To content

Process of the appointment procedure

The sequential steps of an appointment procedure at TU Dortmund University are shown below in chronological order.

Slightly different are the appointment procedures with the waiver of advertisement according to Section 38 of the North Rhine-Westphalia Higher Education Act (Gesetz über die Hochschulen des Landes Nordrhein-Westfalen, HG). In principle, the same rules apply to these procedures as to the appointment procedures with advertisement, except that only one person is evaluated and the appointment proposal refers to only one person.


Dates of a calendar in detail © claudiodivizia​/​

A preliminary meeting is held before each appointment procedure. In this meeting, the Dean's Office of the Department and the Rectorate ascertain, on the basis of the departmental development plans, the content-related orientation of the professorship, the denomination derived from this, and the strategic goals of the new appointment or reappointment. In addition, the preliminary meeting serves to clarify the best possible composition of the appointment committee, questions regarding external committee members, the gender parity of the appointment committee, and other procedural issues. In the case of regular professorships that become vacant, the meeting takes place approximately two years before the retirement of the position holder. In the case of professors accepting a call from another university, it takes place immediately after the previous holder of the position has accepted the call.

After the preliminary meeting, the department elects an appointment committee. It informs the other departments, the Equal Opportunity Officer, the corresponding Department Equal Opportunity Officer and the Appointment Management via its Dean's Office. In addition, the department also points out the possibility of delegating university teachers from the other departments as non-voting members of the committee.

For more information on the composition of the committees, etc., please refer to the page Appointment Committees.

In the first meeting of the appointment committee, the committee develops a proposal for the denomination and the selection criteria that define the requirements for the applicants, and if applicable, as well as the tenure-track criteria. Based on the selection criteria, it prepares the advertisement text for the new professorship to be filled. Samples for the selection criteria, the tenure-track criteria, the advertisement text, and for the invitation to the first meeting can be found in the ServicePortal after logging in.

After the committee has decided on its proposals for denomination, selection criteria and advertisement text, the committee chairperson forwards these to the according Dean's Office. The Dean's Office submits the texts to the department council for decision. If the department council agrees, the Dean's Office combines the proposals into an application for job allocation and applies to the Rectorate for the job allocation and advertisement via the Appointment Management. With the application, the department justifies why the appointment and the chosen denomination of the professorship are necessary from a structural and content-related point of view and which tasks the professorship is to assume in research and teaching. Guidance on how to apply for job allocation can be found in the ServicePortal.

If the Rectorate agrees to the position allocation, the advertisement text and the selection criteria, the advertisement text is published by the Appointment Management in various print and online media. Dissemination of the advertisement to national and international scientific networks or professional societies is done by the according department. In addition, the chairperson actively approaches potentially suitable applicants and draws their attention to the advertisement. In doing so, he or she makes particular use of the search options agreed upon by the committee at its first meeting. In addition, the faculty researches female scientists' databases in order to identify particularly qualified women for the professorship and to invite them to apply.

In principle, applications should be requested by e-mail.

In the second meeting of the appointment committee, the committee first verifies whether there could be bias on the part of the individual committee members (see also the information on bias on the page Principles of appointment procedures).

Committee members who appear to be biased must leave the meeting immediately. After this, the appointment committee - after discussing each individual application and provided that a sufficiently large number of potentially suitable applications has been received - selects the persons who are to be invited to give presentations. The basis for the committee’s decision is the established selection criteria. Here, the committee provides a reasoned assessment of the fulfillment or non-fulfillment of the criteria for each individual application. The committee also checks whether it assesses the applicants in a gender-equitable manner with regard to the criteria. In departments with less than half of the positions for university professors currently filled by women, at least as many women as men or all applicants who meet the required qualifications are to be invited to the presentation in accordance with Section 9 of the Equal Opportunities Act of NRW (Landesgleichstellungsgesetz, LGG NRW).

The invitation to the applicants is usually issued with a notice period of at least four weeks prior to the presentation date in order to give them sufficient time for their preparation and scheduling. Invitations to the department and the members of university to attend application presentations are issued by the Dean's Office.

A sample invitation to the second meeting, the invitation to the applicants and the department and university public, and the sample declarations of bias can be found in the ServicePortal after logging in.

In principle, the application presentation must be a scientific presentation on a topic of the applicant's choice within the scope of the advertised professorship. However, the committee may also specify a topic or also request a trial lecture. Each lecture is followed by an interview with the appointment committee. This serves to deepen the personal impression, to clarify open questions and to give the applicants room for their questions as well as the opportunity to get to know the department beyond the presentation/lecture and the interview. Approximately two to two and a half hours can be scheduled for the application presentations as well as the interview.

