Criteria for Election to Fellowship in the American Academy of Microbiology

Nov. 14, 2019

Excellence in the microbial sciences is difficult to define and will differ depending upon the type of work that an individual performs. The Academy understands that assigning levels of excellence is ultimately a judgment call. The overarching criterion is that the individual has made significant contributions to the microbial sciences and that these contributions are well-delineated in the nominating and supporting letters. The decision on whether the nominee is elected to Fellowship is based primarily on those letters.
 
The criteria used by those who review the nominations is further defined as follows.
 
  1. Senior professional status is expected. In academia, the nominee should be an Associate or Full Professor. For those working in a non-academic clinical, public health, or government setting, the individual should be at an equivalent senior level such as Director. For nominees who work in industry, the nomination should explain the nature of the nominee’s senior professional position if it is not obvious.
 
  1. Scholarship should be the hallmark of all individuals nominated for Fellowship. Individuals should have a consistent and long-term (minimum 10 years) track record of significant refereed publications or equivalent scientific communications in the microbial sciences. These may include, but are not limited to, patents, new drug applications, 510K FDA submissions, textbooks, scientific manuals, official government reports, society white papers or practice guidelines, curated blog entries and invited reviews. The highlighting of individual metrics (e.g. H index, citation number, publication number) is acceptable in assessing scholarship, if these numbers are carefully used in the context of the known limitations of these parameters.
 
  1. Service to the microbial sciences at a national or international level is expected, as it represents a commitment to the field. Service may include participation as journal editors or on editorial boards, NIH study sections, grant reviewing for other granting agencies, service on governmental panels, service on company board of directors, work with non-governmental agencies, etc. ASM provides many opportunities for service to the microbial sciences, and nominees with leadership roles within the Society will be highly valued. It is incumbent that the nominator clearly describes the significance of the service activities of the nominee.
 
  1. Teaching and Mentoring are central to the advancement of microbial sciences. Individuals who have an exceptional record of teaching and mentoring will be given strong consideration for election to Fellowship. The scope of this teaching and mentoring should not be limited to the nominee’s institution but should be national or international in scope with broad impact. Examples include developing teaching materials or techniques that have been widely adapted and developing or leading programs that engage the next generation of microbial scientists. It is incumbent that the nominator clearly describes the significance of the teaching and mentoring activities of the nominee.

The Academy is aware that there are excellent scientists from underrepresented groups who deserve this honor but are not nominated. Therefore, Fellows are encouraged to nominate scientists who come from non-traditional groups (e.g., underrepresented minorities, first generation, disabilities, military, non-native languages, resource-restricted) and from resource-constrained countries for election to Fellowship in the American Academy of Microbiology.