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Engage in intensive study

The Sabbatical leave Program for Instructional Faculty enables recipients to engage in intensive study in order to become more effective teacher-scholars and enhance their service to the University.

Sabbaticals offer opportunities for faculty to acquire, develop, and share new knowledge and skills in their fields and incorporate these into their pedagogy. This privilege is granted to faculty on the merits of their proposed sabbatical project and their past academic contributions to the university.

What do faculty do on sabbatical?
Write + Publish
78% of faculty publish, present at a conference, or receive external awards or grants during or as a result of their sabbaticals.


Bob Nowlan, English

"I did the vast majority of work on one book and then again did an enormous amount of reading and research, including field research, on a second book of a scope and scale that I would never have begun to imagine writing at an institution like this, given the normal faculty workload it maintains, without the sabbatical."

-Bob Nowlan, English

Walker James



"I have had three sabbaticals. For each one, I wrote a book. There is no way I could have been that productive without the sabbaticals." 

-James S. Walker, Mathematics

tali lee



"I submitted 4 manuscripts for publication in peer-reviewed journals. 3 of the 4 were accepted with the fourth accepted the next year. I could not have accomplished this without the block of time afforded by the sabbatical to work and travel so that I could meet with collaborators in person. Sabbatical leave also provided the flexibility I needed to continue offsite field research into the academic year. Some time was used to initiate a new phase of a long-term collaborative project, which led to being awarded a National Science Foundation grant." 

-Tali Lee, Biology

J. Brian Mahoney, Geology


 "Sabbatical afforded the opportunity to conduct both field research and laboratory analyses with colleagues both in the US and in Argentina.  I was able to focus my efforts in a very concentrated fashion, which ultimately led to my being awarded an NSF grant for basin research in Argentina." -

-J. Brian Mahoney, Geology

Percentages based on results of a 2015 survey with 78 faculty respondents.

Impact Student Learning
68% of faculty say their sabbaticals had a direct impact on student learning, including sabbatical projects that directly involved student researchers.


Maria N. DaCosta

"[The sabbatical] allowed me to live in Taiwan for one year (1995-96). During that time I was a Visiting Professor at National Chung Hsing University, Taipei, and a student (of Chinese language) at Taiwan's Normal University. In addition to participating at two international conferences, I was able to travel extensively in the region. My Economics of Pacific Asia course was most impacted by my sabbatical activities, since not only was I able to incorporate the material that I had acquired and researched but also my personal and professional experiences. Several of my articles became part of the assigned readings for the course. I could also use my experience to more effectively conduct faculty/student collaborative research and capstone projects ."  
-Maria N. DaCosta, Economics


Teresa Sanislo

"The best part of my sabbatical research project has been the impact that it has had on my teaching and possibilities for doing research with students. My project focused on gender, public history, the politics of memory, and American tourism in Europe. I have given lectures on my research in many of my upper level classes and encouraged students to reflect upon their own experiences with narratives of the past that they encountered while traveling and visiting historic sites and museums. I worked on a collaborative project with a student on gender and travel guides to Europe. On a much bigger scale, I used my sabbatical research as the basis for group projects for the Central European Travel Seminar the following year. Twenty-four students worked with me to document and analyze historic sites related to women's history, gender history, and the history of sexuality in Berlin. My students presented posters on their research for CERCA. The theme of the project, gender, public history, and tourism continues to inform my teaching and collaborative work with students long after my sabbatical." 
-Teresa Sanislo, History and Women's Studies 

Percentages based on results of a 2015 survey with 78 faculty respondents.

Travel to Other Institutions
49% of faculty used their sabbaticals to build or maintain connections with peers at home and abroad.


Gretchen Peters

"I went to France to complete my archival research for the book I was writing. It also allowed me to finish translating and analyzing the documents that I identified in France."
-Gretchen Peters, Music & Theatre Arts




Ingolf Vogeler

"For my first sabbatical, I worked with two research institutes in Germany, published a major article in the flagship geography journal and was subsequently invited to be visiting professor in Germany, and conducted further research with two other German professors."
-Ingolf Vogeler, Geography & Anthropology



Yan LI, economics

"With the time afforded by my sabbatical, I was able to go to China and collaborate with a few Chinese colleagues in data collection, which not only provided me with a good set of data for my ongoing research but also successfully established the long-term cooperation and scholarly exchange between my department at UW-Eau Claire and my sabbatical host university in China."
-Yan Li, Economics



Percentages based on results of a 2015 survey with 78 faculty respondents.

Explore New Fields
55% of faculty explore new areas of study or research during their sabbaticals.