To support the appointment committees in planning and organizing the appointments, sample letters and a checklist for organizing application presentations and interviews are available  in the ServicePortal after logging in.

After the application presentations and the interviews, the committee decides in its third meeting which of the invited applicants should be evaluated or whether further persons should be invited for presentation. In doing so, the committee is guided by the impressions gained from the application presentations and interviews and - if requested only with the invitation to the application presentations - by the quality of the submitted research and teaching concepts. At this stage, the committee does not yet rank the applicants.

As soon as the selection of the applicants to be reviewed has been completed, the appointment committee decides which persons should be considered as reviewers. In order to maintain gender parity, the committee should draw up a list of approximately five female reviewers and a list of approximately five male and female reviewers, respectively, and decide on the order in which they should be requested. In total, at least two comparative reviews are to be obtained. The committee is free to ask for a third or even fourth review.

Any apparent bias must also be excluded for the selection of the reviewers. Additionally, the reviewers should be given sufficient time to complete their review. Further information on the reviewers and the review itself can be found on the page Reviewers.

A sample invitation to the third meeting and samples of the reviewers' declarations of bias can be found in the ServicePortal after logging in.

In its fourth meeting, the committee agrees on the proposal for appointment. For this purpose, it discusses the reviews and their assessment of the qualifications of the applicants as well as the rankings made by the reviewers. After evaluating the expert opinions and taking into account its own impressions of the applicants, the committee draws up a so-called appointment list, i.e. it decides in which order the applicants are to be appointed. The Appointment Regulations stipulate that, in principle, a list of three should be drawn up. This is to ensure that if the first person on the list declines, there are further opportunities to successfully complete the appointment process.

When drawing up the list, the committee takes into account that, pursuant to Section 3 (1) of the Appointment Regulations, women are in principle to be given preferential consideration under the conditions of Section 7 of the Equal Opportunities Act of NRW (Landesgleichstellungsgesetz, LGG NRW) in cases of equal suitability, ability and professional performance, unless reasons relating to the person of a competitor prevail. Thus, if the committee cannot identify any relevant differences between a male applicant and a female applicant on the basis of the selection criteria, it will rank a female applicant ahead of a male applicant.

A sample invitation to the fourth meeting can be found in the ServicePortal after logging in.

After the committee meeting, the committee chairperson prepares an appointment report that provides detailed justification for the appointment proposal. A sample with a list of attachments can be found in the ServicePortal after logging in. The student members of the committee have the opportunity to submit their own assessment of the candidates and comments on the appointment procedure for their group and to send these directly to the appointment management or the committee chairperson. Upon completion, the committee chairperson submits the appointment report to the Dean's Office for presentation to the department council. 

The department council, after considering potentially apparent bias, discusses the appointment report and the appointment committee's proposal which is part of it. The Dean's Office shall document this discussion on the appointment proposal in the minutes of the department council meeting. If the department council rejects the appointment proposal, it returns it to the Appointment Committee with appropriate justification. In doing so, the department council can set guidelines for repeating procedural steps, e.g., ask for more detailed justification of certain aspects, request clarification of what it considers to be remaining questions, or demand that a further review is to be obtained.

After the department council has passed a positive resolution, the Dean's Office forwards the appointment report, including all necessary documents, to the Appointment Management, which then forwards it, supplemented by the statements of the students, the Equal Opportunity Officer, the Appointment Commissioner and, if applicable, the Representative of Severely Disabled Persons, to the Rectorate for its resolution.

The Rectorate examines whether the appointment proposal has been properly established. In particular, it examines whether it is free of irrelevant or inappropriate considerations and is conclusively justified on the basis of the selection criteria. If the Rectorate approves the appointment proposal, the President communicates the offer of the professorship to the first-placed candidate, and so on. If all those who are part of the list have rejected the call, the appointment procedure is terminated. As a rule, the professorship is re-advertised after another preliminary meeting.

If the Rectorate intends not to decide on the appointment proposal or not to do so unchanged, it will hear the Dean's Office and then give the faculty council the opportunity to withdraw the appointment proposal and request a new appointment proposal from the appointment committee.

In all cases, information on how to proceed will be provided by the Appointment Management.

Appointment negotiations take place before the offered professorship is accepted. The content of the negotiations focuses mainly on personal remuneration and the assets and equipment which are going to be assigned to the professorship. Together with the Dean of the respective department, the President conducts the corresponding negotiations with appointees. The Dean is not involved in the salary negotiations. If the appointment negotiations lead to the acceptance of the offer, the appointment of the candidate takes place at the corresponding date or the conclusion of a private-law employment contract. This concludes the appointment procedure.