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Regarding Takamitsu Sawa’s June 12 article, “School tinkering that hurts“: Contrary to Sawa’s assertion, it is publishing prowess — not instructional effectiveness — that still determines tenure at American universities. Moreover, assistant professors are able to advance to associate professors and beyond if they provide evidence of their academic abilities. Once tenure is achieved, though, it is virtually impossible to get rid of professors who no longer are productive.

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