Scott Bailey-Hartsel

"I mastered methods that I would have neither the time nor equipment to learn otherwise. For example, the confocal microscopy I learned at U of Minnesota allowed us to characterize new fluorescent probes and obtain two patents and disclosures--all with UW-Eau Claire student assistance. The experience likely helped in our successful grant acquisition of a $500K confocal system (Liz Glogowski, PI) from the NSF. My sabbatical research also allowed me to take two students to Paris to perform cutting-edge research at the Institut Curie, establishing a lifelong collaboration!"
-Scott Bailey-Hartsel, Chemistry


"My sabbatical allowed me to connect with the field in ways that I had not been able to while teaching a 12-credit load. Theory and research-based knowledge do not always translate well in clinical practice. That is why it is necessary to have frequent opportunities to immerse oneself in the 'realities' of the field. My sabbatical allowed me to take some risks by questioning my established knowledge and skills. It allowed me to follow some unexplored paths and engage in some creative endeavors."
-Joe Morin, Special Education


Percentages based on results of a 2015 survey with 78 faculty respondents.

Spotlight on Sabbatical
Ruth Cronje, "A Methodology to Evaluate Situation-Specific Public Scientific Literacy," Fall 2009
Ruth Cronje

I completed two different research projects, both of which involve undergraduate collaborators and both of which were accepted for publication in peer-reviewed journals. One of these projects was selected as a finalist in the ORSP Poster competition, and my student collaborator was selected to present a poster of this work at Posters in the Rotunda in Madison, WI.

I am without doubt that the relaxed space of a sabbatical promotes a profundity of thinking that one cannot do during the hurly burley of a semester. One has time to reflect on the work itself, but also in a far more wide-ranging than normal way on the implications and applications of the work, than one can possibly muster while busy teaching classes. If we value the highest possible calibre of intellectual activity among our faculty, rather than just what we need to do to "get by," then we need to preserve the sabbatical experience.

Peter C. Myers, "Color-blindness: A Philosophic and Political History of an Embattled American Idea," 2011-2012
Peter Myers

I was able to do substantial reading and research, thus to clarify and refine the conception of my project. I was also able to complete two articles and several public presentations of research, and I don't believe I would have been able to produce that volume of published and presented work without the sabbatical.

The research it permitted me to do has very significantly broadened and deepened my learning pertinent to two of my courses, one in American political thought and the other concerning civil-rights issues in U.S. constitutional law. In addition, the reputation I gained through publications facilitated by two sabbaticals (for two different book projects) resulted in my invitation to teach in another institution's summer Master's program for middle and high school educators. This has greatly enhanced my sense of satisfaction at the thought that I might, through my teaching, actually be exercising some positive influence on classrooms beyond those in my home institution.

What I love about my work as a college professor are two things: I love to teach, in particular to reach and influence bright and ambitious students, and I love to do research. I love my subject matter, love to read and learn more of it, and love to publish articles and books and thereby gain expanded professional contacts with scholars I like and respect, along with a measure of recognition outside my home university.

Faculty Sabbatical Program

For funding opportunities while on sabbatical visit Faculty Fellowship Opportunities. ORSP also has a Sabbatical Info Session twice a year, usually in August during the week before classes start and in May during exam week. 


The Faculty Sabbatical Program enables recipients to engage in intensive study in order to become more effective teacher-scholars and enhance their services to the University. Sabbaticals offer opportunities for faculty to acquire, develop, and share new knowledge and skills in their fields and incorporate these into their pedagogy. This privilege will be granted to faculty on the merits of their proposed sabbatical project and their past academic contributions to the university.


The word "sabbatical" is used to refer to the professional leave program authorized by s. 36.11(17), Wisconsin Statutes. According to UWS Administration Policy 160, a faculty member is eligible for a sabbatical award under the following terms:

  • A faculty member must have completed six or more years of full-time instructional service, or its equivalent, in the UW System and not have taken a sabbatical within the UW System during the previous six years of full-time service, or its equivalent. In practice, UW-Eau Claire does not award sabbaticals until after the tenure decision.
  • Leaves of absence, regardless of source of funding (including personal resources), will be excluded in determining a faculty member's years of full-time service.
  • Preference shall be given to those making significant contributions to the university through teaching and service, and who have not had a leave of absence, regardless of source of funding, in the previous four years.
  • A sabbatical will not be awarded to a faculty member who will not return to a permanent position in the year following the sabbatical leave.
  • A sabbatical application will not be considered from anyone who has not completed prior final grant reports.
Types of Sabbaticals

Two types of sabbatical leaves are available to faculty members:

  1. A faculty member may take a sabbatical leave for an academic year and receive institutional financial support at any level up to sixty-five percent of his/her full compensation for that period, in accordance with institutional policies.
  2. A faculty member may take a sabbatical leave for one semester of the academic year and receive financial support from the institution at any level up to a maximum of his/her full compensation for that period.

A number of conditions govern the faculty sabbatical program. These are listed in the academic planning statement on faculty sabbaticals (ACPS 3.3). In addition, please note the following.

  • Any questions about copyrights for the publication of books, laboratory manuals, etc. stemming from projects funded under this program must be addressed before the proposal is submitted for review. Faculty should contact Jill Markgraf, copyright officer, L3005, 715-836-4827,, for additional information.
  • Projects involving human subjects must be approved by the Institutional Review Board for the Protection of Human Subjects before they are implemented. The necessary application forms are available here.
  • Projects involving vertebrate animals must be approved by the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) before they are implemented. The necessary application forms are available here.
  • Publications or presentations resulting from work funded by this leave program should acknowledge that the funds to support the project came, in part, from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Faculty Sabbatical Leave Program.
Application Process

Please consult with your department chair when planning a sabbatical leave. The chair will need to present a detailed plan for how the department will manage the workload during your leave as a part of the application, and may need some time for planning.

