sciences.

  • Hello Dan! I know the rate for assistant to associate is 48% in 2010, but it seems no precise data for associate to full, and the average duration neither. Anyway, your answer is really helpful for my eaasy. Thanks for your nice answer!
    – Yunzhou GE
    Dec 29, 2014 at 19:07

Well, I'm sure this is too late for the essay, but I happened to come across some (old) data for US medical school faculty from the AAMC. They look at average number of years to promotion and percentage of faculty promoted within a ten-year period, both from assistant to associate, and associate to full, broken down into various categories (gender, degree earned, whiteness, clinical vs theory, etc).

The 10-year promotion rates, both to associate and full, are generally in the 30-50% range, and for those specifically in tenure-track positions, around 50%.

I suspect the numbers would be higher for Arts & Sciences or Engineering faculty.

  • genuine curiosity: why do you suspect this with regards to faculty in different fields?
    – kbh
    Apr 15, 2015 at 4:14
  • @kbh Personal observation in my field (math) makes me think that most tenure-track people who apply for tenure get it, except at top schools where it's more competitive. Among people I know, many more have gotten tenure than been denied. However, one thing I'm not sure of is how these studies count faculty who leave before getting or being denied tenure. If they count them as not getting tenure, then that skews the numbers downward.
    – Kimball
    Apr 15, 2015 at 5:27
  • @kbh BTW, see this related question: academia.stackexchange.com/q/568/19607
    – Kimball
    Apr 15, 2015 at 5:28

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