Sabbatical Leave: Frequently Asked Questions

General

  • What is the Sabbatical Leave Program and what is its purpose?

The Sabbatical Leave Program is an opportunity to take leave for study and research, the object of which is to enable faculty to increase their professional efficiency and usefulness to the University. Sabbaticals are classified as related to writing, research, and collaboration.

  • How long can I be on sabbatical leave?

Faculty can request to take sabbatical during one semester (Fall or Spring) or up to one academic year.

  • How many sabbatical leaves can I take during my career at LSU?

The only criterion is that faculty must have completed 6 full years of continuous service to become eligible to apply. Therefore, this question depends on the length of employment.

  • Do I have to travel for a sabbatical?

No. Many sabbaticals are completed here, in Baton Rouge.

  • Do I need to submit a report when I return from sabbatical and when is it due?

Yes, the report requirement is stipulated in the sabbatical agreement and is due to the department head on the first day of classes of the semester following sabbatical. These reports are launched and submitted through LSUFaculty360.

  • What format should this report follow?

The standard form is built in LSUFaculty360 and consists of answering a few questions about the accomplishments made while on sabbatical and the attachment of a photo that best captures the sabbatical purchase. This is all outlined in the notification of the sabbatical decision to faculty as well as the sabbatical agreement. 

Application Process

  • How do I apply for a sabbatical leave?

Applications are launched and submitted through LSUFaculty360 at the beginning of the Fall semester.

  • Where do I find sabbatical leave policies?

You may access Policy Statement 12 using this link.

  • Where do I find sabbatical leave request form?

First, the faculty member must express interest to their director, who communicates the request to the Dean’s Office. Once the request is shared with HRM, the faculty member will have an application task available in LSUFaculty360 under the Workflow tab.

  • What other documents do I need in order to apply for the sabbatical?

PS-36CV is a standard requirement needed for sabbatical requests. Any other supporting documentation, such as letter of invitation from an institution or correspondence from collaborators at other institutions, are required. Some colleges on campus have internal document requirements (e.g. Science requires teaching evaluations).

  • To whom do I direct/send my application?

The application routes directly to the Director/department head for review.

  • Is there a template/guide for completing the application?

Once an application is launched, HRM sends each faculty member a notification that the application is available as well as instructions on how to complete the form. Materials may be accessed on HRM’s website using this link.

  • Can I seek assistance in completing the application for sabbatical?

Any questions can be directed to Jane Cassidy in Office of Academic Affairs.

Timing

  • When should I apply for a sabbatical?

The Office of Academic Affairs publishes a timeline for the sabbatical review cycle each year. Each college has their own internal deadlines for faculty to submit to the unit head and to have applications submitted to the Dean. Dates for the 2020-21 academic cycle may be accessed on this site.

  • How often can I apply for sabbatical?

Faculty must have completed 6 full years of continuous service to become eligible to apply. The “sabbatical clock” restarts following the year the last sabbatical leave was taken.

  • When will I know if my application for sabbatical leave has been approved?

The Office of Academic Affairs will send a notification e-mail (generally sometime during the first week of December). 

  • Can I defer my sabbatical leave?

Yes. A sabbatical change request has to be submitted through LSUFaculty360 and routed through the Director, the Dean, and the Office of Academic Affairs. 

  • When does the sabbatical start?

For 9-month faculty, dates of leave entered into Workday are:
8/15 – 12/31 (Fall)
1/1 – 5/14 (Spring)
8/15 – 5/14 (full year)

However, 9-month faculty are not in a paid status during the summer months so they can remain “on leave” during this time. 

Eligibility

  • Who is eligible to apply for sabbatical leave?

Any faculty member at the rank of Instructor and above who have completed 6 years of full-time continuous service.

  • Do other leaves affect sabbatical eligibility?

Only university approved full leaves with pay.

  • How does sabbatical leave affect years of service?

There is no impact to years of service.

  • Can I apply for promotion while on sabbatical leave?

Yes, as long as faculty are eligible and meet the years of service requirement. 

Responsibilities

  • What is my workload balance during my sabbatical?

Typically, the faculty member is released from teaching and service responsibilities to focus on making progress toward their sabbatical plan.

  • Can I take another job while on sabbatical?

Faculty should consult with the Office of Academic Affairs on this. Sometimes a faculty member receives a stipend or additional compensation for service performed for another organization while on sabbatical, but such arrangements must provide some benefit to the University and must be disclosed in the sabbatical request. The faculty member may also need to complete a PM-11. 

Payment/Funding

  • Is sabbatical leave paid or unpaid?

Half year sabbaticals are at full pay; full year sabbaticals are at half pay.

  • Can I request additional support while on sabbatical, e.g. conference funding?

Faculty should consult with their director on this. 

Issues

  • What if I get sick or injured while on sabbatical leave?

Faculty should contact the HR Benefits team with benefits related questions. 

 

The Office of Faculty Affairs & Professional Development expresses thanks to Kimberly LeCompte in preparing this information.