The application is submitted via a BPLogix Eform. Please visit the Using eForms and BP Logix page for a detailed explanation of the eForm system. Log in to BPLogix using your UW-Eau Claire ID and password. ORSP staff can assist with the application. Past examples of successful proposals are available on request. Proposals may be sent to the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs for preliminary review and comment three or more weeks before the application deadline.

This application is for Sabbatical Leave only. Funding for activities discussed in your proposal must be sought from other university or extramural sources. It is a good idea to begin discussions with ORSP staff during the development stage of your proposal regarding possible funding sources for the activities you plan to pursue.

Key components of the application form:
  • Basic Proposal information including:
    • Title
    • Sabbatical length requested (Year, or fall or spring semester)
    • Grant applications planned in support of the sabbatical
  • Applicant information including:
    • The date you started working at UW-Eau Claire
    • List of timing and length of all leaves of absence, whether partial or full
  • Short abstract (100 words) that will be shared with the Board of Regents, should your sabbatical leave be recommended. It should include a summary of the nature of the project, its significance, and key expected outcomes. This will be the “public face” of your sabbatical if it is recommended.
  • List of sabbatical goals/aims.
  • List of expected outcomes.

Attach the following as PDF or Word Documents:
1. Project Description (6 to 10 pages, double-spaced, please number pages; bibliography may extend beyond limit). In language clear to faculty in any discipline, please describe the following:

    • Aims of the project and its significance to the discipline
    • Project approach and plan
    • Planned outcomes for the project by which success of the project will be demonstrated
    • Timeline and discussion of why a time reassignment from teaching/service is needed
    • Expected benefits for the applicant, the academic discipline, the university and students as a result of the project

2. Qualifications and Past University Contributions (page limit 3 pages double spaced)

    • Describe your significant contributions in scholarly/creative work and indicate how the proposed project builds on past accomplishments and supports your longer-range professional goals.
    • Describe your significant contributions in teaching
    • Describe your significant contributions to service
    • Describe your significant contributions to EDI

3. Current Professional Vita. The vita should substantiate the qualifications for execution of the project as described above.

4. Letters of Endorsement (optional). Examples include:

    • Letter from a scholar familiar with your work to testify to the significance and expected impact of the proposed sabbatical project.
    • Letter(s) indicating that resources to be provided by any outside entities (e.g., office space at another institution, funding, collaborations) will be available.

Application Due: September 8, 2023

Apply Here

Evaluation and Selection Procedures

In keeping with State Statute, UW System Guidelines, and the UW-Eau Claire Faculty and Academic Staff Rules and Procedures, the UW-Eau Claire selection process is as follows:

The (tenured) members of the University Research and Creative Activity Council review the application materials and forward their ranking, together with all supporting materials, to the Provost. The Council evaluates and ranks applications using these criteria. In fairness to all applicants, proposals that do not follow the guidelines may be significantly downgraded.

In addition to the ranking provided by the Council, the Provost is provided with data, submitted by chairs and vetted by the deans, on the cost or salary savings associated with each sabbatical proposed.  In consultation with the deans, the Provost selects the sabbaticals to be recommended, attending to the merit ranking but also using financial data to maximize the number of sabbaticals awarded.

The Provost will forward the final list of faculty recommended for sabbatical leave to UW-System Administration and will certify that the quality of program offerings will not be reduced below acceptable standards by the absence of those faculty members on sabbatical leave. The Provost will also certify that the screening process followed nondiscriminatory principles. 

Timetable for Sabbatical Proposals

Mid-August (three weeks prior to submission deadline), Deadline for submitting a narrative draft if you wish for input prior to proposal submission. It is better if you submit earlier.  Send proposal draft as an attachment to August 18, 2023

Late August, usually Wednesday of the first week of faculty contract at 12:00 pm in CETL, Presentation on Preparation of Sabbatical Workshop with Q & A Proposals. Tuesday, August 22, 2023, noon-1:00 pm in Centennial 3314

Early September, usually during the second week of class, Deadline for submission of sabbatical application via BP Logix to your chair. Sept. 8, 2023

Mid-September, a week after the submission deadline, Deadline for submission of the form to ORSP by dean. Sept. 15, 2023

First week of November, List of recommended proposals due at UW System Office of Academic Affairs. Approved UW-Eau Claire proposals will be forwarded by the Provost and Vice Chancellor.

Early December, Formal announcement of awards by the Board of Regents.

Final Report

The final report is created on a document that has the goals/aims and expected outcomes from the sabbatical form pasted at the top (request personalized form from ORSP). In 2-4 pages the report should describe the accomplishments of the sabbatical and describe reasons for any changes in direction or scope. The report should be submitted to the chair, the appropriate college dean, and the provost with a copy to the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs by March 1 for Fall semester sabbaticals or October 15 for Spring semester or academic year sabbaticals.

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